Eighties pop stars acting badly

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Where do eighties teen pop stars go to die? The answer at the moment seems to be the video store. After twenty years or so in the wilderness, US one hit wonder Tiffany, has reappeared in, not one, but three low budget films. I guess she’s finally been allowed out of the shopping mall. Unfortunately, she’s still stuck in retail.

Tiffany Renee Darwish, known to her fans as Tiffany, first came to prominence with her single I Think We’re Alone Now which made a minor dent in the Australian charts, peaking at 46 in 1987. The video for the song famously depicts a sixteen year old Tiffany entertaining an over enthusiastic crowd at a shopping mall. It was actually extensive shopping mall tours that formed the basis of Tiffany’s marketing and promotions in the early stages of her career.

A cover of The Beatles’ I Saw Her Standing There, with the “her” replaced with a “him” fared better in the Australian charts, making it to number 10 in 1988. The music video featured Tiffany performing in front of a screaming live crowd.

Following a turn voicing Judy Jetson in the epic historical drama Jetsons: The Movie (1990), Tiffany disappeared from the Australian pop culture consciousness, perhaps forever.

Tiffany returned to the shopping mall when her career stalled. Sadly, it was as a cleaner. Only kidding, after being dropped by her record label, she continued to record albums as an independent artist and make plans for a comeback. Unfortunately, the plans consisted of rerecording her hits for a disco album, participating in reality shows featuring other eighties has-beens, attempting a career as a country singer and posing nude for Playboy. None of which worked.

After rival eighties teen queen Debbie Gibson successfully appeared in the direct to video adaption of Jane Austen’s Mega Shark Versus Giant Octopus, Tiffany was approached to make her feature film debut in the psychological thriller Blood Snow (2009). With a cast of relative unknowns, Tiffany stars opposite James Kyson Lee (Heroes) as a woman trapped in a cabin with friends during a blizzard. The DVD cover for this masterpiece is quite hilarious.  Whilst all of her co-stars have their film credits listed next to their names, poor Tiffany has the words, “I Think We’re Alone Now.”

Next for Tiffany was a “mockbuster” from The Asylum. I’ve written a column about this low budget production company. They make direct to video movies that are similarly titled to major cinema releases, such as The Transmorphers, Snakes on a Train and Sunday School Musical.

Mega Piranha (2010), a mockbuster of Piranha 3D, stars Tiffany alongside Barry Williams (Greg from The Brady Bunch). She plays a Professor (I’m not sure of what, perhaps shopping malls) who must stop a school of genetically modified piranha from attacking Florida. In the climax of the film, Professor Tiffany destroys the mega piranha by making them eat each other, presumably by forcing them to listen to her music.

Tiffany and Debbie Gibson will finally come head to head on the small screen this year, co-starring in Mega Python Versus Gatoroid, another monster disaster film from The Asylum. After battling it out in the charts during the eighties, both stars fight each other in a hair pulling, cake throwing melee that has to be seen to be believed. This scene is available online as a sneak peek.

Although Tiffany may not be a threat to the cinema box office or the music charts again, it is nice to know that she’s found herself a niche, even if it is the “gigantic steroid enhanced reptiles fighting each other” movie niche.

Blood Snow and Mega Piranha are available to rent now, and are well worth a chuckle on cheap Tuesday.

Published in: on February 8, 2011 at 07:25  Leave a Comment  
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