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High School Musical 4 in the works

Disney bosses are starting something new with another installment of High School Musical.

Executives at the Disney Channel announced on Tuesday (01Mar16) that the long-rumored High School Musical 4 is officially in the works, and they have already kicked off a nationwide casting search for the film's next set of stars.


Co-writers Dan Berendsen and Peter Barsocchini, who wrote all three High School Musical movies, will return as the scribes for the new installment, while Jeffrey Hornaday, who directed Disney Channel's Teen Beach Movie films, will step in for Kenny Ortega as the new director and choreographer.


According to The Hollywood Reporter, High School Musical 4 will center on a new group of students at East High, as well as their cross-town rivals, the West High Knights.


The announcement comes a little over a month after the 10th anniversary of the first movie in the franchise. Stars Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, Corbin Bleu, Monique Coleman and Lucas Grabeel gathered together for a reunion TV special.


Zac Efron didn't appear alongside his ex-girlfriend Hudgens and their co-stars for the reunion, but recorded a message for fans.


It has yet to be revealed if any of the original cast members will appear in the new movie.


The franchise not only made stars out of the leading actors, but High School Musical was also Disney Channel's highest-rated program when it debuted as a TV movie in 2006. High School Musical 2 also broke records as one of the most-watched shows ever on basic cable in 2007.


High School Musical 3: Senior Year was released in cinemas and grossed over $250 million worldwide, with all three of the franchise's soundtracks also becoming bestsellers.