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‘High School Musical’ star says he wasn't cool

America's newest teen sensation, Zac Efron, swears to Access Hollywood that growing up he was not particularly the cool kid.
/ Source: Access Hollywood

America's newest teen sensation, Zac Efron, swears to Access Hollywood that growing up he was not particularly the cool kid.

We find that hard to believe but the California native, who grew up in San Louis Obispo county in the town of Arroyo Grande, swears it's true, "I was definitely not the coolest kid in school. If you were there, you'd believe it. High School, I was just a regular kid. I was actually there a lot of the time to learn. I was really focused on academics and I got really good grades, I had like a 4.3 when I left."

Zac burst onto the scene after landing small parts in TV shows like CBS's "NCIS" and "CSI: Miami. " At age fifteen he played a teen who gets shot on "ER" which he tells us scored him big points at his local High School, "There was all this fake blood. Nothing I was more into at that age. I was really stoked. I left it on at school and carried it around for a week and was showing everybody."

A regular role on the teen drama, "Summerland", helped him land his big break as jock, Troy Bolton, in the first "High School Musical".

This summer his role on the big screen as Link Larkin in "Hairspray" put him in the same stratosphere as A-list stars like John Travolta and Michelle Pfeiffer. With "High School Musical 2" premiering tomorrow on The Disney Channel, the timing helped turn Zac into a mega star. He recently landed the cover of Rolling Stone magazine, which dubbed him the new American heartthrob.

Zac is pictured on the cover wearing a white t-shirt pulled up over her torso with his hand just above his chest. The photo came as a bit of shock to Zac when he first saw it, "The first thing I thought was how did I end up in that pose? It's like the mammogram issue. I can’t believe of all places I made the cover. My friends called me and this is one of the first tangible things that they really talk about."

Personal life now publicZac is dealing with his newfound celebrity, which involves mostly young girls screaming very loudly when they see him. Then again there is the downside of fame. Inside Rolling Stone Zac ponders whether or not celebrities cause their own fates telling the magazine quote, "A lot of problems you see people having in this business is that it becomes about their personal lives and not about their work. Matthew McConaughey has single-handedly funded the tabloid magazines for the past two years now. If he would put on a shirt and just get away from the beach, maybe there would be a few less paparazzi around."

Ironically, all of a sudden the paparazzi have begun to take an interest in his personal life, thanks to his off-screen romance with on-screen "High School Musical" co-star Vanessa Hudgens. From Access Hollywood's view, so far Zac has remained a down to earth guy. He credits his parents David and Starla for that, "They kept me focused my whole life and I probably owe it to that more than anything. I had very real parents. They didn't push me in one direction. I did my own thing and they supported that. I still on a daily basis, I just can't get over that. I owe them everything."

He has made one change we happened to notice. His teeth. A gap between his upper front teeth has been fixed which he did just before filming the first "High School Musical."

"High School Musical 2" premieres tomorrow night on "The Disney Channel."