Back in February, the first Jem and the Holograms photo was released that gave us our first look at this 1980s fictional band that took the nation by storm. While we still don't know when the first trailer will arrive, new photos have arrived that offer new looks at Jem and the Holograms stars Aubrey Peeples, Stefanie Scott, Hayley Kiyoko and Aurora Perrineau. We also have new insight into the story from director Jon M. Chu.
Based on the 1980s animated TV series, the story centers on a small-town girl catapults from underground video sensation to global superstar, she and her three sisters begin a one-in-a-million journey of discovering that some talents are too special to keep hidden. In Universal Pictures Jem and the Holograms, four aspiring musicians will take the world by storm when they see that the key to creating your own destiny lies in finding your own voice. Jon M. Chu revealed that the story is about these young women trying to stay true to who they are after becoming famous.
"It's actually about a group of young people who are going to be inundated with this idea of fame and fortune and products and stuff, and within all that, how do you stay true to who you really are? That's the real soul of the movie. She never wanted to pursue the big costumes, lots of makeup, all that stuff. But in a way it helps her hide and have the confidence to come out and be this persona. We see the transformation as she gets brought into it, getting seduced by it, and at the same time trying to find her real self in between those two identities."
The supporting cast includes Ryan Guzman, Molly Ringwald and Juliette Lewis, who plays the main villain, a record executive who is "tempting you with everything you really do want and need deep down somewhere in your dark place."
The director will also be incorporating fans' contributions into the movie, asking them to submit performance videos and sing the praises of the original cartoon for use as a sort of "crowdsourced Greek chorus." Like in the original cartoon, Jem is the "secret identity" of Jerrica, although Jon M. Chu explained that he had a hard time exploring that dynamic in 2015, when everyone has a social media page.
"How can you even have a secret identity with all this social media?" the director asks. "But then it dawned on us: Wait, everybody has a secret identity. The idea of 'Who are you really?' is more relevant today than ever. That's what inspired me to say, 'Let's roll the dice and try to make this movie.'"
Take a look at the photos below, and stay tuned for more on Jem and the Holograms, which opens in theaters October 23. Do you think this obscure 1980s cartoon can be turned into a hit live action movie? Chime in with your thoughts below.