A love triangle shook the Disney Channel two years ago. Here's where the young stars are now.

Prior to January 2021, most of the world had never heard the names Olivia Rodrigo, Joshua Bassett, or Sabrina Carpenter. 

It was a simpler time.

A time before Rodrigo released her breakout breakup anthem 'drivers license', which created a whirlwind amongst fans, who decided that the song was definitely about her High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (I'm actually out of breath) costar, Joshua Bassett.

For a full breakdown of everything, you can read our explainer here, but for the TL;DR of it all: based on many, many clues and Easter eggs from Rodrigo, the singer seemingly wrote the tune in question about how her ex-boyfriend Bassett moving on to dating fellow Disney star Carpenter a mere two weeks (Two! Weeks!) after their split. 

Rodrigo and Bassett were rumoured to have started dating in 2019 after being cast as love interests Nini and Ricki in Disney's High School Musical series reboot (I simply refuse to type that full name again). But by July 2020, Rodrigo was posting angsty TikToks about "failed relationships", as Bassett was first spotted out on a date with Carpenter.

If fans thought 'drivers license' was already a delicious serve of petty breakup gossip, Rodrigo was about to open a whole damn buffet with the release of Sour, the breakup album to end all breakup albums.

The dust has long settled on the Disney love triangle that captivated our hearts and minds back in 2021. Now, as Rodrigo prepares to release new music (and more breakup bangers?), we thought it was time to see what happened to the three Disney stars embroiled in the messy drama in the years since they became overnight gossip fodder. 


Olivia Rodrigo

The success of 'drivers license' cannot be understated. By the end of 2021, the song had over one billion streams, making it the top-streamed song of that year.

Off the back of 'drivers license' and 'Good 4 U', which both hit number one around the world in 2021, along with her debut album Sour, Rodrigo embarked on her first tour in early 2022. The 'Sour Tour' travelled across the United States before beginning again in Europe, playing sold-out shows from London to Berlin.

Rodrigo was named on Time's '100 Next' list and crowned Time's 'Entertainer of the Year' for 2021, while Billboard awarded her the 'Woman of the Year' in 2022. 

Oh, and she won three Grammys. But whatever! 

With Rodrigo climbing the success ladder, she had less time to spend on High School Musical: The Musical: The Series (okay, I typed it again, it hurt). From season three onwards, she stepped away from being a main cast member on the show. The former Bizaardvark star only appeared as her character Nini in three episodes in the 2022 season.

"From a pure logistical standpoint, the idea of Olivia doing the entire season and doing her tour was immediately looking impossible," showrunner Tim Federle told Entertainment Weekly.

In 2022, Rodrigo did appear on the red carpet alongside Bassett to promote season three of the Disney series. And in all honesty, this reunion is making me very uncomfortable.

Tfw when you reunite with your ex. Image: Getty.

Now on to Olivia's romantic entanglements in the years since her rumoured split from Bassett. The singer was linked to producer Adam Faze in July 2021 but by the end of that year, she had unfollowed him on Instagram. A knife to the virtual heart, as you could imagine.


As of February 2022, Rodrigo was rumoured to be dating music exec, DJ and restaurant owner, Zack Bia. However, they apparently called it quits by August after "their relationship sort of fizzled", a source told Life & Style

With two broken relationships under her belt since Sour, it sounds like Olivia might just be ready to channel all her rage into a new album. While we don't know the name of the 20-year-old's sophomore record, the first single dropping on June 30 is titled 'Vampire', which sounds promising... and a little spooky!

Joshua Bassett

A few days after Rodrigo released 'drivers license', Bassett suffered septic shock and heart failure. The actor said he was given a 30 per cent chance of survival by doctors. "I'm sure stress had a part in it," he told Insider in June 2021


In the weeks preceding Rodrigo's debut single, Bassett released 'Lie Lie Lie', which charted in the US, UK, Ireland and New Zealand. The song featured lyrics like "They told me all the things that you said, running all over my name, oh and you're acting oh so innocent, like I'm the only one to blame," which could be easily interpreted as taking aim at Rodrigo.

However, Bassett clarified in an Instagram Story that he "wrote 'Lie, Lie, Lie' after I found out a friend had been lying about me behind my back for a long time. It always sucks to hear that someone you thought you could trust would throw you under the bus when it benefits them."

Image: Instagram/joshuatbassett


In the time since the scandal settled, Bassett has released a string of singles, but they've failed to chart. In 2021, he appeared in a short film, Limbo, which was released on Amazon Prime Video and Vimeo On Demand.

Unlike Rodrigo, Bassett is still in the main cast of HSM. For the role, he won the 'Favourite Male TV Star' at the Nickelodeon Kids' Choice Awards in 2022 and 2023. Season four will be released later this year.

The big question after all these years is: are Joshua and Sabrina still together? Or maybe, the more accurate question would be, were they ever really together in the first place?

The singers never actually confirmed they were ever dating. They were planning on releasing a duet, 'We Both Know', but it was scrapped at the last minute. "I didn’t want my EP to be overshadowed by some other narrative that people were trying to make," Bassett told Billboard in 2021. 

"You shouldn’t live to please everybody, but at the same time, there are ways to be sensitive to situations where maybe ‘We Both Know’ has a better chance at a different time."

In 2021, Bassett confirmed he did not identify as straight. When asked about Harry Styles in an interview, he boasted about the UK pop star (relatable!) and said, "He's hot. I guess this is also my coming-out video."

Watch: The moment Bassett 'comes out' while bragging about Harry Styles. Post continues after video.


Video via Clevver News. 

In a 2021 interview with GQ, he opened up more about his sexuality. "I’m happy to be a part of the LGBTQ+ community because they embrace all. Don’t let anyone tell you love isn’t love. They’re the ones who probably need it the most," he said in the profile.

As far as dating post-Rodrigo/Carpenter, Bassett hasn't been romantically linked to anyone in the years since 'drivers license' was released. 

"Dating is not on my radar," he said in a 2022 interview with People. "I'm working on myself so much, and the place I'm in right now, I really only have energy for myself."

I mean, can you blame him?

Sabrina Carpenter 

Off the back of 'drivers license' in 2021, Carpenter released a rumoured response track 'Skin', which featured pointed lyrics like, "Maybe you didn't mean it, maybe blonde was the only rhyme."

Rodrigo famously sung about "that blonde girl" in the hit song, a descriptor fans decided was referencing Carpenter.

The actor, however, denied that 'Skin' was about Olivia. "I wasn't bothered by a few lines in a (magnificent) song and wrote a diss track about it," Carpenter wrote in a since-deleted Instagram post. Sounds fake but okay!

She continued, "The song isn't calling out one single person... Some lines address a specific situation, while other lines address plenty of other experiences I've had this past year."


In July 2022, Carpenter released 'Because I Liked a Boy', which, once again, referenced the fallout from Rodrigo's 'drivers license'. In the song, she sings, "Now I'm a home wrecker, I'm a slut, I got death threats fillin' up semi-trucks. I'm a rebound getting 'round, stealing from the young." 

ICYMI in her song, Rodrigo sings, "She's so much older than me, she's everything I'm insecure about."

Listen: In this episode of Cancelled, the hosts talk all things Demi Lovato. Post continues after podcast.

Following up her two-part album Singular, Carpenter released her most successful album yet in 2022 with Emails I Can't Send. The album featured charting songs 'Nonsense' along with 'Skin'.

In 2022, she also starred in Netflix's Tall Girl 2 as well as Amazon Video movie Emergency. In more exciting news, Carpenter is about to set off for South America in August where she will be supporting Taylor Swift on her wildly popular 'Eras' tour.

Since reportedly dating Bassett, Carpenter has been romantically linked to Taylor's 'All Too Well' leading man Dylan O'Brien and pop star Shaun Mendes. Not bad for "that blonde girl", hey?

So in short, the women in this love triangle saga have stayed winning, while Joshua Bassett, umm... still has a really good song (and album) written about him.

Feature image: Getty + Mamamia.

Calling All Australian Women! We want to hear from you in this skincare survey. Complete it now and go in the running to win one of four $100 gift vouchers!