POP-Corn: American Idol, Teens help Teens & More!
Tasty tidbits on your celebrity faves!
From Gerri Miller, for the Ink Splot 26 Celeb Beat
Hello and welcome to POP-Corn, your source for cool news from the world of entertainment. You may remember the POP-Corn column from Scholastic News Online. Well, this summer it's on The Splot! We'll be bringing you a new jam-packed edition every other week, so be sure to tune in every other Friday all through the summer! (And on the other Fridays, STACKS Staffers will be posting their own Book Flap columns clueing you in to all the latest happenings with your favorite books, series, authors, and page-to-screen adaptations. It's all part of our first Summer on The Splot!)
Winning American Idol came as quite a surprise to Kris Allen. “I felt shocked almost every week that I made it. And to beat Adam, I was really shocked,” he confided a few hours after Ryan Seacrest announced his name. “Adam deserved it just as much as I do. He's an amazing performer,” added Kris, who became close with Adam Lambert when they roomed together early in the competition. “The best thing is I made some really good friends — the tour is going to be a blast!”
Kris, who has dreamed of a singing career since he was 13, is proof that you should never give up on something you love. “I tried for so long, and it happened, and it's been the coolest experience ever. If you want to do something, go after it. And if you fail a little bit, just keep going.”
Kris will soon get to work on his debut album, and runner-up Adam will too. “My dream is to make a really good record, do something new, push people's buttons, push the boundaries a little bit, open people's minds,” Adam said, not upset about coming in second. “I got to sing with Queen and KISS. First or second, it doesn't matter to me. I got to sing with two great heroic rock bands!” he declared, happy to make it this far. “We both get to do great things in the future. For me, it's not about what happens tonight, it's about tomorrow.”
Adam was grateful that throughout the competition he was able to sing, be, and wear whatever he wanted. “I like things that are different, things that make you look,” he said about his style. “I don't like to blend in. I like to stand out.” When he was younger, he was sometimes afraid to take such risks, he admitted, “but I pushed myself to the point where it wasn't scary anymore.”
He and Kris are very different, Adam noted, “but we found a way to get along and have a common bond through music but also just through talking and getting to know each other. If there's anything that can come from this experience that I hope all the fans out there pick up is that even if you're really different there's a way to get along with each other.”
Season 6 runner-up Blake Lewis wished both well in the future and on the summer Idol tour. “That's where I had the most fun because you get to connect with the audience,” said Blake, who'll have a new album out October 6th. Queen Latifah, who performed with Lil Rounds on the Idol season finale, advised both to “get some sleep! You're going to need it because you're going to be working very hard,” she said. “Everyone has the potential to be a big star after they leave the show,” she added, and KISS singer Paul Stanley agreed. “Nobody lost tonight,” he said. “They're both champions.”
TEENS HELP TEENS
Last Christmas, actress Nathalia Ramos (Bratz) and her BFF Bosilika 'Bobo' An visited Children's Hospital Los Angeles and were troubled to find plenty of toys for younger kids but nothing fun for the teenage patients. “So we decided to do something just for the teens,” said Nathalia, who rounded up friends to help. The result was the Bash of All Bashes, a May 17th fundraiser that enabled the girls to outfit the hospital's teen lounge with music, computers, and games like Guitar Hero. “We're just overwhelmed to see it all come together,” said Nathalia, who plans to arrange more benefits. “This is just the start. We want to inspire other people to do the same thing. A lot of teens feel, 'I'm young, that's for my parents to do. I can't make a difference.' But you can. It doesn't matter how old you are. You can make a difference.”
Nathalia, who'll attend college at USC this fall, has been busy with her “new passion” for philanthropy, but she hasn't given up acting. She'll be seen next in the British independent movie Shadows From the Sky.
“I think it's important for everyone to reach out and help, and to see teens helping each other is really what I stand for,” said Bash guest Monique Coleman. The High School Musical star is writing a self-help advice book called From Ramen Noodles to the Red Carpet: A Guide to Becoming Who You Are Without Forgetting Who You Were. “It's about how to stay yourself in this industry and not lose sight of who you are,” she explained.
Another Bash guest, Wizards of Waverly Place's David Henrie, isn't writing a book, but he's reading a major one. “This year my New Year's goal was to read the Bible start to finish. I'm almost done with the Old Testament. It's a big book and it's hard to read it all, but it's one of my goals,” he said at the Bash event. On a break from the Disney Channel sitcom till June, he's excited about the special Wizards movie that will air in August. “Six weeks in Puerto Rico was awesome,” he said. “Getting to shoot in the rainforest, mountains, inside caves — it was great!”
WHAT TO WATCH
It'll be a hot summer on Disney Channel! Starting this weekend, there will be lots of specials, movies, and new episodes to look forward to, including a 90-minute crossover episode called Wizards on Deck with Hannah Montana aboard the SS Tipton. Cody Linley guests on Hannah Montana on June 7 (7:30 p.m.), and the same day Selena Gomez guests as herself on Sonny With a Chance (8:30p.m.).
The hit animated movie Wall*E premieres on Starz May 30th at 9 p.m.
Andy Samberg hosts the MTV Movie Awards May 31st at 9 p.m.
Former American Idol contestant Sanjaya Malakar is one of the celebs who'll be dropped into the Costa Rican jungle on the reality show I'm a Celebrity . . . Get Me Out of Here!, premiering on NBC June 1st at 8:00 p.m.
In theaters, Pixar's animated hot air balloon adventure UP opens today, and on June 5th Will Ferrell discovers The Land of the Lost.
That's it for this edition of POP-Corn! Don't forget to check back June 12th for more celebrity scoop!
— Gerri Miller, for the Ink Splot 26 Celeb Beat
Photo of Kris & Adam courtesy of Michael Becker/FOX
Photo of Adam & Kris onstage courtesy of Ray Mickshaw/Fox
Photo of Blake, Kim, Mandisa courtesy of Gerri Miller
Photos from the Bash of All Bashes courtesy of Gerri Miller