High School Musical: The Musical: The Series season 3 will be welcoming some familiar faces! Corbin Bleu, a.k.a. Chad Danforth from the High School Musical trilogy, and Jason Earles, a.k.a. Jackson from Hannah Montana, have joined the cast of the hit series. Corbin will be playing a version of himself, while Jason will play Dewey, the camp director at Camp Shallow Lake.
Corbin is just the latest High School Musical alum to appear on HSMTMTS. Corbin told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY that spoke with creator Tim Federle after the latter expressed interest in having Corbin on the show. “We just ended up getting on a phone call with each other to just talk over what that could possibly look like,” Corbin said. “He knew I was hoping to be able to return to the franchise at some point, especially with this series because I respect what they did with it, but I wanted it to be in the right context. I was so grateful to Tim for allowing me to be a part of that conversation and figuring out what that looked like, whether it was coming back as Chad or coming back as myself, or coming back as a completely different character. We were able to discuss that and figure out what it was.”
Corbin was known for musical performances “I Don’t Dance,” “The Boys Are Back,” and more in the High School Musical movies. The actor teased that a musical moment in HSMTMTS is going down. “Oh, it’s happened. It’s happened. Now, what that’s going to look like, I don’t want to tell you any more than that. But it’s a big one. It’s going to be great,” he revealed.
Meanwhile, Jason has been connected to the Disney+ series from the very beginning. He’s been the acting coach for the young stars since season 1. “The kids, they all grew up watching Hannah Montana, so they were fans. There was a part of them that just kept being like, ‘You know, you should just be in a scene. You should be the janitor in the back, or you should be a teacher walking through the hall or something,'” Jason told HollywoodLife. “But they just wanted me to do a little thing in the show. I was like, ‘If I do it, I don’t want it to be a distraction from you guys because I respect your work, and I respect the world and the show too much to like, hey, look at me.'”
When Tim brought up the summer camp season, Jason thought this would be the perfect opportunity to play a role on the show. “I think it sort of plays into my relationship I actually have with the kids in real life, sort of that authority figure, but also kind of harasses them and pokes fun at them, but loves them, but also makes them think that they could be doing better. It just paralleled what I love about the show so much, so I was thrilled to be able to jump in and play Dewey,” he said.
During the third season, Jason pointed out that fans of High School Musical and Hannah Montana will “appreciate some nods, some definite little jokes and references and stuff that play into that. How that relates to me and Hannah Montana, you’ll have to sort of watch and see, but there are some very fun little winks at things.”
The relationship that Corbin and Dewey have with the Wildcats is “definitely different,” Corbin pointed out. “I’ve got a bit of a wall up with them. They definitely do a number on me throughout the arc of the series,” Corbin said. “I think with Dewey, he’s the director of the camp, so he’s constantly in this rotation of kids. Even though he’s curmudgeonly and grumpy, he’s got a heart of gold in there.” While Corbin and Dewey have “different journeys,” Jason admitted that there is a bit of a “parallel” between the characters.
High School Musical: The Musical: The Series season 3 will premiere July 27 on Disney+. New episodes will drop Wednesdays.