Disney Channel is getting back into the game with High School Musical, officially starting casting on the Disney Channel original movie High School Musical 4, Variety has learned.

Coming 10 years after High School Musical premiered, High School Musical 4, which is in development, will introduce a new cast of characters and actors to a new generation.

The potential flick is described as continuing the story of High School Musical, while introducing new East High Wildcats and their cross-town school rivals, the West High Knights.

High School Musical 4 was first announced back in 2009. Now with casting beginning, Jeffrey Hornaday, who directed the kids’ cabler’s Teen Beach Movie and Teen Beach 2, is still attached to direct and choreograph, should the telepic be greenlit – which is likely, given the huge success of the pop culture juggernaut.

The original High School Musical in 2006 starred Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Ashley Tisdale, Lucas Grabeel, Corbin Bleu and Monique Coleman, bringing the teen stars to worldwide fame.

Recently, the group reunited for a 10-year anniversary special that aired on Disney Channel.

The teen musical rom-com spawned two sequels, including a theatrical release for a third film, which brought in over US$250mil (RM1.03bil) worldwide at the box office. An additional spinoff Sharpay’s Fabulous Adventure starring Tisdale, was released straight-to-DVD in 2011.

At the time of its 2006 debut, High School Musical marked Disney Channel’s highest-rated telecast with 7.7 million viewers in the United States, and that record was later broken by the sequel High School Musical 2, which brought in 17.3 million viewers in August 2007, becoming the most-watched TV movie of all time.

The film High School Musical 3: Senior Year marked the biggest opening day for any musical film at the box-office, holding the title until it was topped by Les Miserables in 2012. – Reuters