Tuesday, September 18, 2007


Are we even surprised that Vanessa Williams would dole out advice and a shoulder to lean on to High School Musical 2 superstar, Vanessa Hudgens after a host of un-Disney-like photos of the teen laid out in all of her glory surfaced on the Internet last week? Williams, whose nude photos cost her to loose her Miss American crown in 1984 says Hudgens will survive her own racy photos scandal. "She's got talent and she's professional, and those are the things that'll help her survive in life," Williams, 44, said at the ET/PEOPLE Emmy party on Sunday. "You know, welcome to the lesson of hard knocks. She got her first big one right now."

If Wiliams could rise above and beyond what had to be the most embarrassing moment of her life, I'm thoroughly convinced Hudgens can too.

More than two decades ago, Williams was pressured to give up her crown and at least $2 million worth of contracts after the images appeared in Penthouse magazine, but she was successful in her fight back to the top. Appearing on the cover of PEOPLE shortly after the scandal broke, Williams said, "I am not a lesbian and I am not a slut, and somehow I am going to make people believe me."

The fallout after the nude pic "taken privately" of Hudgens, 18, surfaced on several Web sites on Sept. 6 was minimal. The young star apologized to fans and has kept a low profile the past few weeks, but Disney stands behind the actress and she has not lost any of her endorsement deals.

"I met her and she's a very sweet talented girl and I've seen High School Musical 2 a zillion times because of my kids ... and she'll be fine," Williams said.

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