At the height of fame, Jacob Elordi was sleeping in his car.

Overnight, Jacob Elordi became a household name. 

After playing a leading role in Netflix's Kissing Boothhe became the latest in a long line of Australian actors to make it in Hollywood. Within just a few short years, he was starring alongside A-listers like Zendaya in the HBO hit series, Euphoria and Ben Affleck in the Hulu film, Deep Water. 

But it wasn't all glamorous. 

Jacob Elordi stars in, here. Post continues after video. 

Video via HBO.

Before Elordi, 25, became a prominent actor, he was a normal Australian teenager growing up in Brisbane with a stay-at-home mum and a housepainter dad. His father, John, says he developed an obsession with acting from the age of 12.  

"He loved the theatre. He devoured films. He devoured books about films," he told Daily Mail earlier this year. "Sometimes two or three books at a time. He watched YouTube video of actor's auditions."

His son, he said, had a dream of making it in Hollywood. 

"Jacob always had this very strong self-belief but of course as parents you try and be pragmatic and we were very pragmatic," he explained. "He always knew what he wanted to be. And as his father there was a time I said to him, 'Mate, acting is a one-in-a-million kind of situation'


"And he said to me, 'Well why can't that one be me? Why can't I be that one in a million?' That's how confidently he looked at things. So as a parent we just decided to back him to the hilt and trust that he knew what he was doing."

Jacob Elordi, 2012. Image: Getty.

"From the moment I did a play I was called gay at school," Elordi told GQ

"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 theatre. I felt like I was above it, or it made me feel older. It made me feel wiser."


He added, "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's schools [he attended an all boys' secondary school].

"I’m spending my weekends with the most beautiful women from the school next-door, reading the most romantic words ever written."

Success, fame and notoriety followed swiftly after he landed his first on-screen acting role in the 2017 film, Swinging Safari, where he rubbed shoulders with some of Australia's biggest names, including Guy Pearce and Kylie Minogue.

"Then things started to happen pretty quickly," John recalled. 

Not too long after earning his first few acting credits, he was packing his bags for a new job, nabbing one of the three romantic leads in the Netflix hit The Kissing Booth.

He played the bad boy love interest, Noah Flynn, and after the film's release, he quickly ascended into the spotlight gaining four million new Instagram followers overnight, which he admits, spooked him. 

Jacob Elordi in The Kissing Booth. Image: Netflix.


"I had to go through and delete my high school pictures because that was the Instagram that I used for my life," he told GQ. "I wish people could understand how drastic that change was."

The Kissing Booth was shot in South Africa, and after filming wrapped in 2017, Elordi moved to Los Angeles and couch surfed at a friend's place. 

At the time, he recalled, he 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," he told GQ

While filming the pilot, a producer of the HBO show noticed Elordi spending quite a bit of time either in his trailer, or in the 2002 Mitsubishi car parked next to it. Sometimes, he even slept in it. 


"My car was like a hoarders' stacked with boxes and coat hangers and things," he said. 

Soon after, producers rented him out a room at a nearby hotel. 

"I got really lucky. Which is just an LA story, you know?"

In Euphoria he was cast as the violent and complicated teenager Nate Jacobs - once again he played a high school heartthrob with a propensity for mistreating girls.

Alexa Demie and Jacob Elordi in Euphoria. Image: HBO.


"It’s two completely different experiences," he told The Hollywood Reporter in 2019. "The Kissing Booth was the first film I ever made - it was sort of my ticket to Hollywood, so I was really grateful for that. It’s almost like righting my wrongs a little bit too, because the character in The Kissing Booth is awful and it’s never really explained. He’s kind of idolised and made into a hero, so I suppose this show is showing why."

Euphoria has since had two successful seasons. The third - and rumoured to be final - season is on its way. The second season averaged around 16.2 million viewers around the globe, making it the best performance for any HBO show since Game of Thrones.  

Listen to The Spill, Mamamia's daily entertainment podcast. Post continues after audio. 

Elordi still hasn't fully accepted his fame.

"It felt like, all of a sudden, I was a poster," he said, recalling the first time he was photographed with someone else. 

"Like I was a billboard. It felt like it was for sale. Then my brain went through the f*****g wringer. 

"Like, I wasn’t sure if I was genuine. It really skews your view... It creates a very paranoid way of living."

The actor is set to star in Emerald Fennell's upcoming thriller Saltburn and in cinematographer Sean Price Williams' The Sweet East.

Feature Image: Instagram @jacobelordi / Mamamia.

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