Vanessa Hudgens Talks About Dealing with Her Nude Photo Scandal

Vanessa Hudgens Talks About Dealing with Her Nude Photo Scandal
Vanessa Hudgens
Matt Sayles/AP

updated 01/03/2008 at 12:00 PM EST

originally published 01/03/2008 12:15PM

Vanessa Hudgens says she's recovering from her scandal of late summer, when risqué private photos of her surfaced on the Internet.

"I'm much better now," the High School Musical star, 18, tells Seventeen magazine for its February issue. "But truthfully I don't like talking about it."

On Sept. 7, after the nude pictures made the rounds, Hudgens released a formal statement through her rep, saying, in part, "I want to apologize to my fans, whose support and trust means the world to me. I am embarrassed over this situation and regret having ever taken these photos."

She now says of the intimate posing session, "It was something that was meant to be private, and even though it isn't anymore, I'd still like to keep it as private as I can."

Zac Efron's Reaction

Of the tempest that the pictures caused, she says, "It was very traumatic, and I am extremely upset it happened. I hope all my fans can learn from my mistake and make smart decisions. But I wouldn't have been able to get through it if it wasn't for my family, friends and fans, who supported me all along the way."

Asked how she had been informed that the photos had gone public, Hudgens answers, "I found out from my manager. We heard some story was going to break in the tabloids, and I was like, What?!? A few days later, the picture came out while I Was on vacation in Australia. Thank God, I wasn't home – it would have sucked if I was at home. So I got to be away from L.A. for about a millisecond. But when I came back, it got kind of crazy."

Vanessa Hudgens Talks About Dealing with Her Nude Photo Scandal| Scandals & Feuds, Vanessa Hudgens

While Hudgens does not directly address boyfriend Zac Efron's reaction to the photos, she does refer to him as "a friend and a cute friend who you like. It's nice."

Mom: 'Okay to Be Naked'

Came time to tell her mother about what had transpired, Hudgens recalls with a laugh, "I was just open with her, and she was just so cute. She was like, 'Well, everyone can be naked if they want to.' "

If there are lessons to be learned from the experience, Hudgens also says, "With the Internet these days, you don't have a personal life. Nothing is private: Everyone knows everything, and they can find out everything about you. You're not as safe as you think you are, and you have to be aware of the people you're around."
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