Everything to Know About 'HSMTMTS' Season 4

The upcoming season is officially in production and will include a handful of HSM stars

Photo: Fred Hayes/Disney

High School Musical: The Musical: The Series season 3 has come to an end, but don't worry: there's more on the way.

Even before season 3 premiered this July, Disney+ gave the green light for season 4.

"This series continues to deliver best in class drama, humor, and heart," Ayo Davis, President of Disney Branded Television said of the show's renewal. "Tim Federle's vision and interpretation of this legacy IP keeps evolving season over season and we can't wait to see what's in store for the Wildcats next."

"This series has been an epic adventure from the start and I'm beyond grateful that we get to keep making music, telling these stories and showcasing these exceptional stars," creator Tim Federle added.

While we still have a while before the new season premieres, the cast and creator Tim Federle have already shared a handful of details about what's to come.

Read ahead for everything we know about HSMTMTS season 4.

Which cast members are returning for HSMTMTS season 4?

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Despite shaking things up in season 3 by making a few main cast members recurring (rather than series regulars), it seems like most of the original cast will be back for season 4.

Federle confirmed to PEOPLE that almost everyone in the season 3 finale "is going to make their way back into the show" next season, including Matt Cornett, Saylor Bell and Adrian Lyles. "If you love somebody in season 3, they'll probably be back, but we're always sort of juggling the number of people whose stories we're telling."

In a recent press release, Disney+ revealed that series regulars would be Joshua Bassett (Ricky), Sofia Wylie (Gina), Dara Reneé (Kourtney), Julia Lester (Ashlyn), Frankie Rodriguez (Carlos), Kate Reinders (Miss Jenn) and Liamani Segura (Emmy). Kylie Cantrall, Matthew Sato, Caitlin Reilly and Vasthy Mompoint are also joining as recurring cast members.

Which cast members are not returning for HSMTMTS season 4?

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After appearing as a guest star in season 3, Olivia Rodrigo will not reprise her role as Nini in the upcoming season.

"What I wanted to say with Nini's story is that everyone can't have a perfect, happy ending every season, but there's always a future where you're driving off into something that could be even better or at least teach you something about yourself," Federle tells PEOPLE of Rodrigo's exit in the season 3 finale.

"The song 'Born to Be Brave' is sentimental to me. I think it's the theme of the entire series. We've always strived to tell stories that are representative and modern and queer and true and I just felt like there was no more beautiful way of doing that than reminding Nini that when she gets in the car, those voices are always gonna be with her."

What will the musical be for HSMTMTS season 4?

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The cast confirmed at D23 that the upcoming season will show the students putting on a musical of High School Musical 3: Senior Year, the third film in the HSM franchise in which the characters put on a musical about their own lives.

What will HSMTMTS season 4 be about?

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During D23, it was revealed that the upcoming fourth season will follow the characters as they return to East High for their senior year, only to find out that the school is being used to film the long-awaited High School Musical 4: The Reunion movie, and they'll all be playing featured extras.

Federle told PEOPLE that the upcoming season is a "real return to the original" season. "[It's] the real return to why the show got greenlit in the first place, which is real theater kids singing at this iconic location, aka East High."

Will any original High School Musical stars appear on HSMTMTS season 4?

Fred Hayes/Disney

Seeing that the upcoming season revolves around the fictional filming of High School Musical 4, many fans are curious to know if the show will feature any of the original Wildcats. While a handful of OG HSM stars have already appeared on the series, including Lucas Grabeel, Kaycee Stroh and Corbin Bleu, Federle confirms to PEOPLE that an invitation has been extended to all of the original HSM stars to cameo in season 4.

In a recent press release, Disney+ confirmed that High School Musical stars Bleu, Stroh, Grabeel, Monique Coleman, Bart Johnson, and Alyson Reed are set to appear in the new season.

When does HSMTMTS season 4 start filming?

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Sofia Wylie previously revealed to PEOPLE that filming for season 4 is expected to start in September in Salt Lake City, Utah. She also added that she and the cast have already started having conversations about what they would like to see for their characters in the new season.

"[Tim] is so inclusive and really wants myself and the rest of the cast to have an input and a say in what we hope to see this coming season," she said. "He's just such a wonderful collaborator and I'm very lucky for him."

On Sept. 23, Disney+ confirmed that season 4 is officially in production.

When will HSMTMTS season 4 be released?

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Though production kicked off in September, we likely won't get new episodes until mid-2023, possibly timed to August to be in line with the senior year plot.

Will HSMTMTS season 4 be the show's final season?

Disney+

Disney+ hasn't confirmed if season 4 will be the show's final season. Although, Federle has teased that he does have an endgame in mind for the show. "I think I've glibly in the past said we're gonna go seven seasons and I would still love that but I think other than Cobra Kai we're just about the longest running reboot there is right now, which we're all super, super grateful and proud of," Federle told PEOPLE. "I definitely have endgames in mind for all of the characters in terms of how long the show goes. I think that's gonna be a decision that Disney and I come to together."

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