Ashley Tisdale Lives Sharpay’s Fabulous Adventure
If you were a High School Musical fan, are an Ashley Tisdale fan in general or just enjoy her currently on TV’s “Hellcats”, you’ll know that Ashley’s HSM character Sharpay Evans was the gal folks loved to hate. She was that snobby, rich, rule-the-school girl who can get on your nerves like fingernails scratching a blackboard. Well, get ready because Sharpay is back, in her own movie on DVD and Blu-Ray Sharpay’s Fabulous Adventure on April 19th.
This time around, Sharpay is given a month to prove herself on stage in New York or her dad will doom her to working back in Albuquerque at his country club. Sharpay has already landed an audition for a new Broadway show but, on arriving, learns that it is her cute dog Boi the Big Apple producers want!
We’re on the cell with Ashley talking about her return to the character, her successful production company, her cute co-star Austin Butler who plays Sharpay’s love interest and more.
Kidzworld: Was it easy to just become Sharpay again after a break from the character?
- Ashley Tisdale: It was much harder this time because I was not surrounded by all the characters that I’m used to. It was a whole new cast. That was definitely a little different to get into. I was used to having Zac and Vanessa playing Troy and Gabriella. It was a little nerve-wracking because I felt a lot like Sharpay does in the movie; like I was out there on my own with a whole new cast.
Kidzworld: I thought you did a great job of making Sharpay more vulnerable and human in this film than in the HSM movies. Was that a conscious decision on your part?
- Ashley: Thank you so much. Yeah, for the High School Musical movies, she was the one stirring up the trouble. She was good at those little one liners (zingers). In this one she’s not just costarring, she’s a lead and to get people to fall in love with her they have to root for her. I had to take a character they love to hate and make her the heroine. A lot of it had to do with the writing. It was so good. But, for me, as an actress, I had to say “Okay, in the beginning, I’m going to make this character the one that everybody knows and then watch her evolve and grow”. Also, my director Michael Lembeck was great with that as well.
Kidzworld: Did you have more tasks as Executive Producer? Or did they just give you that title?
- Ashley: You know, I thought that was what was going to happen but the [kwlink 3418]Disney Channel[/kwlink[/b] knows what they are doing so they don’t seem like they’d need the help. I’ve had a production company since 2008 and have been developing shows over at Disney Channel and it’s really cool that they actually respect me so much and took into consideration what I had to say. Also they knew that I knew the character so well. I was there from the script through the music and weighing in on it.
Kidzworld: Did you write the songs?
- Ashley: I didn’t write the songs (“Gonna Shine", "My Boi and Me", "The Rest of My Life", "New York's Best Kept Secret") but decided that Sharpay had more of a pop song vibe in High School Musical so I wanted that with (the song) “Shine”, that big pop influence.
Kidzworld: Talk about working with the dogs and do you still have Blondie and Maui?
- Ashley: Blondie is more my parents’ dog but Maui is my dog. The dogs that played Boi in the movie are so cute. They were really good dogs.
Kidzworld: Have you ever gone to an audition, like Sharpay does in the film, and it wasn’t at all what they told you or what you expected? If so, how did you handle it?
- Ashley: I probably have. I’ve been to so many. I can’t remember one in particular but I’m sure it happened and obviously, I got over it.
Kidzworld: Was it strange going from cheerleading moves back to pure dance and song moves for this?
- Ashley: I did the movie after the pilot for “Hellcats” so it wasn’t a series yet. But it was really good because, over the summer, I played Sharpay again and it actually brushed me up on a couple of things before I got into cheerleading for “Hellcats”. I didn’t really have a dance break.
Kidzworld: You and Austin Butler have known each other a while. Was it fun working with him again and did you get to do anything for fun off set?
- Ashley: Yeah. I pretty much went to Disney and told them that Austin was perfect for the character. I kind of brought him into the project and I felt he was so great. He’s so cute and we did have so much fun. We’d all hang out after being on set. We’d work out together and enjoy restaurants. When you are so far away from home (New York), you definitely hang out with everyone.
Kidzworld: Did you want to make sure that Sharpay evolves in her wardrobe by the end of the film, as well as in her life? She starts out in pink only and ends up in red.
- Ashley: Yeah, I wanted to keep the more young side and pink definitely does that so pink and bubbly stuff in the very beginning and once she started assisting (diva) Amber Lee Adams, she has her “assistant” wardrobe (dressed down just a little for Sharpay).
Kidzworld: What do you feel is the biggest lesson Sharpay learns in this film?
- Ashley: I think believing in yourself. Sometimes, when you want something so bad, you forget why you were going after it and what you should be trusting in. She starts assisting (the star of the musical she wants to be in) hoping to get ahead. You’ve got to believe in yourself no matter what.
Kidzworld: What is the latest you can tell us about your character Savannah on Hellcats?
- Ashley: The new episodes start up April 19th as well as this Blu-Ray coming out so that’s an exciting day for me. The first episode when we come back is called “Woke Up Dead” and it’s about Savannah’s boyfriend Dan who is player by Matt Barr, going to Lancer and he enrolls in the Film Department and, as an assignment, he makes a movie on zombies versus the cheerleaders so it’s a lot of fun.
Kidzworld: Sounds great. Your Blondie Girl Productions just sold the “Miss Advised” series to Bravo. Are you in that or just producing?
- Ashley: Yeah, I’m excited. I’m producing. I’m not in it.
Kidzworld: What is next for you? Another album maybe?
- Ashley: I’d like to do more movies so I’m looking at a lot of scripts there but music I did about a year and a half ago and I’m not concentrating on music right now. There is the TV show so that leaves very little time. If I could do a movie (during her break) that would be great and then I’m producing as well.
By: Lynn Barker