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He also appeared in some films, including the Lifetime television film Miracle Run (2004), for which he earned a Young Artist Award nomination for his performance as one of two autistic twins.Efron's career reached a turning point with the teen musical television film High School Musical (2006), which premiered on the Disney Channel in January 2006.He followed this with the commercially successful comedy 17 Again (2009) about a 37-year-old man (Matthew Perry) who is transformed into his 17-year-old self (Efron) after a chance accident.
During this time, he also starred in the musical film Hairspray (2007) and the comedy film 17 Again (2009).
The film's soundtrack was certified quadruple platinum by the RIAA, making it one of the best-selling albums of the year in the United States.
Efron's singing talents were disputed when it was revealed that his voice had been blended with Drew Seeley's on the soundtrack, but Efron clarified that the songs (written for a tenor) were written before he was cast and therefore did not suit his more baritone vocal range.
The film, which has been described as a modern adaptation of Romeo and Juliet, saw Efron playing the male lead Troy Bolton, a high school basketball player who feels conflicted when he finds himself interested in participating in the school musical with Gabriella Montez (Vanessa Hudgens), a girl from the scholastic decathlon team.
The film, which also starred Ashley Tisdale, Lucas Grabeel, Corbin Bleu, and Monique Coleman in pivotal roles, became a major success and helped Efron gain recognition among teenage audiences.