"This album could be one of the best, musically, I’ve ever been associated with."
——Thomas D. Mottola, Casablanca Records

THE DOWNLOW ON LOHAN

Casablanca’s Tommy Mottola Ready to Mold Teen Film Icon Into Pop Music Star
She’s a movie star who’s ready to become a music superstar.

With hit films like Mean Girls, Freaky Friday and The Parent Trap under her belt, Lindsay Lohan is preparing to release her debut Casablanca/Universal album, Speak, on Dec. 7, but the first single, “Rumors,” is already making its move at Top 40, with plenty of video and online action.

If anyone knows how to image a movie star as a pop icon, it’s former Sony Music Chairman and current Casablanca chief Thomas D. Mottola, who developed Jennifer Lopez into a multi-platinum diva and says this project has “unlimited potential.”

“She has more talent than I’ve seen in a long time, a great voice and a unique sound,” he says. “Couple that with her ability to dance, her savvy, her ability to present and carry herself. It’s just a function of connecting the dots with the right vehicle, the right single, and the rest will speak for itself. This album could be one of the best, musically, I’ve ever been associated with.”

Mottola insists Lohan is even farther along than J. Lo was at a similar stage.

“Lindsay already had a style and a passion to be more of a cutting-edge rock artist,” he says.

“Rumors” was made available for download at iTunes, Napster, Real, Music Match, Liquid and Buy.com. Fans responded positively to the single by voting at Launch’s “Dig it or Dis It,” Fuse’s “Oven Fresh” and AOL Music’s “Fresh 5” countdown after appearing on the service’s popular First Listen program.

The video for the track debuted last month on MTV’s TRL, where it eventually rose to #1, with Lohan appearing on the show for an exclusive satellite interview.

Lindsay also has scheduled appearances on Regis & Kelly (12/9), Good Morning America (12/6), Teen Nick (12/3) and will perform on MTV’s New Year’s Eve show from Times Square. There’s also an Entertainment Weekly cover the week of release.

Universal Records President Monte Lipman says: “It’s a multimedia blitzkrieg. We’ve found the Internet to be a critical component, an incredible tool for us. The early indicators we picked up all came from the Web, rather than traditional retail or radio. The kids are gravitating there as destinations to discover new music. For this generation of kids, Lindsay’s as big a star as they come.”

Lipman insists that Lohan is as strongly committed to her music as she is to her movie career.

“The most important thing is, the woman can sing. We have to educate people that this is not just a side hobby for her, a whim. Music has always been an instrumental part of Lindsay’s life, and something she always planned on doing. For us, the music comes first.”

Universal promotion head Val DeLong is making sure that music is being heard. “We’ve closed out every major market. We tried not to blow it out in the first week. Our strategy was to go in phases leading up to the release date. Everything’s in place and ready to go.”

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