The Cheetah Girls (group)

The Cheetah Girls was an American girl group consisting of Adrienne Bailon, Kiely Williams, Sabrina Bryan, and Raven-Symoné as the starring leads. The group was created by Disney, and was made famous by the eponymous Disney Channel original film and its sequels, The Cheetah Girls 2 and The Cheetah Girls: One World. The group has released three studio albums, Cheetah-licious Christmas, In Concert: The Party's Just Begun Tour, and TCG plus several RIAA certified Platinum albums including, The Cheetah Girls, The Cheetah Girls 2, and The Cheetah Girls: One World. All of their albums and soundtracks have debuted in the Billboard 200. The soundtrack to their first film sold over 2 million copies.

The Cheetah Girls
Adrienne Bailon, Sabrina Bryan and Kiely Williams performing during the One World Tour in Jacksonville, Florida in October 2008
Background information
OriginNew York, New York, U.S.
Genres
Years active2002–2008
Labels
Associated acts
Websitemyspace.com/thecheetahgirls
Past members

The group has launched a clothing line, several perfume collections, doll lines, room decor, a book series and video games. The group has had three nationwide tours, Cheetah-licious Christmas Tour, The Party's Just Begun Tour and One World Tour. The Cheetah Girls grossed over US$43 million from their second tour.[1][2] They have sold over 11 million records worldwide with the help of producer Brennan Mills.[3]

CareerEdit

2002–2005: The Cheetah Girls film, breakthrough and Cheetah-licious ChristmasEdit

 
The Cheetah Girls performing during their Christmas tour in 2005

The Cheetah Girls had a television movie, based on a best-selling series of young adult books of the same name by Deborah Gregory, which was filmed in October and November 2002, and debuted on August 15, 2003.[4] The movie's DVD sold over 800,000 copies and the film received over 84 million viewers worldwide.[5] The film starred Raven-Symoné, Sabrina Byran, Adrienne Bailon and Kiely Williams. During casting auditions for the film, the singer Solange Knowles was originally cast, but was pulled out of the film due to the promotion and release of her debut album Solo Star. The role was then given to Williams, who along with Bailon was originally in the girl group 3LW.[6] Though there had been no contractual plans to record as an actual music group, producer Debra Martin Chase was able to convince Disney to create new contracts and release the film's music as a soundtrack. The CD was a surprise success despite not having been promoted.[7] Soon after the first soundtrack, plans were underway to turn the Cheetah Girls into a real-life recording group. Symoné however, decided to focus on solo work, leaving the trio of just Bailon, Bryan and Williams.[8]

The Cheetah Girls was also supposed to be adapted into a primetime TV series for ABC in their 2004–2005 season. According to an article on the MTV news site, ABC was set to put the show into production in early 2004, with discussions also being held to write a role for fellow 3LW member, Jessica Benson.[9] A later article, published in February 2004,[10] states that The Cheetah Girls sitcom was delayed due to the success of That's So Raven. The article stated that because of this success, Raven would not be able to do the sitcom. ABC did not pick up the series. A pilot for the show was rumored to have been filmed, but the long-standing rumors about the pilot being filmed were later debunked by Williams and Bryan.[11]

In late 2004, the girls recorded for the first time as a trio and recording act for the Disneymania 3 album, remaking the song "I Won't Say (I'm in Love)" from the Hercules soundtrack.

The girls released their first recording in October 2005 under Walt Disney Records, Cheetah-licious Christmas, the holiday album included classic Christmas songs, as well as several original songs, one of which was co-written by all three girls. The album peaked at number 74 on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The lead single, "Cheetah-licious Christmas", was rotated on Radio Disney and a music video for the song was shown on Disney Channel. A second single from the album, "Five More Days 'Til Christmas" was released as a promo single exclusively on Radio Disney. The following month, the girls went on their very first tour to support the album, along with Aly & AJ as the opening act and the Jonas Brothers as special guests.

2006–2007:The Cheetah Girls 2 and TCGEdit

The Cheetah Girls began work on their debut album in January 2006. "We'll be making a real album, not a soundtrack," Adrienne Bailon says. "Some of the music on there will be produced by will.i.am from The Black Eyed Peas," she says. "It's important for people to see us as a real musical group. We have all this great marketing around us, with the movies and other things. But we are a musical group." However, when filming and recording for The Cheetah Girls 2 came up, the album was put on hold. Raven-Symoné returned for the film, which was shot on location in Barcelona, Spain in the spring of 2006.

The Cheetah Girls 2 premiere received a total of over 8.1 million viewers, making it the highest rated premiere for a Disney Channel Original Movie at the time. Following the film's premiere, the group embarked on The Party's Just Begun Tour from September 2006 to March 2007. They also performed at the Disney Channel Games on April 24, 2007.

In an interview with Billboard about the postponed album, Sabrina Bryan stated that the girls worked on writing for the album during their tour, and that they hoped to gather an audience of older fans while simultaneously staying true to their younger fan base.[12] Bryan also stated that the girls would work with producers they had worked with in the past as well as exploring new producers, such as Timbaland.[12]

The album was originally titled Who We Are,[13] and set to be released on June 19, 2007[14] but this was postponed to September 25, 2007, with a release name of TCG. The track "So Bring It On" was released as the album's first single. "Fuego" was released as the second single from the album.

2007–2008: The Cheetah Girls: One World and disbandmentEdit

 
The Cheetah Girls performing at The Magnificent Mile in 2008

The third Cheetah Girls film was announced for pre-production in early 2007, with Adrienne Bailon revealing in March 2007 that the film would be filming for a three-month period, in India and that the film would have a storyline and theme centered around Bollywood.[15] The entirety of the main cast members was invited to return, but Raven-Symoné confirmed in August 2007 that she would not appear in the third film.[16]

Although "catfights" and "territorial issues" were initially stated to be the reason, Symoné revealed that she did not appear in the third film due to feeling "excluded" and "ostracized" on the set of the second film, likely due to the fact that the three other girls had spent so much time together after being put together in the real-life Cheetah Girls recording group.[17]

The group began filming their third and final Cheetah Girls movie, entitled The Cheetah Girls: One World, in January 2008. It premiered on August 22, 2008 with its soundtrack released on August 19. The movie debuted with 6.2 million viewers, the lowest-ever rated premiere for the series. In the fall of 2008, the group went on tour to support the One World movie and soundtrack, which would be their last tour together. In late December 2008, the group disbanded due to being phased out for other new Disney franchises.

AftermathEdit

All four girls are currently working on solo projects. Bryan released a book titled Princess of Gossip in 2009, had a small supporting role in the straight-to-DVD film Mostly Ghostly, released another fitness DVD called Byou 2, and had a part in the indie film If It Ain't Broke, Break It.[18] Raven has had a successful solo music career and has starred in films such as College Road Trip, Dr Dolittle, Dr Dolittle 2, For One Night and Revenge of The Bridesmaids and voicing Iridessa in the Tinker Bell Movies as well as starring in State of Georgia, guest starring on Sonny with a Chance alongside Demi Lovato and in other series such as Black-ish, K.C. Undercover and Empire. In 2015 she became a co-host on The View until the end of 2016 when she left the show to star in and executive produce the That's So Raven spinoff Raven's Home which is currently on its fourth season.[19] Both Williams and Bailon had small roles in 2008 film The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2, with Bryan making a cameo in the form of a set of her Byou DVDs on display. Williams played a supporting role in the film The House Bunny starring Anna Faris. Williams filmed the music video for her first single "Make Me a Drink" in New York City in November 2008,[20] which was later scrapped in favor of a promotional single titled "Spectacular", released in the spring of 2010.[21] In early 2009, Williams and Bryan talked about collaborating on a talk show together, which Williams described as "a young version of The View".[22] The pilot for Dinner with Friends was filmed in May 2011 and was released on YouTube two months later. Currently, Bailon is one of the hosts of syndicated talk show The Real along with former fellow Disney Channel star Tamera Mowry, Jeannie Mai, and Loni Love, which premiered on July 15, 2013.[23] Adrienne announced that she would be open to doing a Cheetah Girls reunion.[24] In 2019, Symone and Bailon competed on the second season of The Masked Singer with Symone as "Black Widow" and Bailon as "Flamingo".

CultureEdit

The Cheetah Girls were the first multi-ethnic girl music group to come out of Disney Channel. The group not only featured young women of various races, backgrounds, and sizes, but it also showcased music from various cultures around the world. When the second movie took the group to Spain, they released “Amigas Cheetahs” and “Fuego” that featured Spanish lyrics and utilized costumes that are typical of Spanish culture.[25]

The group was largely popular at the same time as a more “grown up” multi-ethnic girl group, The Pussycat Dolls. This parallel is visible in their names, in their upbeat dance tracks, and even in their choreography. The largest difference is in the PG nature of The Cheetah Girls, they keep their choreography rather clean and they are always in layers that are not very revealing.[26] This all helped the group gain popularity with tweens and parents alike.

The message in The Cheetah Girls films is that stardom is attainable as long as you remember that your close personal relationships are more important.[27] The group staying together was always the main goal of the series. This female support shown in the movies communicated an idea of feminism to young girls watching.[28] The music of the group speaks about “friends for life” and “sisters, we stand together” which gave young girls a foundation in feminism and an appreciation for other ethnicities.

The Cheetah Girls have inspired many artists that came after them. Popular celebrities such as Fifth Harmony[29] (mainly Camila Cabello[citation needed] and Ally Brooke), The McClain Sisters,[30] Zendaya,[31] Olivia Holt[32] and Brittany O'Grady[33] have mentioned The Cheetah Girls as idols or an inspiration. Kehlani and rapper Cardi B[34] have also paid homage to The Cheetah Girls by singing their songs.

FilmographyEdit

Year Title Role Notes
2003 The Cheetah Girls The Cheetah Girls (Raven-Symoné as Galleria Garibaldi, Adrienne Bailon as Chanel Simmons, Sabrina Bryan as Dorinda Thomas and Kiely Williams as Aquanetta Walker) Filmed in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and Manhattan, New York City.
2006 The Cheetah Girls 2 The Cheetah Girls (Raven-Symoné as Galleria Garibaldi, Adrienne Bailon as Chanel Simmons, Sabrina Bryan as Dorinda Thomas and Kiely Williams as Aquanetta Walker) Filmed in Barcelona, Spain.
2008 The Cheetah Girls: One World The Cheetah Girls (Adrienne Bailon as Chanel Simmons, Sabrina Bryan as Dorinda Thomas and Kiely Williams as Aquanetta Walker) Filmed in Udaipur, India.

DiscographyEdit

AlbumsEdit

SoundtracksEdit

Live AlbumsEdit

EPsEdit

MerchandiseEdit

There are Cheetah Girl based clothing lines, toys, and video games. The clothing line was made available in Sears stores, and its launch was the most successful in Sears history.

Videos games have been produced for GBA and Nintendo DS, as well as a dancemat game. Toy instruments have been produced for the children's market.

The Cheetah Girls also have a doll line, released in 2007, inspired by the Disney Channel Original Movies (DCOMs). There are several versions of the dolls and the three members. The dolls were sold at Sears stores nationwide and several other retailers.

MiscellaneousEdit

Book series

The Cheetah Girls started as a book series that was written by Deborah Gregory. There are two versions of the Cheetah Girls book series. The original, which was the inspiration for the first movie, and the other by Disney authors released as movie tie-ins.

DVDs

The Disney Channel Original Movies, and the concert DVD, are released with The Cheetah Girls 2 Special Edition Soundtrack. A 20-minute highlights DVD of the Girls' The Party's Just Begun Tour was released on July 10, 2007, along with a live audio CD of the tour. The first DVD released has sold over 800,000 copies.[35] The Cheetah Girls have also released a California Adventures DVD and two compilation DVDs, DisneyMania 3 in Concert and Radio Disney's Totally 15th Birthday.

Toothbrushes

In 2006, Tooth Tunes released a toothbrush featuring a picture of The Cheetah Girls and plays a clip of their single "Shake a Tail Feather". It was one of the most popular toothbrushes for all girls in 2006.

ToursEdit

Cheetah-licious Christmas Tour (2005)

In the winter of 2005, the Cheetah Girls went on tour to support their Christmas album Cheetah-licious Christmas. Aly & AJ went along with them, as the opening act, to support their own album Into the Rush, although the Jonas Brothers performed as surprise guests opening for both the Cheetah Girls and Aly & AJ for a total of 10 shows of the tour, promoting It's About Time, their first album. The holiday theme of the concert included giant presents (in which the Cheetah Girls performed in), winter clothes, and even a tropical theme for their song "Christmas in California", which included surf boards with the girls' names on them. The Cheetah Girls also sang songs from the first Cheetah Girls soundtrack, their song "I Won't Say (I'm in Love)" (from Disneymania 3), and their version of "Shake a Tail Feather" (from the Chicken Little soundtrack).

The Party's Just Begun Tour (2006–07)

In July 2006, the girls stated to Disney 365, a brief Disney Channel So Hot Summer news program, that they would be hitting the road again in September 2006, however they didn't state whether or not Raven-Symoné would be joining them. However, in a later interview they confirmed that Raven would not be going with them. An ad inside of the Cheetah Girls 2 soundtrack confirmed the name of the tour to be The Party's Just Begun Tour. The concert was released to a live CD and DVD combo on July 10, 2007. The opening acts for the tour were Miley Cyrus (as Hannah Montana) for the first 20 dates, Vanessa Hudgens for the next 20 dates, and Everlife for the last 40 dates. Jordan Pruitt was also a special guest on the tour for the first 40 cities. Preteen group T-Squad also performed as special guests for 5 of the 58 dates. The concert tour sold out every date. For the tour's finale the group performed in Reliant Stadium in Houston, Texas with Miley Cyrus as their opening act. Within 3 minutes, the concert had already sold 80,000 tickets.

The One World Tour (2008)

The girls announced their third tour in the summer of 2008. The tour, entitled the One World Tour began in October 2008 and is in support of the trio's third soundtrack from their Disney Channel film The Cheetah Girls: One World. Bailon stated in an interview that it was likely that this tour would travel to various other countries as well as the United States and Canada. Corbin Bleu was originally announced as the opening act for the tour but due to his busy schedule could not continue with the duties. The Clique Girlz were announced as the official opening act for the tour just days before it began.

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ 2007 most Powerful Girls list Archived March 6, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  2. ^ "The Cheetah Girls 2 – Box Office Data, Movie News, Cast Information". The Numbers. November 28, 2006. Retrieved 2012-03-28.
  3. ^ [1]
  4. ^ "How 'Cheetah Girls' Paved The Way For Disney Channel's Future Musical Movies". International Business Times. 2018-08-15. Retrieved 2019-03-06.
  5. ^ Carter, Brooke (2017-03-31). "Raven Symone Net Worth 2018 - How Rich Is She Now?". Gazette Review. Retrieved 2019-03-06.
  6. ^ Ellenbogen, Rachael (September 27, 2018). "'The Cheetah Girls' Almost Starred Solange Knowles As This Main Character". International Business Times. Retrieved 2020-08-04.
  7. ^ "How 'Cheetah Girls' Paved The Way For Disney Channel's Future Musical Movies". International Business Times. 2018-08-15. Retrieved 2019-02-27.
  8. ^ "The Cheetah Girls | Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved 2019-03-06.
  9. ^ Archive-Corey-Moss. "3LW Bringing 'Cheetah Girls' To TV, May Get Real In Atlanta". MTV News. Retrieved 2019-03-05.
  10. ^ Glaeser, Edward; Gyourko, Joseph; Saks, Raven (November 2003). "Why is Manhattan So Expensive? Regulation and the Rise in House Prices". Cambridge, MA. doi:10.3386/w10124. Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  11. ^ "Long-Standing 'Cheetah Girls' Rumor Debunked By Stars Sabrina Bryan, Kiely Williams". International Business Times. 2019-08-15. Retrieved 2019-12-09.
  12. ^ a b Sabrina Bryan Interview. Billboard.
  13. ^ Adrienne in Hip-Hop Weekly
  14. ^ www.tommy2.net. www.tommy2.net.
  15. ^ Adrienne Bailon at the Meet The Robinson's premiere
  16. ^ "Raven Symone Out of Cheetah Girls' Third Movie Installment". National Ledger. August 6, 2007.
  17. ^ "Raven-Symoné and Kiely Williams Just Revealed Some Major Cheetah Girls Tea on Instagram Live". Seventeen. April 10, 2020.
  18. ^ "Sabrina Bryan". Retrieved September 9, 2016.
  19. ^ Nast, Condé. "Raven-Symoné Is Returning to Disney Channel For a "That's So Raven" Spinoff". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 2019-08-27.
  20. ^ Kiely Williams Solo Single Announced. Little Cheetah Women blog (November 13, 2008).
  21. ^ Music Video: Kiely Williams – Spectacular Archived December 9, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. Concreteloop.com (April 7, 2010).
  22. ^ Kiely Williams EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW April 9, 2009. Youtube.com.
  23. ^ "It's Official: 'The Real' Talk Show Begins Four-Week Test Run July 15". Deadline Hollywood. June 12, 2013. Retrieved July 28, 2013.
  24. ^ A 'Cheetah Girls' Reunion Movie Could Happen Under One Condition, According To Adrienne Houghton
  25. ^ "Raven-Symone takes 'Cheetah Girls' to Spain". TODAY.com. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  26. ^ BICKFORD, TYLER (2012). "The new 'tween' music industry: The Disney Channel, Kidz Bop and an emerging childhood counterpublic". Popular Music. 31 (3): 417–436. doi:10.1017/S0261143012000335. ISSN 0261-1430. JSTOR 23325786.
  27. ^ McNamara, Mary (2008-08-22). "Cheated by 'Cheetah Girls'". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  28. ^ Decaille, Nia. "'The Cheetah Girls' Was A Primer For Intersectional Feminism". Bustle. Retrieved 2019-03-11.
  29. ^ "Fifth Harmony's November 2015 Cover Shoot!". LATINA.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  30. ^ "The Cheetah Girls Live On With This Song Cover". 955thelou.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  31. ^ "FACT-CHECKED Series: Zendaya And 15 Things You Might Not Know About The Star Of 'Euphoria'". HollywoodInsider.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  32. ^ "Olivia Holt Is the Ultimate Cheetah Girls Fan!". TheReal.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  33. ^ "Star's Brittany O'Grady Tells Adrienne Why She And The Cheetah Girls Meant So Much to Her". TheReal.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  34. ^ "CARDI B IS AN HONORARY DISNEY PRINCESS AFTER HER IMMACULATE CHEETAH GIRLS COVER". MTV.com. Retrieved 2020-05-03.
  35. ^ Multi Channel Archived January 11, 2008, at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit