Princess Rosalinda was about to become the Queen of Costa Luna when her country is invaded by an evil dictator. In order to protect her, she is placed in the Princess Protection Program to keep her identity hidden. Now known as Rosie, she moves in with Carter’s family in rural Louisiana. Carter teaches Rosie how to act like a normal American teenager, and Rosie teaches Carter how to be a princess.
Did you know that Rosie and Carter are friends in real life, though? Yep, you may recognize these famous BFFs — Demi Lovato (Sunny with a Chance) slips into Rosalinda’s royal slippers, and Carter’s sneakers are filled by Selena Gomez (Wizards of Waverly Place). Read our exclusive interview with Selena and see what it’s like to be best friends with your co-star.
Was it fun working with Demi on Princess Protection Program?
Selena: I really don’t think I could find anything that was wrong with working with Demi. We’ve known each other for almost 10 years now, so there isn’t really anything we can surprise each other with. It is kind of odd trying to pretend like I don’t know who this person is in the movie, in the beginning, so that was fun. Being able to work with someone you’re comfortable with is always nice because it’s not the awkward, “Hi, nice to meet you. We have to pretend to be best friends.” So all the stuff that’s genuine in the movie is actual.
Does the friendship in the movie mirror real life?
Selena: Yeah, I think the parts where we’re laughing and being goofballs is absolutely one hundred percent us. Half the time, they’d keep the cameras rolling because we’d keep going and going and sit there and talk and laugh until we couldn’t breathe anymore. It was pretty much all genuine.
Are you similar to Carter and was Demi similar to Rosalinda?
Selena: Yes. Demi grew up in pageants, so back home in Texas, she was always poised and grew up that way. And I was a tomboy growing up. So it was back to our childhoods just for a little bit while we were shooting the movie.
How did you guys first meet?
Selena:In line, auditioning for Barney. We were in line with 1,400 kids, and she asked me to color with her, and I sat down on the ground and colored with her. We ended up booking the series together. Ten years later, we’re working for the same network, and we’re getting to grow and go through all of this together. Not being able to see each other can get really frustrating. But the one thing that I do admire about our friendship is, even if we’re separated for two years straight, we can’t forget our friendship and we can’t forget what it means to us, so I think distance does make the heart grow fonder.
Which scene in the movie did you like the best?
Selena: My favorite scene has to be the scene where Demi and I finally are friends in the movie, because it was really fun to shoot. After we’d shot all the scenes where we don’t like each other, it was refreshing to just be friends like we normally are.
And the hardest scene?
Selena: Acting like I didn’t know her. There’s a scene where we first meet, and it’s very weird and awkward because I’m not supposed to have any idea who this girl is and I’ve known her for 10 years, so that was a little weird.
Any funny stories?
Selena: Me and Demi would get really bored sometimes and throw food, but only at each other. (laughs) We cleaned it up after we were done, I promise.
What do you guys like to do when you’re just being yourselves off the set?
Selena: We like to just be normal 16-year-olds, because we can’t be every day. We’re obviously working. So it’s nice to be able to go to her house, listen to music, do each other’s hair and make-up, and talk about boys and gossip. That’s what normal 16-year-olds do, and that’s when that inner 16-year-old comes out.
What music do you listen to now?
Selena: I like Kelly Clarkson’s new record. I’m listening to Jason Mraz and Demi’s new record — it hasn’t come out yet, but I’ve heard it. It’s amazing.
How do you and Demi support each other if one of you is down?
Selena: We have a lot of inside jokes. Whenever we’re kind of stressed about everything going on in the business now, with rumors or with people hurting us or doing things like that, I say, “Hey, remember when we were, like, 12 at your house in Texas and we were barbecuing . . . ” And then we remember the good times. It’s nice to say, “Remember when . . . ” just to know that we have each other.
What would Demi say that she likes best about you?
Selena: That I don’t judge her. I feel like sometimes she gets afraid that people don’t like her if she wears too much eyeliner or she likes to listen to rock music, and I think she gets a little nervous because she doesn’t ever want people to not like her. I never judge anything she does. I always support her.
And what do you like best about her?
Selena: I like that she’s honest. I like that she can tell me anything, whether it’s an outfit she absolutely hates or it’s something about my music.
Any obstacles you’ve had to overcome in your career?
Selena: Disney Channel flew me out when I was 12, and I had to audition in a huge room with probably 15 executives staring at a 12-year-old asking her to sing and perform in front of them. I was very shy. Once I realized this is what I want to do and I should just focus on that, my passion, and I shouldn’t focus on all these people wearing fancy suits — I overcame that and I ended up booking my own series. So I’m very, very happy. My mom helped me overcome that.
— Alyssa, STACKS Intern
Interview conducted by Marie Morreale
Photo of Demi and Selena in party dresses © ROMAN FRANCISCO / American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. (Disney Channel)
Photo of Demi and Selena on the dock © BOB D’AMICO / American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. (Disney Channel)