Vanessa Hudgens is a household name around the globe, thanks to the success of the High School Musical franchise but how did Vanessa Hudgens become the star she is today?
Vanessa Hudgens was born on December 14, 1988 in Salinas, California in the United States. She was born and raised a Roman Catholic and has a very mixed, multi cultural background. Vanessa’s father is of Irish and Native American descent, while her mother is a native of Manila, Philippines and is of Chinese, Filipino and Spanish descent. Music has always been in the family and all of Vanessa’s grandparents were musicians.
Vanessa Hudgens took her first steps toward stardom at the age of 8, when she took up musical theatre starring in local productions such as Carousel, The Wizard of Oz, The King & I, The Music Man, Cinderella and many more. Two years later, Vanessa decided that she wanted to up things a bit and began to audition for television commercials and television shows. Hudgens landed a role in a television commercial and her family moved to Los Angeles where the commercial was being filmed.
At the age of 15, Vanessa Hudgens took another step towards movie stardom, as she won her first role in a feature film. Vanessa attended the Orange County High School of the Arts for a brief time before leaving to be home schooled by tutors, as her acting career began to take off. 2003 saw Vanessa Hudgens in her first movie, as she had a minor role in the Indie movie Thirteen, starring alongside Evan Rachel Wood. The movie received critical acclaim and made back more than its $4million budget.
In 2004, Vanessa Hudgens won the role of Tintin in the movie Thunderbirds but the film flopped both financially and critically. However, Vanessa put the heavy criticism behind her and continued along the acting path, appearing in a number of television shows in 2005, including Quintuplets, Still Standing, The Brothers Garcia, Drake & Josh and The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. Then, late in 2005, Vanessa got the big break that would make her a household name.
Vanessa Hudgens auditioned for the role of Gabriella Montez in 2005 and was to audition alongside Zac Efron. The chemistry that the young couple showed in the audition won them both the lead roles in High School Musical. The movie became a huge success and the chemistry that Vanessa Hudgens and Zac Efron showed on screen, spilled off screen and the two stars began dating.
After the success of High School Musical, Vanessa Hudgens decided to turn her hand to a music career. In September 2006, Vanessa released her debut album V and readers of Billboard voted it as the seventh best album of the year. Hudgens was then named Female Breakout Singer at the Teen Choice Awards in 2007. V was certified Gold on February 27, 2007.
2007 was quite an up and down year for Vanessa Hudgens. Vanessa reprised her role as Gabriella Montez for High School Musical 2 but came under a little criticism for her performance and was deemed average. On September 6, 2007, some nude pictures of Vanessa Hudgens appeared on the internet. Hudgens admitted that she was deeply embarrassed by the nude pictures, which she had taken in the privacy of her own home.
Also in 2007, Vanessa Hudgens was sued by Brian Schall, who claimed that Vanessa was in breach of contract and that she owed him $150,000 after he helped her to make over $5million from her music career. However, Hudgens claimed that she was underage when she signed the contract in October 2005, since she was on 16 years old and disaffirmed the contract is 2008. It would not be the last time that Vanessa would be sued.