This weekend, as we were sitting in our movie theater seats and watching sweet-but-goofy Jesse (Skylar Astin) joke around with silly album covers and do his best to woo a seemingly indifferent Beca (Anna Kendrick) in Pitch Perfect, a thought occurred to us. Hey, isn’t one of Lea Michele’s (Rachel) former Broadway co-stars supposed to be in this movie?
As soon as the scene ended, we booked it for the restrooms so we could Google it on our phone. Sure enough, we quickly deduced that Lea’s former Spring Awakening co-star Skylar Astin — who played Georg in the 2008 Broadway hit — was indeed the very same guy making our hearts flutter as Pitch Perfect’s charming male love interest, Jesse.
So who is Skylar Astin, and where else might you have seen him before? Here are five things to know.
1. He dropped his last name for show biz — just like Lea Michele.
Lea Michele Sarfati decided to ditch her last name early on in her career, and her former Spring Awakening co-star tells Movieline he did the same thing. Skylar Astin Lipstein doesn’t use his last name professionally, a decision made by his agent when Skylar was just 15. “I'm not ashamed, I'm not embarrassed, but she said it was just less specific to one thing and she chopped it off," he says.
2. After starting his career on Broadway, he’s not set his sights on Hollywood.
Before landing his role in Spring Awakening, the now-25 year old New York native trained at NYU’s prestigious Tisch School of the Arts. He sang in the 2008 film Hamlet 2 and more recently appeared in an episode of FOX’s House, and hooked up with Shoshanna in a recent episode of HBO’s Girls.
3. He loves to cook... especially when it’s spicy.
Skylar recently told MTV’s Hollywood Crush that he doesn’t really use pick up lines, since he’s always thought they’re kind of “weird.” But he does have a pretty awesome alternative when it comes to impressing girls. "I do like to cook for chicks. I think that’s like something. I don’t know... I make a really good pad Thai, actually.”
4. Lea Michele is a big fan.
Lea may have had a busy weekend filming her new commercial for L’Oreal Paris, but the Glee star made sure to tweet about the opening of Skylar’s new movie.
5. He’s working on a new movie with Camilla Belle and Chad Michael Murray.
Skylar’s next project is a flick called Cavemen, and if you follow him on Twitter @SkylarAstin, you’re sure to come across plenty of fun behind-the-scenes photos of the cast chilling out together on set.
We love that Skylar’s film career seems to be taking off — but we can’t help but wonder if he might ever consider reuniting with Lea on the small screen. We’d love to see Skylar pop up on Glee sometime. And if Ryan Murphy ever needs any help, we’d be more than happy to offer our time. Trust us: We’ve got plenty of ideas already.
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