High School Musical Cast Then And Now

By Aaron Love 1 year ago

Zac Efron (Troy Bolton) Then

Image Source: Teen Vogue
Troy Bolton is the 'Main Character' in the HSM films and the captain of the Wildcats basketball team. He is also engaged in a relationship with Gabriella. He is the most popular student at the school, and often puts others ahead of himself when it comes to happiness; this is evident when he moves to Berkely instead of U of A so hes closer to Gabriella. Although he's an athletic male, he decides to follow music due to his love of Gabriella, and the first film shows the two get the roles of Arnold and Minnie in the Musical.

Zac Efron (Troy Bolton) Now

Image Source: Yahoo
Following the final HSM film in 2008, Zac Efron appeared as the younger version of Matthew Perry in 17 Again, and then the titular character in The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud. Most of his roles have come in popular comedy roles like: Neighbours, Dirty Grandpa and Baywatch. He has even tried his hand at a musical role as Phillip in The Greatest Showman and recently has played Ted Bundy in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile.

Vanessa Hudgens (Gabriella Montez) Then

Image Source: POPSUGAR
Gabriella is the female main character opposite Troy Bolton. She is an extremely intelligent student, and part of the Scholastic Decathlon Team. She ultimately makes decisions that best suit her as a person, such as when she broke up with Troy in the second film. They eventually get back together, and in the third film we find out she is going to study law at Stanford University.

Vanessa Hudgens (Gabriella Montez) Now

Image Source: Reddit
Hudgens next big role following HSM came in the Journey 2: The Mysterious island opposite Dwayne Johnson and Josh Hutcherson. Following this she started to appear in more adult films such as Spring Breakers and The Frozen Ground opposite. She also starred in Netflix's Dog Days alongside Finn Wolfhard and Nina Dobrev, and in the same year she became a permanent judge on Dancing with the stars. She has also appeared in all three of Netflix's Princess Switch Movies.

Ashley Tisdale (Sharpay Evans)

Image Source: Young Hollywood 
Sharpay was the main antagonist in the first films, alongside her brother Ryan; although she did become a supportive member of the group in the third film. Unlike the others who act for fun, Sharpay dreams of being an actor which leads to her being the way she is. She doesn't like the fact anyone else can be the star of the show. The second movie shows her selfish side, trying to steal Troy for herself which obviously doesn't work. She decides to attend University of Albuquerque with Chad.

Ashley Tisdale (Sharpay Evans) Now

Image Source: E! Online
Tisdale appeared in 2005 as Maddie in The Suite Life, and her work here coincided with HSM and Phineas and Ferb. She joined the cast of Clipped in 2014 but it was cancelled after just one season. Throughout this time she has also been creating music, with four studio albums. She served as a panellist in 2020's season of Masked Singer.

Lucas Grabeel (Ryan Evans) Then

Image Source: ScreenCrush
Ryan is Sharpay's brother, but mostly he is seen to be her sidekick, although sometimes he is annoyed by her dominant behaviour he doesn't question her leadership. In the second film we see him defy Sharpay and join the wildcats instead.

Lucas Grabeel (Ryan Evans) Now

Image Source: SeatGeek
Following HSM, Grabeel guest appeared in an episode of the Disney+ spin off HSM The Musical as himself. He has also starred as Toby in Switched at Birth and has voiced numerous characters in the popular animated comedy Family Guy.

Corbin Bleu (Chad Danforth) Then

Image Source: Pinterest
Chad is Troy's best friend and teammate for the Wildcats. He is also romantically involved with Taylor. He is more focused on his basketball than Troy and isn't particularly fond of the theater. He does however perform reluctantly at times.

Corbin Bleu (Chad Danforth) Now

Image Source: Variety
Since the end of the film franchise, Corbin has guest appeared on popular shows like The Good Wife, Castle and Chicago Med. He also featured in a handful of episodes of the HSM: The Musical series. He has continued appearing in theater roles working in Broadway and he also came second in season 17 of Dancing With the Stars.

Monique Coleman (Taylor McKessie)

Image Source: Insider
What Chad was to Troy, Taylor was to Gabriella! She tried to keep Gabriella in check and her mind in the game as she was the leader of the Scholastic Decathlon team. Although by the end of the film she is on board with helping Gabriella and Troy get the callbacks.

Monique Coleman (Taylor McKessie) Now

Image Source: Business Wire
Similarly to Bleu, Coleman also featured on Dancing With the Stars, this time in 2006 where she came fourth. She also appeared in season four of HSM: The Musical. These days she is seen as more of a philanthropist with Gimme Mo Youth.

Olesya Rulin (Kelsi Nielsen) Then

Image Source: HSM Wiki
Kelsi, although minor in her role had an important role in the movement of the films, she composed Twinkle Towne and wrote many of the songs including Breaking Free. She becomes romantically involved with Ryan in the third film, going to prom together.

Olesya Rulin (Kelsi Nielsen) Now

Image Source: Twitter
Since the culmination of HSM, Rulin has appeared in guest roles in shows like: The Mentalist, CSI and NCIS. She also had a recurring role as Calista in Powers and as Zasha in NCIS: Los Angeles. Most recently she played the role of Tess in the film Black Bags.

KayCee Stroh (Martha Cox) Then

Image Source: BuzzFeed
Martha really knew how to dance, or as she put it 'pop and lock and jam and break. She is shown to be quite an intelligent student, but one who loves dancing and also enjoys her role as a cheerleader for the wildcats.

KayCee Stroh (Martha Cox) Now

Image Source: The Movie Database
KayCee hasn't appeared on our screens much since the end of HSM with just a handful of roles. She appeared for a singular episode of The League and then had a recurring role in Shape Town, USA. This was her last role for 7 years before guest appearing in Andi Mack and reprising her role as Martha in the spinoff series.

Alyson Reed (Ms. Darbus) Then

Image Source: People
Ms. Darbus is the drama teacher at East High, and her being dramatic would be an understatement. She also lives at East High as a result of financial problems. She is often at odds with Troy's father who is the coach of the basketball team.

Alyson Reed (Ms. Darbus) Now

Image Source: Fan Casting
Reed also appeared in season four of the HSM: The Musical and has appeared in a number of shows since the end of the film franchise. Appearances have come in shows like: NCIS, How to Get Away with Murder and Grace and Frankie. She also had a recurring role in Chance.

Bart Johnson (Coach Bolton) Then

Image Source: J-14
Coach Bolton is Troy's father and also the coach to East High's basketball team, The Wildcats. he doesn't initially take to the Troy and Gabriella's relationship as he thinks it will affect Troy's performance on the court. Eventually though, he does celebrate with Troy.

Bart Johnson (Coach Bolton) Now

Image Source: Twitter
Sine HSM, Johnson has kept busy with a number of appearances in small movies and guest roles on TV. Most notably, a recurring role in The Client List, 9-1-1 Lone Star and Quantum Leap. He also reprised his role as Coach Johnson briefly in the spinoff.

Leslie Wing (Lucille Bolton) Then

Image Source: Disney-Planet
Lucille is Troy's Mother and the wife of Coach Bolton. She is one of the only characters to immediately approve of her sons relationship with Gabriella. She also seems to have some control over the behaviour of the two male Boltons.

Leslie Wing (Lucille Bolton) Now

Image Source: The Movie Database
The final HSM film was actually Lucille's last role on our screens, with her popular roles coming during the mid 80's and through the 90's. She was actually nearly cast as Alex Owens in Flashdance! These days she owns a small coffee shop in Lafayette.

Chris Warren Jr. (Zeke Baylor) Then

Image Source: Pinterest
Zeke is a member of the Wildcats team and he unusually loves to bake! Throughout the films he has an obvious crush on Sharpay and eventually they go to prom together. He reluctantly appeared in the final musical during the third film.

Chris Warren Jr. (Zeke Baylor) Now

Image Source: IMDb
Chris has continued to appear on our screens a few times with recurring roles in Good Luck Charlie, The Hard Times of RJ Berger and The Fosters. Since 2020, he has had a guest recurring role in Tyler Perry's Sistas.

Ryne Sanborn (Jason Cross) Then

Image Source: Disney-Planet
Jason is another member of the Wildcats basketball team and is often seen to portray the stereotypical dumb jock character. He s involved in the plan to split up Troy and Gabriella in order to keep Troy's focus on his basketball and nothing else.

Ryne Sanborn (Jason Cross) Now

Image Source: Deseret News
Following HSM 3, Sanborn retired from acting in order to pursue a career in architeture going to study the subject. He also went on to play lower-league Ice Hockey for the Salt Lake Outliers. His last role that wasn't in HSM came in the indie movie The Adventures of Food Boy.

Socorro Hererra (Lisa Montez) Then

Image Source: Fandom
Lisa Montez is the mother to Gabriella. She, alongside Troy's Mother, is one of the only characters to approve of their relationship immediately. She is seen to always be very proud of Gabriella and her achievements both educational and her talents.

Socorro Hererra (Lisa Montez) Now

Image Source: Alchetron
Socorro is another of the actors who hasn't continued acting since the HSM series, appearing in a short titled Alias as her only role since, in 2011. Even before the series, she had only appeared in two roles, with her career never really taking off.

 Joey Miyashima (Principal Matsui) Then

Image Source: Disney-Planet
Principal Matsui, as his name would suggest is the principal of East High. He only appears in the first film and is forced to act as the middle man between Coach Bolton and Ms Darbus, attempting to keep their rivalry from boiling over.

Joey Miyashima (Principal Matsui) Now

Image Source: Pictures of Celebrities
Miyahsima's breakthrough role came in 1986's The Karate Kid Part II as Toshio. Following HSM he has had small roles in films like Storm Rider, Love Me Like You Do and The Night Clerk. He also made guest appearances in Youth & Consequences and Hawaii Five-0.

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