One of the activites that we did today on our #disneyglobalevent was interviewing the McClain sisters. It was very exciting to be able to meet them first hand and to see that they were people just like us. So often when we think of movie, and TV stars we place them on a pedestal or think they lead a different life than the average Joe. I can say after meeting the McClain’s during the interview, they were refreshingly down to earth.
When we arrived, I witnessed China McClain ‘s mom cradling her daughter’s face giving her words of encouragement. Then she gave her a motherly kiss on her nose. I wondered if anyone else was fortunate enough to glimpse this very talented family being so caring and united. When the interview began, the girls came to life with giggles and an obvious sisterly love. and I learned later that the family unity was the base of their family.
This interview really struck home with me because I attended this interview with my sister. Jamie and I were very close growing up and carry on that relationship to this day. The girls are ages 13, 15 and 18 and have stuck with each other through thick and thin. Since China was the break out star with Disney, mentioning the ups and downs that come with that happening, and how they helped each other through such with sisterly moments of talking and giggling.
On this whole DisneyNature event, everything seems to fit in perfectly with a theme, and the theme of Chimpanzee, the song “Rise” and the McClain interview was Unity. When asked to write a song for the DisneyNature movie Chimpanzee, the McClain sisters said they felt very honored and excited.
The sisters were invited to watch a very early draft of the film so they would be able to create the theme song for Chimpanzee. Their inspirations, said Lauryn and China, came from when they watched the bond between Oscar and his mother, Isha. They combined the words “togetherness”, “together we will rise” and “about unity,” saying, “The unity in the movie was really amazing” talking about the bond between the chimps especially between Isha and Oscar and then later Freddie and Oscar.
The McClain family dynamic is working. The song, “Rise” is a catchy tune that has been stuck pleasantly in my head all day. Speaking about the brainstorming session of creating “Rise” was a team effort as is most of their music. The credits ran The McClain Family as a whole instead of the individuals. Mom wrote the lyrics while Dad produced the song in the usual McClain fashion.
The girls were adorable when asked how they stayed so down to earth, a question I am sure that was on everyone’s minds because it was so evident that stardom had not gone to their heads. They all chimed in, “Their parents” and further explained that their parents taught them to stay humble and to remember the lessons that they were taught. Further evidence of their “down-to-earth” status was when they ooohhhed and ahhhed at a mommy blogger talking about her kids and then later making a teen magazine editor blush by claiming that they loved the magazine and just purchased it recently.
I was reminded of my sister several times during the interview and glanced over at her fondly and knowingly often when the McClain girls talked about the best and worst of working with each other. China answered first claiming the best was they got to work together so closely and since they have always been close it doesn’t feel like work. The worst China talked about made me laugh, “the clothes and the shoes” because China was the same size as Lauryn, but then giggled well not in shoes and made fun of Lauryn’s big feet. Sisters for sure and the same things that Jamie and I tease each other about. China teasing Lauryn prompted Lauryn’s answer to the same question generalizing interviews and being picked on, but quickly agreed that the best part was the togetherness and that working with her sisters did not feel like work. Sierra, the oldest, gave the wisest answer that the best and the worst was being able to work together.
At the conclusion of the interview when asked what the key message they would give to their (the mommy bloggers) children, Sierra said “Stick close, love each other and always be there for each other; friends come and go; siblings will always be there. China added, “Love each other and have fun.” One thing remains true. Sisters will be sisters no matter who they are or how famous they will become.
CHIMPANZEE hits theaters everywhere on April 20th. “Rise,” written and performed by McClain Sisters after being inspired by Disneynature’s feature film CHIMPANZEE, is the latest Disney Friends for Change anthem. With the motivating lyrics “Together we can do anything,” the song captures the central message of the program: when kids and families work together, they can inspire each other and their communities to make a lasting, positive change in the world. “Rise” is the fourthFriends for Change anthem to be released with a benefit back to the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund. This contribution marks nearly $1 million awarded through the music campaign to charities working to protect the planet and conserve nature for future generations.