July 17th, 2013
Today we have a super awesome treat for you TeenSpot-ers: insider information on Disney Channel’s newest star, Maia Mitchell, and also Ross Lynch, of the upcoming movie Teen Beach Movie!
Teen Beach Movie is a totally cool new summer movie filled with surfing, bikers, and fun fashion! You can watch it live on Disney Channel when it premieres on July 19 at 8 PM EST / 7 CST. Until then, check out this quick video:
I got the opportunity to ask the stars of Teen Beach Movie some questions about what it was like working on this super fun movie.
Tell us a little bit about auditioning -- were you nervous? Do you have any funny stories?
Ross: Um, it was basically like any normal auditioning process, you know? I had a script and you go in an audition. Lucky enough they liked me and I got a few call-backs. And then I met Maia and got to audition with her. And then realized I had the job.
Maia: Mine wasn’t a normal audition process. I was in Australia when I auditioned, so I sent a tape to America. Then there were awkward Skype interviews and auditions that didn’t work out because of the time delay. So it was always really frustrating and sometimes Skype would stop working and the head of Disney Channel would be screaming “we can’t hear you” and I’m like “sorry!” in my living room. Then they flew me out for the last round of auditions and I met Ross and auditioned. I’m surprised they liked me. But glad it worked out.
How did you celebrate when you found out you were cast in the movie?
Ross: Yea, I don’t think there was any sort of celebration. No party or anything. But now that it’s airing, I guarantee you there will be some sort of crazy party.
Maia: Yea, it’ll be fun!
Were you both surfers before this film, or did you have to learn? Was it a challenge?
Maia: It was challenging at first because I was nervous, but after a couple weeks, I got the hang of it. I was literally in the water that day after I booked it with a trainer in Baron Bay in Australia. It ended up being kind of fun.
What was your favorite part about filming this movie?
Ross: My favorite part about filming the movie was just being in Puerto Rico.
Maia: I think the musical numbers for me was the most fun part because it’s different and unlike any experience I had ever done. I had never done a musical before so to be able to sing and dance and act.
Maia, since you're from Australia, was it hard perfecting your perfect American accent?
Maia: Ross? [laughter] It’s definitely something that you have to think about and be aware of. But we have a lot of American TV influences in Australia. And you have to be able to do it before you come to America, and before you audition. I was kind of learning it before I auditioned for the movie and then having them [the cast] around to help me with words, they were really good about helping me if I was saying something wrong.
How are you most like your character in the film and how are you different?
Maia: McKenzie is very confident and adventurous. I think I’m confident and adventurous too but in a different way. I’m living in another country independently and I’m 19 years old. I moved out here when I was 18 to live independently, so I think like that part of me is similar to Mack but she’s also probably more physically courageous than I am like she puts herself out there a lot more and I think that’s really cool.
Ross: I’m lot like Mack because of that. Brady is very go-with-the-flow, surfer attitude and I’m a lot like that. That’s partly how I was raised. We both like to take advantage of the opportunities that we’re given, you know, and make the most of life. And to just have the most fun we can.
Which costume was your favorite to wear?
Ross: I like my biker outfit just a simple leather jacket and white shirt.
Maia: I liked my biker outfit too. That was really really fun! [Not something I would normally wear.]
What would you tell our readers are the biggest reason they should totally check out this movie?
Ross: They should check out the movie because they’re just going to enjoy watching it. There are a lot of funny things in it, great music that’s really really catchy.
Maia: You’ll have a really fun time watching it and leave with having learned something. I love the morale of this story and what it has to say which is to let your destiny happen, to follow your heart, trust your instincts and be open to anything.
What do you enjoy the most—acting, dancing, singing?
Ross: Acting. I kind of put singing together with all things music. I like dancing, but music and acting are the two things that I love most. Anything with film making; someday I want to direct and produce. With music, I’m already producing all sorts of stuff and I write.
Who’s your biggest musical or acting influence?
Maia: Mine with acting would be Meryl Streep.
Ross: Ohh, can’t top that! She wins every award possible! I’d say as far as musical influences I would say all the classics – Elvis [Presley], The Beatles, The [Rolling] Stones, Led Zeppelin, Bruce Springsteen—he’s a huge inspiration. But current bands—I love Imagine Dragons, Walk The Moon, Young the Giant, Neon Trees, that sort of style. And for acting, I don’t really have any influences. I just feel it. I try to just trust my gut and do whatever feels right.
When did you first realize that you wanted to be in this industry?
Maia: I don’t remember making that decision. It was always what I wanted to do. And I started so young with acting anyways that I don’t even remember the first time I was on set. But it was always what I wanted to do, was going to do, and I think that might be why it’s even happening because I believe what you put out into the universe is like the law of attraction. If you believe in something, then something will happen.
Ross: Same thing as Maia basically. My brothers first started doing it and then we all started following them and it all happened. We moved out to California and started auditioning.
If you couldn’t be doing what you’re doing right now, what would you be doing?
Ross: Probably NHL or pilot.
Maia: I’d study psychology at university.
Do you have any nicknames?
Ross: Recently, I’ve been called “Batman” because I call my friend “Robin”. But that’s just me and him. Only I can call him “Robin” and only he can call me “Batman”. Some people call me “Ross-some.”
Maia: I’m “My-My” for the most part.
Ross: I’ve never called you that. I bet people call you “Australia” huh?
Maia: People call me “Australia”, people also call me “Mitch”.
What you consider to be the perfect summer jam?
Maia: R5. My favorite summer jam would be Teen Beach Movie soundtrack.
What are three words that you would use to describe yourself?
Ross: Okay, so basically my brothers told me this last night, literally last night, they said “Ross is very creative, he’s very opinionated, and he’s very um…” I guess I don’t have a third one. I’m a thinker, but that counts! What about you Maia? Independent?
Maia: Um, I’m independent; I’m creative and I’m affectionate.
If you could go to dinner with anyone in the world, who would it be and why?
Ross: Maia Mitchell.
Maia: Aww! I would probably go to dinner with…
Ross: with Ross Lynch, duh!
Maia: I would say Meryl Streep or Barack Obama.
Ross: And I’ll go to lunch with Michelle Obama.
Were there any pranks on set??
Maia: Um, yea, definitely! We actually hid Garrett’s [Clayton] clothes in his microwave once, and he was stuck in his 60s outfit for awhile. And what else happened Ross?
Ross: We had a lot of late night hangouts where we would be jammin’ with guitars on the beach, going swimming late at night, or um, there were a lot of iguanas in Puerto Rico. We decided to catch one and one of the dancers got a huge gash in his arm but like we caught him which was pretty cool. And I’m pretty sure we put him in someone’s trailer. I can’t remember whose trailer it was. I’m pretty sure that happened.
Maia: It was Mollee’s trailer!
Ross: Oh yeah, it was Mollee’s trailer! Yea that was pretty funny.
Maia: Yea! She hated it!
Thanks so much for sharing your stories, Maia and Ross!
You can see and hear all about Maia and Ross’ home life and who they are by watching their videos here:
To learn more about Disney Channel’s Teen Beach Movie, check out the full trailer below! And be sure to check out Teen Beach Movie live on July 19 at 8 PM EST / 7 PM CST only on Disney Channel!