When we think of The Disney Channel, we think of wholesome family entertainment. But Disney's former child stars seem eager to shed that image once they come of age — and some do so in more daring ways than others.
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This month marked the release of Harmony Korine's "Spring Breakers," an R-rated film featuring plenty of sex, drugs and violence, and starring former Disney regulars Selena Gomez and Vanessa Hudgens (as well as Ashley Benson, the star of a teen drama on the Disney-owned ABC Family channel).
But they weren't the first (and they probably won't be the last) child stars to ditch their purer personas. Check out a few former Disney stars who got edgier with age:
Lindsay Lohan's breakout role in the Disney remake of "The Parent Trap" quickly catapulted her to stardom, but nowadays she's more infamous for her numerous run-ins with the law. Most recently, the 26-year-old actress was sentenced to 90 days in rehab on charges stemming from a reckless driving incident.
Spears was a series regular on "The Mickey Mouse Club" from 1993 to 1994 before breaking out with a successful pop career in 1999. She seemed eager to leave her squeaky clean image behind, appearing in a video for the first single, " … Baby One More Time," as a scantily clad Catholic schoolgirl. If that didn't change perceptions, her 2007 head-shaving and paparazzi-attacking incidents did, not to mention her stint in rehab.
Shia LaBeouf first gained attention in 2000 as the star of the Disney Channel series "Even Stevens" before moving on to larger roles in films such as "Disturbia" and "Transformers." For a short time in 2011, however, LaBeouf was making headlines for his repeated bar fights. More recently, he has appeared fully nude in the 2012 music video for Sigur Ros' song, "Fjögur Píanó.”
Before starring in "Spring Breakers," Vanessa Hudgens' biggest break came when she was cast in the 2006 Disney Channel original film "High School Musical." One year later in 2007, Hudgens was at the center of a nude photo scandal when racy pictures of her somehow hit the Internet. To whom those pictures were intended is still unclear, although Hudgens was dating fellow "High School Musical" star Zac Efron at the time.
Zac Efron isn't getting out of this one unscathed, either. The "High School Musical" actor still makes his share of family films, but he reminded us all of his responsible adult pursuits when he accidentally dropped a condom on the red carpet at the premiere of "The Lorax." Some claimed it was deliberate, but Efron seemed genuinely embarrassed when discussing the incident with Matt Lauer.
Before releasing her debut album, Grammy-winning artist Christina Aguilera had a gig on "The Mickey Mouse Club" and also contributed a song to the soundtrack of Disney's "Mulan." She became slightly edgier as the years progressed, but nothing matched her "Xtina" persona, which debuted around the time of her fourth album, "Stripped." 2002's "Stripped" contained plenty of sexually suggestive lyrics and spawned an equally racy video for the song "Drrty," which contained references to sadomasochism and the Thai sex industry.
It's hard to pinpoint exactly when Gosling lost his Disney image, but his transition from child actor to adult star saw him taking on a number of dark roles. After working as a cast member on "The Mickey Mouse Club" in the mid '90s, Gosling starred as a neo-Nazi in "The Believer" (2001), and a murderous student in both "Murder By Numbers" (2002) and "The United States of Leland" before appearing in 2004's "The Notebook."
In 2010, Demi Lovato left her Disney Channel sitcom "Sonny With A Chance" (the actress had previously starred in a Disney Channel original film "Camp Rock") to enter a treatment facility. Lovato had been struggling with eating disorders, self-harm, and anger issues (she hit one of her backup dancers during a concert in South Africa). Afterward, she shared her experiences with Seventeen magazine in the hopes of helping other girls avoid the same problems.
Miley Cyrus' first starring role came in 2006 on the Disney Channel series "Hannah Montana." In 2009, one year before the show's final season, a video of Cyrus taking a bong-hit of Salvia divinorum (a natural psychoactive plant) appeared on the Internet. She first defended her actions before ultimately expressing disappointment in herself for the incident.
Adrienne Bailon had a singing career with 3LW long before her Disney Channel days with The Cheetah Girls. Around the time The Cheetah Girls broke up in 2008, however, Bailon's laptop was reportedly stolen, and semi-nude photos of her were leaked on the internet. More recently, Bailon was the victim of a wardrobe malfunction when her dress revealed much more than she intended at a New York City event.