When Girl Bands Go To Hollywood

7 songbirds turn screen wannabes…

 

Beyonce Knowles keeps her acting career afloat with dodgy stalker drama Obsessed, which arrives today.

She’s definitely not the first former girl band member to strut her stuff on screen, and she’s had more luck than most.

Here are a few of the ladies who turned up in some decidedly mixed movies…

The Film: Freddy Vs Jason (2003)

The Girl: Kelly Rowland

The Band: Destiny’s Child, the same warbling group that gave the world Beyonce.

Destiny’s Child has a long and somewhat chequered history, from a difficult birth in the early 1990s, a string of different line-ups and names and their first real success under the Destiny’s moniker in 1996.

They’d go on to create five hit albums, have plenty of top-selling singles, but never quite escaped the in-fighting and problems, going on hiatus in 2002, before returning for a final album, Destiny Fulfilled in 2005.

The Ugly: Rowlands played one of the luckless teens that happen to get in the middle of trouble between Jason Voorhees and Freddy Krueger.

Let’s face it, everyone was focused on the horror icons meeting for the first time and never really paid much attention to who was dying.

Plus, did she really think her Destiny’s fans wanted to see her brutally murderlised by Jason?

Next up: Spice Girls [Page-Break]

 

The Film: Spice World (1997)

The Girl(s): Emma Bunton, Victoria Beckham, Geri Halliwell, Melanie Brown and Melanie Chisholm.

The Band: Spice Girls, of course!

Plucked from obscurity in 1994 by Bob and Chris Herbert after a round of open auditions, the fivesome went on to become the most successful British group since The Beatles.

Managed by Simon Fuller, their first album, the creatively titled Spice sold 23 million copies worldwide and got their nicknames – Scary, Sporty, Baby, Ginger and Posh – from Top Of The Pops Magazine.

Halliwell left in 1998 to pursue solo work and the remaining members released a third album in 2000 before splitting to focus on their separate careers. They reformed for a brief reunion tour in 2007, which was cut short in 2008.

The Ugly: Oh, Spice World… Released on Boxing Day at the height of their popularity, the film saw the girls attempting more Beatles-style success by making a Hard Days’ Night-style blend of fiction and reality.

It’s loaded down with cameos, including Elton John and Bob Geldof(!) and despite making $75 million around the world, was slated for being utter pap.

Still, the girls won an award… er… Worst Actress at the 1998 Razzies.

Next up: Rachel Stevens[Page-Break]

 

The Film: Deuce Bigalow: European Gigolo (2005)

The Girl: Rachel Stevens

The Band: S Club, one of he more annoying teenie-pop acts of the 2000s.

Created by Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller (who cannily saw a gap in the market for a younger group), they arrived on the scene as S Club 7 in 1999, launched via excitable telly show Miami.

The group went on to have four UK number-one singles, one UK number-one album, a string of number-one singles throughout Europe, and top-ten singles elsewhere in the world.

They recorded a total of four studio albums, released eleven singles and went on to sell over sixteen million albums worldwide.

S Club split finally split in 2003, just after making their first film, Seeing Double.

The Ugly: It's the sequel no one but Rob Schneider and his accountants asked for! More hilarity with Deuce and co, this time relocated to Amsterdam.

It’s about as funny as root canal surgery.

Stevens plays Louisa, the “dirty girl”. No, not sexy dirty, literally filthy and covered in mud. Yes, charming.

Since then, she’s worked on one TV movie, but mostly became known for her solo singing career and appearing on Strictly Come Dancing.

Next up: Fergie[Page-Break]

 

The Film: Grindhouse (2007)

The Girl: Stacey “Fergie” Ferguson

The Band: Black Eyed Peas, who – unlike many of the bands here – are still together and performing.

Fergie actually got her start with girl trio Wild Orchid, but in 2003 was invited to try out for one song with the Black Eyed Peas, who were recording their third album.

She did so well and bonded so naturally with the group that she soon scored a permanent position and became one of the driving forces, and as well known as founder Will.i.am.

The group released two more albums and Fergie also span off on her own, successful solo career, while still playing with her band mates.
 

The Ugly: Robert Rodriguez’ contribution to the box office flop that was Grindhouse - Planet Terror - was actually more fun than Quentin Tarantino’s.

Ferguson has a small yet pivotal role as Tammy, the doomed former lover of Marley Shelton’s Dakota. She’s soon attacked and chomped by crazed zombie-alike attackers.

Next up: Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas[Page-break]

 

The Film:Ticker (2001)

The Girl: Rozonda "Chilli" Thomas

The Band: TLC, which usually comprised Tionne "T-Boz" Watkins, Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes, and Thomas, were originally put together in 1990 after founding member Crystal Jones put out an ad for two girl singers. Sadly for Jones, she was quickly replaced.

They hit it big with singles such as Waterfalls and No Scrubs, and their 1994 album CrazySexyCool was a massive hit.

Tragedy befell the group in early 2002 when Lopes was killed in a car accident. The other two girls continued to perform, though have not released another album since 3D, the disc that was about to drop when Lopes died.

The Ugly: When you get a small part in an action movie “starring” Tom Sizemore and Steven Seagal, should you celebrate?

Probably not, since the film in question was little-scene action pic Ticker, in which “Chilli” plays Lily, a prostitute.

She doesn’t get much to do besides grind a little for a client, before being rudely interrupted by Sizemore and his vice cop partner, played by rapper Nas.

Next: All Saints[Page-Break]

 

The Film:Honest (2000)

The Girl(s): Nicole Appleton, Natalie Appleton and Melanie Blatt.

The Band: All Saints. Originally formed (with a different line-up) in 1994, the group truly came together in 1995 when Natalie and Nicole Appleton were added to the already teamed Melanie Blatt and Shaznay Lewis.

But it was 1997, and the release of their smash single Never Ever that saw them properly launched on the worldwide music stage.

They had more success with albums and singles, before band arguments saw them split in early 2001, with the various singers attempting solo careers.

They briefly reformed in 2007 and apparently still plan to perform together, though very little has been heard of them since then.

The Ugly: Despite being directed by Dave “Eurhythmics” Stewart, black comedy Honest, which saw the Appletons and Blatt as a gang of thieves, never took off at the box office, eventually earning £111,309.

It was better known as “All Saints Exposing Their Boobs Movie”, since both the Appletons expose their lady bumps in the film. Shaznay Lewis smartly stayed well away.

Next up: The 5.6.7.8's[Page-Break]

 

The Film:Kill Bill: Volume One (2003)

The Girl(s): Yoshiko Fujiyama, Sachiko Fujii and Akiko Omo.

The Band: Sachiko and Yoshiko “Ronnie” Fujiyama formed The 5.6.7.8’s in 1986.

After the usual revolving door line-up changes, they’re still going strong after releasing seven albums. The group is best known (at least in the West) for its covers of American garage and surf rock tunes, but they also have plenty of original material.

Their biggest following, however, is still in Japan. They’re the sort of niche appeal group that cult music lovers adore. Which might explain their film appearance…
 

The Ugly: Actually, they lucked out in that they appeared in a mostly great film and were part of one of the iconic set pieces – performing two songs in the House Of Blue Leaves as The Bride arrives for her smack down with the Crazy 88s.

Their cult following and reputation emerged unscathed, since all they had to do was essentially play themselves – and the film launched them to a much wider audience.

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Comments

    • daveynix

      May 29th 2009, 10:00

      Not that I'm much of a Fergie fan, but surely her casting in the upcoming '9' is worthy of a mention? The concept might be vaguely blasphemous to a film fan, but the casting alone says it's bound to be an Oscar contender..

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    • fluffulike

      Jun 2nd 2009, 16:42

      Is that 9 or nine? Getting so confused these day according to IMDB there are 3 movies called 9 being released this year?

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