Tween Mania

The Next Miley Cyrus

Between her racy Vanity Fair shoot and the pole dance she performed at the Teen Choice Awards in Los Angeles, Miley Cyrus just isn't a kid anymore. Enter Selena Gomez, who is being groomed to take her place. For the uninitiated, Gomez plays a teen with magical powers in the hit Disney sitcom Wizards of Waverly Place, and over the next few weeks she'll appear in a movie based on the series, sing on the soundtrack, release an album, and lend her face to 30 million packages of Sara Lee bread products. Plus, next year she'll play Beezus in a film based on the Beverly Cleary book Beezus and Ramona. At age 17, Gomez, who got her start on Barney & Friends, is a year older than Cyrus, although she's keen to polish the young image that keeps her tween fans screaming. The Wall Street Journal reports that Disney execs love her for her wholesome looks, comedic timing, down-to-earth nature, and the Hispanic roots which help widen the company's appeal.