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POP-Corn: Jonas Bros. Celebrate Earth Day

Tasty tidbits on your celebrity faves!

By Gerri Miller | null null , null
The Jonas Brothers plant a tree to honor Earth Day. (Photo courtesy Gerri Miller)<br />
The Jonas Brothers plant a tree to honor Earth Day. (Photo courtesy Gerri Miller)


The Jonas Brothers celebrated Earth Day on April 22 by planting a tree at the Ricardo Lizarraga Elementary School in Los Angeles and telling the students how to be more "green."

Kevin, who drives a hybrid car, suggested turning lights out and turning off computers when they're not in use, as well as writing on both sides of a piece of paper. He pointed out that the packaging of the trio's next CD will be made of recyclable material. "It's important for everyone to be aware of the environment and protect it and watch over it," added Joe.


It was a celebration of books and people who love them—including some big-name stars—at the annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books. Lots of lucky kids got to hear celebrities—such as Dylan Sprouse, sister duo Aly & A.J., and Ben Barnes, who plays the title role in the new movie The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian—read to them at the Target Children's Stage and to get autographs afterward.

Dylan, who read from his and brother Cole's 47 R.O.N.I.N series, told the crowd that he just got his learner's permit to drive—but Cole didn't, even though he studied more than Dylan did. "I passed, but he failed!" Dylan bragged. Both boys are now working on their Suite Life spin-off series, Suite Life on Deck.

Aly & A.J. read from the first book in their Aly & A.J.'s Rock ‘N' Roll Mysteries series, First Stop, New York, in which they help find who's behind the theft of instruments from Girls Rock Academy. That book, and another set in Miami, will be out June 12 with at least two more to follow. These are in addition to the duo's autobiography, which is already out. The sisters put a lot of autobiographical details into the novels, including their love of shopping and the Hello Kitty items on their tour bus.

Aly & A.J. plan to tour in June and July, and they're working on music for a new CD. They also designed T-shirts for a Multiple Sclerosis awareness campaign—their cousin has the disease—and they've been busy acting. Aly stars with Vanessa Hudgens in the music-themed Will, and A.J. has a small part in the movie The Lovely Bones, which was shot in beautiful New Zealand.

Aly told the audience about the mishaps that can occur on stage. She shared a story from the girls' tour with Miley Cyrus. During one performance, A.J. got her boot heel caught in the stage grating. "She couldn't get it out, so she pulled her foot out and left it there," she related. "That's why we're very careful about the shoes we wear on stage!"

Before he read from C.S. Lewis's Prince Caspian, the book on which the new movie, Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian, is based, British newcomer Ben Barnes told the crowd he had been a fan of the Narnia books since he was 8 years old and still has his old copy of Prince Caspian. He had to learn to ride horseback and sword fight for the movie, which was shot in New Zealand, Slovenia, and Prague, Czech Republic. He did most of his own stunts in the movie and had to wear heavy armor most of the time but didn't complain because many of the other actors had it a lot worse!  "Some people had three hours of makeup every day," he explained.

He's set to film the third movie in the Narnia series, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader, in October.    

Also at the Festival was Danica McKellar, best known as Winnie Cooper from The Wonder Years, explaining why Math Doesn't Suck, (the title of her book). As a middle school student, Danica struggled with math but grew to understand and love it, and now she helps kids do the same with her books.

Ben Barnes, reading, to kids, Prince Caspian
<i>The Chronicles of Narnia: Prince Caspian<i>'s Ben Barnes reads the classic book to kids at the Los Angeles Times Book Fest. (Photo courtesy Gerri Miller)

Math "keeps you from getting ripped off, it prepares you for better jobs or running your own business one day, it helps you plan things like parties and vacations, and it will make you smarter no matter what you do in life," Danica pointed out. "Doing math sharpens your brain. And when you struggle with something and get better at it, it builds confidence." Her second book, Kiss My Math, comes out in August.

For more on Ben, watch for our Prince Caspian Special Report; also check up on our upcoming Star Spotlight for Aly & A.J.!


He plays an auto-racing ace as the title character in the new movie Speed Racer, opening May 9, but Emile Hirsch didn't have to do any actual driving in it—all the cars and racetracks are computer-generated, and the actors were inserted later. On set, Emile sat in a cockpit contraption attached to a moving platform called a gimbal. "You're slamming around in this simulator for hours, and it's hot, and there's lights on you, and you can't move because you're strapped in," he describes, noting that he got some bumps and bruises as a result.

Even so, Hirsch had a blast playing a character he had watched as a kid (he was a big fan of the Speed Racer cartoon series). He also had fun training for a big fight scene. "I learned when you get punched in the face, how to roll with it," he said. He can't wait to make the sequel!


Ashley Tisdale performs a new original song in the Mother's Day episode of Phineas & Ferb, airing on Disney Channel on May 10 at 8:30 p.m. Now shooting High School Musical 3: Senior Year, Ashley has signed on for a remake of the movie Teen Witch. Meanwhile, High School Musical 4 is in the works. Unlike HSM 3, which will hit theaters October 24, HSM 4 will probably be a TV movie and focus on some of the characters from HSM 3. We don't know yet which cast members will participate. Also, ABC will air a summer reality show in which aspiring student performers compete for the chance to win a part in High School Musical. Nick Lachey hosts the series, which premieres July 20.

Brooke Shields returns as Miley's mom in another flashback episode of Hannah Montana, airing May 4 at 8 p.m. on Disney Channel. ABC Family will show The Incredibles May 2 at 8 p.m., and to get you up to speed before the May 16 release of Prince Caspian, ABC will air The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe May 3 at 8 p.m.

About the Author

Gerri Miller is a contributing writer for Scholastic News Online.

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