Alexz Johnson Dissects Controversial ‘Instant Star’ Series Finale, Reveals Revival Idea — IBTimes

Hard to believe it’s been 10 years since the Instant Star finale. Check out what Alexz thinks about the finale and bringing the show back.

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By Rachael Ellenbogen @TheRachaelE

Degrassi: The Next Generation” had countless fan-favorite relationships during its run from 2001 to 2015, but it was the central romance of its sister Canadian drama, “Instant Star,” that really earned the diehard fans. Ten years after the series finale, which was in June 2008 for American viewers and August 2008 for Canadian fans, it’s time to dissect the end of the show with star Alexz Johnson, who played Jude Harrison.

The show, which was created by “Degrassi” co-creator Linda Schuyler and co-executive produced by “Degrassi” EP Stephen Stohn, ran from 2004 to 2008 and focused on teenager Jude after she won a record deal from a singing competition. She had to balance school, her relationship with her sister Sadie (Laura Vandervoort) and friends with her new life as a rookie recording artist. Complicating matters even more, her producer was none other than former boyband member Tommy Q (Tim Rozon), who she instantly started to fall for. The two had a star-crossed, will-they-won’t-they romance of sorts over four seasons, with it all coming to an end in the series finale when Jude ended her engagement to Tommy and headed off to London.

Fans were angered after watching the intense relationship blossom between the two of them for four seasons, only to have it come crumbling down in the finale. Johnson, though, has a different outlook on the way it all went down.

Keep reading to find out what Johnson thinks about the “Instant Star” series finale, if she thinks Jude and Tommy (aka Jommy) would be endgame and if she wants to revive the show.

International Business Times: Many fans were upset with how the show ended. What did you think of the finale?

Alexz Johnson: I thought it was great because I feel like you have to do what your heart tells you to do, and I feel like love is the most important thing. But sometimes, you know, I feel like you need to have experiences, and you need to fail and you need to do the wrong things to know what’s right. I feel like Jude needed to be independent, and I feel like she needed to just break free. I feel like she needed to take the risk and take the jump. I think that, in the end, will always lead to — it’s the truth, it’s the right thing to do.

I think it’s rad. I think Jude was just like, ‘I love you and I want to be with you, but I need to do this at my age, and I need to do this right now because this is my chance, and fate is on my side. We’ll see where I am in 10 years, but, at least, I’ll know that I jumped.’ And she won’t have any regrets.

IBT: Now that it is 10 years later, would you want to revive “Instant Star”?

Johnson: Oh, yeah, that would be awesome. I totally would revive the show. I think that would be incredible. I mean, even just being — the experiences I’ve had being on the show, being signed to two major record deals, touring [all over], being an indie artist, surviving as an indie artist, putting out material, living in Brooklyn for seven years, I feel like I could bring so much art…it would be so rad. I think it would actually be an interesting time to do it. So, I’m all for it.

IBT: Do you think Jude and Tommy would’ve found their way back to each other?

Johnson: Probably. Just because it makes such good TV. They can’t not. It’s like what every Shakespearean play is about.

IBT: Why do you think viewers were so invested in their relationship?

Johnson: It was exciting for people to watch this young girl fall in love with a producer. It’s such a classic industry story. It’s forbidden, it’s like ahh, and I feel like…Jude kind of really makes people root for it. Because everything was working against Jude and Tommy. So, I feel like all those things put together, and the writing being so great, it just made it work.

IBT: What do you think the characters are up to all these years later? Where would the show pick back up?

Johnson: Oh man, [I think] Jamie [Kristopher Turner] would have his own record label. And I think probably…Darius [Wes Williams] would probably be like Simon Cowell of the reality TV show world. I feel like Tommy Q would probably still be producing, but [with] really quality artists. I feel like Jude would have been touring and playing music and probably, maybe had a kid, somehow. Maybe a very Joni Mitchell thing. Like some story that could — who knows, I think she would’ve just kind of gone with the wind, and then maybe just finally came back to America. She decided to come back, maybe her dad was sick or something. She came back to America, and that’s where I think it would be.

And then I think that…Tommy and Jude should be on the panel of judges, and then they should have the show be focused on the new Instant Star, that Jude kind of mentored.

IBT: Revivals are so popular now, do you think this could ever actually happen?

Johnson: Yeah, they are. People like that now.

I think people become very nostalgic. People like to go back, especially when the cast is still around. I think it would be a smart move to be honest, and I think “Instant Star” was a great show to be a part of.

Alexz’s Charity Auction is Live!

Now is your chance to bid on Alexz’s jumpsuit from the “Let ‘Em Eat Cake” tour!

Auction LIVE! Link in bio! ✨✨✨✨✨✨✨✨ Excited to announce a rare chance to own this tour look from my "Let 'Em Eat Cake" North American Tour in 2014, designed by Annika Tibando (Annika Tibs). This is a duplicate jumpsuit tailor made for me but never worn!! Best part, WE ARE AUCTIONING FOR GOOD REASON, PROCEEDS GO TO THIS AMAZING CAUSE; THE BRAIN & BEHAVIOR RESEARCH FOUNDATION By placing the winning bid for this jumpsuit, you will be supporting an amazing charity. A not-for-profit organization since 1987, that has awarded more than $380 million to fund over more than 5,500 grants to more than 4,500 scientists around the world. 100% of donations contributed to the foundation go to research and are invested in their grants to scientists. The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation is the nation’s top non-governmental funder of mental health research grants. They are committed to alleviating the suffering caused by mental illness. Auction will run for 1 week! 💋

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Click here to go to the auction!

The auction ends one week from today. Proceeds from this auction to go The Brain and Research Foundation!

Own Alexz’s “Let ‘Em Eat Cake” Tour Look!

This Saturday Alexz is auctioning off a jumpsuit custom made for her by Anika Tibs. Proceeds of the winning bid will go to The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation.

Excited to announce a rare chance to own this tour look from my "Let 'Em Eat Cake" North American Tour in 2014, designed by @Annikatibs. This is a duplicate jumpsuit tailor made for me but never worn!! Best part, WE ARE AUCTIONING FOR GOOD REASON, PROCEEDS GO TO THIS AMAZING CAUSE; THE BRAIN & BEHAVIOR RESEARCH FOUNDATION By placing the winning bid for this jumpsuit, you will be supporting an amazing charity. A not-for-profit organization since 1987, that has awarded more than $380 million to fund over more than 5,500 grants to more than 4,500 scientists around the world. 100% of donations contributed to the foundation go to research and are invested in their grants to scientists. The Brain & Behavior Research Foundation is the nation’s top non-governmental funder of mental health research grants. They are committed to alleviating the suffering caused by mental illness. Auction link to be posted at 12PM EST this Saturday, the 14th. 💋

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Album Premiere: Alexz Johnson Is Raw & Unfiltered in ‘Live From a Stranger Time’ — AtwoodMagazine.com

On March 9, 2018 Live From A Stranger Time will be released on all digital platforms!

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Album Premiere: Alexz Johnson Is Raw & Unfiltered in ‘Live From a Stranger Time’
By Mitch Mosk

Alexz Johnson’s story is a classic tale of perseverance in the face of adversity. Based in New York and Toronto, the Canadian-born singer/songwriter and Gemini Award-winning actress (known for her lead role as Jude Harrison in TV’s Instant Star) has overcome more than her share of obstacles over a decade-long music career. Her recently-released third album A Stranger Time (9/1/2017) reflects the intensity of an artist in transition and a woman in 2017’s America. On the cusp of major life changes and exciting milestones, Alexz Johnson takes fresh musical risks – working with veteran producer Mark Howard (Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, U2, Neil Young to create a dynamic and colorful live off the floor album that blends rock, soul, folk, Americana and R&B elements.

Please read the full article at the link.

Interview: The Wasting’s Alexz Johnson — BriefTake.com

Screenings have begun for “The Wasting”! Interviews and reviews are coming in. Here’s one with Alexz from Brieftake.com:

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Interview: The Wasting’s Alexz Johnson
written by Leora Heilbronn

The Wasting isn’t your typical horror film. The female-driven movie centres around Sophie (Lauren McQueen), a British teenaged dancer whose father (played by Gray O’Brien) uproots the family suddenly, leaving his despondent daughter under his abusive care and cutting her off from her worried friends (played by Canadians Alexz Johnson, Sean Saunders Stevenson and Brendan Flynn). Yes there’s a hauntingly ghoulish subplot in there that’s reminiscent of a Gaskell or Poe story, but the film also tackles the all too prevalent acceptance of toxic masculinity and anorexia in a refreshingly original way.

We had the wonderful opportunity to chat with multi-talented Canadian It girl Alexz Johnson (Instant Star, Degrassi: The Next Generation) who starred in and produced The Wasting. The following is a condensed and edited version of that conversation.

Brief Take: Congratulations on the film! No offense to the other actors, but your character was my favourite. Grace is no nonsense, isn’t afraid to say what everyone else is thinking and a real ball buster. What did you like best about playing her and what drew you to the project in the beginning?

Alexz Johnson: Oh thank you! Carolyn Saunders is a dear friend of mine and she’s the director of the film. She approached me in the beginning stages. The Wasting really has to do with psychological and mental illness and eating disorders, really. Stuff that I think is so prevalent in our society but people are so afraid to talk about it for some reason. I know that the majority of young women fall into some kind of time in their lives when they’re hyper conscious of their bodies and psychologically they go through some kind of torment. I’ve been in the industry so long and seeing this, especially within the acting industry, I was like, “Wow, this would be a really cool film to make”. The script that she was writing and the psychological spin on it, I think, was really really cool because it makes it all exciting to watch. It’s taking something real and putting it into this alternate universe, which I thought was really cool because I hadn’t seen it done before. So when she approached me about playing Grace, it was a natural role for me because I’m an older sister and I have a lot of really amazing female friends. So it just felt like a very comfortable and natural character to fall into for me.

BT: As a singer-songwriter, you’re very collaborative in terms of your storytelling process. Was Carolyn the same way?

AJ: Oh yeah, absolutely. I play music in the film as well. So yes, she was. Working with Carolyn was really amazing. Having a female director was a special experience for me.

BT: And you filmed the project completely in the UK, is that correct?

AJ: Yes we did. Up about two hours outside of Worcestershire. *laughs* I can’t sound English when I say that. But yeah, it was awesome. It was really cool because we were in this old, kind of haunted estate. It was fun.

BT: And yet you were working alongside a few Canadians. What was it like working with Brendan Flynn and Sean Saunders Stevenson? The group of you, including Lauren McQueen, really came across as old friends in the film.

AJ: I love that! That makes me so happy. Honestly, my goal was that I wanted to break the ice. We did hang out but didn’t have much opportunity to become close. I think it’s just a testament to the actors in the film. They’re all such sweet kids and it was just really easy to fall into that friendship quickly. It was just natural.

BT: Going back to what you were saying earlier, the film is a heightened fantasy but intermixed in that are issues that are, unfortunately, very real to many young women. There’s the anorexia and the loss of control (and doing everything in one’s power to regain that control) due to the weight of toxic masculinity constantly surrounding them. What do you hope your young female fans take away from this movie?

AJ: I have always had a real soft spot for thrillers and really exciting psychological thrillers. I’m not really into gore but I really like the script for this film. I hope they take away some solid seeming of truth, that this is the outcome of not dealing with eating disorders. We didn’t create this film as a way of starting a movement to speak out against eating disorders, but I hope that people who see this really fine thriller, can also take away from it the feeling of having a voice to speak out against them. It leaves people with something to think about and something deeper than some of those empty horror, genre films. And I love that it’s a female-driven project and that makes it even more exciting.

BT: What are some of your favourite psychological thrillers?

AJ: Oh, Se7en. I also love Black Mirror! I think it’s amazing.

BT: Right now you’re promoting the film, of course, but you’re also promoting your recent album. Are there any actor/singers who you look up to as role models?

AJ: Wow. When it comes to music I love Annie Lennox, obviously Carole King, and I’m really inspired by Anna Kendrick. I think she’s a wonderful actress and she sings.

BT: Which albums have you been listening to lately?

AJ: Lately I’m been listening to a lot of Enya. I don’t listen to top 40 stuff. I’ve been listening to Brandi Carlile’s By the Way I Forgive You album. She should win a Grammy for that record. It’s beautiful. I love it.

BT: Are there any directors that you’d like to work with in the near future?

AJ: Oh, of course. Sarah Polley, Greta Gerwig, and I’d love to work with Lake Bell. I think she’s amazing. I’d jump at the opportunity to work with any one of them.