- Stephanie Toone The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Chris Pratt, the versatile and debonair star of such films as “Guardians of the Galaxy” and “Jurassic Park,” has wowed audiences and helped to break some serious box-office records in the last year.
Celebrity blogs have been filled with reports of his good deeds, scene-stealing work and, at times, details about his personal life.
There are still a few details some of his most devoted fans might not know.
We’ve gathered five little-known facts about the leading man. See how many you already knew:
1. He might not have become an actor if not for “Color Purple” star Rae Dawn Chong.
While waiting tables at Maui Bubba Gump Shrimp Company, Pratt was discovered by the actress and director, who later cast Pratt in a short horror film, “Cursed Part 3,” according to the New York Post.
2. He was not originally slated to star in “Parks and Recreation” beyond one season.
Chris Pratt originally signed on as a guest star in his role as Andy Dwyer. What started as a six episode commitment ended up with Pratt playing Dwyer for seven seasons, according to a report by the Independent.
3. He once worked for the organization Jews for Jesus.
About four weeks before being discovered in Maui, Pratt met a gentleman with Jews for Jesus, a Messianic Jewish nonprofit. The stranger inquired about Pratt’s evening plans, which included drinking and partying for Pratt. The man responded with some enlightenment he claimed to receive from Jesus, Pratt said in an Esquire interview.
“He was like, 'I stopped because Jesus told me to stop and talk to you. He said to tell you you're destined for great things.' My friends came out, and I was like, 'Hey, I'm gonna go with this guy.' I gave my soul to Jesus within, like, two days. I was stuffing envelopes for his organization, Jews for Jesus. I'm not even sure, at that age — I was nineteen years old — I knew what Jewish was."
4. He once raised nearly $500,000 for the Boys and Girls Club.
Among Chris Pratt’s numerous charitable acts, he once held a raffle for his hometown of Lake Stevens, Minnesota, open to his fans across the world that promised, for a $10 ticket, a tour of the “Guardians of the Galaxy” set. The raffle eventually raised nearly $485,000 that helped the Boys & Girls Club of Snohomish County build a teen center.
5. Before his success as a sci-fi film star, he was turned down for lead roles in two major science fiction films.
Pratt unsuccessfully auditioned for the roles of Capt. James T. Kirk in 2009’s “Star Trek” and Jake Scully in “Avatar.” Pratt said failing at those two auditions made him question whether he had the “it” factor for Hollywood, he said in an Entertainment Weekly interview. Within the same year, he broke out as a star in “Parks and Recreation.”