Kristin Ford is a freelance writer who lives in Orlando. She wrote about The Walt Disney Co. during many of her 17 years as a journalist at the Orlando Sentinel, before joining the AllEars.Net staff. Kristin writes about Disney news from a parent's perspective, covering Walt Disney World, Disney Cruise Line, Disney Channel, Disney Publishing and Disney Interactive and more. You can follow her adventures through the parks with her husband and two elementary-school-age children here and on Twitter @Kristin_B_Ford.
Teen Beach 2: Beach Party kicks off on May 22 at Disney's Typhoon Lagoon
Walt Disney World is bringing back its beach dance party at Typhoon Lagoon for a limited time this summer. Inspired by the sequel to Disney Channel’s ‘Teen Beach Movie,’ the fun kicks off May 22 as part of the ‘Coolest Summer Ever’ at the resort.
The original party debuted at the water park in the summer of 2013, when the movie was released. It featured a high-energy DJ spinning remixes of retro tunes on the stage by the clock tower adjacent to the wave pool. Costumed bikers and surfers, much like the characters in the movie, led guests in dancing, hula hooping and tossing beach balls. The beach party also offered other traditional summer activities, including relays on the sand, a water balloon toss and a limbo challenge.
This year’s event, ‘Teen Beach 2: Beach Party’ will have the same format, according to Charles Stovall, a public relations manager at Walt Disney World. The party will take place multiple times each day through July 5. (A placard in front of the stage will list daily times.)
The party is included in regular admission to Typhoon Lagoon, which is $58 for ages 10 and older and $50 for children ages 3 to 9.
‘Teen Beach Movie’ actors Garrett Clayton (Tanner), Kent Boyd (Rascal) and Chrissie Fit (CheeChee) surprised guests at the kickoff of the beach party two years ago, and we were there to catch the fun, as you can see in the video below.
‘Teen Beach Movie 2’ is the first Disney Channel movie sequel since ‘Camp Rock 2: The Final Jam’ in 2010. In the continuation, modern-day teens Brady (Ross Lynch) and McKenzie (Maia Mitchell) get a real-world visit from Lela, Tanner, Butchy, and other surfer and biker pals from the beach party film within a film, ‘Wet Side Story.’ That much was revealed after the credits of the first movie, but trailers for the sequel aren’t giving away much of the new plot. Disney Channel also has not publicized a release date.
Stay tuned to AllEars.Net for details as they are released.
Disney Channel announces 'Teen Beach Movie' sequel for 2015
Disney Channel fans got a splash of good news this weekend when the network announced that a sequel to “Teen Beach Movie” will begin production in July. “Teen Beach Movie 2” will have its television premiere in 2015.
Actors Ross Lynch, Maia Mitchell, Grace Phipps, Garrett Clayton and John DeLuca will return for the sequel. Lynch and Mitchell portray Brady and McKenzie, respectively, a couple of surfers who are magically transported inside the classic '60s beach party flick, “Wet Side Story,” where a rivalry between bikers and surfers threatens to erupt. Brady and Mack accidentally change the musical's storyline, and the film's hero, Tanner (Clayton), and heroine, Lela (Phipps), fall for them instead of for each other.
“Teen Beach Movie” ends with Brady and McKenzie returning from their adventure and being surprised by a visit from Lela, Tanner, Butchy (DeLuca) and the other surfers and bikers. Clearly, the writers were setting up the plot for a continuation.
And the original movie's numbers helped greenlight the sequel. According to The Hollywood Reporter, “[Teen Beach Movie] ranks as cable television's No. 2 movie in total viewers with a giant 13.53 million. The original soundtrack also peaked at No. 3 on the Billboard 200 chart and was No. 1 on the soundtrack chart.”
The news of the sequel was announced Saturday before the Radio Disney Music Awards were filmed. The “Teen Beach Movie” cast reunited during the show, which was televised Sunday night.
Last spring, actors Clayon, Kent Boyd (Rascal) and Chrissie Fit (Cheechee) visited Walt Disney World to kick off a summer beach party at the Typhoon Lagoon water park, and I had the opportunity to interview them. I was especially curious about their time filming in Puerto Rico, since I had lived there as a child and visited several times as an adult. The beach scenes were filmed at the governor's beach in Fajardo on the east side of the island, and the interiors were built and shot in a studio in San Juan. Presumably, the cast will be returning to the tropical paradise, where they spent two months filming the first movie.
"I'm Cuban, so I speak Spanish and that's what I love -- to get lost in the island, the food, the music, the people, the beaches," Fit told me. "I saw El Morro [the fortress] when I was in Old San Juan. … We also went to El Yunque. I hiked up the waterfall twice -- beautiful -- and saw the bioluminescent bay. That was unreal. I had never been to Puerto Rico before, but I'd always wanted to go."
Boyd added, “The best part was the beaches. The water was really like a postcard and the sand was so white.”
To read more from my interviews, see my previous “Teen Beach Movie” blog post here.
And while we waiting for the new soundtrack, here's a look back at Clayon, Boyd and Fit doing their choreographed dance to “Surf's Up” at Typhoon Lagoon:
Actors from Disney Channel's 'Teen Beach Movie' kick off Typhoon Lagoon beach party
Here's a look at the Teen Beach Movie: Beach Party Kick-off In July at Typhoon Lagoon with Garrett, Kent and Chrissie:
Last week, Disney introduced a new summer beach party at Typhoon Lagoon, and with it, three of the stars of the upcoming Disney Channel original film, "Teen Beach Movie."
Actors Kent Boyd, Garrett Clayton and Chrissie Fit
Actors Garrett Clayton, Kent Boyd and Chrissie Fit surprised guests at the water park on Friday when they appeared with a high-energy DJ spinning remixes of retro tunes on the stage by the clock tower adjacent to the wave pool. Joined by other costumed bikers and surfers, the trio made their way into a crowd of mostly kids to dance, hula hoop and toss beach balls.
Although the stars won't be there every day, "Teen Beach Movie: Beach Party" continues multiple times a day through Sept. 1. (A placard in front of the stage list daily times.) The beach party also offers other traditional summer activities, including relays on the sand, a water balloon toss and a limbo challenge.
“Teen Beach Movie” is a modern take on classic beach party movies that premieres July 19 on Disney Channel. It stars Ross Lynch (“Austin & Ally”) and Maia Mitchell (“The Fosters”) as Brady and McKenzie, surfers who take the last wave of summer, one that mysteriously takes them into a classic beach party movie, "Wet Side Story."
Garrett plays the romantic lead in "Wet Side Story," and he and Kent are surfers in the movie who battle bikers such as Cheechee (played by Chrissie) for control of the local hangout. I spoke to the three actors when they visited Typhoon Lagoon about what it was like to make a new kind of musical for Disney Channel.
First, I wanted to know how the young actors identify with characters that are inspired by the beach party movies of the 1960s.
Chrissie explained the process: "To get into character, I really had to get to know the movies we were paying homage to, so I watched 'Beach Blanket Bingo' and 'Gidget.' I got a sense of what it would be like to be a surfer or a biker. Then it was the little things that would make Cheechee special -- her style, her hair, her voice, a little laugh. I think it came together really well."
Garrett agreed that creating his surfer/teen movie star persona meant finding the right combination of details. "When I first thought about making Tanner, I thought -- without offending anyone -- what does a surfer sound like?" he said. "I drew from Tony from 'West Side Story,' which kind of gave Tanner his heart. ... There are touches from 'Grease' and all these classic and vintage movies with Frankie Avalon. You watch the movies and the delivery of lines, and it's very specific."
Kent said playing Rascal was a little closer to home for him. "Rascal is a surfer dude who gets in a little trouble. He's kind of really outgoing and he's always doing the crazy, silly things. He's very energetic -- off the walls. Definitely in a group setting, if you watch him, he is just spastic in the way he moves. He has a signature move with the claws out. He likes to make everyone laugh, and I feel like that's a shared quality."
They may not have firsthand knowledge of beach party movies, but the young actors certainly got to experience a similar tropical locale when they were making "Teen Beach Movie" in Puerto Rico. The beach scenes were filmed at the governor's beach in Fajardo on the east side of the island, and the interiors were built and shot in a studio in San Juan.
"I'm Cuban, so I speak Spanish and that's what I love -- to get lost in the island, the food, the music, the people, the beaches," Chrissie told me. "I saw El Morro [the fortress] when I was in Old San Juan. … We also went to El Yunque. I hiked up the waterfall twice -- beautiful -- and saw the bioluminescent bay. That was unreal. I had never been to Puerto Rico before, but I'd always wanted to go."
Already, "Teen Bech Movie" and its stars are being compared to the "High School Musical" franchise on several levels. For starters, Garrett bears an uncanny resemblance to Zac Efron, who played the male lead, Troy, in the trilogy.
"I think because no one has seen [the movie], they see that there are four leads and it's a musical and there are resemblances with cast members to Corbin Bleu, Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, people assume that, but there is so much more," Garrett said. "I think when people actually see the plot line, they'll see it's worlds apart."
But it's not just the musical genre or the actors' looks that lend themselves to the "High School Musical" comparison. The marketing campaign is considerable: a 10-city mall tour by the actors, promotions at One Direction and R5 concerts, and licensed products in apparel, home décor, fashion dolls, bedding, lunch kits, and school supplies. Clearly, Disney Channel is hoping to create a franchise as popular as "High School Musical."