On July 28th, film and pop star Ashley Tisdale will release her second album, Guilty Pleasure. StarShine was able to get an advanced listen of the CD, (check out our review here) and followed up with Ashley by phone to discuss her future plans. Looks like Disney’s “High School Musical” franchise was just the beginning for this beauty and talent with a brain to boot!
Find out more about the new album, her upcoming movie, “Aliens In The Attic”, her new production company, Blondie Girl Productions, and more…
As your album release nears, are you getting excited?
I’m definitely excited. I worked really hard on this album. I worked for about a year on it. It’s something I’m really proud of and I’m really excited for everyone to hear it. So, it’s an exciting and nerve-wracking time.
How was the transition from Headstrong to Guilty Pleasure?
It’s definitely a reflection of where I am in my life right now because I definitely have grown up since Headstrong, but [Guilty Pleasure] is definitely more guitar-driven pop/rock. The first album I was just learning about myself and who I was as an artist whereas the second album I knew exactly what I wanted going into it. I recorded over twenty-five songs until I got exactly the album I felt was right. So, yeah, I think it was just something that you can tell I have grown up between the two.
Very cool. I listened to the album a couple of times and I love “Acting Out” and “Masquerade”!
Aww, thank you!
I just watched the video for “It’s Alright, It’s OK”. Where did you get all those cute guys for that video?
We auditioned them! [Laughs] Definitely really cute eye candy, for sure. It was kind of like the perfect revenge…I walk into the ex-boyfriend’s house and I bring over all these hot guys and take pictures of them everywhere, so it was definitely something that you wish you could do, but you never did.
Was it fun filming it?
Yeah, I had so much fun. It was a late night, though. We went from I think three in the afternoon–maybe four–no, maybe it was around later I guess, but we went until seven in the morning. So, it was an all night kind of thing–it was kind of hard.
Now, talking a little bit more about the album…You got to co-write a lot of the songs. What was that experience like for you?
It was fun. I co-wrote on the first album, but this album I co-wrote four songs. I got to co-write with some amazing, talented people like Kara DioGuardi and Toby Gad, who did “If I Were A Boy” by Beyonce. I feel I definitely learned a lot since the first album because I think my voice has grown. I’ve matured; I’ve grown, but also my writing has grown. It was hard writing with Kara last year because I felt I wasn’t really confident in my ideas in the first one where with this I just knew exactly what I wanted. In an hour and a half, we wrote a whole song together. So, it was really quick and it was great. I feel just really proud of every song I’ve done. I co-wrote “What If”, “Overrated”, “Acting Out” and “Me Without You”.
You also have a song called “Hair” on the album…
Oh my gosh, my favorite.
When everyone thinks of Ashley Tisdale, they think about your hair–at least that’s what I think about.
That’s awesome! [Laughs]
Now that you’re brunette…who has more fun, blonde or brunette?
Um, I can’t say. I had fun as both. The brunette is really my original hair color, so I just feel back to myself. But I feel like they’re both so much fun. I think it’s like your attitude and your confidence, I don’t think it has anything to do with your hair color.
You’re up for an MTV Movie Award, which is awesome. Congratulations. Were you surprised when you found out?
Thank you! I was super excited. I have never really been nominated for anything. I’ve always been nominated as part of a cast, but this is my first nomination of uh, you know of…being me. [Laughs] That was really exciting–just to be recognized with the group of people I’m recognized with is just really exciting. They’re all my good friends. I am honored. [When I found out] I was screaming.
[Author’s Note: Congratulations to Ashley for winning “Best Female Breakthrough Performance” at the MTV Movie Awards last night!]
Speaking of your acting career, you have a new movie coming out called “Aliens In The Attic”. Can you tell us a little about that movie?
It’s an action-comedy with aliens. It’s a really fun take on if aliens were to invade. It kind of reminds you a little bit of “Gremlins” meets “The Goonies”. We had a blast. I play the older sister, Bethany. My boyfriend is played by Robert Hoffman. [I am] kind of like the in love older sister that’s going on the family vacation, completely bored, but he ends up coming along. And I don’t really see him for who he is. I just see him for this really nice guy like the Eddie Haskel–where he’s nice to me and my parents, but totally rude to my brother. So, he gets zapped by one of the aliens and then he starts acting kind of weird. I then finally realize it. But it was really fun and I have an action scene. It was produced by Barry Josephson, who produced “Men In Black” and “Enchanted”. It was just something that was very challenging. I’ve never really done CGI before. So it was challenging and it was really exciting, but my character is not a big stretch. I took the role because I thought it would be a really fun movie. We also have a really great cast: Kevin Nealon, Tim Meadows, Andy Richter, Doris Roberts–all these comedians–being around them I could not even keep a straight face. [Laughs]
I also heard that you’re doing the remake of “Teen Witch”?
Yeah. It’s in the very beginning stages right now. We’re still writing it and stuff, but I loved the movie growing up. Have you seen “Teen Witch”?
Yes, I have–many times. [Laughs]
Yeah. It’s one of my favorite movies, so it’s just something I always liked and thought ‘maybe I should do the remake of it’. So, it has to be done the right away so it’s been taking some time. But yeah, I’m supposed to do that for sure.
You have you’re own production company, which is awesome. What are your goals as a producer?
My production company, Blondie Girl Productions…we’re just really getting started. We have a deal with Fremantle who created “American Idol”. Right now, we’re trying to do a reality show with the E! Channel. We’re trying to get into it that way–I think Ashton Kutcher did it the same way with “Beauty & the Geek”. First we’re starting off in that area and then going into TV shows and movies, but really I don’t want to produce anything with me in it. I’m just producing it for other people. I just feel like it’s something where I can be really creative and have fun with. It’s definitely different. I pitch the shows to all the networks, which is so different. They know me as an actress, which is really funny. It’s cool to walk in there and just be really in control and pitch your show that you really want them to buy. So, it’s definitely a different experience.
Would you say it was hard since you started out so young in the business–you went from a child star–pretty much a Disney kid to now you’re grown up and you’re doing all of this stuff…Was it a struggle to get where you are today?
It’s always been a struggle to get where I am today. It’s never really easy. I’ve always had to prove myself and work hard for it. I think I wouldn’t have done it any other way. I still am–I’m in my transition mode right now. So, I think that’s just something that’s makes you really grateful and grounded. I have so much fun with what I do. I just love doing it. It’s everything I ever wanted to do.
Now “High School Musical”…I know you guys said you didn’t want to do anymore sequels. Am I right about that?[Laughs] Yeah.
What if ten years from now they want you to do “High School Reunion”, would you do it?[Laughs] I don’t know about that…It just depends on if anyone else is doing it. I think for me, being without that cast–there’s no way. It would be so weird if I didn’t do a movie with them. If everybody was in for it–maybe, I don’t know. [Laughs]
Did you ever dream you would be able to do everything–sing, act, write, dance, produce…? Growing up, did you dream of doing all that or just an actress or a singer?
Um, it just kind of–I started singing at a young age because I did Les Miserables when I was eight-years-old. So I was singing and acting at the same time, but it wasn’t really ‘I wanted to do all these things’. I’ve always dreamt of having an album, but I never thought it was possible. For me, “High School Musical” opened a lot of doors. I’m very grateful for that. I’ve always dreamed of it. I just never thought…I kind of had to make a decision at one point–it was either the singing or the acting, so I went with the acting because I was doing a lot of TV shows, but I’m so glad I was able to do an album as well. I’ve been a singer for a long time and it’s always been something I always wanted to do.
If you could do a duet with anyone in the world, who would you pick?
Probably Boys Like Girls. I do love Boys Like Girls…or Madonna. [Laughs] That’s so wide. I do love them and I do love Madonna. Yeah, they’re my two favorites for sure.
If you could dedicate any song in the world to your fans, which song would you pick and why?
Oh man, that’s a really good question! I have no idea. I’d have to say one of my songs because I know my songs so well. “Suddenly” was written about my whole experience with the fans and how my life was changing around me, but I wasn’t changing. So I’d have to say that was something that was for the fans, like ‘thank you so much’, you know, that I’m doing this for you guys, so that was really what the song was about.
Alright, thank you so much, Ashley. Good luck with the album!
Thank you! Thank you so much!