'Christmas Cupid''s Christina Milian & Ashley Benson on Staying Grounded in Hollywood
Christina Milian and Ashley Benson star in "Christmas Cupid," a modern-day Hollywood version of A Christmas Carol, playing a publicist and her out-of-control client respectively. Now, ETonline chats with the two stars of the film to find out what, if anything, they learned from playing these obsessed women!
ETonline: What makes the "Christmas Cupid" version of A Christmas Carol unique?
Christina Milian: I think what makes "Christmas Cupid" really special is it is a modern take on A Christmas Carol. There is the classic Scrooge character, which I play. I play Sloane Spencer. She is a modern-day businesswoman, but she is so into her work and she is a Hollywood PR girl, so that doubles her job. She is not concerned with anything, love or anything. She has a very wild, uncontrollable client that she represents, named Caitlin Quinn, who is out one day and chokes on a martini olive while she is in a club getting her party on and she dies. She becomes the ghost of Christmas past and the future and shows Sloane her love life. She shows her what her life could be like if she changes her ways.
ETonline: So are there lessons to be drawn from Caitlin's demise that applies to your lives?
Ashley Benson: Definitely. Caitlin tries to tell Sloane if she doesn't change her ways and continues to act like that, she will be alone. Everybody should not take their loved ones for granted. You never know what is going to happen. You should always treat others the way you want to be treated.
ETonline: Are you ladies as career driven as Sloane in your real lives? A ghost reminds her to live her life. Is there someone that keeps you grounded?
Christina Milian: I have plenty of things. My family keeps me grounded. It has always been my mom, but now I have a beautiful daughter. I remain humble because I want to set a great example for her. My family is everything to me. As long as I have them, I stay balanced and down-to-earth.
Ashley Benson: For me, it is my friends and family. I constantly surround myself with people who aren't caught up in Hollywood. That is so not me. I just want to go to work and do my job and live a normal life and not have people know who I am. I think staying grounded is so important in this industry, because you can get a big head easily. I am from Orange County, so I go down there a lot to spend time with my family. I have tons of cousins and a sister, it keeps me grounded.
ETonline: Do you have a favorite holiday tradition?
Ashley Benson: Every Christmas morning since I was born, we go to my grandma's house and she makes the same breakfast every time. We open presents and everything, but how we get our presents … she lives on a big hill, and we go on a scavenger hunt through her neighborhood. It always ends up back at her house, but we always get clues and then she goes on a storyboard and writes this big, long story. We take a family trip every year, which is one of her gifts to us. It is really fun. It is a big game.
Christina Milian: We get up early in the morning and everybody opens up their gifts together. Then, we fall back to sleep, [get up], eat and go see a movie together.
ETonline: Ashley, what can we expect from the new season of "Pretty Little Liars"?
Ashley Benson: The new season starts off with Hanna [Benson's character] in the hospital after she was run over by a car. She wakes up and she is stressed out by the whole thing. She thinks she remembers who A is. She tells the girls and they try to put all these clues together. It goes from there. The season is really juicy and the stakes are high. A puts them through an insane ride. She really tortures Hanna. After being hit by a car, she makes her do things that she does not want to. Everybody's secrets are spilling out in the first episode, so it is going to be crazy.
ETonline: Christina, you have a new album coming out. I understand that you might be redoing it because of your divorce?
Christina Milian: Yes, I am just in a different place in my life. The original album I worked on, Elope, I worked on with my ex-husband. I am single, free, confident, really happy where I am and I am having a great time. It is going to exude everything about that. Plus, on top of that motherhood is going to make a difference, too. There are so many single moms out there. We are going to do something that can relate to them as well. It is a new fresh start.
ETonline: Christina, your divorce has become very public since you appeared on Wendy Williams' show. Were you happy to the have the opportunity to clear up the misconceptions, or do you feel the press is too intrusive?
Christina Milian: I think it is something to expect with the job. I was happy I was able to clear up some rumors on Wendy Williams. Sometimes people get carried away and they run with what is out there, especially in the Internet age. To be able to have a voice and to be able to tell the truth, I don't get too into my private life, where I want everyone to know everything. But I think sometimes it is necessary if you want to clear something up. I felt it was great to be able to speak.
"Christmas Cupid" premieres Sunday, Dec. 12 at 8 p.m. on ABC Family.
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