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'Bandslam' takes you back to high school

Hollywood Wrap with George Pennacchio
August 14, 2009 12:00:00 AM PDT
The new movie "Bandslam" is a twist on the often-formulaic high school angst genre. It opens in theaters Friday.Actor Gaelan Connell stars as "Will," a socially-awkward young man who gathers together fellow outcasts to form a musical group that aims to take over and win an annual "Battle of the Bands" competition.

"The characters aren't just black and white, like a normal high school movie," said co-star Lisa Kudrow. "There are many levels, not all popular or all losers. They have friends who are everywhere. I think that's pretty relatable."

Vanessa Hudgens and Aly Michalka co-star as the young women who come to influence Will's life in different ways. Both actresses in the film are very strong, and this is a great message for some of the young people watching.

"I think it is definitely great," said Hudgens. "We're strong individuals, and I think that's how people should go about life. Be strong about opinions and know what you want."

One thing both young performers know is that they want to be able to keep mixing singing and acting with their careers.

"It's something I'm passionate about, and it is fun to incorporate with acting," said Michalka. "Todd, the director, had a great vision for it."

There's a lot of jamming in "Bandslam," and Kudrow dares you not to leave the theater with a song in your heart.

"By the end of the movie, everybody is up cheering and it feels great," said Kudrow. "Forget what it's about, you'll find out when you're there. You'll be like, 'That was great!'"

"Bandslam" is rated PG and is theaters this weekend.

Disney is the parent company of ABC7.

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