Most of the actors and actresses who got their start on the Disney Channel had a squeaky-clean image, after all, they were meant to be someone who children could look up to as role models (these shows are aimed at a younger audience). But apparently being a role model is a lot to live up to, because despite some of the most successful people in the entertainment and music industries actually starting out with Disney, it seems there is a bit of a pattern when it comes to these young stars getting into trouble with the law, or using bizarre antics and adult-themed movies to shed their image.
Parents may have once been willing to let their children watch these former Disney stars in the past, but their actions in recent years have been so disappointing, and downright strange, that there are few parents who would still give them their stamp of approval — and no, we are not just talking about Miley Cyrus here.
Don’t believe me, or think I’m exaggerating? Below are 15 Disney stars who were once sweet and innocent, and are now all grown up and guilty of doing things that would make us and Mickey Mouse blush.
15. Shia LaBeouf Is So Strange
Shia LaBeouf is probably best known for his role as Sam Witwicky in the Transformer movies, but he was also a Disney star and appeared in the Disney Channel series, Even Stevens, in which he was Louis Stevens.
As for why LaBeouf deserves a spot on this list? Well, there are too many strange antics in his past to mention all of them, but some of these include him reportedly trying to start a fight, causing a disturbance during a Studio 54 theatre performance of Cabaret, and being banned from a Los Angeles restaurant for his inappropriate behavior. But perhaps the most memorable incident happened at the Berlin Film Festival in 2014, when he arrived wearing a paper bag on his head with the words reading “I am not famous anymore.”
14. Debby Ryan Had A Run-In With The Law
You may recognize Debby Ryan as the character Bailey Pickett in the Disney Channel original series The Suite Life on Deck (which starred twins Cole and Dylan Sprouse), and if not, then you’ll definitely remember her for her role as Jessie Prescott in Disney Channel show, Jessie. But when watching these shows as a teenager, you probably never thought that Ryan would land herself in trouble with the law, now did you?
But that happened, as seems to be the pattern with so many stars who experience fame from a young age. In 2016, when she was aged 22, she was reportedly arrested in Los Angeles for felony drunk driving after she knocked into the side of a Mercedes. The reason it was a felony arrest, is that, according to TMZ, the driver of the other car claimed injury.
13. Miley Cyrus Ruined Her ‘Hannah Montana’ Image
Probably the most obvious Disney star on this list is Miley Cyrus because even if you had never heard of her before 2013, everyone knows her name now. Cyrus had been adored for years because of her clean girl image, which was an inspiration to little girls all over the world, but that all came crashing to a halt in 2013, at one of the most notorious VMAs in history.
Cyrus caused a stir when she stepped out on stage to perform “Blurred Lines” with Robin Thicke — the performance included a lot of tongue pulling and twerking — and just like that, her Hannah Montana image was over for good. What followed was a lot of controversies (and horror) and resulted in Cyrus and her fiancé Liam Hemsworth calling off their engagement. Fast forward to 2018, and Cyrus has definitely toned down her antics, but this performance will be burned into everyone’s mind forever.
12. Adrienne Bailon’s War With The Kardashians Was So Ugly
Most people have probably forgotten that Adrienne Bailon was once a Disney star because since her time as a Cheetah Girl she’s become known for many different things. Namely, her link to Reality TV’s royal family, the Kardashians, after dating Rob Kardashian in 2007.
And the fallout from that relationship, she thinks, changed her career forever, and not for the better. During an interview with Latina she reportedly made these comments: “To be stuck with that Kardashian label, that was so hurtful to me and to my career. I probably realized that too late – not that it would’ve affected my decisions in terms of who I dated, but it would’ve affected my decision to appear on the show.”
11. Kelli Berglund’s Fake ID Got Her In Trouble
Kelli Berglund’s Coachella’s experience was memorable for all the wrong reasons because she was busted for being in possession of a fake identity document. The incident happened in 2016, and according to TMZ, Berglund was arrested at the music festival after trying to reportedly access a restricted section of the party to meet up with her friends, however, things did not go according to plan because security guards noticed her ID was fake and contacted the cops.
But even though this is strange behavior, it wasn’t as big of a deal as some of the other former Disney stars actions, because the Lab Rats actress was reportedly only given a citation and was then sent off to party. Still, seeing a role model doing something a little shady is bad news!
10. ‘Smart Guy’ star Jason Weaver Used A Public Spot As A Toilet
Jason Weaver played Marcus Henderson, the elder sibling of genius T.J. Henderson, who was plated by Tahj Mowry, on the Disney series, Smart Guy. The series started in 1999 and lasted for three seasons, and while Weaver was beloved for his role, it was years later that he made headlines for something a lot less pleasant.
According to RumorFix, in 2011, MediaTakeOut reported that Weaver decided to use the side of a highway as a toilet. The publication reportedly claimed that he had done his business on the side of a highway in Georgia, however, RumorFix states that the actor slammed these claims and insisted that instead of doing a number 2, he had simply did a number 1 at a gas station in the early hours of the morning because the clerk would not open the door. He was apparently arrested for this offense.
9. David Henrie Had An Ugly Encounter With A Security Guard
The Disney Channel original series Wizards of Waverly Place was a huge success and one of the stars of the show was David Henrie, who played the role of Justin Russo (who was a brother to Selena Gomez’s character Alex, and Jake T. Austin’s character Max). However, in 2010, Henrie and his real brother, Lorenzo, made headlines for allegedly trying to start a fight with security guards.
But this may have been a case of things not always being as they seem, because a rep for the actor slammed the rumors about Henrie and made the following statement to JustJared: “Contrary to the reports that have circulated in the media, neither David Henrie nor his 16-year-old brother Lorenzo were trying to start a fight last night at Universal City Walk. In fact, they took appropriate measures to avoid an altercation. Unfortunately, private security guards released the instigators, and became extremely aggressive with Lorenzo.”
The statement went on to reveal that Henrie had reportedly tried to defend his brother when security guards became aggressive with him, and that eyewitnesses had backed up this account, saying that the two boys were just trying to “protect themselves from an unjustified use of force.”
8. Lindsay Lohan Turned Into A Very Troubled Star
Bet you would never have guessed that Lindsay Lohan had her start on Disney because she’s now known for her scandals and drunken antics. But long, long before Lohan fell off the wagon she was the star of several Disney movies, including the hit The Parent Trap in 1998, and later Freaky Friday and Mean Girls.
But growing up in the limelight took its toll on Lohan and she struggled with substance abuse, which resulted in multiple run-ins with the law and a lot of publicity surrounding her life. Some of her more memorable blunders include being arrested for suspicion of driving under the influence, as well as possession of an illegal substance in 2007, which resulted in her checking into Promises rehab. And then in 2010 (following several more incidents leading up to this point), she spent 14 days of a 90-day sentence in jail for violating her probation.
7. Vanessa Hudgens Made A Silly Mistake
Vanessa Hudgens is a former Disney star who, for the most part, has managed to stay out of trouble in the years following her success with High School Musical, but she has tried to shed her innocent image with a role in the more adult-themed film, Spring Breakers (in 2012). She also caused controversy when she carved her name into an Arizona rock formation.
Hudgens has also been the unfortunate victim of a photo scandal, which exposed several very personal images which were never meant to be shared with the world. In 2007, she spoke about this saying, “I want to apologize to my fans, whose support and trust means the world to me. I am embarrassed over this situation and regret having ever taken these photos. I am thankful for the support of my family and friends.”
6. Joe Jonas Is A Bad Boy
It’s pretty hard to remember that former Jonas brother star and current DNCE bandmate Joe Jonas was once a Disney star, but years before he dated half of young Hollywood and got several breakup songs written about him (thanks, Taylor Swift), he was the star of Disney’s Camp Rock.
Since then, Jonas has made a name for himself as being a bit of a player, and some of his more famous relationships include Gigi Hadid, AJ Michalka, Taylor Swift, and Camilla Belle. He also decided to speak about the first time he ever tried an illegal drug in 2013 during an interview with New York Magazine, and sort of blamed Disney stars Miley Cyrus and Demi Lovato for encouraging him to do it.
5. Mitchel Musso Doesn’t Adhere To California Law
You may have thought that Miley Cyrus was the only former Hannah Montana star that turned weird, but Mitchel Musso, who starred as one of Miley Cyrus’ character’s best friends, Oliver Oken on the show, has also made headlines for reasons he probably wishes he hadn’t.
When Musso was aged 20, he was arrested in Los Angeles for driving under the influence. The incident reportedly happened after the actor failed to slow down and listen to an officer’s instructions at an intersection where an accident occurred, New York Daily News reported at the time. And as if this was not bad enough, he was also underage [you have to be aged 21 to legally drink in California] at the time of the arrest, a local police sergeant made a statement, saying, “He’s only 20 years old, so technically the limit for him is zero, but he was over the 0.08 adult limit too.”
4. Anneliese Van Der Pol Had Way Too Much To Drink
Anneliese Van Der Pol starred as the character Chelsea Daniels in Disney Channel sitcom, That’s So Raven, and while she may have seemed so sweet and innocent, her life took an unexpected twist. In 2006, she made headlines for driving under the influence, and her blood alcohol levels were reported twice the legal limit.
According to TMZ, Van Der Pol drove into a parked car and “after hitting the parked vehicle, Defendant then lost control of her vehicle, traveled across the roadway, and finally collided with another vehicle…” She reportedly plead no contest to the two misdemeanor charges of driving under the influence, and driving with a blood-alcohol level above 0.8.
3. Ryan Merriman Needed More Of That Irish Luck
Ryan Merriman starred in two Disney Channel original movies, Smart House in 1999, in which he played the role of Ben Cooper, and later the 2001 film The Luck of the Irish, in which he portrayed the character Kyle Johnson.
While these were not his only films, and Merriman later became known for his role as Kevin Fischer in Final Destination 3 (and several other horror films) he is yet another Disney star who broke out of that child star mold. And Merriman did this when he got arrested for a DUI, which, as you’d have noticed by this stage of our list seems to be a common problem among former Disney stars.
2. Kirsten Storms Came Onto The Police’s Radar
These days Kirsten Storms may be better known for her role on General Hospital, but before this, she was a Disney Channel star thanks to her role as Zenon Karin on Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century, Zenon: The Zequel, and Zenon: Z3.
She also came onto the police’s radar in 2007, when it was reported that officers saw her throw a lit cigarette out of her vehicle. According to Fox News, the officers also noted an “odor of an alcoholic beverage” coming from within her car and this was the cause for her sobriety tests, which she failed, and was then arrested — I know you’re probably thinking what the heck is with these former Disney stars and drinking too much? And not only that, why do they all have such poor judgement?!
1. Bella Thorne Shacked Up With Scott Disick
Bella Thorne made a name for herself as CeCe Jones on the Disney Channel series Shake It Up, and while she’s starred in a lot of more mature films since this, the strangest thing about her is probably her relationship with Scott Disick.
Thorne is just 20, and while her relationships have made headlines in the past, the most recent attention has been on her connection with Scott Disick — for those who don’t know, is Kourtney Kardashian’s ex and baby daddy, he is also 14 years Thorne’s senior. What exactly was going on here, we can’t be certain, but there were photos of the pair looking very cozy that emerged online. And the Kardashian clan did not seem to be impressed at all by Disick spending so much time with the actress!
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