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Maxim's Interview With May Cover Girl Ashley Tisdale

In our hearts Ashley Tisdale will always be Sharpay Evans, the pink-wearing drama-queen teen from High School Musical. (She’s our spirit animal.) But in case you haven’t noticed, Ashley has shed her Disney image in spectacular fashion. On April 12 she’s taking the lead in Scary Movie V, a reboot of the franchise that spoofs recent frightening films, including Black Swan, Paranormal Activity, and the scariest of them all, Madea’s Witness Protection. We had a chat with Ashley about what freaks her out, turns her on, and rotates her chicken. (It’s the Ronco Rotisserie!)

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High School Musical fans are a…passionate bunch. What’s the craziest thing someone has done?
Once I Instagrammed a picture of me waking up, and the next day this older gentleman came to my parents’ house saying he wasn’t going to leave till he saw me. I was like, maybe I shouldn’t have taken a picture of me in bed?

Scary Movie V spoofs a ton of horror films. Did you watch them all?
The only way to spoof something is to take it seriously. I had to take ballet for about a month because of the Black Swan performance. Also, I dreaded having to watch scary movies. I am so scared of the Paranormal Activity movies. I didn’t think I was going to be able to sleep.

Did you ever get freaked out during filming?
Once in my hotel room, I’d gone to sleep, and the light in the bedroom turned on. I thought it was probably the wiring, so I went to bed again. Then I woke up in the middle of the night, and it was back on again. So that freaked me out a little, because I was doing all this Paranormal stuff.

So what was scarier: Having a ghost in your room or being on set with Lindsay Lohan?
Definitely the ghost. I think Lindsay’s great! There were so many cameos, and that’s what I love about these movies. They’d write a scene, then look for cameos, and they’d just pop in and do it. It was, like, Whoa, Mike Tyson’s here, and that wasn’t even planned!

Charlie Sheen had a cameo, too. Did he ever proposition you?
No, no. Charlie is super cool and very professional.

Speaking of celebrities, aren’t you distant cousins with Ron Popeil, the Ronco guy who’s famous for the Chop-O-Matic and Pocket Fisherman?
Yeah, and I have one of his knives and the rotisserie. The family on my mom’s side, their whole business is invent ing and pitching stuff. My grandfather is in infomercials. He’s a pitchman, so if you’re ever watching TV late at night, you’ll probably see him pitch­ing knives. My great-grand­father also invented the plastic cheese grater.

That’s amazing! Your holiday dinners must be super efficient.
We definitely have a lot of great kitchen utensils.

What was it like growing up in a family of infomer­cial royalty?
When I was younger, I was really shy. My grandfather was working at a kiosk in the mall when I was 10, and he asked me to come in. To get me to be more talkative to people, he had me pitching. They had the chopper, and my whole pitch was like, “I’m 10, and if I can do it, you can, too!”

Have you thought about inventing a new gadget to keep the legacy going?
No, but I’m producing at my company, Blondie Girl Productions, and we pitch shows all the time to networks. So I’m constantly pitching in my own way.

In “Guilty Pleasure” you sing about your weakness for the “treacherous, dangerous, and devious.” So you like bad boys?
I do. I just like guys who have an edge to them. But it could go either way. Like, I have been into the surfer blonde frat guys, and then there’s definitely a thing where I like the dark, mysterious bad boy.

Does that mean you’re more forgiving of a guy who doesn’t call when he says he will?
I’m definitely old-school when it comes to dating. I’m not into the “game” so much. If I like you, I’ll confront you and be open about it. Then I expect you to come after me.

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Danielle "Topanga" Fishel
Girls By the Water