Jacob Elordi has come a long way!!
The 25-year-old may be one of the hottest actors right now — in every sense of the word — but even after making it big on Netflix’s The Kissing Booth, he was struggling to make ends meet at the start of Euphoria!
In a new interview with GQ out on Monday, the Australian revealed he was essentially broke and living in his car as he began work on the HBO drama!
Jacob’s first breakout role was starring as Noah Flynn in Netflix’s The Kissing Booth, which was released in 2018 and quickly became one of the streamer’s “most watched movies in the world” at the time, according to co-CEO Ted Sarandos. So, you’d think the leading man in a movie like that would have been set up for success, right? Wrong!
After the movie wrapped in 2017, Jacob made the big move from Brisbane, Australia to LA in hopes of booking more roles — but the only problem was nobody knew who he was at that point! His Netflix success hadn’t come yet, and so he was having a tough time landing more roles. He crashed on a friend’s couch in the San Fernando Valley for a couple of weeks, according to the outlet. But when a sofa wasn’t available, he also spent many evenings in his 2004 Mitsubishi on Mulholland Drive.
Things got so brutal he decided to take some time away from the city. Luckily, he auditioned for the gritty teen drama right before heading home, he recalled of his tough situation:
“I wasn’t booking jobs. I think I had — I don’t know, $400 or $800 left in my bank account — and Euphoria was my last audition before I went home for a little while to make some money and recuperate.”
Thankfully, he soon landed the role of Nate Jacobs. So things were looking up! Still, he wasn’t done living in his car! No one knew the show would be the cultural phenomenon it’s become. So during filming of the pilot, he was still crashing in his vehicle, he noted:
“My car was like a hoarder’s, stacked with boxes and coat hangers and things.”
When a producer noticed the unusual behavior, they kindly got Jacob a room at the Standard in West Hollywood. So generous!! Jacob acknowledged the generosity, too, saying:
“I got really lucky. Which is just an LA story, you know?”
This isn’t the first time the star has opened up about his rocky rise to fame. In 2019, he sat down with Wonderland to discuss his career, reflecting on how he was “practically homeless” before getting cast in Euphoria. He shared:
“I auditioned — this was at a point where the movies that I’d made hadn’t come out. I had no money, I didn’t have anything, I was practically homeless in LA — and I went to the casting and I forgot my lines.”
Surprisingly, he ended up getting a call back the same day even despite the blunder, he continued:
“I had no name, I had no backing, you could not find any video of me acting anywhere. I was just a child, and they cast me. I was quite lucky.”
Wow! It was meant to be we guess!
Later in his revealing chat with GQ, he opened up about his childhood bullies — which whether they knew it or not, inspired him to lean into acting! Jacob recalled being cast as Oberon, King of the Fairies, in a production of William Shakespeare‘s A Midsummer Night’s Dream as a 12-year-old. He was thrilled to be embodying the gender-bending character, but those around him weren’t into it. What should have been an exciting start to his career was actually a challenging time, he expressed:
“From the moment I did a play I was called gay at school.”
Rather than shy away from the role, he decided to explore the arts further:
“But I had this abundance of confidence in myself. Because I could do both: I was quite good at sport and I think I was quite good at theater. I felt like I was above it, or it made me feel older. It made me feel wiser.”
“When they said I was gay, I remember leaning into the makeup. I was like, if I’m going to be the King of the Fairies, I’m going to be the f**king hottest King of the Fairies you’ve ever seen.”
He suddenly had the freedom to explore himself and his character, he shared:
“I started welcoming those kinds of characters. I started welcoming the femininity. I started speaking with my hands. I started really playing the thespian.”
Love that confident reaction! And while his haters might have thought it wasn’t cool to be doing the play, he saw the benefits of his hobby, teasing:
“I never was worried that my peers would think that I was less than a man. And also, there’s the classic thing of I was doing plays with girl schools. I’m spending my weekends with the most beautiful women from the school next-door, reading the most romantic words ever written.”
The homophobic bullying inspired him to prove his peers wrong, which is probably why he was so determined to make it big in Hollywood despite having little to his name at first! On his decision to work toward a career in acting rather than something deemed more masculine, he told the outlet:
“I enjoyed playing the actor. I stepped away from beer culture and from sport culture, and I was like, well, if you think this is gay, I’m going to be who I am when I was your friend, which is this hetero guy, but I’m going to play the arts.”
It became a sort of personal mission of his to prove others wrong, he concluded:
“I’m going to show you that’s bulls**t. I could never understand, how could you label anything, ever? How could you label sport as masculine? How does your sexuality inform your prowess as an athlete, or your prowess as a performer?”
How interesting that his leading role these days deals with such similar complex issues!! Seems like he really appreciates all his success after going through these financial and personal ordeals earlier in life. Reactions, Perezcious readers?!