the boy band August Moon from 'The Idea Of You'

A Very Real Talk With The Very Fake Boy Band, August Moon

Moonheads, unite!


August Moon is faking their way into actual boy-band stardom. The pop quintet was put together for the new romcom The Idea of You, but their fame has exploded beyond the screen, with tens of thousands of Moonheads following the group’s TikTok and nearly a quarter of a million monthly listeners on Spotify streaming their very real singles.

“It's a super surreal experience,” Jaidan Anthony — one-fifth of August Moon — tells Elite Daily. Although Anthony and his faux bandmates Raymond Cham Jr., Dakota Adan, and Viktor White aren’t really a boy band, at this point, they might as well be.

Before filming the movie, the four dancers attended a boy-band boot camp with Nicholas Galitzine (August Moon’s frontman Hayes) to make their bond as real as an actual pop group. Choreographer Dani Vitale was inspired by actual training camps boy bands would attend back in the day. In between all the choreo lessons, the group’s connection was fully formed during a chaotic Nerf gun fight in their hotel.

You can't fake that. We actually became friends.

“We took over the top floor of the hotel we were staying at and were running around like a bunch of hoodlums,” Adan recalls. “We just felt like we had known each other for so long and had this chemistry. You can't fake that. We actually became friends.”

The boot camp was integral for both the choreo and connection among the group, but the singing... well, that was another matter. Only Galitzine, who’s already known as a singer, provided vocals for the band’s singles, like “Closer” and “Dance Before We Walk.”

After August Moon built the groundwork for pretend stardom, a real fandom followed. While the Moonheads are still mainly an online phenomenon, Cham Jr. did have an IRL run-in with a superfan recently. “She was just like, ‘Are you who I think you are?’ I'm like, ‘What? This is new to me. I don't know what you're talking about.’ She was like, ‘Are you in August Moon?’” Cham Jr. said, adding that he took a photo with her and found it funny that her friend didn’t recognize him at all.

With the Moonheads’ numbers only increasing since The Idea of You released on Prime Video on May 2, Cham Jr., Anthony, Adan, and White tell Elite Daily how much longer the act can go on.


Elite Daily: When did you all meet each other, and what was that like?

Viktor White: It was in the dance studio. We started off by playing two truths and a lie to get to know each other. And then we just ended up hanging out after rehearsals, going to play some pool or going to the park. That's where the real bond was built.

ED: Every boy band gets broken down by a standout trait of each member, like “the sensitive one” or “the bad boy.” Who would you say your characters are within August Moon?

Raymond Cham Jr.: In the movie, I'm the sh*t-stirrer. I yap a little bit too much.

Jaiden Anthony: They just love to describe me as the pretty boy, the one with the smile. That's my shtick. I'm sorry, I'm not saying it like that, but that's what they were really pushing for me! I don't even know. What's a better word for that? One of you help me.

VW: I think a good word is second best-looking member. I just thought that I was the prettiest boy on the band.

Dakota Adan: What made you think that? What gave you that impression?

RCJ: Can we go to the next question?

ED: What are some music videos you watched to help get into character?

RCJ: For me, it was the parade scene in Ferris Bueller's Day Off. I watched that on repeat and was like, "This is what every boy band should be."

JA: I don't know if there's a specific video that we really pulled from, but all those top-tier boy bands have iconic videos, the NSYNCs and all of them. I definitely watched a lot of those.

I wanted August Moon to feel like its own beautiful thing as opposed to being a knockoff of another boy band.

DA: I didn't watch too much, to be honest. I grew up with all the boy bands in your face, how can you not? They're such an iconic part of American pop culture, but then when it came to forming this band, I really wanted to create something unique. I wanted August Moon to feel like its own beautiful thing as opposed to being a knockoff of another boy band.

ED: You had to go to a boy band boot camp to form August Moon. What was an average day in that boot camp like?

JA: It consists of a lot of fooling around. And of course we were dancing a lot, working with mics, and having to sing. Although it's not our voices on the songs, we were still singing live because you want to make sure it’s believable. One of the coolest things we did was have some of the boys perform while the rest sat out and watched and vice versa.

RCJ: It was the first time we really performed, and it was for each other, so it allowed us to be our own toughest critics and get over any fears. Sitting down and watching each other, you really get to see what you're missing, or what is working about this person's performance, and how you can bring that into your own.

VW: I remember going with Ray at the same time and being like, "Dang!" Because Ray’s got so much sauce and I was just trying to keep up with him.

RCJ: I was trying to keep up with you. I was scared.

VW: No, bro. Ray had the sauce.

ED: Was boy band training what you expected or not?

JA: It's definitely a different muscle. The four of us come from extensive dance backgrounds and have worked professionally in dance. I think going into it with that mindset — versus Nick, who doesn't have that background — was interesting to see how each person went about each step.

RCJ: We were all comfortable performing, but we had to realize that performing as a dancer versus performing as an artist are very different. Some of us have danced with incredible artists and have seen firsthand that yes, they are doing the steps, but there's something else magical that's happening in their performance that separates us.


ED: You guys are kind of blurring the lines between reality and fiction with how you’re promoting August Moon on social media and with real song releases. Have you gotten any interesting reactions from people?

RJC: I had a family friend ask my mom if I changed my name.

VW: Whoa!

RJC: I was like, "This movie's getting out of hand."

JA: I have family members asking for autographs from the boys. It's a super surreal experience. And it's also validating because we're really trying to portray a boy band, and people are really loving a boy band.

DA: The movie creates this wonderful, cool fantasy world. I think Anne Hathaway called it a magic closet story where all of the sudden you step into another world, but it was always right there. It takes this one degree off from reality and blends it so beautifully into the real world with the way August Moon is making TikToks and being promoted as an actual band. It makes the movies a little bit magical again.

ED: Have you run into any Moonheads in real life yet?

VW: So far, it’s just an online thing, but Raymond is having different experiences.

RJC: Yeah, I went to South By Southwest, and as I was walking to grab my ticket this woman came up to me and she was just like, "Are you who I think you are?" I'm like, "What? This is new to me. I don't know what you're talking about." She said, "Are you in August Moon?" I took a photo with her and then she asked me to take a photo with her friend. Her friend couldn't care less about who I was, and that was hilarious.

I was like, ‘Oh, I'm not actually in a band.’

DA: I ran into one person who was like, "Oh, I know you. You're in a band." And I was like, "Oh, I'm not actually in a band." She was very sweet, but very confused.

JA: I haven't really had too much fan experience, but I am still very heavily involved in the dance industry, and I feel like I can't step into a studio without a dancer being like, "Oh, you're in that fake band, right? You're doing that." It's super interesting how widespread it's already gotten.

ED: Will you keep the August Moon stuff going even after The Idea of You comes out? Maybe a meet-and-greet for the Moonheads like in the movie?

RCJ: I hope people can walk away from this movie and appreciate what's in the film. It would be an honor for fans to desire more from us, but I think what's in the film is incredible and we really did everything that we could to make it special.

DA: They can always tune in to August Moon on Spotify.

JA: Maybe one meet-and-greet. Maybe just one.

This interview has been condensed and edited for clarity.