Disney has found their lead star for the upcoming TV series High School Musical: The Musical: newcomer Joshua Bassett. The series is based on the incredibly popular Disney Channel movies, which began in 2006 with a Disney Channel original movie that only aired on TV. High School Musical 2 followed the same pattern, but with the growing popularity of the series, the third film actually got a theatrical release.
The High School Musical trilogy kicked off the careers of many now successful actors. The lead actor of the original films, Zach Efron, had been acting since 2002, but his appearance in the first High School Musical launched him into stardom. Efron has since moved past his Disney Channel career and starred in the Neighbors films as well as the Oscar-nominated The Greatest Showman. The two main actresses, Vanessa Hudgens and Ashley Tisdale, had also acted prior to their High School Musical days, but rose to celebrity status after appearing in the films. Disney cast relatively unknown actors in the first film, and seems to be taking a similar approach with the TV series.
As revealed by The Hollywood Reporter, Joshua Bassett has been cast in the lead role of the High School Musical TV show. Bassett will be playing the role of Ricky, who auditions for his high school's rendition of High School Musical in order to get his ex-girlfriend Nini to like him again. Bassett is a relatively fresh actor with his first acting gig taking place in 2015 for the short film Limbo. He has also appeared on the Nickelodeon show Game Shakers and Disney's Stuck in the Middle.
The announcement of the High School Musical TV show is still quite new, so not a whole lot is known about the upcoming series. So far, Bassett is the only cast member announced for High School Musical: The Musical, but the character bios for the other high schoolers were released in September. The series will also run for ten episodes for the first season, which will be released on Disney's upcoming streaming service. The new platform will be called Disney Play and will feature new exclusive content as well as previously released Disney TV shows and movies. Each episode in the TV show is also said to have a brand new song, as well as a rendition of one of the original trilogy's songs. The series will also be written by Ferdinand writer Tim Federle.
Casting relatively new actors seemed to work for the first three films, so it's possible Disney could duplicate that success with their TV series. The show is being released exclusively on Disney Play, which could limit the number of people who see the show since not everyone will be willing to shell out more money for another streaming service. Still, this could be the start of something new...
Source: The Hollywood Reporter