Teen Beat, 1993 Get the News on Newsies–Right Here! Exclusive Interviews With Some “News-Worthy” Guys!
Newsies, a hot new Disney flick, is the story of the great New York City newspaper strike that took place around the turn of the century. Two young newsboys, Jack Kelly (Christian Bale) and David Jacobs (David Moscow) round up their peers, including David’s younger brother Les (Luke Edwards), Racetrack (Max Casella), Crutchy (Marty Belafsky), Kid Blink (Trey Parker), Mush (Aaron Lohr), and Boots (Arvie Lowe, Jr.) and revolt against newspaper moguls Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst when they cut the boys’ meager wages to benefit themselves. Look out–‘cause the boys plan to do something about it! This musical extravaganza comes complete with good guys, bad guys (gorgeous Shon Greenblatt plays Oscar Delancey, the younger of the two evil Delancey gangsters) and is loaded with singing and dancing. When TEEN BEAT got wind of this movie, we put a call in to Disney and what did we get in return? A chance to chat with Shon, Marty, Arvie, Aaron, and Trey. Get all the news–straight from the source. Enjoy! ———— AARON LOHR “Mush” TEEN BEAT: Tell us about Newsies. AARON LOHR: Newsies takes place in 1899 and it’s about how the newsboys strike against William Hearst and Joseph Pulitzer. They form a labor union. The whole movie is singing and dancing, acting, gymnastic and stunts. TEEN BEAT: You do all your own stunts and stuff? AARON: Yes. I’ve been dancing, acting and doing gymnastics since I ws 3. TEEN BEAT: Tell us about your Newsies character, Mush. AARON: Mush is always looking on the bright side of things and he’s always trying to help out. He repeats things. He’s always laughing at stupid jokes. He’s kind of naive. TEEN BEAT: Why is he nicknamed Mush? AARON: The director, Kenny Ortega, said that the complexion of my skin is like oatmeal, so they called my character Mush! TEEN BEAT: Is he like you in real life? AARON: Yes, I guess so. I look on the bright side of things. I’m always positive and laugh a lot. TEEN BEAT: Were there any funny things that happened on the set while you were filming? AARON: Oh, yes. Like, David Moscow and a couple of other guys, we were going to throw buckets of water from the top of the World building on Kenny but somehow he saw the water coming and ran out of the way and he got squirt guns and started squirting everyone. It was fun. TEEN BEAT: What was the average age of the actors on the set? AARON: Most of the actors were around 19 years old. TEEN BEAT: Was it fun filming at Universal Studios? AARON: It was fun and it was convenient, because I live in Los Angeles. TEEN BEAT: What was the best part about it? AARON: Kenny Ortega is the best. He listens to you and he’s like a kid. It was fun. _________________________________________ ARVIE LOWE, JR. “Boots” TEEN BEAT: Tell us about your Newsies character, Boots. ARVIE LOWE, JR.: His name is Benjamin Arvis. TEEN BEAT: How’d he get his nickname Boots? ARVIE: He used to shine shoes when his mom was still with him. When his mom passed away, he couldn’t make it because shining shoes didn’t pay well. So, Jack Kelly [Christian Bale’s character] asked if my character wanted to sell papers too. But since my character loves shoes, they call him Boots. TEEN BEAT: You’re a dancer. How’d you start dancing? ARVIE: Well, I attended the Regina School Of Performing Arts and I learned to dance with my buddies at school. TEEN BEAT: Would you want to try your hand at a career in music? ARVIE: I don’t know. I think I might want to. TEEN BEAT: How’d you get into acting? ARVIE: I was taped at a birthday party at the Regina School of Performing Arts and they showed this tape of me dancing to an agent and the agent wanted me to audition for this agency and I got it. On my first audition I got a JOB. TEEN BEAT: What was the job? ARVIE: It was called Box Office Funny. It turned out to be a movie. TEEN BEAT: And you toured Europe. ARVIE: For Reebok. I brought a friend. We’re a dance team. TEEN BEAT: Where do you see yourself in five years? ARVIE: Probably in high school, doing what I do best–drawing characters and creating. TEEN BEAT: Is there any one thing you want to say to your fans? ARVIE: Go see Newsies! ________________________________________________ TREY PARKER “Kid Blink” TEEN BEAT: Tell us about your Newsies character, Kid Blink. TREY PARKER: They call him that because he has a patch over his left eye. TEEN BEAT: How’d he lose his eye? TREY: I just tell people he was born that way, but in real life, there was a Kid Blink and he wore a patch and it was like, a handicap to sell. He wore a patch to make him look helpless. TEEN BEAT: Was Newsies a fun movie to make? TREY: It was incredible! TEEN BEAT: How was the cast? TREY: I’ve never worked with a better cast. We were like a big family. All the producers and directors–everybody involved–were so close! TEEN BEAT: For how long did the movie film? TREY: We worked for almost seven months. TEEN BEAT: When the film wrapped, what did you do to celebrate? TREY: We had a party at one of the guys’ houses and we made a scrapbook for the director and for other people who worked on the film. TEEN BEAT: How’d you get into acting? TREY: I did little things in Alabama. I was born and raised there. Then I moved to New York. Then I started dancing. I did a few commercials and then I did mainly theater. I played John in Peter Pan. TEEN BEAT: How’d you start dancing? TREY: When I was 7 or 8, my best friend and I used to turn on the TV to Soul Train and we used to mimic the dancers. My sister took classes and I’d go and watch her. I just picked it up. Then, in New York, I started training. TEEN BEAT: Do you sing too? TREY: Yes. To tell the truth I have a group and we’re trying to get our stuff together. The group’s called EYC (Express Yourself Clearly ). I’m just gonna be the Bo Jackson of entertainment! [Trey starts laughing]. I’m willing to commit myself to it–I think it can be done. TEEN BEAT: Give us the final overall view. TREY: I think the movie is a really cool film and I think a lot of people will like it! _____________________________________________ MARTY BELAFSKY “Crutchy” TEEN BEAT: We hear the cast of Newsies was close. Did you guys hang out socially? MARTY BELAFSKY: Yes. Sometimes we’d go out and see a movie. A bunch of us would do paint color wars. We’d dress up in army clothes and go out in the fields and have paint color wars. TEEN BEAT: If you had to move from California, where would you move to? MARTY: My mom’s from Chicago. I like Chicago. TEEN BEAT: Newsies is the first major role you’ve had in a feature film. How’d you feel when you got the part? MARTY: I was thrilled. I was so happy to work with Kenny again. We’d worked together on Hull High. TEEN BEAT: Create the perfect role for yourself in a movie. MARTY: That’s hard. Probably an action/adventure movie–with everything in it. Something where I’m the hero. TEEN BEAT: What actors would be included in the cast? MARTY: Robin Williams, Eddie Murphy, Arnold Schwarzenegger–people like that. Have Steven Spielberg direct it. TEEN BEAT: If you couldn’t act anymore, what would you want to do? MARTY: I want to direct. I’d like to follow in the footsteps of Ron Howard. I want to go to film school at USC. TEEN BEAT: What is one goal that you’d like to accomplish in your lifetime? MARTY: I’d like to have a family and settle down. That’s kind of weird coming from a teenager! TEEN BEAT: What era would you visit if you fell into a time machine? MARTY: Probably the '50s because I’m curious to see how everything worked back then. TEEN BEAT: What do you like most about acting? MARTY: Just the feel of doing it. I like being up there and I like the attention! I simply like making people laugh and cry. _____________________________________________ SHON GREENBLATT “Oscar Delancey” TEEN BEAT: Tell us about your character in Newsies. SHON GREENBLATT: The character I play in Newsies is a true character. His name is Oscar Delancey. [The younger of the two Delancey brothers.] The Delancey Streets in New York and San Francisco were named after him. When he grew up he became a huge crime lord. But, in Newsies, he’s this bad, more perverted, demented younger brother. My character’s the guy you love to hate. TEEN BEAT: Was he an easy character to play? SHON: I’ve never played a bad guy, so it’s cool. It’s hard to play a period bad guy because you can’t rely on any one thing. There was a lot of research into this character. We were trained in martial arts and wrestling and there was a dialect coach on the set. TEEN BEAT: Was it hard to stay in that “New Yawk” tongue? SHON: No. We were around each other and pretty much talking like our characters all the time. TEEN BEAT: Was there anyone who mastered this “dialect?” SHON: If we couldn’t find the dialect coach, then we’d talk to Max Casella. Max has such a great New York accent. TEEN BEAT: Were there any outstanding things you remember from filming? SHON: Yeah. When we burst into the theater where Ann-Margret is performing to get all the kids. The cop my character’s with falls into the orchestra pit and it’s a funny, slapstick thing because I’m trying to push him out of there and he weight two tons and he’s crushing me. I just started ad-libbing. I had to get it approved by the dialect coach because there are certain words they didn’t use back then. TEEN BEAT: Were they open to your input as far as lines go? SHON: Yes. Actually, I said the ad-lib and the script supervisor wrote down what I said, and together we picked what we’d keep. Then, all the other takes were done with that. TEEN BEAT: We understand that kenny Ortega, the director of Newsies, was really great. SHON: Kenny Ortega is the greatest. He’s an actor’s director. He really believed in us. He’s a good guy. TEEN BEAT: Was Newsies a tough film to make? SHON: Newsies was … there is no walk in the forest when it comes to making a film.