Vanessa Hudgens became a hit with the tween set by starring in Disney’s wildly popular made-for-TV movie series High School Musical, but it wasn’t until her nudie pics hit the Internet that she became a household name. In the most notorious photo, a full-frontal naked shot, taken when Vanessa was only 15 years old, she’s standing erect with her legs spread open suggestively and a sassy, coming-of-age smile on her face.
Landing on computer screens worldwide on September 6, ’07 (just a few days before HSM 2 premiered on TV), the photos made national headlines and dashed Vanessa’s G-rated image almost overnight. To combat the media scrutiny, she apologized to the public: “I am embarrassed over this situation and regret having ever taken these photos.” Turns out, Vanessa photographed herself in her bedroom and supposedly sent the pornographic results to torture a boy toy that she’d dumped. “It was like she was saying: ‘Look what you’re going to miss,’” her then-boyfriend Adam O’Neal told The National Enquirer.
Disney stuck by its star, and Vanessa’s career is now on fire. Not only does she endorse Marc Ecko‘s clothing line, but she has a second pop album in the works and is landing Hollywood roles. In fact, she’s set to play a 15-year-old girl who gets tangled up in a romance in Will. When the movie’s released next year, she’ll be 21. So this time you can look.