The character was originally named Chloe Stewart but was changed to Miley Stewart.
Cyrus learned about the casting for a new Disney show at the age of 11 through a Nashville talent agent. She sent in a tape auditioning for the show's best friend role, but recevied a call asking her to audition for the lead. After she sent in a tape and was flown to Hollywood for further auditions, Cyrus was told that she was too young and too small for the role. However, Cyrus' persistence and ability to sing in addition to act caused the show's producers to invite her back for further auditions. Producers eventually narrowed the large pool of candidates down to three actresses, including Cyrus and Taylor Momsen, and gave the part to Cyrus, then twelve. According to Disney Channel president Gary Marsh, Cyrus was chosen because of her energetic and lively performance and was seen as a person who "loves every minute of life, " with the "everyday relatability of Hilary Duff and the stage presence of Shania Twain.
Cyrus' casting also led to the casting of her real life father, Billy Ray Cyrus, as the father of her character on the show. Cyrus was initially wary; according to her mother and co-manager, Tish Cyrus, "Miley's concern at the time was, oh my gosh, people are going to think I only got this part because of my dad." However, worried that her family would otherwise have to be separated as they had been when her father first landed the lead in the television series Doc, Cyrus relanted and helped audition her father for the part.
Pages in category "Conception and casting"
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