High School Musical is a 2006 American television film and the first installment in the High School Musical trilogy. Upon its release on January 20, 2006, it became the most successful film that Disney Channel Original Movie ever produced, with a television sequel High School Musical 2 released in 2007 and the feature film High School Musical 3: Senior Year released to theaters in October 2008. It is the first Disney Channel Original Movie to have a theatrical sequel. The film's soundtrack was the best-selling album in the United States for 2006.
High School Musical was Disney Channel's most watched film that year with 7.7 million viewers in its premiere broadcast in the US, until August's premiere of The Cheetah Girls 2, which achieved 8.1 million viewers. In the UK, it received 789,000 viewers for its premiere, making it the second most watched program for the Disney Channel of 2006. On December 29, 2006, it became the first DCOM to be broadcast on the BBC. Globally, High School Musical has been seen by over 225 million viewers.
With a plot described by the author and numerous critics as a modern adaptation of Romeo & Juliet, High School Musical is a story about two high school juniors from rival cliques – Troy Bolton, captain of the basketball team, and Gabriella Montez, a beautiful and shy transfer student who excels in math and science. Together, they try out for the lead parts in their high school musical, and as a result, divide the school. Despite other students' attempts to thwart their dreams, Troy and Gabriella resist peer pressure and rivalry, inspiring others along the way not to "stick to the status quo". High school diva Sharpay Evans will do anything to sabotage the friendship between Troy and Gabriella and also get a lead in the school musical, assisted by her brother Ryan.