Ashley Tisdale brought the drama as Sharpay Evans in High School Musical, fumbled her brothers’ summer vacation plans as Candance in Phineas and Ferb, and now she’s serving up haircuts in the new TBS comedy Clipped.
Created by David Kohan and Max Mutchnick, the same duo behind Will & Grace, the series follows a group of high school friends dealing with life and love while working at a barbershop in Charlestown, Massachusetts. Tisdale will play Danni, a young woman with lingering feelings for a friend she hooked up with on prom night.
The Suite Life of Zack and Cody star recently hit up EW to talk haircut mishaps and how one co-star almost cut off his finger.
What can we expect from this season?
This season, it’s really just getting to know each of the characters and who they are. It’s really funny. I think people will laugh their ass off.
Were there any mishaps? Accidental clippings?
Mike Castle. It was so horrible and he’s probably so embarrassed by it but we were just rehearsing it. We work with real scissors—we actually cut the background [actor’s] hair. So he was just spinning his scissors in his hand and he went to go grab something, and I guess he nicked himself. When he looked down, he didn’t even realize but it [the cut] just spread open and he had to be rushed to the hospital [for stitches]. And he does it every episode, which is so crazy that this one time it just nicked him.
Did you have to take any special classes?
Yeah, they actually made us do hair-cutting classes. We learned how to cut the hair and we would cut the wigs and stuff. In the pilot, I got super confident. I feel like I’m pretty good at faking because I’ve obviously spent so much time in hair salons so I picked up a lot of things from people doing my hair. One of the actresses, she doesn’t have a wig, and I was like, “Oh, can I trim your ends in the scene because I learned how to do it and I think I’m really good at it.” And she’s like “Oh yeah!” We got picked up and the first episode she’s back, she goes, “Just so you know, don’t cut my hair.” And I’m like “What are you talking about?” [laughing] “Because I went to my hair person and they’re like, ‘Don’t ever let her do that again.’”
How would you describe your level of skill as a stylist?
I would say that working with the scissors and the movement and all of that stuff, I’m super A+. It’s just when it comes to actually cutting the hair that I think I’m not that great with yet.
Did your parents give you an embarrassing haircut?
No. I had pretty curly hair when I was younger so [my mom] just let me grow my hair out. I would get little trims but nothing crazy so my hair was pretty long when I was 18. I actually did get a haircut for The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and the producer really wanted me to have blonde, short straight hair so it’s a completely different hair change. They cut seven inches off of my regular hair and gave me bangs. It was definitely a culture shock.
You’re starring in Clipped but you’re also producing other projects like Young & Hungry. Is it hard juggling all these things?
Sometimes, it can be overwhelming but I love being busy. I love working. I hate it when I’m not busy. Producing is great just because whenever I’m not on set acting, it’s nice to be creative in other ways.
What got you into producing and starting Blondie Girl Productions?
Six or seven years ago, I just remember my manager talking to me on the set of High School Musical 2 and being like “What do you wanna do? Do you wanna do a clothing line? ” I’ve always been the type of person that likes to do things differently and a lot of people were doing clothing lines at the time. I was just like, “You know what? I kind of wanna do something different.” I just like the idea of being able to create things and put my friends in it or even put myself in it if I wanted to.
I’ve known Emily Osment for a long time and like a year before Young & Hungry, we were testing for the same show and I always thought she was so funny and she’s so cute. So when we were casting Young & Hungry, I remembered a moment I had with her in the casting room and I was like, “She is so perfect for this part.” She had come into this casting office and she had coffee on her shirt and she was such a hot mess and I was just like, “This chick is so funny.” I thought she was so Gabby and it’s awesome being a part of creating something for people that I know to star in.
Catch the series premiere of Clipped June 16 at 10 p.m. on TBS.