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Loving Candy: A Conversation With The Multi Talented Aly Michalka

29 July 2009

American actress, singer-songwriter and musician who rose to prominence with her starring role as Keely Teslow in the Disney Channel sitcom Phil of the Future (2004–2006). Aly Michalka went on to appear in various films including Bandslam.

We sit down with multi talented Aly Michalka, one half of pop/rock sensation 78violet (formerly known as Aly & AJ), about her new music comedy Bandslam, about Charlotte, her love of Candy and life after Phil of the Future…

Are you enjoying your time here?

I love it, I’m so excited to just see the sights and actually spend time here cause I have two days off. The last time I was here I didn’t really get to see much of London, I’m excited to do some shopping.



So tell me about Bandslam and your character ‘Charlotte’?

Bandslam is a great movie about friendship, romance and music and the kind of connection it can bring to a friendship, just having that love for music can connect people on so many different levels.

Charlotte, for instants really finds Will interesting and different because he’s so honest and smart with music, and she kinda befriends him and takes her under her wing, and they end up going to this huge Bandslam competition in their home town of New Jersey and Charlotte just shows him how to live life in a different way, and really open up and not be afraid to say what he’s thinking or speak his mind, or go up to Sam who’s played by Vanessa Hudgens to not be afraid to take a chance with the girl, and she really shows Will things I don’t think he would have ever thought about if he hadn’t met Charlotte.


The characters in this film come to change as people – how do you think you have changed over the last few years?

I think I’ve changed a lot, I think my musical taste has changed slightly, I think my style has really changed, I think my music has changed a lot, I think I’ve grown into myself I think physically, emotionally and mentally and I think the kind of experiences I’ve gone through have really shaped me as a person, and my own opinions on the world.


How do you relate to your character?

I can relate to Charlotte just by her love for music, and her confidence in her music and her song writing, the way she loves her friends, I’m really close to my friends I have a few that are really close and really special. I think it’s cool that Charlotte has her band to turn to, people that she trusts.

The things I couldn’t really relate to as much was the pain she went through when she lost her Dad, and him dealing with cancer, I’ve never had to deal with that thankfully in my family, so I had to pull from other experiences in my life to get me there on that emotional level.



Do you have any favourite memories with working with Gaelan?

Yeah, we had so many funny times, probably just hanging out in each others trailer, like at lunch time, we would always hang out and goof around. On set he would always make fun of me because I was always reading, he would say ‘what are you reading today’ and we would switch iPods and he’d kind of download music for me that I’d never heard before, like I heard of this really cool band called Gomez, that I love, I think they’re a Scottish band, and I totally got hooked on them because of Gaelan. He’s a really funny and cool guy and he’s perfect for Will, I can’t imagine anyone playing Will but him.


Did you learn to play your instruments and how do you keep your voice in shape?

I had already been playing the guitar since I was thirteen so I had been playing that for years, Vanessa learnt in a couple of weeks, and piano I’ve been playing since I was six. Vocally I just really warmed up before I went out and filmed, and just stayed healthy, I drank a lot of water and tea. All of the stuff that was live and shot on camera was definitely a little bit nerve wracking just because you really knew that you had to be on top of it, but in a good way, it just made you step up and give yourself a bar to raise.


You and your sister are musical sensations, do you encourage each other, and how’s the new album coming along?

We definitely inspire each other, in ways of our music and in each other lives. We are both each others best friend and confidant, she’s here with me, she travelled to the UK. She’s so supportive and so excited that Bandslam is coming out and I’m so excited that Lovely Bones is going to be out in December, we’re just really proud of each other, and I think our music really speaks for itself on this record, it just kinda touches all bases in our life and our personal experiences, in our world views aswell. It’s definitely a rock album with a message, I think it’ll touch people on a deeper level and it’s something we really took a lot of time on. We took a year to really perfect it, to have something we are really proud of to show the world.


How was it working with Vanessa and Lisa, and who would you like to work with next?

It was great, Lisa is an amazing actress, she’s so on top of it and so a tuned to everything as a fellow actor. She really gives you a lot in a scene, and she’s so professional, so it was an honor cause I’m such a huge fan of her.

Vanessa and I didn’t really have too many scenes together but we hung out all the time on set, it was great working with her, we ended up becoming really close girlfriends on the movie and we’ve maintained to keep intouch and see eachother in LA all the time.

I would love to work with Johnny Depp, I think he’s so fantastic, he’s one of my favourite actors, I think he’s such a chameleon, he would be my number one choice, I think he’s phenomenal, and I think Meryl Streep is the best actress on the planet, I think she’s unreal and so humble as well.



How does working on a film Bandslam compare to working on the television series Phil Of The Future, and are you still in contact with Ricky?

Yeah I do keep in touch with Ricky, I haven’t seen him in a while but it’s definitely a lot different you’re not on a set day to day working, sometimes you have a couple of days off to chill. On a tv series you’re working for six months straight and this movie took us like two and a half months so its definitely different. It’s different energies as well, it’s a lot older than Phil Of The Future it’s a little more mature.

Phil Of The Future was a great starting ground for me, a great way to be launched into the business and kinda get my fans through the tv show.


The film’s a lot of fun, were there any practical jokes on set?

No we didn’t really throw any practical jokes, me and Gaelan were pretty boring when it came to that sort of stuff, it was a fun set but we didn’t do jokes, we were focused and kinda devoted to to making the music perfect and getting the acting to be right on.


And finally… What are you a fan of (can be anything from films, actors, musicians, ice cream etc)?

I’m a fan of candy big time, I’m a fan of anything sweet and I am a fan of purses, I have a weakness for purses, and I’m a huge music fan, I love music. I just saw U2 in Ireland and that was such an amazing experience, I’m a fan of Ireland and the whole Irish experience I had at the U2 concert, I love the UK, I definitely wanna come back here, to visit it properly, I’m here for work but I’m a fan of this place, the people and the culture is different from America in a refreshing way.

Bandslam Film Page | Alyson Michalka Profile