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Movie Mom

Today is the birthday of Lucas Grabeel, an extraordinarily gifted performer I’ve seen in four different movies in the past few weeks. He’s still best known for playing Ryan, the twin brother of the scheming Sharpay, in the High School Musical series.

They highlighted his singing and dancing, especially the third one, where he gets a little more screen time. In Alice Upside Down he played the title character’s older brother, showing an appealing on-screen confidence and a deft touch with comedy. They had to add a line to explain his shaved head — he had just completed an appearance as a young Lex Luthor in an episode of “Smallville.” He took the lead in the cute comedy The Adventures of Foodboy as a high school senior who discovers he has the power to make food appear.

And he has a small role in the prestige film “Milk,” co-starring with Sean Penn in the story of the first openly gay man to win major elective office in the United States. Grabeel plays photographer Danny Nicoletta, and you can glimpse him with a camera in this trailer for the film. I am very impressed with the range, screen presence, and charisma of this talented young actor and I expect him to be a breakout star.

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