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October 2008
HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 3: SENIOR YEAR | An Exclusive Interview with Justin Martin

An Exclusive Interview with Justin Martin
by Wilson Morales

October 20, 2008

One of the beakout stars of 2008 has been Justin Martin. In 2005, the talented young actor was chosen for the coveted role of Young Simba in Disney’s long-running “The Lion King” on Broadway, but earlier this year, Martin appeared on TV with Sean 'Diddy' Combs and Sanaa Lathan in 'A Raisin in the Sun', and is currently in theaters now playing the younger version of Ernie Davis in 'The Express', and will be seen next year as the younger version of Jamie Foxx's character in 'The Soloist'. The Atlanta native has previously appeared in TV shows such as 'The Bernie Mac Show' and 'Malcolm in the Middle'.

His latest film to come out will put on him in his own league as he is one the new kids added to that juggernaut franchise that Disney has - 'High School Musical 3: Senior'.

"High School Musical 3: Senior Year" finds high school seniors Troy (Zac Efron) and Gabriella (Vanessa Hudgens) facing the prospect of separation as they head off to different colleges. Joined by the rest of the Wildcats, they stage an elaborate spring musical reflecting their experiences, hopes and fears about the future. With incredible new music and exciting dance numbers designed to take maximum advantage of the big screen, this motion picture extravaganza delivers plenty of high-energy entertainment from East High's talented ensemble.

In speaking exclusively with Blackfilm.com, Martin talks about his role in the film and working with the cast.

What role do you play in the film?

Justin Martin: I play one the three new sophomores in the film, Donny Dion, along with Matt Prokop who plays best friend/partner-in-crime to fellow sophomore Jimmy “Rocket Man” Zara and Jemma Mckensie-Brown. My character was written into the script. Initially I was thought to be too small to play a sophomore, but they changed their minds and I got the callfrom Kenny (Ortega). Donny is a ball boy on the basketball team and really looks up to Chad, played by Corbin Bleu

Had you watch the previous two films?

JM: I have an 9 year old sister and she is a huge fan, so I got to watch them with her and she was very excited when I told her that would be in this film. She's crazy about Corbin Bleu and asked me all sorts of questions about him like, 'What's he like?, Does he have a girlfriend? etc.'

How was working with Kenny Ortega?

JM: He was really cool. He made us feel comfortable around everyone, especially since they all have been working together and traveling together from the last two films.

How was working with the rest of the cast?

JM: From day 1, they treated me like a member of the family.



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