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Vanessa Hudgens Shares 1 Reason Why She's 'So Grateful' For Austin Butler Split

Vanessa Hudgens recently reflected on her past longtime relationship with fellow actor Austin Butler and why she’s thankful their union ultimately fell apart.

During an appearance on the “She Pivots” podcast on Wednesday, The “High School Musical” star, who’s now married to professional baseball player Cole Tucker, discussed how her life has changed since dating the “Elvis” actor — though she didn’t say Butler’s name.

“What is something in your life that at the time you saw was like a real negative, but now you see it [as] having really launched you into the success that you are now?” host Emily Tisch Sussman asked Hudgens.

“I feel like so much of my character was built from my breakups,” she said, before also crediting her growth and “tenacity” to entering the entertainment industry at a young age and facing a lot of rejection.

“I feel like my last breakup has really catapulted me to a very, very special place, obviously,” she continued. “You pushed me to the right person, which I’m so grateful for because he’s just the most supportive, real, understanding human being that I have ever met.”

Austin Butler and Vanessa Hudgens at the world premiere of
Austin Butler and Vanessa Hudgens at the world premiere of "Second Act" on Dec. 12, 2018, in New York, New York. via Associated Press

Hudgens wed Tucker in December. She and Butler had dated for more than eight years before they called it quits in 2020. Prior to that, she was in a high-profile relationship with Zac Efron, which began when they filmed the “High School Musical” films together.

Butler has since been romantically linked to model Kaia Gerber.

The “Dune: Part Two” actor discussed his past relationship with Hudgens in an Esquire profile last month, when he addressed online criticism he received for appearing to downplay their relationship in a past interview.

During an appearance in a Hollywood Reporter roundtable interview last year, Butler had referred to Hudgens as a “friend” when he referenced her as the person who encouraged him to seek out the role for “Elvis.”

He later told Esquire that he “learned a lesson” from the backlash and that he was only trying to respect her privacy when he shared the story.

“I have so much love and care for her,” he said. “I was in no way trying to erase anything.”

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