Before 2021's biggest breakout hit "Drivers License" zoomed to the top of the Billboard Hot 100, Olivia Rodrigo was chugging along as part of the Disney machine while starring in High School Musical: The Musical: The Series.
The High School Musical-inspired series premiered on Disney+ in November 2019, more than a year before the release of "Drivers License" and before she could get her actual driver's license (Rodrigo said in an interview that her filming schedule actually caused her to cancel her second of four attempts to take her driver's test and pass). Even if the teen sensation took the longer route to finally get it, she took the fast lane to superstardom. Rodrigo's current Billboard cover story breaks down how she skipped the usual path of going to Disney-owned Hollywood Records that past Disney stars Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez once took and went straight to a major label, Geffen Records.
"I've known a couple of the stars and knew which ones when I worked with I was thinking, 'Oh, this person's going to be a superstar.' It's ridiculous for me to say that Olivia is going to be a superstar because she is already a superstar," Mitch Allan, Disney Channel veteran songwriter and producer, previously told Billboard.