We recently sat down with Latin bombshell Jessie Camacho as she returns to her hometown of Miami to host the music-themed Telemundo show Descontrol (Out of Control). Find out how this Florida police officer, turned reality show icon, turned Host-Actress is embracing her role as the face of the Spanish Network… and her greatest role of all- motherhood.
Jessie first garnered fame at the beginning of the reality TV craze. Mark Burnett’s Survivor was one of the top rated shows on television and one of few in its new genre. Enter Season 3 contestant Jessie Camacho. At the time, Jessie was five years into her career as a police officer, following in the footsteps of her grandfather and her military-involved family.
“I heard about the opportunity to apply for Survivor through my sister and something sparked. When I found out I was accepted I went to my Commander and Sheriff and requested a three months leave. I wasn’t sure if it would be granted especially because it was for filming a television show. I also had to ask the force not to make my absence public which is something that isn’t usually allowed. But they let me go and had my job waiting when I got back. I experienced something special on Survivor. Although I was the second one voted off, (when that happens you stay on during the remainder of filming), the booted contestants got to travel on a huge safari across Africa. When it was all over I knew that I wanted to stay and learn about the culture and community and so I did.”
Jessie ended up spending time working at the Shompole Lodge. “It’s a community where they teach the Maasai how to use the resources of the land to earn money through tourism. It is a merger of volunteer groups who run the lodge for ten years and then it is given back to the native community. I worked there for about a month and a half. I was due to return to the U.S. Sept. 15th and decided to visit Lamu on my way back when September 11th happened. It’s hard to believe we just celebrated the tenth year anniversary. I remember a local woman trying to rush me into a room and show me the TV which was one of two televisions in the whole village. I thought she was showing me a movie and then I realized what it was and like so many watched helplessly as the Towers collapsed. I remember my mouth dropped in devastation. My flight was delayed until Sept. 24. When I got back to the U.S. my time at the community project and this event had changed my life. I came back with a different mentality about the future.”
Jessie’s first year stateside was filled with a lot of TV appearances as part of her contract with CBS. “You do a lot of interviews. I was on The Today Show, Regis and Kelly, Howard Stern, David Letterman, and countless radio stations and personal appearances. I was living in Orlando when I first returned but started traveling to Miami for more work opportunities. My first break was hosting a small music show and my career just snowballed from there.”
Jessie’s hosting jobs have included the music show Ritmo Y Sabor on Telemundo, The Roof on Telemundo’s Mun2 channel, Jamz on HTV, and Mega Especiales on Mega TV. The hosting work was great but I really wanted to work as an actress in TV and film and was ready for a change of pace so I moved to LA. I packed up my stuff and shipped my car. The first year I traveled back and forth working in Miami and auditioning for opportunities in LA. After that, I decided to make LA my home and left my work in Florida behind me.” This focus paid off and she booked several films including The Box, Crossbones, Champagne Gang, Curse of Alcatraz, and Treasure of the Black Jaguar– an action-adventure film set to release in 2012. She also booked a TV role on ABC’s The Forgotten opposite Christian Slater, ironically playing an undercover cop and a recurring role on Season 6 of Comedy Central’s Reno 911, playing a radio sidekick name ‘La Chupi Chupi’.
But as luck would have it, music would once again find Jessie, even on the west coast. “For whatever reason, my career has always been tied to music, even though I am not a musician myself. I was offered the opportunity to host the show Que Buena TV on Estrella TV, Remix TV, a Las Vegas based TV program, and Desveladas”.
Telemundo’s Descontrol also started on the West Coast. It originally filmed in Los Angeles, Mexico and now Miami. The format is to have an out of control fun television show with sexy dancers, current artists interviews, show the latest videos and hold dance competitions, among other things.
In April 2011 Jessie was blessed with the birth of a baby girl.
Even though she now claims Miami as her home, the Telemundo star often travels to LA and elsewhere for work. “I will be in LA at the end of October to be a red carpet host and presenter for the Regional Mexican Billboard Awards. The show airs October 27th on Telemundo.”
When Jessie is not filming she continues her work of giving back stateside. “After working at the Shompole Ranch, I knew charity would remain an important part of my life”. Jessie participated in Rally for Kids an event organized to benefit PADRES Contra El Cancer (Parents Against Cancer) hosted by Eva Longoria. She has served as the face of Bullets for Peace,, a charitable organization that collects bullets to encourage an end to gang violence. She was also the face of the fall collection for Glaudi Fall Collection, where the profits went to a kids refuge in El Salvador.
Descontrol airs every Saturday on Telemundo at 1 PM.
Find out more about Jessie Camacho.