Ashley Tisdale and Austin Butler have had a close relationship for years ever since they costarred in 2009’s Aliens in the Attic. Their friendship seemed to blossom even further during and after the Elvis actor’s romance with Ashley’s High School Musical costar Vanessa Hudgens, which lasted from 2011 to 2020. Although fans were curious about Austin and Ashley’s bond, they remained buddies and even found out that they are, in fact, related.
Keep reading to find out everything we know about Ashley and Austin’s relationship.
Are Ashley Tisdale and Austin Butler Related?
In November 2011, the Suite Life of Zack & Cody alum described to Us Weekly how she discovered that the former Carrie Diaries star is her 10th cousin, once removed. They share an English ancestor named Richard Scruggs, who died in 1669.
After teaming up with Ancestry’s 2 Lies and a Leaf, Ashley was questioned which former male costar she believed she was related to: Zac Efron, Dylan and Cole Sprouse or Austin. Before the truth was revealed, Ashley noted she always considered Austin to be a sibling.
“I think my reaction on camera says it all,” she said. “I couldn’t believe it, and I started to get emotional. We’ve had an immediate connection since we met, and we’ve been close friends for years. We even joked about being fraternal twins.”
After she uncovered the shocking truth, Ashley recalled sending a message to Austin, and he didn’t miss a beat in replying to her.
“I texted him as soon as I heard, and he replied right away saying, ‘NO F-ING WAY!’” the New Jersey native said. “He was just as shocked as I was. To know this whole time that we’re actually cousins — it’s just so wild.”
When Were Ashley Tisdale and Austin Butler Costars?
After appearing together in the 2009 sci-fi film Aliens in the Attic, Austin and Ashley costarred in the High School Musical 2011 spinoff, Sharpay’s Fabulous Adventure.
The Zoey 101 alum portrayed Ashley’s onscreen love interest, Peyton Leverett, whom Sharpay meets in New York City while becoming a Broadway star.
Despite portraying a fictional couple, the two always described their relationship as a strong friendship.
“Ashley Tisdale and I have been friends for, like, three or four years, so it was a blast to get to come to work every day and just have fun with her,” the Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood actor told Girl in 2011.
Are Ashley Tisdale and Austin Butler Still Friends?
Ten years after filming the Disney musical, the “Headstrong” artist reflected on their long-lasting bond in a sweet Instagram tribute in honor of Austin’s 30th birthday.
“You’ve been my best friend since you were 15, so that’s 15 years strong of friendship!” Ashley gushed in her lengthy caption in January 2021. “I am beyond proud of you and everything you’re accomplishing, but most importantly proud of the person you are. You’ve been my closest friend through the years. You’re the type of friend that came over when I was crying on the floor from a horrible breakup, and not only lifted me off the ground, but brought my favorite candy. I honestly didn’t think anyone would ever understand me like you, but then enter my husband [Christopher French] and you happily embraced him like a brother.”
Although she wasn’t aware of their familial relationship at the time, the pop singer labeled the Nickelodeon alum as a brother.
“There’s no one like you Austin. You’re my twin born 7 years later,” Ashley noted, before adding, “Remember that one time I convinced you to be in my Disney movie Sharpays Fabulous Adventure? Well, look at you now!!”