We were first introduced to alpha male Jason Momoa when he hit screens in the first season of Game of Thrones as Khal Drogo. Years later, he was cast as aquatic superhero in Aquaman and his fame came to an all time high.
Considering the clean cut appearance of many Hollywood actors, it is clear why Momoa has attracted so much attention with his rugged, masculine look and his 6 foot 4 stature. If you didn’t already understand the fascination with the actor, you will after learning these facts.
Jason Momoa’s ethnically diverse looks are a result of his Hawaiian father and his mother who is German, Irish and Native American. Growing up an only child in Hawaii, Jason and his mother, Coni, moved to Iowa where he spent the majority of his childhood.
It wasn’t until later years when he returned to Hawaii to bond with his father and reconnect with his Hawaiian roots. It was in Hawaii that he was discovered by Hollywood executives and his life changed forever.
It turns out that Jason wasn’t totally out of his depth when it came to navigating through the ocean as Aquaman. He went on to attend college in Iowa and studied marine biology, totally unaware of what his future held.
Part of his studies led him to travel down to Florida for some field research followed by attending Colorado State University where he studied wildlife biology. However, prior to finishing his studies, he returned to Hawaii before being snapped up by Hollywood.
Man of many talents
If you thought acting and studying was the extent of Jason Momoa’s talents, think again. He is the type of person who has dabbled in many different areas of interest and when he was younger he traveled to France to study pastel painting after being inspired by his artist mother.
Following this, Jason traveled to Tibet to study Buddhism which taught him spirituality and meditation. Add acting on top of all of this and he is an extremely intelligent and well rounded individual.
Story behind the scar
Despite many people assuming that the scar on Jason’s eyebrow is something he chose to do himself, it is actually a scar. It was a result of a bar fight in LA when another person smashed glass across the actors face.
The terrible incident forced Jason to get 140 stitches and was left with a scar on his left eyebrow. Ironically, the scar became his signature and it made him look even more rugged and authentic in many of his acting roles.
Undeniably, Jason Momoa has won many people over with his handsome appearance. Prior to acting, Jason got his first gig in the public eye as a model which even won him Hawaii’s Model of the Year in 1999.
As the winner, Jason got to host Miss Teen Hawaii but he didn’t want to stay in modeling and saw it as a stepping stone to get into acting. Shortly after this, Jason got his first acting gig and starred in Baywatch Hawaii for three years.
Baywatch for real
It wasn’t just marine biology studies that set Jason up for future roles, but he was also working at a surf shop and as a lifeguard before he joined Baywatch.
Assuming the post when he was in his mid-teens, Jason was actually the youngest lifeguard in the history of the Gulf Coast and the role would have set him up nicely to appear on Baywatch. In the slim chance that his acting career dwindles down, Jason has many backup careers he can slide back into seamlessly.
Winning his role in Game of Thrones
Game of Thrones was one of the most successful series of all time and casting directors spent hours sifting through actors who they believed would accurately portray the characters they had created.
When trying to win the role of Khal Drogo, Momoa wanted to show that he would be an excellent and ruthless leader for the Dothraki so during his audition, he performed the war chant the Haka. The idea paid off and the casting directors asked him to return and perform the Haka on camera so they could capture the moment.
A doting husband
Jason has been married to Lisa Bonet for 9 years and they have been together for a total of 11. In Hollywood years, this is a lifetime and the couple are head over heels in love even after over a decade together.
When talking about his wife Lisa, Jason practically swoons over her, constantly gushing over how amazing she is as both a partner and a mother. The couple are parents to two children together and Jason is the step father of actress Zoe Kravitz.
Actor and writer
While we have seen Jason act in many TV shows and movies, in 2014 he decided to take on a different role and not just star in a movie, but also co-write it. The film, Road To Paloma also featured Momoa’s wife Lisa Bonet in their first appearance on-screen together.
It premiered at the Sarasota Film Festival in April 2014 and was welcomed with positive reviews from critics. The movie is centered around Native American Robert Wolf who avenges his mother’s death and wants to spread her ashes before being caught by law enforcement.
Celeb kids names
Celebrities have been known to be give their kids very unusual names, purely because they can, and this is no different for Jason Momoa and his wife Lisa Bonet. His son is named Nakoa-Wolf Manakauapo Namakaeha Momoa. While it sounds like a complete mouthful, each name of their son means something special to the couple.
Nakoa means warrior and Mana means strength, two attributes they wanted their son to have. In addition, Kaua, means rain, and Po, means dark which relates to the bizarre weather on the night he was born in 2008. Finally, Namakaeha comes from Jason’s middle name.
He rocked dreadlocks
When Jason got a role on Stargate Atlantis, he was rocking dreadlocks and the producers originally asked him to cut them off. After a few conversations, he was eventually granted permission to keep the hairstyle and they became his trademark.
However, after four seasons on the show, Jason grew tired of the dreadlocks and they were giving him headaches so he got rid of them. Originally, writers wanted to include his haircut in the series but the network refused it so Jason was forced to wear a wig.
Love scene jitters
While they look romantic on-screen, love scenes in TV and movies can be quite awkward and uncomfortable on set. Despite being a total heartthrob, Jason admitted he found the love scenes in Game of Thrones with Emilia Clarke quite difficult.
He said “It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do, because I love Emilia, she’s someone that I love and adore to this day. You have to kind of separate [yourself from] it.” To this day, the two of them remain super close friends.
Becoming a superhero
Most of Jason Momoa’s work isn’t kid friendly and being the father of two young children, they couldn’t watch any of his work. When Jason was cast as Aquaman in the DC Universe, he was most excited about the role as he finally had a piece of cinema for his children to watch.
He revealed that his son loved Batman and daughter loved Wonder Woman and more than that, he was eager to connect with his Hawaiian ancestry in the role as Aquaman.
Just like Aquaman, Jason Momoa has plenty of tattoos himself. The most recognizable tattoo he has is the half-sleeve on his left forearm which is a tribute to his family god or “aumakua,” from Hawaiian mythology.
A family god is the concept of an ancestor who died and resurrected and the tattoo depicts this. It features nine rows of triangles that represent shark teeth, the family’s animal guardian. Momoa also has tattoos of his children’s initials and a french saying on his forearm.
Nearly a Marvel man
The Marvel universe and Avengers films are the biggest franchise in the world and Avengers Endgame is the highest-grossing film of all time. Jason Momoa had the opportunity to become a part of the incredible franchise as he auditioned for a role in Guardians of the Galaxy, even auditioning with Chris Pratt.
While he wouldn’t disclose what role he auditioned for, he did admit that it was for a villain role, so we wouldn’t have rooted for him anyway!
Aspiring for different genres
Jason Momoa is known for playing big roles in his movies, often intimidating and strong characters in action films. However, despite being somewhat typecast in this role, Momoa has aspirations of acting in comedies.
He is a big fan of Saturday Night Live and hopes to one day act in a film like Robin Williams’ The Birdcage. In interviews and in his personal life, Momoa comes across as a light hearted and funny individual and he wants to translate this onto the silver screen.
He loves guitar
Another one of Momoa’s passions in life is music and playing guitar. He has an incredible guitar collection which includes a 1959 Gibson Les Paul previously owned by Led Zeppelin’s Jimmy Page. The rare guitar and collectors item was something that Jason gifted himself for being awarded the role of Aquaman.
Momoa noted that his rare guitar is just one of one hundred in the world and he owns the ninth one made. With his career booming, it looks like his expensive guitar collection will grow exponentially.
On set prankster
Jason Momoa admitted that he can be “very annoying” and constantly was involved in prankster antics on the set of Aquaman. Amber Heard was said to have read plenty of books on set in order to avoid the wrath of Jason but she was far from exempt from it.
Momoa decided to rip out the last 10 pages of the book she was reading so she wouldn’t get to read the ending. The only person who was safe from his prankster behavior is Nicole Kidman who he wouldn’t dare mess with.
Talent in the family
While Jason has two children with wife Lisa Bonet, he also plays stepdad to a famous actress. Lisa’s first born daughter is Zoe Kravitz, the Hollywood actress and star of movies including Fantastic Beasts and Divergent. Zoe’s biological father is musician Lenny Kravitz, so talent runs through the whole family.
While some families have difficulty having a stepdad, Zoe couldn’t love hers anymore and often posts pictures to Instagram spending quality time with Jason, adding captions like “Love you papabear”.
He hates the gym
Given his size and ripped physique, you would think that Jason Momoa thrived in the gym. Well, as much as he is constantly working out to stay in top shape, he does not enjoy going to the gym.
Before he cast in Conan, he had never even lifted weights and to stay in shape he relied on running, climbing, surfing, and boxing. He admitted he found traditional gym workouts boring and monotonous and would rather participate in exciting outdoor activities. He keeps to a strict diet too, sticking to lean meats and veggies.
He loves a specific beer
Although Jason sticks to a super healthy diet, one thing he allows himself to indulge in is beer. It’s not just any beer that he loves, it is just a Guinness that Jason can’t get enough of. The dark irish brew isn’t a light drink by any means, but Jason also isn’t a light man.
When Guinness were informed that Jason was a fan, they decided to name a special beer after him. Their first sour brew the Mano Brew was created in order to pay homage to the actor in 2016.
Becoming an activist
Aside from acting and being a doting father, Jason has used his celebrity in a really positive way to make a difference. His Hawaiian heritage and love for the islands is incredibly important to Jason so he has been an active participant in the protests against the construction of a telescope on indigenous lands atop the summit of Mauna Kea.
Together with his fellow Hawaiians, they stood together in an attempt to protect their beautiful land from destruction.
While it is normal for actors to befriend other actors in the film industry, it is not so common for famous actors to be childhood friends. It turns out that Jason Momoa went to high school with Superman. Brandon Routh plays Superman in the film Superman Returns and he grew up in Iowa with Jason Momoa.
More than that, the two actors played soccer together at Norwalk High School. Routh later noted how it was crazy that the two grew up together and one became Superman while the other became Aquaman.
He shaved the beard for a good cause
Jason Momoa is known for his famous beard an in every role he has undertaken, he always is seen rocking facial hair. So you can probably imagine the world was shocked when he shaved it all off.
However, instead of trying out a new look, Momoa did it for a good cause and he wanted to raise awareness about plastics harming our planet and how we can start using 100% recyclable aluminium cans instead. Well, he surely got the attention!
He loves rock climbing
As one of Jason’s many hobbies, he loves taking to the outdoors and going rock climbing. Although he once participated in the activity by himself, he has a new partner as his eleven year old daughter is joining in.
More than that, Jason got all the tips and tricks he needed from one of his friends, professional rock climber Chris Sharma, who is also known as one of the best climbers of all time, so you know where he is when Jason isn’t filming a movie.
He doesn’t want his kids to be in the public eye
Jason Momoa is a very easily recognizable actor and when he is in public he is often approached by fans. While he doesn’t mind taking pictures and interacting with fans, he is much more wary of his kids being thrust into the limelight.
Growing up with humble beginnings and a normal childhood, Jason wanted his kids to have as normal an upbringing as possible. Moreover, he doesn’t want his kids to see him as a celebrity in case they change their attitude and gain a sense of entitlement.
His next passion project
In 2014, Jason admitted it would take him roughly five years to make his next script but after being cast as Aquaman, the completed project looked to be pushed back even further.
The premise of his next script is apparently a late 1800s historical drama which he described as “Braveheart or Last of the Mohicans for Hawaiians.” When it is finally complete, the script will probably generate much more attention than his last considering how he has recently risen through the ranks in Hollywood.
Always eager to learn
Despite Jason possessing so many incredible talents, he is always eager to learn more and in his downtime often challenges himself to learn new skills.
This was no different during the filming for Stargate Atlantis when he learned to play the slide guitar and later went on to learn the bass in order to rock out with his Aquaman co-star Patrick Wilson who plays the drums. Jason couldn’t contain his excitement when he learned to play a song on the bass.
He wasn’t taken seriously
As a young guy in Hawaii, Jason was chosen for a role in Baywatch Hawaii out of 1,300 but he had absolutely no acting experience. Jason admitted to just winging the role and even though he was on one of the most talked about TV shows with a massive following, he recalled that it took him five years to get an agent to sign him after this.
He added that no one took him seriously after he was in Baywatch and he worked incredibly hard to get out of that shadow.
Jason Momoa admitted that his mother was one of the biggest influences on his life and everything he took on. His passion for pastel painting that he picked up when traveling came from his mother who was a photographer.
Jason explained that in her art form she was always seeing and always searching for something inspired or beautiful to capture. Her passion was infectious and this is where Jason realized the importance of traveling, seeing new things and creating something.
A Harley man
If Jason Momoa wasn’t already considered the manliest man out there, the fact that he owns and drives a Harley-Davidson motorcycle sure does cement this. Not only has Jason had a private tour of the Harley-Davidson museum, and had his pick at their flagship store.
While his wife Lisa Bonet banned their kids from going on dad’s Harley, Jason found a way around this by building a sidecar with his kids for the Harley so they could sit in it while Jason whizzed them around.
Getting into the scene
While Jason can’t be considered too much of a method actor, he admitted he prefers to film in natural surroundings instead of with a green screen. He said that while he enjoys the challenge of a green screen and having to improvise with your surroundings, he added “the rain and the dirt and the mud, it makes it easier to act.”
Not only this, but Momoa explained that he likes to keep the props from his scenes and he now owns the tongue Khal Drogo ripped out of someone’s mouth in Game of Thrones.
Game of apologies
Khal Drogo was known for being ruthless and insensitive towards Daenerys when he first meets her. In their non-consented intimate scene, Jason admitted he felt incredibly uncomfortable and said it was “one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do.”
In an attempt to lighten the very difficult scene, Jason replace the typical flesh-colored sock to protect his modesty with a fluffy pink sock. After the scene was completed, Momoa comforted Emilia Clarke with “lots of kisses and I’m sorry afterwards.”
Pulling no punches
In all of his roles, Jason wanted to look the part as much as possible and made the necessary changes in order to do so. However, when he was due to film Conan the Barbarian, he may have taken it too far when he realized that he would look more like the character he was playing if he had a broken nose, so he did exactly that.
Jason asked one of his friends to punch him in the face to break his nose, and without a second thought, his friend did just that and broke it.
Jason’s wife Lisa Bonet is 11 years his senior and when Jason was just eight years old he saw Lisa on a TV show and said to his mom “I want that one,” in reference to Lisa. Things came full circle in 2005 when he met her at a jazz club through mutual friends.
Their relationship progressed pretty quickly when Jason took Lisa for a meal of Guinness and grits and when her admission came about her love of Guinness, he knew she was the one.
Aquaman is by far Jason Momoa’s biggest movie to date which brought in a whopping $1.1 billion internationally, making it one of the highest grossing movies of all time. Jason found out he got the role of Aquaman in 2013 but had to keep it a secret as the studio weren’t set to announce it for a while.
At the time he found out, he was broke and knew this was going to turn his life around. When the movie was released in 2018, it turned Jason into an A-lister.
Supporting the stepfather
Lisa Bonet’s ex-husband is world renowned musician Lenny Kravitz and the rocker has a wonderful relationship with both Lisa and Jason. Not only do they have blended family dinners together with Zoe Kravitz, but Lenny also came out to the Aquaman premiere to support Jason.
In return for his support, Jason bought Lenny matching Skull rings which he presented to him after he played on Saturday Night Live. They are a great example to other blended families and proving that even in Hollywood they can put the past behind them.
He is a martial arts expert
The majority of Jason Momoa’s roles have been very intensive when it comes to action and fighting and instead of bringing in stunt doubles to do everything, Jason was trained to do it himself. For roles including Stargate: Atlantis and Conan the Barbarian, Jason learned martial arts before training in the art of jiu-jitsu in 2017.
From this, he learned how to convincingly fake fights which set him up nicely for his next roles. He trained in sword fighting for Aquaman and in axe-throwing for Braven.
Giving away spoilers
Film studios are incredibly strict about leaking big spoilers from highly anticipated movies in the intention that their box office numbers will be great. While most actors are good at keeping tight lipped, Momoa isn’t the best at staying mum on the movie endings.
He revealed that the last scene of Aquaman showed Arthur Curry becoming what he was destined to be, which everyone assumed to be the King of Atlantis as he was the son of Atlantis’ queen. His admission was confirmed when the movie hit theaters and no one was surprised.
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