If Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello found themselves in an alternate version of "Back to the Future" on a surfboard instead of a DeLorean, the result might be Disney's "Teen Beach Movie." In the accurately titled flick, Ross Lynch ("Austin & Ally") and Maia Mitchell ("The Fosters") play surf buddies who get trapped in an alternate reality: "Wet Side Story," '60s "Beach Blanket Bingo"-style movie. When the "Wet" leads crush on them instead of each other, the friends have to figure out how to fix things, or "Wet Side Story" will never get made!
Watch the trailer:
Sounds sunny and light, but behind the scenes, it was pretty bloody. Mitchell and Lynch suffered matching minor foot injuries while shooting on location in Puerto Rico.
Lynch, who tripped while running on set, gave us the gory details: "It was one of those cuts where it cuts off a layer of your skin. It was so deep, but nothing too serious."
Mitchell waited until the last day of filming to get hurt. "I was surfing and we were meant to surf in, get off our boards, and run up through the sand," she said. "And then at the end of it, I could feel something on my foot. And Ross was like, 'Maia, look at your foot,' and I looked down, and I literally had a huge cut. I had fallen off my board."
Surfboards are dangerous, according to Lynch, who told us that the sharp fins can be like knives. And it's true. Mitchell's cut required a two-day stay in the hospital, and she called the experience "terrifying." But in the end, she thought it was worth it because "in the beginning of the film you can see our matching bandages on our feet."
We want to assure you that Disney took extra good care of their cast and crew while in the deep blue sea. These wipeouts were safe, thanks in large part to Hawaiian surf legend and water safety expert Brian Keaulana. He's kind of like the wave whisperer, you see, which is why producer David Buelow brought him on set. Buelow elaborates to Yahoo! TV exclusively, "Brian can stand on the beach and read the water. His calm presence allowed everyone in the water to feel totally safe."
Additionally, the stars were never alone out there. Typically, surf scenes called for two to four jet skis off camera and nearby water pros on deck looking out for Mitchell, Lynch, and the crew.
Keaulana has loads of sympathy for the learners and says that the first wipeout is "the hardest." Once the two young stars got their surf legs, they were both "completely fearless," according to Keaulana. And when the real life God of surfing calls you fearless, you know you did stellar.
The surfing scenes made for some great memories for Mitchell and Lynch, but if given the choice of another movie world to explore they opted to stay out of the water. Mitchell would go for "The Wizard of Oz" because she thought she was Dorothy "for the longest time." Lynch chose the 1968 version of "Romeo and Juliet" with one request: "I would have to be Romeo."
Right on, dude.
"Teen Beach Movie" premieres July 19 at 8 PM on Disney Channel.
- Maia Mitchell
- Teen Beach Movie