By Fred Topel | Image property of Walt Disney Pictures
High School Musical 3: Senior Year
High School Musical 3: Senior Year is first and foremost about singing and dancing, but there's a message as well. First Troy Bolton learns it's okay to like music. Then he learns not to sell out. Now all the kids have to decide what they're going to do with their lives.
Monique Coleman Ready to Graduate from High School Musical 3: Senior Year
"I'm not sure that our characters do have a clear vision of exactly what they want to do," said Monique Coleman. "I think that what High School Musical does is break us out of that box. Now we're living in a time where kids need to know what they want to do by the time they're seven. That's ridiculous. What this movie says is you don't need to know by the time you're 18. You don't even need to know ever. Actually, you have a whole world of possibilities that lay before you and ultimately, the only thing that is important is that you do make a choice and the choice is yours. That it's not your parents' or your teachers' or your friends' decision about your future but that it is your decision."
Coleman plays Taylor McKessie, the one who actually does have her mind made up. "My character is a little different and did know exactly what she wanted to do and I, also, when I was very young, did know what I wanted to do. But I do seek inspirations from this movie and it has broadened my horizons and made me feel like I'm interested in writing and speaking and doing a bunch of other things. I don't feel like any of us is necessarily bound to the specific types of roles we've been playing in these movies. We'll hopefully have a very colorful career ahead of all of us."
Emotions ran wild on the last day of shooting High School Musical 3, and no one made a bigger scene than Coleman. "I was a dirty mess. I ruined my costume. I had to go back to the trailer and clean my face up but I didn't start it this time."
Director Kenny Ortega made an emotional speech that just set her off. "We're the ones that get the attention from this movie primarily and that's not necessarily where all the attention is due. It's an ensemble. It's the writer, producers, everyone involved. Kenny really is sort of the cornerstone for us. He obviously made all our dreams come true. He said, 'Guys, I'm so proud of you but I want you to know that this is my dream. It was my dream to be able to do this in my career and I owe it to all of you and the performances that you gave and the energy that you put behind this and I'm eternally grateful to you.' To know that not only has your life been changed but you're able to do that back, that's this whole thing is about. We're inspiring kids but then kids get to turn around and inspire us back."
High School Musical 3: Senior Year opens to theaters on October 24th.