All American: Why Layla's Father Was Recast (& Who Plays Him) (2024)


  • JP Keating was recast in All American due to COVID-19 restrictions preventing Elvis Nolasco from returning.
  • Ray Campbell took over the role, with both actors having experience in notable TV shows.
  • The recasting affected the character's impact, with fans noticing the change and its impact on the storyline.

After being introduced in season 1, Layla's dad in All American, JP Keating, was recast with a new actor playing the role afterward. While Spencer James is still the star, characters like Olivia Baker, Jordan Baker, Coop, and Layla Keating have had prominent roles. As their stories grow, more characters are introduced to All American and for Layla, this meant the introduction of her father, mega-music producer JP, during the debut season.

Layla's father appeared in multiple episodes during All American's first two seasons with actor Elvis Nolasco playing the character. JP returned for the first time in All American season 3, episode 7, which finally showed what happened during the summer when the kids went to Las Vegas. While he seemed like an important new member of the All American cast, JP only appeared in a few scenes. However, many fans were still able to pick up on the fact that the character was recast when the character was brought back in season 3 with Ray Campbell taking over.

All American is based on the story of real-life football player Spencer Paysinger.


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Elvis Nolasco Was Unable To Return To The All America Cast

COVID Restrictions Led To The Recasting

All American: Why Layla's Father Was Recast (& Who Plays Him) (2)

The absence of Elvis Nolasco as Layla's father didn't go unnoticed by All American viewers and raised questions about why he was recast. Nolasco confirmed on social media that he was meant to return to the show for season 3, but complications with the ongoing pandemic made it impossible.

Specifically, Nolasco revealed that his absence was caused by COVID-19 restrictions and travel guidelines (via Instagram). All American films in California naturally, but Nolaso is a New York native and could not head out west when necessary. As a result, the show had no other choice but to recast Layla's father.

All American's Two JP Keating Actors Explained

The Actors Have Appeared On Shows Like Godfather Of Harlem And Breaking Bad

Before stepping into the role of Layla's dad on All American, Elvis Nolasco was likely best known for his role on the anthology series American Crime. Nolasco appeared in season 1 as Carter Nix and in season 2 as Chris Dixon. He has also worked with filmmaker Spike Lee on a number of occasions, going back to Clockers in 1995 and most recently with Lee's TV version of She's Gotta Have It. Luckily, since being recast on All American, Nolasco has remained working with roles in Godfather of Harlem and Manhunt.

Ray Campbell is the actor who was brought in to fill the role of JP Keating. Campbell is likely most recognizable to fans as Tyrus, one of the henchmen of Gus Fring in Breaking Bad. He was present and killed alongside Gus himself during his iconic death scene. He also reprised his Breaking Bad character on Better Call Saul in several episodes. Campbell has also appeared on episodes of How to Get Away with Murder and The Gifted.

How The Recast Impacted The Show

The Change In Actors Came At A Bad Time For The Character

All American: Why Layla's Father Was Recast (& Who Plays Him) (3)

Given the reason for the recasting, there were some who wondered if it was temporary and if Elvis Nolasco would return as Layla's dad on All American season 4. However, Ray Campbell continued on with the role across the seasons and is expected to return in All American season 7. It makes sense that the show would stick with the recasting. As noticeable as it might have been the first time, switching back again would just be needlessly confusing for fans.

In terms of acting talents, both Nolasco and Campbell are effective performers. However, it is hard to deny that the recasting affected the impact of the character. Nolasco helped introduce the character, and despite his limited screen time, he was able to establish himself as a caring father who could potentially be there for Layla when she needed him. It is likely that the idea was for there to always be conflict in the relationship, however, with Campbell taking over the role, it coincided with JP and Layla not seeing eye to eye.

Had it been the same actor, this might have felt like a fitting development between the two characters. However, the recasting on All American made it easier to see JP as a new character and thus made it easier to dislike him when he started acting differently. It remains to be seen what the story has in store for JP, but hopefully, Campbell will have a chance to turn the character around.

All American: Why Layla's Father Was Recast (& Who Plays Him) (4)
All American

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This sports drama, inspired by the real-life journey of football player Spencer Paysinger, follows a high school student from south L.A. when he is recruited to play for Beverly Hills High.

Samantha Logan , Cody Christian , Monet Mazur , Taye Diggs , Jalyn Hall

Release Date
October 10, 2018

Streaming Service(s)
Netflix , HBO Max

Nkechi Okoro Carroll
  • All American (2018)

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