Zac Efron may be climbing up the moviestar charts, but his girlfriend Vanessa Hudgens isn't that far behind him.  O.K., she's really far behind him, but she's certainly giving it the old "HSM" try.

According to Marc Malkin at EOnline, Hudgens has signed on to star in a big screen adaptation of Alex Finn's young adult novel, "Beastly," a modern retelling of "Beauty and the Beast." 

Hudgens would star opposite Alex Pettyfer who will play Kyle Kingsbury, the New York City high school student who had it all until a witch in his english class turned him into a walking monster.  Hudgens plays the "beauty" who could break the spell.  Moviegoers may recognize Pettyfer as  the teen spy Alex Rider in "Stormbreaker." He also stars in the Emma Roberts tween click "Wild Child" which already opened overseas, but is currently without a domestic release date.

Intriguingly, the report notes that Efron was once a top contender for the same role.  After the success of "17 Again," he's clearly looking to distance himself from the overly teen-friendly roles.

Production on "Beastly" should begin this summer. Hudgens will then segue to another re-telling of a classic tale, Zack Snyder's "Sucker Punch" which is inspired by "Alice in Wonderland."  Hudgens next film, "Bandslam," will hit theaters on August 14.