Movies / TV

Nick Cannon Makes It Pop

Nick Cannon Makes It Pop

By Angela McLean

Nick Cannon does it all – he’s a musician, actor, businessman, media mogul and the co-creator and executive producer of the hit show MAKE IT POP! If you haven’t watched the show yet, you’re missing out on something BIG! It follows four music-loving friends – Sun-Hi (Megan Lee), Corki (Erika Tham), Jodi (Louriza Tronco) and Caleb (Dale Whibley) – who form a K-pop-inspired band while attending classes at their school, Mackendrick Prep. Talk about an awesome extra-curricular activity!

XO-IQ - MAKE IT POP, Season TwoMAKE IT POP’s second season, which premiered in January, has given fans new characters, new drama and new music and become one of YTV’s top-rated programs. Just before filming for season two wrapped up, Nick flew out to surprise the cast on set and filmed a special cameo for the finale.

In the finale airing on YTV February 4 at 7:30 p.m. ET, the pressure is on as Sun-Hi, Jodi, Corki and Caleb do final preparations for XO-IQ’s first ever nationally televised performance. In the midst of romantic tensions, new life-changing offers and a serious threat from Mackendrick’s Principal Diona to shut down the performance, will the band be able to pull it together in time to wow their star-packed audience? No spoilers here: you will have to watch to find out!

Vervegirl sat down with Nick Cannon on set for an exclusive chat about his role on the show, bringing K-pop out west and how MAKE IT POP makes it pop.

Vervegirl: Nick, you’re back in Toronto to shoot a guest spot on MAKE IT POP. What can you tell us about your role?

My role is me! I made a cameo last season as myself and it’s the same thing this time around. We find out that I’m an alumnus of Mackendrick Prep and now I’m actually trying to spread the news and the word about some cool things that are going down at the school. It’s a lot of fun!

VG: Fans of the show may be surprised to know you are one of the co-creators and executive producers! Take us through some of the fun things you do.

I am very involved! I get to look over storylines when the writers are writing but I think it all goes back to the original concept which is what I created. I had really wanted to produce a show in the world of K-pop. My executive stuff at Nickelodeon and in the development phase is making sure that this show gets picked up every season. Everyone’s so talented and I’m very happy.

Dale Whibley and Nick Cannon on set of MAKE IT POPVG: When you were creating the show, what was your vision?

Ultimately, I wanted to do a show about K-pop and I thought it would be really cool to show K-pop set out west. My partner Tommy Lynch and I got together and figured out some cool things, started doing some worldwide casting and here we are today.

VG: If you could have any K-pop artist guest star on the show, who would you choose?

G-Dragon for sure. (FUN FACT: Dale Whibley, who plays Caleb on the show, told us on set that he is a big fan of G-Dragon! Check out more of our interview with Nick and Dale here.)

VG: Season two of MAKE IT POP features a lot of great, catchy music, which is all featured on XO-IQ’s new album, ‘Tomorrow Is Ours.’ Which song is your favourite?

I don’t have a favourite – they’re all great!

VG: How do you think MAKE IT POP makes it pop?

I think MAKE IT POP is cool, innovative and something that’s never really been on television before. To bring music and comedy all together in each episode sets the show apart.

Thank you, Nick! Follow Nick on Twitter @NickCannon and don’t miss the season finale of MAKE IT POP on YTV February 4 at 7:30 p.m ET.

‘Tis The Season to Make It Pop

‘Tis The Season to Make It Pop

By Angela McLean

If you are looking for ways to make your Christmas pop, consider adding some EDM-infused pop beats, colourful costumes and hip dance moves to the mix. This combination forms the basis of the new hit musical comedy series MAKE IT POP which follows four music-loving friends – Sun-Hi (Megan Lee), Corki (Erika Tham), Jodi (Louriza Tronco) and Caleb (Dale Whibley) – who form a K-pop-inspired band while attending classes at Mackendrick Prep School. The show is co-created and executive produced by Nick Cannon. If that’s not incredible enough, what makes MAKE IT POP so unique is that the band on the show, XO-IQ, also performs together in real life!

'All The Love'XO-IQ has delivered a special Christmas treat for their fans who have been eagerly awaiting the premiere of season two – a special MAKE IT POP Christmas episode! In the special, Sun-Hi, Corki, Jodi and Caleb look forward to the freedom and excitement that comes with their winter break. However, a massive blizzard rolls in and threatens to put a stop to all of their fun plans. Will the mysterious new boy, Linc, be able to save them and help them find the true meaning of the holidays? You will have to tune in and see!

XO-IQ still has more to give to their fans. Their holiday EP, ‘All The Love,’ which came out November 20, features a trio of covers and original holiday songs. Next up is the release of their sophomore album ‘Tomorrow Is Ours,’ which is out December 18 and features music from season two of MAKE IT POP.

Vervegirl went on set and caught up with Dale Whibley (Caleb) and Nick Cannon, who was in town to surprise the cast, to chat about season two, making dreams come true and the best Christmas carols.

Vervegirl: How would you describe MAKE IT POP to someone who has never seen an episode?

Dale: It’s a show about these four kids who really just want to make their dreams come true. They all come from different worlds and they really have the same goal and that’s to make this band a success.

Caleb (Dale Whibley) in MAKE IT POPVG: Dale, tell us about your character Caleb and what’s new with him in season two!

Dale: Caleb Davis is a crazy, outgoing DJ who makes the music for the group XO-IQ. He went through some awkward troubles last year getting along with the girls and talking to other people in general but this year he’s coming out of his shell. He goes through some troubles with Jodi which are a little crazy but they bring him out of his comfort zone. You get to see the real Caleb and see what he’s really turning into.

VG: What are you looking forward to sharing with the fans in season two?

Dale: A lot more music. The difference between season one and season two is that it has evolved into something bigger. Club Ri Ry is even bigger, the wardrobe is flashier and the music has evolved more. It’s all a step up.

VG: If you could have any K-pop artist guest star on season two, who would you choose and why?

Dale: G-Dragon because he’s sick.

VG: Fans have a lot to look forward to in addition to the arrival of season two in January, including an awesome Christmas special this month! What can fans expect from that?

Dale: The Christmas episode is not necessarily your typical feel-good Christmas special, but it’s your Christmas special with a MAKE IT POP twist. It’s not necessarily Christmas; it’s the holidays. We capture every aspect. We’ve got Jodi who we find out is from another religion, and we have everything coming together as one. It’s really just a feel-good, happy, fun thing.

Nick: There’s some really cool Christmas music.

VG: On top of the Christmas special, XO-IQ just released a holiday EP, ‘All The Love.’ What’s your favourite Christmas carol?

Nick: “Jingle Bells”!

Dale: “Deck the Halls” is always a good one. “Jingle Bells” is a good one too.

Dale Whibley and Nick Cannon on set of MAKE IT POPVG: The music in season two is bigger and better than ever before and it will all be featured on XO-IQ’s new album, ‘Tomorrow Is Ours.’ Which song is your favourite?

Dale: That’s a hard one. I love our Christmas stuff! “Jing, Jing, Jingle,” which actually came out on our holiday EP, is one of my favourite songs from season two by far.

VG: How do you think MAKE IT POP makes it pop?

Dale: I think it really brings everything that you need to see on TV that you haven’t seen on TV before into one show, season after season and episode after episode. Everybody has someone that they can look up to and follow and watch and it’s just great to see.

Thank you Dale and Nick! You can get XO-IQ’s holiday EP, ‘All The Love,’ on iTunes now. Also, look out for ‘Tomorrow Is Ours,’ the new album by XO-IQ, available Friday, December 18.

Don’t miss the MAKE IT POP Christmas special on Nickelodeon (U.S.) tonight – December 5 – at 9 p.m. ET and on YTV (Canada) Thursday, December 17 at 7 p.m. ET.

Stay tuned for more of Vervegirl’s exclusive interview with Nick Cannon on set of MAKE IT POP!

Meet XO-IQ!

Meet XO-IQ!

By Angela McLean

Megan Lee, Louriza Tronco, Erika Tham and Dale Whibley are 4 people who really know how to make it pop. They star on YTV’s newest musical comedy series MAKE IT POP, which tells the story of 4 music-loving classmates who become bandmates after they form a band called XO-IQ. The show features awesome music and dancing, cool costumes and plenty of laughs! Although all of the events on the show are fictional, XO-IQ is also a group off-screen and they gave an exciting, high-energy performance at the YTV Summer Beach Bash earlier this month.

Vervegirl sat down with XO-IQ to talk about staying in sync, attending the Kids Choice Awards and what their fans have to look forward to.

Vervegirl: XO-IQ shines on MAKE IT POP! Tell us about the show.

Megan: The show is about 4 freshmen who attend a school called Mackendrick Prep and they form a band called XO-IQ – that’s us! We tried to audition for the school play but the thing is freshmen don’t get the leads so that’s the point of the first season and all the adventures that we get into. There’s romance and really cool music.

VG: You are 4 very distinct personalities but you each complement each other. What do each of you bring to XO-IQ and how do you stay in sync?

Louriza: I think we all know each other’s strengths and what we can provide in the group and how we can help out. I’m a little more hip-hop trained and based for dance, Megan does more singing and Erika just loves being on stage and she has that flavour with the audience.

MAKE IT POPDale: We’ve really family oriented ourselves so we’re all kind of together and it keeps us at a balanced level for when we go on stage.

VG: Each of the performances on the show are amazingly well-choreographed. Did you have a dance background coming into the show?

Erika: Personally, not at all.

Louriza: YOU OWN IT GIRL!

Erika: I honestly have never danced before the show. Megan and Louriza are both really trained and super great at what they do so they really helped me out and Addy, our choreographer, and Cora, my dance mentor, are great too.

VG: How much time do you spend learning the choreography for each episode?

Megan: It takes at least 3 hours. We are on a really tight schedule so we never have a set schedule for rehearsals. Whenever we have time between shoots we rehearse together.

VG: MAKE IT POP is co-produced by Nick Cannon. Have you had the chance to meet him and if so, what was that like?

Dale: We had some fun with him on set. Then, we had the chance to go over to the Kids Choice Awards out in Los Angeles and he walked us down the carpet. He introduced us to so many people and he was really nice to us.

Megan: He’s really cool. He played a really father-like role during the show.

VG: Why do Vervegirl readers HAVE to watch MAKE IT POP?

XO-IQ at the YTV Summer Beach BashMegan: If you love music, and drama…

Louriza: If you like being happy, then you should watch the show!

Dale: Bright colours, awesome music…

Megan: We have fun outfits!

VG: Who are some of your biggest musical influences?

Louriza: I love Jessie J. She’s the bomb. I think Bruno Mars just owns the stage when he’s doing his set. He has his band and everything, but he just takes over the spotlight.

Dale: A couple of DJs. DVBBS is great. They’re a great performing group. Skrillex is always great. I just love my EDM.

Megan: I love Taylor Swift, mainly because I’m totally a country girl! I play the guitar and I love to write my own music so these days I really look up to Taylor Swift.

Erika: I love Rihanna. I think she’s so effortless and just so cool.

VG: What’s next for you?

Megan: We’re working on the second season. Lots of new music!

Erika: This season is crazy. I think fans are really going to be blown away.

Megan: There’s going to be some new characters as well. People are getting hyped for season one right now but we just want to let them know that season two is even better so there’s so much to look forward to.

Dale: You have to make sure you watch season one because it gets intense. It’s a crazy stir that once you come into season two it just makes it all even better.

Get ready to make it pop with XO-IQ! MAKE IT POP makes its Canadian debut on Wednesday, September 9 with two back-to-back episodes beginning at 7:00PM EST on YTV.

Watch XO-IQ’s performance at the YTV Summer Beach Bash whenever and wherever you want by clicking to YTV’s YouTube channel.

Meet Charlie and Kolton!

Meet Charlie and Kolton!

By Angela McLean

Think back to some of your favourite childhood toys. Now, imagine one of them blowing up your house! That’s the premise of YTV’s hit show SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED, starring talented teens Charlie Storwick and Kolton Stewart. In addition to being business partners on the show, Charlie and Kolton are musical partners in real life. Much like their on-screen characters, Charlie and Kolton are energetic and full-of-life! Their cover of Meghan Trainor’s “Lips Are Movin” had the crowd at YTV’s Summer Beach Bash dancing and singing along.

Vervegirl met up with Charlie and Kolton to talk about toys, ghosts, Ellen DeGeneres and more!

Vervegirl: You both star on YTV’s hit show SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED. Tell us about the show and your characters, Piper and Jarvis.

Kolton: The show is about this 14-year-old kid named Jarvis. He gets a toy for Christmas and it blows up his house. So, he goes to the toy company and sues them and in the lawsuit he ends up getting the toy company. He hires all of his friends and it’s all of these teenagers running a toy company!

Some-Assembly-RequiredCharlie: Piper happens to be one of the friends he hires and she handles the technical side of the company and does the video games. She’s really fun to play. She’s sarcastic, ironic and a punk. Her and I are very similar.

VG: What was your favourite toy to work with on the show?

Kolton: They are all so much fun! Once, we had this big thing of Kooky-Dough and it was literally like this big ball of clay.

VG: Netflix recently showed a lot of love to SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED and picked it up around the world. How does it feel for you both to be reaching a whole new international audience?

Charlie: I’m really excited to meet new fans and build a fanbase out there and share our project with the world.

VG: Why do Vervegirl readers HAVE to watch SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED?

Kolton: It’s got your classic comedy that everybody likes in a sitcom but it also has another dimension of drama. There are a lot of relationships and love interests so I think the show covers all the bases. Also, the characters themselves are very different so it connects with every kind of personality.

Charlie: There’s definitely a lot of energy, a lot of fun and a lot of crazy things. There’s even a rollercoaster which is pretty cool. It’s a great show.

VG: Charlie, you just released your new solo single, “Ghosts”, which is an incredible edgy pop song. Tell us more about how “Ghosts” came to be and what inspired it.

Charlie: I actually wrote the song a couple years ago. It was really late at night and I was sitting in my room and I heard a noise and it kind of scared me a bit! I punched in a few lines because I got in this mindset of ghosts. I was given an opportunity to make it into a single and it just wrote itself. I’m really proud of it and really excited to share it. It’s dark pop so I feel like it’s a cross of Sia with Lana Del Rey with Lorde. Those are 3 people I really admire.

VG: Charlie, you won season 4 of YTV’s THE NEXT STAR back in 2011. How has your sound evolved since then?

Charlie: It’s definitely become a little edgier and I’ve found my sound more. I’m discovering myself as an artist a little more every year.

VG: Kolton, you and your friend Myles were invited to perform on The Ellen DeGeneres Show back in 2012! Tell us how that experience came about and what you were feeling when you got the call.

Kolton: So cool! I was 12 years old at the time and I always sang but I never did a YouTube video. I was at Myles’ house one night because we were filming a show and we decided to post a YouTube video. Actually, we were just playing and Myles’ mom recorded it and then she put it on YouTube. It was just crazy! It went viral and by 20,000 views Ellen saw it and she called us up and asked us to be on her show. I thought it was fake until we got there. It was an unreal experience. She’s amazing and just the way she is on camera.

Charlie and Kolton at the YTV Summer Beach BashVG: Kolton, around the same time, you also connected with Justin Bieber. Has he given you any good advice?

Kolton: He has! It’s been really cool to know him because he’s doing what I want to do. He is so successful so to be backstage at his concerts and see the hard work that’s put in and see how to get there is very good. He’s been a very good mentor.

VG: Kolton, these days, you post covers of popular songs on your YouTube channel. What has been one of your favourite songs to cover? What are some songs you would potentially like to cover in the future?

Kolton: All of them have been fun. I love covering Ed Sheeran’s songs and I just recently did Walk the Moon’s “Shut Up and Dance” which was a lot of fun because I like dancing so I incorporated dancing into the cover. I don’t know what’s next just because I’ve been so busy but literally tomorrow I’m going to take a look at the charts and probably get one up soon.

VG: Who are some of your biggest musical influences?

Charlie: Sia, Lorde, The Beatles, Lana Del Rey…I just love The Beatles! Also, this band called Mother Mother and Shawn Mendes.

Kolton: Ed Sheeran, Bruno Mars and Justin Timberlake. Those are kind of my 3 and I’m hopefully going to put my own music into that range. I also love Ray Charles, Elton John and Stevie Wonder.

VG: What advice do you have for budding musicians?

Charlie: Definitely stick to your roots, know who you are and stay confident in your decisions.

Kolton: Never give up. It can get tough and it can get discouraging but if it’s what you love, nothing should stop you from it.

VG: What’s next for you?

Charlie: We’re filming season 3 of SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED.

Kolton: Hopefully more music and acting.

Thank you, Charlie and Kolton! Catch SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED on YTV and Netflix now. Follow them on Twitter at @sooocharlie and @kolton_stewart.

Watch Charlie and Kolton’s performance at the YTV Summer Beach Bash whenever and wherever you want by clicking to YTV’s YouTube channel.

YTV Summer Beach Bash Makes A Splash

YTV Summer Beach Bash Makes A Splash

By Angela McLean

It was the hottest family concert event of the summer and Vervegirl was there! The YTV Summer Beach Bash brought out waves of fans to Canada’s Wonderland Splash Works on August 8 for a fun day filled with live performances and exclusive meet and greets with YTV stars. This year, the entertainment roster was bigger and better than ever and featured some of this summer’s leading young talent, including GIRL MEETS WORLD star Sabrina Carpenter and “Cheerleader” singer OMI. How’s that for making waves!

YTV Summer Beach Bash Hosts

In between the stellar on-stage performances, YTV hosts Suki, Victor, Lisa and Carlos kept the energy levels in the crowd high, initiating sing-alongs and inviting a lucky few on stage for giveaways. The guys and gals from GAME ON, THE STANLEY DYNAMIC, MAX AND SHRED and SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED were also on hand at the event site to mingle with their fans and take pictures.

As an added bonus, every Summer Beach Bash ticket came with full admission to Canada’s Wonderland and Splash Works where the water was flowing and the rides were in full swing! Even the stars couldn’t help but get their fix – performer Francesco Yates asked for his fans’ input on which rides to visit and Sabrina Carpenter hit up Leviathan with her band.

Vervegirl caught up with all of this year’s headlining performers – Francesco Yates, Charlie Storwick & Kolton Stewart from SOME ASSEMBLY REQUIRED, Sabrina Carpenter, Shawn Hook, OMI and XO-IQ from MAKE IT POP – before they rocked the stage to talk about getting pumped up, making people happy and being cool for the summer.

Sabrina Carpenter - YTV Summer Beach Bash

VG: How do you get pumped up for a big and exciting performance like the YTV Summer Beach Bash?

Francesco: I go out there and see the people and that is inspiring. It’s also just my own hype. I’m very into the music.

Charlie: I always listen to music and drink a lot of coffee.

Kolton: I get a good sleep the night before then get the beats jamming.

Sabrina: Soundcheck is really fun because we get to do a whole test run before the actual show. That’s usually how I get pumped up – in soundcheck and just getting ready with my band. We usually do a little chant pre-show.

Shawn: I like to do vocal warm-ups 3 hours before I have to sing and then just loosen up and not think about it – just go up there and play.

OMI: I guess just the thrill of knowing that I’m going out there to perform for my fans. I always pray before I do anything.

Megan (XO-IQ): Addy, our choreographer, huddles us together with all our dancers and we talk about being pumped and just doing our best.

Erika (XO-IQ): I think we all really feed off the audience as well so that helps a lot.

Charlie & Kolton - YTV Summer Beach Bash

VG: What can fans expect from your live performance?

Francesco: I like to have a lot of fun up there. It’s a very fun, loose type of vibe.

Charlie: A lot of energy and surprises. A lot of smiles!

Shawn: Lots of energy!

OMI: Just to have fun. That’s what it is for me – having fun and sharing that energy.

Megan (XO-IQ): A lot of our music is very EDM-based so definitely lots of really pumped up dance music with lots of electronic beats.

Dale (XO-IQ): Cool costumes and awesome moves.

Louriza (XO-IQ): We just want people to dance with us!

Francesco Yates - YTV Summer Beach Bash

VG: What’s your favourite part about summer?

Francesco: That everyone’s open and out. In the winter it’s a different vibe and everyone is all closed off. It’s easier to be happy in the summer!

Charlie: The energy and the music. I love the music in the summer.

Kolton: The weather. It’s always great to hang out with friends.

Sabrina: Making smores and having campfires. Also, going on rollercoasters and going to amusement parks – I’ve found myself there a lot this summer.

Photo Credit: Andy Vanderkaay

Photo Credit: Andy Vanderkaay

Shawn: I grew up in a small town on a river so I loved swimming. If I can do that at least once or twice a year I’m happy.

OMI: My favourite part of summer is just getting away from whatever it is you do and just having that relaxation and bonding. Families come from abroad, come from different countries, just to hang and get to know each other a little better.

Megan (XO-IQ): The beach!

VG: Now we have a few rapid fire questions so Vervegirl readers can get to know you better! My go-to summer treat is…

Francesco: M&Ms.

Charlie: Watermelon.

Kolton: Pop.

Sabrina: Chocolate.

Shawn: An Oreo Blizzard.

OMI: A Drumstick!

Dale (XO-IQ): Shave ice.

Louriza (XO-IQ): Mango gelato is where I’m at every weekend.

Erika (XO-IQ): Watermelon.

Megan (XO-IQ): I’m really craving for a funnel cake right now. I want to try a Beaver Tail today!

XO-IQ - YTV Summer Beach Bash

VG: My song of the summer is…

Francesco: “Uptown Funk” by Bruno Mars and Mark Ronson.

Charlie: “Riptide” by Vance Joy.

Kolton: “Cheerleader” by OMI.

Sabrina: “Cool for the Summer” by Demi Lovato.

Shawn: “Cheerleader”.

Megan (XO-IQ): “California Gurls” by Katy Perry.

Dale (XO-IQ): Anything by Jack Ü – Diplo and Skrillex.

Louriza (XO-IQ): “Keeping You Up” by K. Stewart. She’s so good!

Erika (XO-IQ): “Can’t Feel My Face” by The Weeknd.

Photo Credit: Andy Vanderkaay

Photo Credit: Andy Vanderkaay

VG: My dream karaoke partner is…

Francesco: William Hung from AMERICAN IDOL.

Charlie: Whitney Houston.

Kolton: Ed Sheeran.

Sabrina: Adele.

Shawn: Eminem.

OMI: My assistant, Errol. I want to hear him sing with me on stage one day.

Megan (XO-IQ): Michael Jackson! It’s like having a vocal lesson with a legend.

Louriza (XO-IQ): The Spice Girls.

Erika (XO-IQ): Nicki Minaj.

Dale (XO-IQ): Drizzy. T-dot represent!

VG: Something my fans would be surprised to know about me is…

Francesco: I’ve never had a hamburger in my life.

Charlie: I have a bearded dragon named Feisty. He’s 7 and he likes to sit on my shoulder and hang out.

Kolton: I eat lemons like they’re apples.

Sabrina: I hate bananas. Everything about them. I like the way they look actually – I think they’re a very pretty fruit – but I just hate how they taste.

Shawn: I golf!

OMI: I’m trying to come out with a book so I want them to read certain things in the book. If I tell them now, we’re going to be low on sales. So, look forward to the book.

Megan (XO-IQ): I’m obsessed with THE VAMPIRE DIARIES! I just recently started watching it so I’ve been binge watching.

Dale (XO-IQ): I’m absolutely obsessed with DOCTOR WHO.

If you missed the party, or want to re-live all of the action, you’re in luck! The YTV Summer Beach Bash special will be airing on YTV Sunday, August 16 at 8:30PM EST. If you were in the crowd, you just might see yourself on TV! You can also watch the YTV Summer Beach Bash on-demand by going to YTV’s YouTube channel.

Don’t forget to keep it locked to Vervegirl for more of our extensive one-on-one chats with the stars of YTV Summer Beach Bash.

Good and evil collide in Disney’s Descendants!

Good and evil collide in Disney’s Descendants!

Have you ever wondered what happened to your favourite Disney characters once the movie ends? Well wonder no more!

In Disney’s latest TV flick, Descendants, audiences are introduced to the second generation of Disney heroes and villains, but the lines between good and evil may not be so clear cut.

Photo courtesy of Disney.

Photo courtesy of Disney.

Descendants is set in the idyllic kingdom of Auradon, where goodness has reigned ever since Maleficent, Cruella de Vil, the Evil Queen and Jafar were banished to the Isle of Lost – along with all other villains, sidekicks and evil stepmothers. Now, 20 years later, Ben, the teenage son of the King and Queen (Beast and Belle from Beauty and the Beast) is poised to take the throne and, as his first official proclamation, he offers the villainous descendants a chance at redemption. Will the seemingly evil teens – Mal, Carlos, Evie and Jay – follow in their nefarious parents’ footsteps and help the villains regain power, or embrace their innate goodness and save the kingdom.

Plus, this modern take on your favourite childhood stories features a star-studded cast: Dove Cameron as Mal, Maleficent’s daughter; Cameron Boyce as Carlos, Cruella de Vil’s son; Sofia Carson as Evie, daughter of Evil Queen; Booboo Stewart as Jay, son of Jafar; Mitchell Hope as Ben; Tony-award winning Kristen Chenoweth as Maleficent; Wendy Raquel Robinson as Cruella de Vil; Kathy Najimy as Evil Queen; and Maz Jobrani as Jafar.

Catch the premiere of Descendants Friday July 31 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on Family Channel after a brand new episode of Liv and Maddie.

Watch the trailer or learn more at family.ca.

On Our Radar: The cast of The Next Step

On Our Radar: The cast of The Next Step

With a new season of drama and dancing upon us, the cast of the hit Family channel show The Next Step is definitely on our radar.

Each week the talented cast members of The Next Step dance their hearts out in the mockumentary-style show about life behind the scenes of a successful  dance troupe. We caught up with cast members Brittany Raymond (Riley), Victoria Baldesarra (Michelle), Trevor Tordjman (James), Lamar Johnson (West) and Jordan Clark (Giselle) to find out about life behind the scenes and what we can expect from their characters this season.

Vervegirl: What can we expect from your character this season?
Brittany: Riley is a lot more mature this season. She has a greater understanding of what it takes to grow up and is forced to deal with more mature obstacles when it comes to her relationship with James. And, of course, she’s dancing whenever she can!

VG: How have things changed for you personally since being on the show?
Jordan: The biggest thing that has changed is being out in public and people knowing who I am. It’s pretty crazy but very exciting to meet new fans all the time.

VG: What song on the radio or your fave playlist gets you moving and makes you want to dance?
Trevor: Uptown Funk by Mark Ronson feat. Bruno Mars is SO groovy – I love it. I’m definitely dancing every time I hear that song.

VG: How do you balance your personality with your character’s? Is it tough sometimes?
Victoria: It is hard at times to balance the two personally. Especially this past year of filming because my character went through an emotional roller coaster so it definitely takes a toll on me sometimes.

VG: Are you all friends outside of the show?
Jordan: Yes! My fellow cast mates are incredible people and they will always have a special place in my heart.

VG: Looking ahead, if you had control over what happens on The Next Step, what would happen to your character?
Lamar: If I had control I’d either become dance captain and create my own rules, or move on to do a professional job outside of The Next Step. I think those would be great steps moving forward for West.

Watch the season three premiere of The Next Step on Family Channel March 16 at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT. New episodes will air Monday to Friday at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT

Enter to win a pizza party for you and your classmates!

Enter to win a pizza party for you and your classmates!

dolphin-tale-2-contest

This fall check out DOLPHIN TALE 2 and you could win a pizza party for you and your classmates!

In theaters September 12, DOLPHIN TALE 2 continues the story of Winter, the dolphin with a prosthetic tail. Several years have passed since young Sawyer Nelson (Nathan Gamble) and the dedicated team at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium (CMA), headed by Dr. Clay Haskett (Harry Connick, Jr.) rescued Winter, a young dolphin who lost her tail after being entangled in a crab trap. With the help of Dr. Cameron McCarthy (Morgan Freeman), who developed a unique prosthetic tail for Winter, they saved her life against all odds.

Yet their fight is not over. Winter’s surrogate mother, the elderly dolphin Panama, passes away, leaving Winter alone and grieving, unwilling to engage with anyone, even her best friend Sawyer. When the loss of Panama may have even greater repercussions for CMA, they must find Winter a female companion that she accepts or they will lose Winter. But as time runs out, there may still be hope.

Visit DolphinTale2.ca for more info about the films stars or tag #DOLPHINTALE2 on Twitter and Instagram to let us know what you think of the movie!

 

To enter to win your pizza party, simply complete the form below.


Click here for contest rules and regulations.

Contest closes October 22, 2014

Win tickets to the advanced screening of IF I STAY

Win tickets to the advanced screening of IF I STAY

Based on the bestselling novel of the same name, If I Stay tells the story of Mia Hall who is left fighting for her life after a horrific car accident. As Mia recounts the events that led her to that fateful day, she must decide if she is ready to go or will fight to stay behind. And we’ve got your inside edge to see it before the public.

If I Stay is in theatres August 22, 2014.

If I Stay is in theatres August 22, 2014.

We’re giving away tickets to next week’s advanced screening of If I Stay and we want you to be the first to see it! Simply complete the entry form below by Friday August 15 and you’ll be automatically entered to win. Seriously! It’s that easy.

And don’t worry if you’re not in Toronto, we’ll be choosing four winners in each of the cities listed below. Each winner gets two tickets so make sure you tell your friends! Movies are always better with a group.

We’ll be giving away tickets to the Wednesday August 20, 2014 screening in:

Toronto, Vancouver, Montreal (English), Montreal (French), Calgary, Edmonton, Winnipeg, Ottawa and Halifax

 

Winners will be chosen and notified via the email address provided on the entry from below on Friday August 15 before 9 pm, so be sure to give us an email address you check often! We’ll send you your download code and instructions for how to print your passes in the email, too.

Want to more about If I Stay? Get the full scoop, including our interview with Chloë Grace Moretz, here!

 

Contest closes: August 15, 2014 at 7pm EST

Contest rules and regulations

 

 

 

Note: all showtimes are local time.

 

 

Chloe Grace Moretz shines in summer drama If I Stay

Chloe Grace Moretz shines in summer drama If I Stay

What if your entire world changed in an instant? Would you choose to leave or would you fight to stay?

For Mia Hall, played by the uber talented Chloë Grace Moretz, the biggest choice she faced was deciding between persuing her dreams and applying to Julliard or following her heart to be with the love of her life, Adam, played by Jamie Blackley. That is, until a horrific car accident changes everything.

Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia Hall in New Line Cinema's and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures' If I Stay, a Warner Bros. Pictures release. Photo credit: Doane Gregory

Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia Hall in If I Stay. Photo credit: Doane Gregory

What should have been a nice country drive with her family on a snowy day leaves Mia alone, devastated and confused as her life hangs in the balance. Based on the New York Times best-selling novel of the same name by Gail Forman, If I Stay follows Mia’s journey through the past as she discovers new meanings to old relationships and encounters the many faces of love including family love and romantic love. It was this concept of eternal love and it’s many faces that drew Chloë to the lead role.

“There is so much energy swirling around If I Stay, so many teenagers and YA readers are completely infatuated with this story, so it was exciting to get involved. I was really eager for the chance to try and do justice to Mia and her wrenching conflict,” explains Chloe. “When you fall in love for the first time, it’s all new; you can hear your heart beat from across the world for that person,” she continues. “Gayle’s book depicts that beautifully and shows how love brings out all sorts of different strengths and weaknesses, particularly when a catastrophe is involved.”

Mia is a strong woman who knows that her first love is the cello, which also drew Chloë to the role. “I really wanted to show a female empowerment character that wasn’t about falling for the guy and abandoning her dream of Julliard,” said Chloë when we chatted with her in Toronto leading up to the August 22 release. She knows she fell in love with the cello when she was five and she’s going to live by it and that’s how I am with acting. I wanted to show someone to young girls that they could look up to.”

if-i-stay-moretz-blackley

Chloë Grace Moretz as Mia and Jamie Blackley as Adam
in If I Stay. Photo credit: Doane Gregory

Jamie Blackley, who you may recognize from Snow White and the Huntsman, plays Mia’s love interest Adam who had us swooning in our seats from the first moment his handsome rockstar face graced the screen. Initially, Adam is drawn to Mia without really knowing why but by the time these two head out on their first date it’s clear that Mia and Adam are destined to be together as their passion and love of music grows into a love stronger than either one of them had imagined.

With music playing a central role in the film, Chloë spent time learning and honing her skills on Mia’s instrumental weapon of choice – the cello. “I did five months intensive training with a cello coach. It’s not an instrument you can just pick up and start strumming but I did try the best I could. I wanted to be true to cellists.”

With the characters going through so much on an emotional level, “every day [on set] was a hard, tough acting day,” Chloë shared. But in the end her love of the role and her love for Mia made it all worth while. “Mia was worth going though the emotion for. Music helped me a lot to stay in character.”

The bottom line: this is one beloved book adaptation to check out on the big screen. Just make sure you have your Kleenex tucked away. It’s totally worth it!

If I Stay opens in theatres across Canada August 22, 2014.

Love and Loyalty Run Deeper than Blood: Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters is reinventing the vampire genre!

Love and Loyalty Run Deeper than Blood: Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters is reinventing the vampire genre!

Our world is obsessed with books, and in recent years, after the mega successes of Harry Potter by J.K Rowling and Twilight by Stephanie Meyer, book-to-screen adaptations. From Pretty Little Liars to the Vampire Diaries to the Hunger Games, it seems that there are more books being turned into movie scripts than there are movie scripts. It’s been a massive obsession, which is about to get worse with the production of The Fault in Our Stars, the Maze Runners and Divergent movies. But there is one book-to-movie adaptation that seems to stand out from the rest.

With over 8 million books sold worldwide in 35 countries, fans from all over the world, 25.4K followers on Twitter and 278 K likes on their official Facebook movie page, the Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead seems to be taking on the world by storm, and the movie hasn’t even hit theatres…yet.

In June 2010, Preger Entertainment optioned the film rights to the series. However, unlike recent book-to-film adaptations in recent years, Vampire Academy was optioned near the end of its series and there was a three year wait on actual production news-much to the fans dismay.

But what is it that got fans so crazy about the vampire series? An amazing story line, wonderful characters, and overall IT ISN’T TWILIGHT! The name ‘Vampire Academy’ may be misleading and may draw conclusions to a Twilight copy, but it is the complete opposite- the soon-to-be movie will reinvent the whole genre as we know it.

During a recent interview with Yahoo! Movies, Amy Wilkinson, editor of MTV’s Hollywood Crush said: “As far as protagonists go, bumbling Bella Swan is no match for fearless fighter Rose Hathaway — a vampire guardian-in-training who’s as fierce about best friend Lissa’s safety as she is about a simmering romance with hot teacher Dimitri Belikov. If it’s a self-assured, kick-butt heroine you seek, you’ll find her in ‘Vampire Academy.'”

 Zoey Deutch (above) will be playing Rose Hathaway in Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters

The Vampire Academy Series revolves around 17 year old Rosemarie ‘Rose’ Hathaway, a half-vampire, half-human (also known as a dhampir) in her journey to become a guardian for her Moroi (good vampire) best friend and psychic bond mate, Princess Lissa Dragomir- the last of her name. There is danger everywhere for the two as the Strigoi (the evil, undead, vampires) are always on the hunt for them. In addition, the two have to face social discrimination, mental health issues and adult authority, as well as forbidden romances.

On December 17th, 2012 it was announced that Dan Waters (Heathers) wrote the script for the movie, and two months later, the roles of Rose, Lissa and Dimitri were cast: Zoey Deutch (Beautiful Creatures) will be playing Rose, Australian actress Lucy Fry (Lightning Point) will be playing Lissa and Russian actor Danila Kozlovsky (We Are from the Future) will be playing Dimitri. Other talented actors were later added onto the cast like Sami Gayle (Blue Bloods) who will be portraying mean-girl Mia Rinaldi, Gabriel Byrne (Vikings) will be playing antagonist Viktor Dashkov, Cameron Monaghan (Shameless) will be playing Mason Ashford, Dominic Sherwood will be playing Christian Ozera.

A break down of the cast, via @PenguinTeenAus

The movie hasn’t even hit theatres yet, and distributors for the movie around the world have already created contests for the dedicated fan base. Australia is currently holding a contest for the Aussie fans to get their questions answered from the actors (penguinteenaustralia.blogspot.com.au) and the Weinstein Company just recently held a contest for one lucky US fan to visit the UK set with a friend!

What makes Vampire Academy different from other vampire movies (other than the kick-ass heroine and storyline) is the involvement and interaction between fans, the author, Richelle Mead, the actors and the production crew (from the producers to the casting director to the trainers for the film!). Fans have also tattooed themselves with symbols from the book, started a healthy fitness trend, taking example from Zoey, Danila and trainers Bobby and Alicia Strom (#GuardiansInTraining). And to show their immense love for the cast fans around the world by trending the movie: Vampire Academy: Blood Sisters world-wide on twitter, and even created Danila birthday greetings on May 3rd– from fans around the world.

There is no doubt that this movie will change the vampire genre into something that is enjoyable for all genders and ages all over the world!

The eagerly anticipated film began filming on May 28th, 2013 in the UK, and the film is scheduled to release on February 14th, 2014!

 

For more Vampire Academy movie news, follow me on twitter @VACanadaNews :)

Mirror In The Bathroom: Top 5 Celeb Beauty Trends at the 2013 MMVAs!

The 2013 Much Music Video Awards – The country’s biggest night with the hottest stars! Rachel was backstage in the front row of the media room to find out which 5 beauty trends rocked the MMVA stage this year! Which trend will make it on top?! Watch now to find out!