It’s the day after the premiere and after party for his latest film, Whiplash, and Miles Teller has certainly felt better. Teller stars as Andrew, a jazz drummer at an elite music conservatory who wants so badly to be a musical great that he not only forfeits all personal relationships, he also withstands the emotional and physical abuse of a fiercely intimidating instructor (J.K. Simmons). Teller shares not only Andrew’s musical talent, but also his drive. He’s already wrapped two other potential big hits: Next year’s Divergent follow-up, Insurgent, and the new Fantastic Four reboot, in which he’ll star as Reed Richards. As if that wasn’t enough to keep him occupied, Teller also had to deal with an online brouhaha last month, when he was quoted as saying he felt “dead inside” after wrapping Divergent, forcing the Philadelphia-area native to vehemently (and very frankly) defend himself.
“When I first read Whiplash, I was feeling dead inside,” Teller tells W magazine. “I didn’t have an interesting part [in Divergent], and I’d taken the film for business reasons: It was the first movie I’d done that was going to have an international audience. Teller, who played the bully Peter in Divergent (and will reprise the role in the sequel Insurgent), wasn’t director Damien Chazelle’s first choice for Whiplash. As fate would have it, Dane DeHaan turned the part down, and Teller immediately started drum lessons to demonstrate his commitment.
'Whiplash' tells the story of an ambitious young musician (Miles Teller) locked in a battle of wills with a thorny professor (J. K. Simmons).