Pop Star Voices Jo-Jo in 'Horton'

Horton Hears A Who

Animation, Family | G | 1 hr 25 m
Warner Bros/20th Century Fox Distribution

The upcoming family event movie “Horton” starts in the jungle of Nool, in the heat of the day, in the cool of the pool. Horton the elephant was splashing, enjoying the jungle’s great joys, until Horton heard a small noise.

The film, like Seuss’ book, “Horton Hears a Who!” presents an imaginative elephant named Horton (Carrey) who hears a faint cry for help coming from a tiny speck of dust floating through the air. Although Horton doesn’t know it yet, that speck houses an entire city named Who-ville, inhabited by the microscopic Whos, led by the Mayor (Carell). Despite being ridiculed and threatened by his neighbors, who think he has lost his mind, Horton is determined to save the particle…because “a person’s a person, no matter how small.”

In the microscopic town of Whoville, the Mayor’s pride and joy is son Jo-Jo (voiced by Jesse McCartney), the littlest Who. The Mayor has big plans for his diminutive son, grooming him to continue the family legacy by taking over as head of the Whos when the Mayor retires. But Jo-Jo has made it abundantly clear that he does not want his father’s career. Instead, the taciturn young man is pursuing something very, very different and special.

In the movie, Jo-jo finds solace in an old observatory on top of the highest point in Whoville where only he knows what’s inside. Jo-Jo’s giant sling-shot device, which he uses to access an old observatory that figures prominently in the story. Jo-jo takes center stage at the film’s epic climax, in which every Who comes together, using whatever they can to make noise to make themselves heard – and save themselves from certain doom. In unison, they shout, “WE ARE HERE! WE ARE HERE!” Help comes from an unexpected source: the Mayor’s son Jo-Jo, who contributes his Symphoniphone – a wondrous musical instrument he’s rigged from non-musical objects – to the multi-layered, city-wide symphony.

Pop singer Jesse McCartney initially came to fame in the early 2000s, as a member of the boy band Dream Street, and was the youngest out of all 5 people in the band and subsequently branched out into a solo career, having appeared on the television series Summerland.

In 2004, McCartney participated in "Come kiss me Now", a charity single to benefit the victims of the 2004 Asian Tsunami and the 2005 Hurricane Katrina. In 2005, McCartney signed on as an official supporter of Little Kids Rock, a nonprofit organization that provides free musical instruments and free lessons to children in public schools throughout the U.S.A. He has donated proceeds of his 2005 tour for disaster relief, recorded radio spots promoting the "Kids For A Drug-Free America" campaign, is a spokesperson for the St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, and is involved in the charity SPACE, which was co-founded by a childhood friend of his mother's. Jesse performed at the Hope Rocks concert in 2005 to benefit City of Hope Cancer Center.

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