The Signs Exes Vanessa Hudgens And Austin Butler Don't Get Along

Vanessa Hudgens and Austin Butler broke up after so many years together back in 2020, but let's just say, they've continued to give us a ton to talk about in the time since. In fact, there have been a number of possible digs made that have got us questioning whether they dislike one another. 

News of Hudgens and Butler's split broke in January 2020. At the time, a source told E! News that the couple's filming schedules were the cause. The same insider also mused that they may even get back together, once things had gone back to normal. However, as we know now, that didn't happen. The onset of the COVID-19 pandemic meant "Elvis" was put on pause, and as Butler revealed in an interview on "Jimmy Kimmel Live," he used that time to get into character and all but ignore the outside world. As for Hudgens, in November that year, she met her now-husband, baseball player Cole Tucker. 

Given that Hudgens is married and starting a family with Tucker, and Butler seems smitten with Kaia Gerber, it's safe to say the former couple has since moved on. Plus, with the reason for their split being scheduling, rather than some other, bigger issue, one might expect the exes to be pretty cordial. However, there have also been a few signs to suggest otherwise. Spoiler alert: much of the tension has revolved around "Elvis."

Both Vanessa and Austin have made shady remarks

While Vanessa Hudgens made no secret of her excitement over Austin Butler being cast in "Elvis" (more on that in a sec!), she's also been accused of using the film to poke fun at him. Exhibit A: in wake of jokes about Butler's enduring Elvis Presley accent, Hudgens offered her own, sly opinion. In response to an Instagram comment that Butler was vying for an Oscar in much the same way as Lady Gaga had, she wrote, "Crying." Given that Butler's choice to remain in Australia likely stopped any chance of a reconciliation, that very plausibly could have been a dig. 

As for Butler, he's also made questionable comments pertaining to "Elvis" and his ex. In a 2023 Actor Roundtable for The Hollywood Reporter, he relayed the story of how a "friend" encouraged him to audition for the titular character. "There was an Elvis Christmas song on the radio, and I was singing along, and my friend looked over at me and goes, 'You've got to play Elvis,'" he recounted. Just one problem: Hudgens had previously shared the exact same story on "Live with Kelly and Mark."

Butler later explained in an interview with Esquire that he'd only referred to Hudgens as his friend to prioritize her privacy. Granted, she was in a new relationship at the time, so perhaps that's true. However, with it already being public knowledge that Hudgens was the friend in question, it was a little sketchy. 

Austin and Vanessa have had awkward interactions IRL

If the back and forth via social media and the press weren't enough, Vanessa Hudgens and Austin Butler have also had a pretty awkward-looking moment in person. Footage from the 2023 Oscars after party showed the exes avoiding eye contact, which understandably led to chatter about their dynamic, post-split. 

In one slow-mo video, posted to Instagram by Entertainment Tonight, Hudgens could be seen looking at Butler, an ever-so-slightly annoyed-looking expression in tow, before glancing down at her phone and walking by him as he waved for fans. As for Butler, he seemed to glance after her, look down and collect himself, before continuing to pose for pictures. 

Granted, in extended footage published by Us Weekly, it seemed as though Butler stopped fairly abruptly to interact with fans, once Sharon Stone had pointed them out. It also looked like Hudgens had been texting in that area before he and Stone came around the corner, so there's a possibility that if she was annoyed, it was because she'd needed to walk away to avoid being snapped right by them, bringing even more attention to their run-in. However, it also bears mentioning that the Oscars took place not long after Hudgens' Instagram comment, and Butler's reference to her as a friend, so there's a chance they were both feeling a little tense. 

Both have hinted that the split was for the best

Sly digs aside, neither Vanessa Hudgens nor Austin Butler have done tell-alls about their breakup or where they stand today. However, when they have spoken about the situation, both have alluded to feeling as though it was probably for the best. 

In an interview with the "She Pivots" podcast, Hudgens shared that going through her split from Butler was what led her to her happily ever after. "I feel like my last break up has really catapulted me to a very, very special place. Obviously, it pushed me to the right person, which I'm so grateful for!" she said. As for Butler, he's fairly committed to keeping the situation to his chest to minimize chatter where he can (ahem, friend). However, even he has seemed to hint at the split being necessary. One of the only times Butler has come close to breaking his silence on the end of the relationship, he told GQ, "Life is full of changes, and you've got to find a way to constantly be evolving and growing." 

The only other time Butler has addressed the split was when he apologized for the "friend" comment to Esquire. And, suffice it to say, it's evident that at least from his side, there's no beef. As he told the outlet, "I have so much love and care for her." We're not counting on them being besties anytime soon, but it's great to know the love is there.