Disney Channel’s moving forward on another High School Musical movie, with the network announcing High School Musical 4 is now in the casting process. Disney Channel’s calling all Wildcats to try out this spring for the upcoming musical that will be directed by Jeffrey Hornaday (Teen Beach Movie 1 and 2). Hornaday’s also choreographing the film and Peter Barsocchini, the writer of all three High School Musical films, is working on the script along with Dan Berendsen (Hannah Montana: The Movie, Wizards of Waverly Place The Movie). According to the network, the nationwide casting search began today headed by casting directors Jason La Padura, C.S.A., Natalie Hart, C.S.A., and Kendra Patterson, C.S.A., of LaPadura/Hart/Patterson. Details on the open casting calls will be available at disneychannel.com/opencall.
“High School Musical is part of Disney Channel’s DNA. It embodies all that we stand for. As a way of continuing to embrace that heritage, we’re excited to announce ‘the start of something new’ — as we launch a search for a new class of East High Wildcats to star in a fourth installment of the High School Musical franchise,” explained Gary Marsh, president and chief creative officer, Disney Channels Worldwide.
The fourth film of the franchise will be set at East High and continues the High School Musical story with new East High Wildcats and their cross-town school rivals, the West High Knights. The first film premiered on January 20, 2006 (can you believe it’s been 10 years?) and was directed and choreographed by Kenny Ortega (Descendants). High School Musical was watched by 7.7 million viewers when it premiered, which was the biggest ratings numbers for the Disney Channel at that time. The soundtrack for the original TV movie also set a record as the first TV movie soundtrack to hit the #1 spot on Billboard’s Top 200 chart.
High School Musical followed on August 17, 2007 with 18.6 million viewers tuning in to see Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, and Corbin Bleu sing their hearts out. The soundtrack to the second HSM film earned triple Platinum status and the DVD became 2007’s top selling TV DVD. In October 2008 High School Musical 3: Senior Year arrived in theaters and grossed more than $250 million worldwide before exiting theaters.