Back when Zac Efron starred in High School Musical, the actor had the chance to talk to Michael Jackson on the phone.
During an appearance on BBC America’s The Graham Norton Show Efron recalled the conversation, which took place while he was promoting High School Musical 3 in Paris with director Kenny Ortega. Efron was at dinner with Ortega, who directed several of Jackson’s world tours and would later go on to direct the posthumous concert film This is It, when his phone rang.
Ortega handed Efron the phone and gave him the chance to talk to his hero. When Efron was done, Jackson said politely, “that’s really nice. Can you hand the phone back to Kenny?”
Efron was already freaking out about his first conversation with Jackson when the phone rang again. This time, Jackson asked for him.
“I picked up the phone and I go, ‘Hello?’ and he goes, ‘Oh this is Zac from ‘High School Musical?’” Efron recalled. “And I was like, ‘Uh, yeah.’ And he was like, ‘Oh I love what you do. I’m a huge fan.’”
Hearing that one of his biggest heroes was a fan of his work was enough to leave Efron speechless.
“You’re my hero,” Efron recalled telling Jackson. “You’re the reason I do what I do. Thank you so much, Michael for everything. Thanks for showing me how to dance, how to believe in myself — I don’t know, how to shine.”
“That made him cry,” he said. “We’re both crying to each other on the phone and he ended the whole phone call conversation along the lines of, ‘Hey Zac. Isn’t it awesome? Dreams really do come true, don’t they.’”
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