High School Musical's Zac Efron Hits Hairspray Premiere with Vanessa Hudgens
07/11/2007 AT 03:15 PM EDT
Efron, 19, who plays hunky Link Larkin in the film, and Hudgens, 18, arrived separately to the Mann Village Theater in Westwood, but reunited once inside and cozied up to watch the movie with the rest of the Hairspray cast, including John Travolta and Michelle Pfeiffer.
Afterwards, the pair held hands as they navigated their way through the afterparty at the Ackerman Union on the UCLA campus, which had been transformed into an ultra-modern blue and white lounge.
Each Hairspray star had his or her own table, and at Efron's, he and Hudgens were joined by their fellow High School Musical alum, Ashley Tisdale. But Efron, bombarded by fans requesting photos and industry types eager to shake his hand, was far too busy to socialize with his pals, or even scarf down a cheeseburger.
(Of the attention he was receiving from female fans, he told PEOPLE: "There's a lot of females out here today! What can I say? I'm enjoying myself.")
Efron can expect even more attention. Variety reports that he’s been signed to star in a movie remake of Footloose, playing the Kevin Bacon character. This version will be a full musical.
Meanwhile, Hudgens and Tisdale chatted up Hairspray star Amanda Bynes, grabbed some grub and danced to the live band's rendition of "Proud Mary." Once in a while they'd check back in at Efron's table, where his mother, Starla, and Tisdale's mother, Lisa, were also seated.
And while Efron was a hit with his female fans, Tisdale was just as impressed by his performance in the movie. "He's hot!" she told PEOPLE. "I remember when he got this role, I was like, 'That's so cool.' He reminds me of a young John Travolta."
Reporting by MONICA RIZZO