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by Fiona Ingram, a  South African writer who loves books, travel, animals, antiques, and adventures of all kinds! Read Fiona’s author site and find out about her recently published children’s adventure novel

Bieber fever is about to hit the big screen in South Africa with “Never Say Never” the biopic of teen singing sensation Justin Bieber. Never Say Never is the inspiring true story and rare inside look at Justin’s rise from street performer in the small town of Stratford, Ontario to internet phenomenon to global super star culminating with a dream sold out show at the famed Madison Square Garden in 3-D.

But as the movie unfolds, viewers will be surprised to see how hard Justin worked to get where he is. The movie opens with interviews of Justin’s family and friends, interspersed with snippets of his roadshow and various gigs. All this is intermingled with pieces leading up to the amazing sell-out performance in Madison Square Gardens. To indicate how popular he is, Justin’s show sold out in a record twenty minutes!

What makes Justin so popular? Young fans interviewed in the movie say it all: his looks, his smile, his hair (oh, sadly he now has a new haircut), his laugh, his songs, his … well, what’s not to like? He is a talented likeable performer who works hard and who projects a wholesome image. It’s not just about looks and a winning smile though. Viewers get to see footage of Justin performing on the drums when he was only two bricks high and – wow – that kid is good! Justin sings and plays drums, guitar and piano. He is one talented boy! Justin’s appeal cuts across all ages and genders: from little ones to tweens, to teens, to adults. Everyone loves his lyrics and music. Oh, one important note – lots of girls who want to marry him as well!!!!

The background to Justin’s success is fascinating and it’s nice to see he has retained a down-to-earth attitude, possibly the result of good basic grounding and a supportive family. Fame has its downside though, as Justin finds out when he asks when he can have a ‘normal’ life. “Welcome to the new normal,” says his voice coach. On the upside, Justin has a lot of fun because he loves performing and being surrounded by people who love him makes it even better.

The highlight of the movie is, of course, the Madison Square Garden show. It’s simply fantastic, and the 3-D element will give young fans a show to remember. Justin performs with another popular young rising star, Jaden Smith. Justin and Jaden rap their hearts out to the screaming applause of what looks like zillions of fans! Miley Cyrus also appears in a duet with Justin. The title of the film links to Justin’s seemingly impossible dream: to sing at Madison Square Garden. He never said never to his dream and achieved it. His message to young fans is the same – go for your dream and “never say never!”

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