updated 04/20/2012 AT 11:00 AM ET
•originally published 04/20/2012 AT 8:00 AM ET
“We saw the film together and I was kind of squirming,” Efron, 24, told PEOPLE at Thursday’s New York City Cinema Society screening of the movie.
“Even though she was a couple of seats down from me, I tried to duck out during those scenes because it was too embarrassing. Obviously I’m acting, but knowing that my mom and my family were watching is kind of awkward. There’s really no way around it.”
In the screen adaptation of the Nicholas Sparks novel, opening Friday, the High School Musical alum is seen in several revealing scenes, including a provocative one in the shower. (PEOPLE’s movie critic, Alynda Wheat, says go ahead and ogle him.) So what did Starla think of that?