We already suspected that the Disney factory manufactures tween starlets like plastic widgets, but we had no idea that production has gone into super overdrive since the Miley Cyrus/ Vanity Fair "nude" debacle. The Wall Street Journal reports that "Talent development has taken on new urgency since April, when Vanity Fair magazine published photos of the 15-year-old Ms. Cyrus with only a bedsheet covering her torso." Hannah Montana ratings have declined, the Journal points out, and so Disney is attempting to replace Miley with 15-year-old actress/singer Demi Lovato by using a "multimedia blitz that is aggressive even by Disney standards." So Lovato is being touted as the "New Miley," but just last month, another pretty, Texas-born Hispanic girl was declared heiress to the Cyrus juggernaut. People called Disney's Wizards of Waverly Place star Selena Gomez the next Miley, and it turns out that Lovato and Gomez (pictured here — Lovato is on the left) are "best friends" who have their own YouTube channel wherein they discuss things like their matching "True Love Waits" purity rings.
Selena and Demi met as child actors on the show Barney and Friends. When they were 11, they both tried out for a role in a Lizzie McGuire spin off, according to the WSJ, but Demi's mom, a former Dallas Cowboys cheerleader, says, "Selena is an adorable looking Hispanic girl, and looks more Hispanic than Demi, and that's what they were looking for at the time." This was right after Dora the Explorer became a huge, runaway success, so it makes sense that Disney would want to tap the Hispanic market that their main competitor, Nickelodeon, had already made huge strides in that sector.
Anyway, back to our little promise keepers: Miley, for her part, is distinctly displeased that she's been pushed aside for the new blood. On her YouTube channel, Miley put up a video with her friend Mandy Jiroux parodying Selena and Demi's Youtube channel (side note: doesn't Miley sound kind of drunk in this clip? Drunk on Jesus, naturally.) The Youtube viewers of this parody have articulated the underlying message to Disney's Post-Vanity Fair, post-green bra Miley overthrow. A disgruntled fan writes, "You are just jealous on Demi and Selena because they are not Sluts... " You see, now that Miley's virginal imagine is tainted, Disney needs to put some squeaky clean teens in the spotlight, and perhaps that's why there are two of them; if nude photos surface of Selena, (à la Vanessa Hudgens), there's already a back-up being primed for stardom.
Disney Revs Up Tween Star Machine [WSJ]
Demi Lovato And Selena Gomez Q&A!!!! [Official Demi Lovato Youtube Channel]
The Miley And Mandy Show!!!! Is My Makeup To Dark? [Miley Cyrus Official Youtube Channel]