World now seeing what Irmo High grad 'can do'

There's a new face in the world of major motion pictures, and, it's none other than Columbia native Jeremy DeCarlos.

The 2000 Irmo High School graduate is a featured performer in Cartoon Network's live-action movie, "Ben 10: Alien Swarm." The movie debuted Thanksgiving week on the Cartoon Network and was released earlier this week on Blu-Ray and DVD.

It marked the most significant theatrical work to date for DeCarlos, who also has appeared in several independent films.

"It's kinda surreal," said the 28-year-old, who portrays a tough biker named Helio in the live movie version of the popular children's cartoon.

"Ben 10" was filmed earlier in the year in Atlanta, and DeCarlos - whose acting roots are on the stage - said one of the biggest adjustments he had to make during filming was to the rapid pace.

"I'm very oriented to the stage," he said. "Once you do film work, you have to get adjusted to how they do things. When they're ready to go, they're ready to go."

Now living in Charlotte, DeCarlos initially studied drama at Irmo High School, at Workshop Theater and at the S.C. Shakespeare Company.

He received his bachelor's degree in theater performance from Winthrop University. While there, he landed spots in several regional and national commercials and appeared on "Dawson's Creek," the Food Network's "Date Plate," and in "The Ultimate Gift," "Shallow Hal," "Talladega Nights," and "One Tree Hill."

DeCarlos has performed at the Actor's Theatre of Charlotte, including in "Take Me Out," and "Southern Rapture." The two shows were honored as the season's outstanding drama and outstanding comedy, respectively, by the Metrolina Theater Association.

But rarely were his imaginative skills required as heavily as during the filming of "Ben 10." Because so much of the movie was driven by special effects, DeCarlos said he and his fellow cast members often had to react to things (like attacking aliens overhead) that weren't really there.

"It's very daunting," he said. "Once I got accepted into the project, there was a lot of pressure for me to perform to their standards."

But his efforts have paid dividends. DeCarlos is featured in several independent film projects that are now being shopped around for release. Among those is "Insignificant Others," which was filmed in Charlotte.

And since his Cartoon Network appearance, DeCarlos has been receiving calls from various talent agents and casting directors.

"Now they're seeing what I can do."