From E!'s Marc Malkin: Is the onscreen competition between Miley Cyrus and fellow tween Disney sensation Selena Gomez about to get real? I'm told Disney executives are so worried about Cyrus' recent controversies that, more than ever, they want to make Gomez an even bigger star. The 15-year-old Gomez now stars in the Disney Channel hit Wizards of Waverly Place, but last year she appeared on two episodes of Hannah Montana as Mikayla, one of Hannah's pop star rivals. "Selena sings and acts and is really young," a source reports. "She is going to be the next Miley Cyrus. [Disney executives] really want this." Next up for Gomez is the Warner Bros. movie Another Cinderella Story, scheduled for a fall release. No surprise, but I've just learned that Gomez has recorded several new songs for the flick. "The studio has high hopes for this," says my source. But a Disney rep insists there are no plans to try and replace Cyrus in any way with Gomez. "We are fortunate to work with a host of young actors and actresses who are each unique and making their own trajectory based on their talent," the rep said via email this morning. "However, Wizards of Waverly Place is a bona fide hit with kids and families, and licensees and retailers are indeed interested in the series. As for Selena, she deserves all the success that's coming her way."
Man ... you expose your nekkid back just one time while your parents look on in approval and your head ends up on the chopping block from the megabazillion dollar corporation that you
The Disney Channel phenom will not be attending a network media party in Orlando Friday, what was to have been her first public appearance since the incredibly controversial results of her recent photo shoot for Vanity Fair. Cyrus' name had been on the guest list for weeks, long before Annie Leibovitz's eye for art threw the blogosphere into a tizzy and started a massive debate over whether the 15-year-old Hannah Montana star was still a proper role model for her fellow youngsters. Disney, which is hosting the party for the stars and execs in town to film the Disney Channel Games, a celeb-studded charity competition, had no further comment on that particular scheduling change. According to a network rep, however, Cyrus is still "100 percent performing on Saturday night" at the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando. The concert will be televised this summer as part of the special-event series.
Seriously ... all of this stuff is so ridiculous ... but at the same time it's so interesting as well. The business of selling teen stars is extremely fascinating cuz it's so harsh. It's a delicate thing to try and sell wholesomeness and innocence because the consumer (usually of the conservative Christian ilk) is a very picky one ... they hold the goods they are buying to an insanely high (basically Holy) standard. They can love, love, love one moment and then cast aside into the fiery pits of Hell the next based on one slip up. I don't honestly believe that Miley Cyrus is dunzo after all of this hoopla (and to be honest, I'm surprised she's managed to make it this far without conservative whack-jobs giving her shizz because of her "alternative-looking" brother) but I absolutely believe that Disney is ready to start cultivating a replacement for her should the need arise ...
... after all ... you can never run out of innocence to sell. [Source, Source]