No, you’re never too old for Disney drama, especially when it involves a pretty messy love triangle between three major stars: Sabrina Carpenter, Olivia Rodrigo and Joshua Bassett!
You’ve probably listened to the song “Drivers License” on repeat since its release in January 2021, but if you’re wondering what it’s about, well, we spilled all the tea on what *really* went down between the trio. Between rumored relationships and song lyrics that appear to throw some major shade, there’s a lot to unpack!
After the Disney+ original series High School Musical: The Musical: The Series premiered in November 2019, viewers were convinced that Olivia, 17, and Joshua, 20, had taken their relationship from the screen into real life. Although neither actor ever acknowledged the relationship rumors between them, they did share their love for each other in a Los Angeles Times interview from January 2020.
During one scene of the show, Joshua’s character (Ricky) has to tell Olivia’s character (Nini) that he loves her. When filming that particular moment, the actor decided that instead of following the script he “would change it to something else that was specific to her and I.”
Olivia remembered that scene during the same interview. “He said, ‘Remember that one time that we wrote a song, and we didn’t know if anybody would like it?’ That one made me cry because I just remembered sharing those memories with him, and I love him so much.”
Romance rumors between the two continued to swirl for the bulk of 2020, especially after the July release of Joshua’s song “Anyone Else.” When he told Broadway World that the song “came about after the sudden realization that I was hopelessly falling in love with a close friend … who was in a relationship with someone else,” fans were convinced that he was talking about Olivia (she dated fellow Disney Channel star Ethan Wacker from July 2018 until they split at some point during 2019).
About a month after “Anyone Else” was released, things started to get messy. In August 2020, Olivia uploaded a TikTok video with the HSMTMTS song “All I Want” playing in the background. “And that’s on failed relationships,” she captioned the clip.
Around the same time, Just Jared Jr. obtained a series of photos that showed Joshua and Sabrina, 21, out to lunch in Los Angeles, first sparking relationship rumors between them. Months later, in October 2020, they dressed up in matching Sharkboy and Lavagirl Halloween costumes fueling dating speculation even more.
When all this was happening in real time, no one thought much of it. It wasn’t until Olivia appeared to leave a few hints about her past relationship in multiple songs, including “Drivers License,” “Traitor” and “Good 4 U,” when social media users unpacked the love triangle. Sabrina even released her own song called “Skin,” which fans took as her response to the entire situation.
Scroll through our gallery for a breakdown of all the drama between Sabrina, Olivia and Joshua.
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