Penn Badgley has become a household name and is instantly recognised, thanks to his portrayal of the creepy psychopath Joe Goldberg in Netflix’s popular psychological thriller series You.
The actor, whose rise to fame was the role of Dan Humphrey in Gossip Girl, has been acting from the very young age of twelve, having moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting along with his mother, Lynne.
The 34-year-old star had bagged a role in the US sitcom Will & Grace in 1998 and made his first appearance in an episode named ‘I, By No means, promised You an Olive Backyard’.
In that episode, one of the main characters, Karen Walker, attends a parent-teacher meeting at her children’s school and drags Jack McFarland along with her. Jack meets a boy named John via whom he manages to process his traumatic experiences of being bullied.
Young Penn Badgley played the character of a class bully who is scolded by Jack for bullying other children in the class. Badgley is nearly unrecognisable in his scrawny uniform as he dons a new avatar of picking on his fellow mates.
After this brief stint at Will & Grace, Badgley landed roles in The Young and the Restless, The Bedford Diaries and Do Over, among others. Finally, 2007 marked his breakthrough performance as Dan Humphrey in the popular sitcom Gossip Girl and Badgley has not looked back ever since.
Just as he almost rejected the role of Dan, Badgley was initially reluctant to play the character of Joe Goldberg before being convinced otherwise. Since then, he has amassed immense popularity over the three seasons of the show and is gearing up for the fourth instalment.