Hollywood Spotlight: Jason Momoa

902 views April 11, 2018 4:00 PM

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This week our Hollywood Spotlight is on Aquaman...err, we mean, Jason Momoa! While he is no stranger to the film industry, he gained widespread recognition as Khal Drogo in "Game of Thrones" and most recently, grabbed the hearts of many as Aquaman in "Justice League". He will surely do it all over again in "Aquaman" which is set for cinematic release this December.

This hunky Hawaiian native was born on August 1, 1979, as Joseph Jason Namakaeha Momoa to parents Joseph, a painter and Coni, a photographer. His parents divorced when he was young, prompting Momoa to move to the mainland where he would eventually go on to study marine biology (how ironic!) at a university in Iowa. Eventually, he transferred to Colorado State University where he studied wildlife biology. However, prior to completing his university studies, he decided to move back to Hawaii and spend time with his father.

Image: Unilad

In the late 1990s, Momoa was discovered by Takeo Kobayashi, an international designer, who urged him to pursue a modeling career. In 1999, he won Hawaii's Model of the Year and was cast as Jason Ioane on the television action-drama series "Baywatch Hawaii". Officially initiated into Hollywood, Momoa later landed roles on "North Shore", "Stargate: Atlantis", "The Game", "The Red Road", and most recently, as Khal Drogo in the wildly popular epic fantasy HBO series "Game of Thrones" and in the historical drama "Frontier", a Discovery Channel and Netflix original series.

He made his feature film debut in the 2004 family comedy "Johnson Family Vacation", followed by a role in the 2007 film "Pipeline". In 2011, he played the title role in the reboot of "Conan the Barbarian" which won him the CinemaCon Award for Male Rising Star. His other film credits include "Bullet to the Head", "Debug", "Wolves", "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice", "The Bad Batch", "Sugar Mountain", "Once Upon a Time in Venice", "Braven", which he also produced, and the upcoming "Aquaman", set to hit cinemas on December 21.

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In 2014, Momoa made his directorial debut with "Road to Paloma", a drama thriller he also produced and acted in. However, the film received average reviews by critics. That same year, Momoa was officially cast as Aquaman for a cameo in "Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice" and "Justice League".

Aside from acting, Momoa is known as the husband of actress Lisa Bonet (real name Lilakoi Moon) and the stepfather of actress, singer, and model  ZoĆ« Kravitz. The couple began dating in 2005 and were believed to be married in 2007. However, a decade later, it became clear to fans that they had not actually married until October 2017. In 2007, the couple welcomed a daughter named Lola Iolani Momoa; she was their first child together. At the end of 2008, they welcomed a son named Nakoa-Wolf Manakauapo Namakaeha Momoa.

Image: Azra.ba

Here are some more fun facts about Jason Momoa:
- He was a frequent traveler during his youth. He spent time in Paris to master the art of pastel painting and later ventured to Tibet to study Buddhist teachings.
- His signature slashed eyebrow is a result of a bar fight in 2008. He received 140 stitches and reconstructive surgery.
- In 2017, he signed on to join the "Just Cause" movie series.
- Momoa is a martial artist. He began training for his roles in "Conan the Barbarian" and "Stargate Atlantis".
- Before becoming an actor and model, he was a surfer and lifeguard.
- He's a shocking 196 cm (6'5)!
- At the beginning of his career, he donned dreadlocks. However, he decided to cut them off because they were "heavy".
- The tattoo on his arm is supposed to represent shark teeth which he hopes will help them recognize he's one of them in the water.
- He's a true Guinness fan! He states that the Irish beer helped him to gain weight for his role as Khal Drogo in "Game of the Thrones".
- In interviews, he stated that he starred in "Justice League" for his kids because they are huge fans of Batman and Wonder Woman.

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