Vanessa Hudgens has long been known as a singer and an actress. She began her career on Disney’s original edition of High School Musical, she’s released two albums and her roles in the past few years include Fox’s live stagings of Rent and Grease, as well as work on Broadway.
But don’t expect an album from her anytime soon.
“Who knows? At some point. Definitely not soon,” Hudgens tells Yahoo Entertainment when asked about when there will be more music. “I’m so busy right now ... And acting has always been my first passion and singing is just something that kind of went along with it, because I started musical theater, and it’s something that I really do enjoy, but it’s not necessarily the priority.”
Hudgens’s latest acting project is the Netflix movie The Knight Before Christmas, which is part romantic dramedy, part fantasy. She plays Brooke, a woman still reeling from her last relationship when she meets a time-traveling knight. You can guess what happens next.
Hudgens “hit it off” with director Monika Mitchell, and she and Entourage alum Emmanuelle Chriqui, who plays her sister, have been friends for years. “People have always said that we look like sisters,” Hudgens says of Chriqui.
The actress had a “great time,” too, with Josh Whitehouse, the actor who plays her love interest.
Whitehouse was the one who sang on this one, lending his vocals to an original song used in the movie. He confirms that he and his “super-professional” co-star became fast friends.
“She had her mom with her on set, who’s awesome and, you know, we all just kind of hung out together quite a lot,” Whitehouse says. “And we were laughing a lot.”
For Hudgens’s next job, she stars alongside Will Smith and Martin Lawrence in Bad Boys sequel Bad Boys for Life, which lands in theaters in January, followed by another Netflix romance, The Princess Switch: Swiched Again. That one is a sequel to last year’s The Princess Switch, in which she plays the dual roles of a Chicago baker and her look-alike, a princess who asks her to temporarily trade places with her.
Hudgens says she hasn’t yet watched the new reboot of perhaps her most famous production, High School Musical. (The third and final one of those was released the same year as her last album.) She doesn’t have Disney+, but she says she loves the fact that they’re doing it.
“I think the concept is really smart,” she says of the premise that the students from the high school where HSM was shot staged a production of it. “So I wish them nothing but the best.”
Her advice to the new cast is to “just have fun.”
A friend told her about an early reference to one of the characters talks about going “full V-Hudge” for an audition, and Hudgens found it “so adorable.”
Hudgens’s The Knight Before Christmas also falls into that category, in a cheesy, heartwarming holiday movie kind of way. It would fit right in on Freeform or Hallmark.
“The whole reason why I started doing these types of films is because the holidays can be stressful and some people, including myself, are reminded of people who are missing, who have passed on,” she says. “It can be a really sad time, and I think through films there is escapism, and it’s just a really beautiful moment to bring everyone together and to just believe in magic and feel the Christmas spirit.
“Just [for people] to be able to go about their day a little more lightheartedly. And I think that’s a beautiful gift to be able to give people.”
The Knight Before Christmas is streaming now on Netflix.
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