The Disney Channel may have given us tons of great original programming over the years, but one series that will always hold a special place in our hearts is Hannah Montana.
Premiering in 2006 and starring Miley Cyrus, the show was full of hilarious moments and ridiculously catchy tunes — but more importantly, it taught us that even if your wildest dreams came true, they would mean nothing without good friends and a loving family by your side
To help you learn a bit more about one of our favorite television shows ever, we’ve come up with a list of six interesting facts you might not know about Hannah Montana.
1. Showrunners originally had someone else in mind to play Hannah..
Miley Cyrus is so synonymous with Hannah Montana that we just can’t imagine the hit Disney Channel show starring anyone else, but there was a time when producers were hoping none other than JoJo would take on the role. In fact, creators originally wrote the role with the singer in mind, but the edgy pop star turned the role down. It’s probably a good thing JoJo wasn’t interested or we might have never discovered Miley!
2. Miley Cyrus still has a lot of love for her on-screen brother, Jason Earles.
Hannah Montana may have ended years ago but it’s clear that the bond is still strong between Cyrus and Jason Earles, who played Hannah’s hilarious brother, Jackson, on the show. Despite the fact that the show is no longer filming, Earles told ClevverTV that he still keeps in touch with a few of his former castmates.
“I see Moises [Arias] all the time cuz his brother’s on [Kickin’ It] and I run into Emily [Osment] once in a while. Miley’s probably the one that I see or talk to the most from the regular cast,” revealed Earles.
3. Miley Cyrus was originally rejected for the role by casting directors.
Not only was JoJo almost cast as Hannah Montana, but also Cyrus was actually turned down for the role because showrunners thought she was “too small, too young” when she first auditioned at the age of 11. Her perseverance paid off, however, and the actress scored the coveted Disney Channel gig after turning 12.
4. A reunion is a possibility…
But only under certain conditions, at least according to Miley Cyrus! When E! News asked the singer recently if she’d be open to the possibility of stepping back into Hannah’s shoes, Cyrus said, “Only if she, like, has an alter ego and is actually me. Reverse it all the way around.” Sounds very meta to us but we wouldn’t be opposed to tuning in!
5. Jason Earles didn’t want to audition for Jackson
It’s hard to imagine Hannah Montana without actor Jason Earles playing her goofy brother, Jackson, but the truth of the matter is, Earles almost didn’t audition for the role!
“I didn’t think I was right for it, I didn’t think I was going to get it,” explained Earles of what was going through his mind in an interview with Premiere.
In the end it was Earles’ agent who convinced the actor to give it a shot anyway and the gamble definitely paid off!
6. The goal with Hannah Montana was always to give younger viewers lessons in good morals.
Hannah Montana may be full of celebrity glitz and hilarious hijinks, but one thing executive producer Steven Peterman said they always tried to do with the show is pepper in life lessons for its younger viewers.
As Peterman explained to Ed Magik TV in an interview back in 2010, the goal with the show was always to teach kids that the thing that they should value most in life is the people they get to share it with.
“Fame and celebrity isn’t the thing makes you happy, it’s having people in your life who you love and you know they love you. You care about each other, you have each other’s backs, when you make a mistake, when you screw up, you apologize,” explained Peterman. “These are the lessons we’ve talked to with our own children, and they’re the lessons we try to deal with in the show. We try to make it as funny as we can so kids don’t know that they’re getting a little moral lesson, but they get the message.”
What do you miss most about Hannah Montana? Tell us in the comments!