It’s prom season, and all of the young ladies and gents will dress up in ball gowns and tuxes to strut around ballrooms, have dinner at posh restaurants and hang out of the sunroofs of limousines.
That’s the fun stuff.
Then, there’s the drama that comes with senior prom. For instance, finding the right dress or even finding a date to escort you after your boyfriend or girlfriend does the unthinkable, just before your special night.
The new comedy due in theaters this month, Prom, highlights everything that could go right and wrong leading up to the gala.
On a press tour to celebrate their roles in the Disney film are actors DeVaughn Nixon, son of TV’s Debbie Allen and NBA legend Norm Nixon, and Canadian newcomer Kylie Bunbury, who’s just getting used to the idea of her pending stardom.
How does it feel to be in a Disney film?
Nixon: I grew up watching Disney … huge [fan of] Lion King, Aladdin, all of those classics, Little Mermaid. [Laughter] As girlie as that sounds, I understood her. She wanted to be free. I know Disney produces great products, great films. It is such a humbling experience to be working with them. It’s a rebirth for my career. They will shine us in the right lights.
Bunbury: For me, it’s been a whirlwind, given the fact that this is my first film. To be associated with a driving force like Disney is insane, and I am so grateful.
What role did your family play in your career choice?
Nixon: They told me to follow my dreams and be passionate. One of the things that I took from both of them was my drive. Debbie [mom] is just a [jill]-of-all-trades. She threw everything on the wall, and everything stuck: choreographer, director, actress. To see how passionate she is about what she does is unbelievable. She could very well retire. Phylicia [Rashad, his aunt] is one of sweetest people you’ll ever meet. She is Mrs. Huxtable in real life. Her advice is “study the greats” — Sidney Poitier, Denzel Washington. Know your history and where you come from as a black actor.
What did you like most about your role?
Bunbury: Teenage years are a very difficult time. I liked the fact that my character was confident, showed independence and didn’t conform to the norm.
What is your best advice for girls headed to prom?
Bunbury: Don’t let it get into your head too much. It’s one night. Yeah, it’s glamorous, but don’t stress yourself out about it. Do what you want to do — go alone or go with your friends. It’s just a dance.
Nixon: Don’t go with people who are all about drama. This is something that you will remember for the rest of your life and share with your kids and grandkids.
Are you selective about your roles?
Nixon: Yes. I want to be able to crossover like Brad Pitt and Will Smith do. Any role that I do, I want to be a chameleon. I think that’s one of the most important things about being an actor, being able to adapt to any film. I would love to do comedy … [or just the] right movie for me.
Do either of you have talents other than acting?
Nixon: She can sing [pointing to his co-star]. We did “The Mo’Nique Show,” and she made me dance so I dropped it like it was hot. I am putting [her] on blast.
After much chanting and egging on, Bunbury performed a cover of Adele, a capella, for the group of media professionals. She’s not only beautiful but that girl can sang. –yvette caslin
Prom is due in theaters on Friday, April 29, 2011.