‘Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal’ is a 2008 Lifetime movie based on the events of the McKinney North School High School cheerleading scandal. When a new cheerleading coach, Emma Carr, pushes the team to new competitive heights, five popular girls on the team resort to a web of deceit and manipulation. Driven by a desire for social dominance, they engage in a series of scandalous actions, including bullying, drinking alcohol, and posting inappropriate pictures online, leading to suspensions from the squad.
As the scandal unfolds, the community grapples with the repercussions of their actions, examining nepotism, complacency, the pressures placed on teachers, and the toxic culture of high school popularity. The film by Tom McLoughlin navigates the complexities of the scandal, blending elements of drama and documentary to expose the underbelly of high school social dynamics. With the real events of the scandal having taken place in a high school in McKinney, some may investigate whether filming for the Lifetime flick took place in the same locales.
Where Was Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal Filmed?
‘Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal’ was filmed entirely in the New Orleans Metropolitan area in the state of Louisiana. Principal photography was carried out between mid-February 2008 and early March of the same year. The very first shoot of the film involved a scene of the five cheerleaders drunkenly exploring a pornography store, leading to the actresses laughing together behind the scenes and bonding quickly. Allow us to take you to the locations seen in the movie.
New Orleans Metropolitan Area, Louisiana
The city of New Orleans and its surrounding areas stood in for McKinney, Texas, in ‘Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal.’ The city’s metropolitan sprawl can be spotted in multiple scenes throughout the film as characters travel to and from school. The final sequence of the movie involving the reformed cheerleaders’ performance actually took place in the Alario Center at 2000 Segnette Boulevard, Westwego.
Also known as the John A. Alario Sr. Event Center, the 2,400-seat arena is generally used for a range of sporting events, and is most well-known for having been the practice venue for the NBA’s New Orleans Pelicans. The facility’s wooden flooring and square seating arrangement can be seen in the final sequences of the film, which involve the cheerleading team successfully performing a stunt they had struggled with earlier.
Situated along the bends of the Mississippi River, New Orleans offers a rich and diverse backdrop for cinematic storytelling. Its iconic architecture, from the wrought-iron-laced balconies of the French Quarter to the charm of Garden District mansions, provides filmmakers with a visually stunning canvas. Beyond its aesthetic charm, New Orleans’ film-friendly infrastructure, including tax incentives and local support, has turned the city into a cinematic hub with Lifetime’s ‘A New Orleans Noel’ and ‘The Pregnancy Pact’ also having been filmed here. Other high school movies filmed in the city include ‘The Best of Me,’ ‘Tall Girl 2,’ and ‘Girl, Positive.’
Fab Five: The Texas Cheerleader Scandal Cast
The film is led by Jenna Dewan essaying the coach, Emma Carr. A former model and dancer, Jenna Dewan became recognized in film for her dancing personas of Nora Clark in ‘Step Up,’ and Sasha in ‘Take the Lead.’ She has gone on to star in ‘The Rookie’ as Bailey Nune, ‘Superman & Lois’ as Lucy Lane, and ‘Soundtrack’ as Joanna Kassem. The cheerleading group headlining the movie consists of Ashley Benson as Brooke Tippit, Ashlynn Ross as Tabitha Doering, Jessica Heap as Jeri, Aimee Fortier as Lisa, and Stephanie Honore as Ashley.
Interestingly Ashlynn Ross and Ashley Benson were the only actresses of high school age within the group, and Ashley was a real-life cheerleader as well. Dameon Clarke, the actor behind Coach Adam Reeve, is a prolific voice actor, and has previously worked with Ashley Benson in the fourth season of ‘Supernatural.’ Supporting cast members for the Lifetime film include Jason Davis as Tim, Rhoda Griffis as Pamela Blackburn, Keith Flippen as Mr. Spretnak, Caroline McKinley as Janice Harper, Tatum O’Neal as Lorene Tippit, Hailey Wist as Megan Harper, and Daniel Newman as Trevor.
Other cast includes Carissa Fowler as Cindy Harper, Suzanne Pitman as Nicole, Nancy McLoughlin as Coach Hanley, Robert C. Treveiler as Paul Toledo, L. Warren Young as Superintendant Vern Tompkins, and Carl Savering as Investigator. Also featuring in the movie are Karan Kendrick as Helen Durant, Taylor Kowalski as Jason, Miko DeFoor as Security Guard, Lara Grice as Reporter, Dane Rhodes as Store Clerk, Shaun Grant as Security Officer, and Corey Flaspoehler as Jock.
Additional appearances include Natasha Angelety as High School Student, Daurice Cummings as Parent, Geraldine Glenn as Secretary, Russell M. Haeuser as School Board Member, Rodney Hebert as Teacher, Tiffany Lynn Land as Student, Zack Leath as Middle Schooler, and Leigh Louque as Paparazzi Reporter. Further appearances consist of Anne Palermo as School Teacher, Lyssa Prine as Secretary, Jonathan Reynolds as Terrance Foster, Michael Roth as Student, Travis Sanzone as Eddie the bully, Terry Lee Smith as High School Teacher, Defecio Stoglin as Security Guard, M. Jearl Vinot as Paparazzi Camera Man.