Right from the start, 2021 was full of celebrity drama!
Olivia Rodrigo started her music career on January 8 with the release of her debut single, “Drivers License.” Alongside the song’s release came some apparent drama that lasted all year long. Once fans listened to the track, some started to speculate that it was about a past relationship with Olivia’s High School Musical: The Musical: The Series costar Joshua Bassett. While neither of them have confirmed their relationship, both parties have spoken publicly about the song.
“I put it out not knowing that it would get that reaction, so it was really strange [when] it did,” Olivia told Variety in August. “I just remember [everyone being] so weird and speculative about stuff they had no idea about.”
The HSMTMTS star added, “I don’t really subscribe to hating other women because of boys. I think that’s so stupid, and I really resent that narrative that was being tossed around.”
Fans theorized that the song told the story of Olivia’s heartbreak after her apparent split from Joshua, who was rumored to have moved on with Sabrina Carpenter. When the Girl Meets World star released her song “Skin” on January 22, it further fueled the narrative that there was some major drama between these three stars.
“People will make a narrative about something always,” Sabrina said on The Late Late Show With James Corden in February. “I think this was a really interesting song for people to kind of misinterpret and make it into something that it wasn’t really supposed to be in the first place.”
Joshua, for his part, waited nearly the entire year to tell his side of the story. The “Feel Something” singer released a collection of three singles — “Crisis,” “Secret” and Set Me Free” — in December.
“I finally found the courage to speak up for myself,” he explained to GQ in an interview released alongside the three songs. “I would see TikToks with like 50 million views and 10 million likes saying, ‘If I ever see that kid on the street, I’m going to f–king kill him.’ It’s hard to see that and then be living in New York and walking down the street.”
He addressed the ongoing drama and past with Olivia by explaining that fans have no idea “how long ago that was.”
“It’s not as recent as it seems. I’m a completely different person now,” Joshua added. “I’m not here to expose people. It was eating me alive, and I couldn’t keep it in anymore.”
These weren’t the only stars who made headlines for some drama this year. Scroll through our gallery to uncover some of the biggest scandals from 2021.
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