Vanessa Hudgens continues to leave her High School Musical days in the dust, with a stunning hot Flare cover!

The former Disney star constantly impresses by seeking out edgier and darker roles.  Many fans were floored when she took part in Spring Breakers, directed by the film world’s provocateur, Harmony Korine, and Vanessa tells the magazine why she took the risk of working with him. “The thing with Harmony Korine — you don’t know what you’re going to get. There were moments when I was unsure how it was going to turn out, because nobody can see the project the way he’s seeing it through his eyes. It was just about trusting him and knowing he was going to make something really interesting and artistic and powerful.”

But that controversial role was just a stepping stone to even meatier projects, which Vanessa says she’s actively searching out. “They send you roles that you’ve just done, but I don’t want to do the same thing twice. I want the parts I gotta go out of my way for.”

Her part in the upcoming Gimme Shelter was just that. Again she’s shaking up the norm playing a teen-runaway. In her cover shoot’s behind-the-scenes video, Vanessa explains her transformation. “It was such an incredible experience – I chopped off all my hair, put on 15 pounds and lived in a shelter. It was invigorating; it was very freeing . It definitely prepared me to push aside any fears.

Watch more from Vanessa’s behind-the-scenes shoot on ET Canada tonight and visit Flare for more from her spread!