New Musical ‘It’s Christmas Again’ Combines Contemporary Music, Dancing with Nativity Story

New Musical ‘It’s Christmas Again’ Combines Contemporary Music, Dancing with Nativity Story December 16, 2022

Combining the traditional story of the Nativity with contemporary dance musicals, the new holiday film “It’s Christmas Again” starring Lawson Touliatos, Leela Owen, Dimitri Mareno and Reina Ozbay, releases to home video this week. The film, about Jake (Touliatos), a young man who is magically transported to the birth of Christ, had a Fathom Events theatrical run late last month.

‘It’s Christmas Again’ image courtesy of Epic Inc.

Touliatos, currently a Philosophy and Political Science major at Nashville’s Belmont University, recently spoke to Reel Faith about the audition process, learning the dances, and his character’s journey.

 

This film is like “High School Musical” meets “The Nativity.” How did you get involved? Was “It’s Christmas Again” an audition process or something someone approached you about coming on board?

it was an audition process. It was relatively normal for the acting process. I got lucky enough to make it through the audition phase and be able to meet with the directors and get hired. But I the movie is so much fun with the “High School Musical” aspects like you said. It’s really nice. I really love having more Christmas music because there’s so many songs that are so great for Christmas, I feel like we never get new ones nowadays. We have just the same ones. That was a big appeal for me.

 

Let’s talk about your character little bit, because he goes on a little bit of a journey. In the beginning, things don’t seem to work out for him that well. And he’s kind of frustrated how the plans are. He has his idea of Christmas kind of falls apart.

Yeah. My character, Jake has a pretty typical view of Christmas, being just a time to have fun, and party. He kind of rejects the whole idea, the meaning of Christmas, at least in a way. And so the journey throughout the movie kind of just shows me being directly confronted with the meaning of Christmas and how important it really is, and then having to reconcile with the fact that I hadn’t always thought that way. Then to give back to the community, because of my new realization about how important Christmas really is.

 

You’re a singer in this and when I looked online, I see you have several music videos. Would you say music is more your passion or acting?

Nowadays, I would probably say they’re both hand in hand. I actually started singing first. I’ve been singing for longer than I’ve been acting, actually. For a very long time, I would have said singing is the number one thing for me. But then lately, I’ve kind of realized that I love them both and it’s they’re just too much fun to live without.

 

What were your expectations going in? And what surprised you? You know, what, what were the things that you learned on on the first big movie?

It was so much fun. I had been on set before, but I had never been a lead role. You know, I never had any sort of say on set or anything. So being able to actually work with the directors and the other leads and everything was very fun and nerve wracking. Going into it. I was definitely nervous my first day showing up to set thinking, “How are these people going to be? I’m gonna have to spend a lot of time with them over the next few weeks.” But they were all really nice. And it was a great environment. I loved filming with all of them.

 

How are your family and friends responding?

Well, my mom won’t stop talking about it. She is even more excited than I am. But for the rest of my friends and family it’s a big, just a big event. It’s just kind of crazy. We’re very excited to see it when it comes out.

 

How hard was it learning like the dance moves and all that?

Oh, the dance moves, were the were the hardest part. I am not much of a dancer myself.  I won’t lie. And so that was definitely the most intimidating part of filming was the first day showing up to the dancing class with all the background dancers. Having them walk in and introduce me to all of the dancers as the lead of the movie that they’re performing in and then they all already know the dance.

 

“It’s Christmas Again,” written and directed by Sandra L. Martin and released by Mapelle Films, is now available to purchase through digital outlets.

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