High School Musical: The Musical: The Series may be tackling Beauty and the Beast instead of High School Musical 2, but the season 2 premiere gave us some HSM2 musical numbers. This included Ricky’s version of Zac Efron’s legendary “Bet On It.” HollywoodLife got the EXCLUSIVE scoop from Joshua Bassett about tackling such an iconic song and more.
“It was so iconic. I was like, ‘I can’t believe they’re letting me do this. This is amazing.’ Literally, I watched the YouTube video of Zac Efron doing it like 30 times,” Joshua told HollywoodLife during the show’s press junket. But that’s not all. Joshua knew he had to really prepare to sing “Bet On It.”
Joshua explained: “They were like, you’re going to sing it live. So I was like, okay, you want me to run around the entire room, roll over the bed, dunk a basketball, and also sing live? Got it. So I was literally — for like the 2-3 weeks before — I ran every night on the treadmill. I did at least 3 passes of the song where I would sing it on the treadmill. When we shot it, it was a good time.”
At the end of the season 2 premiere, Nini finally told Ricky that she’s moving to Denver to join the Youth Actors Conservatory. Joshua revealed how Nini’s absence at East High impacts everyone moving forward. “I think everyone’s sort of torn, especially Ricky,” Joshua said. “He’s very much happy for her because he wants her to do that but also, you know, he loves her and wants her to be with him. So I think there’s a little bit of like figuring that out. Same thing with her where she’s excited to go on this journey, but she’s also like I miss my people back home. We get by. I don’t know. We figure it out.”
But what is going on with Ricky and Gina? They’re just friends, but we all saw that look at the New Year’s Eve party. Joshua weighed in on the Ricky and Gina dynamic in season 2. “It’s a complicated thing,” he said. “Relationships just in general with people… They’re so not black and white. That’s very much seen in Gina and Ricky where it’s like both of them are unsure and, honestly, it’s like the funniest thing about high school romance in any way is that all of it would be solved with a little communication, but they just never talk about it… but the journey is really neat to follow and I think people are going to love every twist and turn thrown at them.”
When it comes to EJ and Ricky, they will be getting along more in season 1. “There’s still the rivalry between the two and the competition,” Matt Cornett told HollywoodLife. “He [EJ] might help him [Ricky] out on some different fronts. I think it’ll be a lot of fun getting to see their interactions.” High School Musical: The Musical: The Series will premiere new season 2 episodes Friday on Disney+.