Muppet gangster not returning for HSM4, Sez Jim Hill

9 Jul

A thoughtful friend this morning sent me news I definitely need (plus a headline I’ve totally stolen from her email), from Jim Hill’s update on High School Musical 4:

Now where this gets interesting is – rather than make use Matt Prokop, Justin Martin and Jemma McKenzie-Brown (whose Jimmie Zara, Donny Dion and Tiara Gold characters were deliberately introduced in “High School Musical 3: Senior Year” so that this Disney franchise would then have some recognizable-but-still-affordable performers to built future “HSM” installments around) – is that “High School Musical: East Meets West” is reportedly going to feature an all-new cast.

Mind you, that’s most likely because Ortega is no longer directing the “High School Musical” movies. Kenny’s moved on (Most recently, Ortega was the director / choreographer for the now-canceled Michael Jackson “This is It!” concert that was planned for London’s O2 Arena). In his place, Disney has hired Jeffrey Hornaday. Who is probably best known for the choreographer of “Flashdance” and “Captain EO.”

Thank goodness! I found those newly-introduced characters quite tedious. I’m guessing their HSM3 market-testing didn’t give quite the results Ortega might have been hoping for.

And while it’s not news that Ortega is moving on, nonetheless I’m still a bit disappointed every time I read it. It’s a bit like hearing that George Lucas wouldn’t be directing the next Star Wars installment….except wait, that would be a good thing.

In any case, I’m still wishing they’d make the Haunted High School Musical that turned out to be HSM3: Senior Year instead. So, I’m somewhat reassured that “Halloween” is one of the plot keywords listed for HSM4 on the Internet Movie Database.

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