Zac Efron: 5 Things You Didn't Know About the Actor

10:00 AM 10/18/2015

by Natalie Stone

And they might surprise you.

Ruven Afanador

Still widely recognized nearly 10 years following the release of High School Musical in which Zac Efron starred as Troy Bolton, the actor has transitioned out of his Disney days and made a name for himself as a leading actor in Hollywood, starring in headlining films including 17 Again, The Lucky One and Neighbors.

The Hollywood Reporter looks at five things you probably didn't know about Efron.

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  • "Hates" Being Called a "Heartthrob"

    Though Efron won over the hearts of teen girls in his starring role on High School Musical, he dislikes the association that comes with his looks.

    "I can't explain to you what it's like to be a heartthrob. I don't think I am a heartthrob," Efron said in an interview on CBS' Sunday Morning.

    In response to being asked what he thinks about the term "heartthrob," the actor replied, "I hate it. It follows you around, but you don't deserve it."

  • "I Was Always Prepared to Fail"

    The San Luis Obispo County native, situated three-and-a-half hours north of Los Angeles, grew up with "pessimist" parents.

    "They're both pessimists," Efron told GQ. "They'll give it to you real. They don't blow you up with excess confidence. I didn't grow up thinking I was the greatest kid in the world. And they completely believed that there was a oneinabillion chance I would ever be successful."

    He continued, "And that was ingrained in the back of my head I will fail. I'm going to fail. They managed my expectations. I was always prepared to fail. So it was kind of confusing when things started to work out." The actor said, "That was the one thing I wasn't prepared for. This wasn't supposed to work, y'know There's 150 guys that are just like me, except more talented, and they probably deserve to be out here. It's a fluke."

  • Hidden Talent: He's an Artist

    Not only is Efron an artist on-camera, he has a hand in it off-screen as well.

    When asked what his hidden talent is, the actor told Women's Health, "I can draw really well. And I like to paint. I'm a bit of an artist."

  • Thinks "Fame Is Inherently Uncomfortable"

    Though the actor enjoys being on the big screen, he is willing to pass on the "fame" that comes with living everyday life when the cameras stop rolling.

    "We’re at an impasse before we even show up," he told Elle of celebrities. "Fame is inherently uncomfortable. But I want it to be fun. It’s just something you have to navigate carefully. There’s a way to do it with grace."

  • Matthew McConaughey Asked Tough Life Questions That Got Him "Thinking"

    When Efron and Matthew McConaughey were filming The Paperboy, the High School Musical actor said that his co-star asked him some tough, and thought-provoking, life questions.

    "During filming, Matthew and I had a lot of time to talk. We talked about life. He got me thinking, because for the past few years, I've been so focused on movies and work. I guess I'm compulsive like that," he told Glamour Magazine.

    He continued, "Matthew was the first person to sit me down like a big brother and say, 'Are you happy? What do you want to do with your life, man?' He'd say, 'Let's go do something fun today.' All I'm thinking is, 'Let's go rehearse!' I realized that there was something else I wasn't tuned in to."

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