It seems only yesterday Vanessa Hudgens was singing and dancing on Disney's wildly popular High School Musical franchise.

Wait, that wasn't too long ago, actually. The third movie in the series came out in 2008. Still, the actress has come a long way since playing brainy Gabriella Montez.

She received critical praise for her role as Sa5m in Bandslam in 2009.

This year, she starred opposite English hunk Alex Pettyfer in the movie adaptation of the novel Beastly, in which she played the daughter of a drug dealing father.

She also starred in the mainly all-girl cast of the fantasy action film Sucker Punch.

Younger Hudgens fans - and their parents - will be glad to know she'll star in the children's adventure movie Journey 2: The Mysterious Island in February, which also features Josh Hutcherson of The Hunger Games.

The actress will have a Precious-type role in the 2012 film Gimme Shelter. Hudgens' character, nicknamed Apple, is a pregnant teenage girl who leaves her abusive, drug-addicted, prostitute of a mother in search of something better.

Hudgens may be pursuing more mature roles, but she still has little fans who remember her from her Disney days. She told Conan O'Brien that kiddie fans, upon seeing her, either go still, burst into tears, or follow her around.

You never really know what to expect, she said.

Here are photos of Hudgens throughout the years, pre- and post- High School Musical.