How did Vanessa Hudgens get started in her acting career? Born Vanessa Anne Hudgens on December 14, 1988 in Salinas, California, her looks can be attributed to her parents’ backgrounds. Her dad, Greg Hudgens, is an American with a Native American and Irish background while her mother, Gina, a Filipino, grew up in Manila with traces of Filipino, Chinese and Spanish blood.
Vanessa was prone to the performing arts since she was a child. At eight years old, she got involved in musical plays. She was in the lead and supporting casts of plays such as "The Wizard of Oz”, "The Music Man”, "Damn Yankees", "Evita", "Carousel", The King and I", and "The Music Man”. Everything happened by chance for little Vanessa. Her first gig was a commercial, but she landed the part purely by accident. She went on the audition because her friend, who was supposed to audition, got sick and asked her to go in her place.
After completing seventh-grade at the Orange County High School of the Arts, Vanessa opted for a home school setup.
In 2003, her film debut was in the feature film "Thirteen", starring Evan Rachel Wood and Holly Hunter. Vanessa also starred in "Thunderbirds", an action-adventure film, but Hudgens hit it big after playing the part of Gabriella in “High School Musical”, a Disney Channel original movie that was first released in 2006. That same year, she released her debut album “V”. In July of 2008, her second album “Identified” was released.
In addition to movies, she also had bit parts in television, including guest spots on TV shows such as “The Brothers Garcia”, “Still Standing”, “Quintuplets”, “Drake and Josh”, and “The Suite Life of Zack and Cody”.
Hudgens continued to play the role of Gabriella Montez in the two equally successful “High School Musical” TV movies, when she played the love interest of real-life boyfriend, Zac Efron. Their roles had given them the “Best Chemistry” award given by the Teen Choice Awards. The first movie also had a hit soundtrack, and it brought the group on a worldwide concert tour. A book series was also made out of it.
With all the success she has garnered, Hudgens became number seven on Forbes magazine’s top earning list of stars under 21. She was 18 years old at the time with an estimated $2 million of earnings. “High School Musical 3: Senior Year” was released on October 24, 2008.
She was also ranked 62nd of the Most Sexiest Woman on FHM, and she was also number 12 on Maxim’s 100 Hot List. She was also part of People magazine’s 100 Most Beautiful People.
Life in the Spotlight
Her career was marked with controversy when provocative pictures of Hudgens proliferated on the Internet on September 6, 2007. The photos were passed through emails, mobile phones, and other devices. There were also rumors then that she would be pulled out from the High School Musical franchise because she was no longer fit to be called a model for the youth.
Above all that, however, everything was settled with Hudgens apologizing to fans and her family. After that, all is well again for this young superstar. Just looking back on how Vanessa Hudgens got started in her acting career will inspire young minds about this craft if they are planning on joining the bandwagon.
Search Amazon.com for vanessa hudgens high school musical