YouTube | Ryan Reynolds

8+ Male Celebs Who Were Unpopular In School

Sarah Kester 24 Mar 2020

What we know about most male celebs today is that they're smart, good-looking, charming... did we mention they're good-looking???

But that wasn't always the case growing up. For some male celebs, they didn't breeze through school — they were bullied during it instead.

1. Dwayne Johnson

Going through puberty too early caused trouble for the Jumanji actor.

“By the age of 16, I managed to change 4 high schools in different states. And I was 6’4’’ and weighed 225 lbs, and looked like a mutant. Some classmates even thought that I was an undercover cop.”

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2. Zac Efron

Turns out, Zac wasn't too far off from his High School Musicial character — minus the popularity.

"I wasn’t a heartthrob at school; I was a geek, I was into musical theater, which isn’t perceived as the coolest thing," he told The Mail on Sunday.

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"There were guys who were 6’ 1” with beards and big muscles and I was a gawky 17-year-old, a skinny, awkward kid. I was a late bloomer. Growing up was hell."

Instagram | @zacefron

That's clearly all changed as the actor is a dreamboat who has a way with the ladies.

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3. Justin Timberlake

Instagram | @justintimberlake

Despite being on TV with The Mickey Mouse Club as a kid, his peers weren't impressed.

“At school, I was constantly teased and called weird, different, and a couple of other words that I can’t say on TV," he once confessed on stage.

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4. Liam Hemsworth

Instagram | @liamhemsworth

Missing the athletic gene made the Aussie actor super unpopular in school.

“Most of the children played football at school and they were cool and strong. But I wasn’t athletic and didn’t play football, so all they had left was to laugh at me," he said.

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5. Shawn Mendes

Instagram | @shawnmendes

The singer got discovered via Vine and YouTube, but when he first started uploading videos, he got made fun of.

“When I was in the 9th grade, I posted one of my first videos on YouTube," he shared on Instagram.

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"The day after, I was walking down the hall at school and guys started yelling out: ‘Sing for me, Shawn, sing for me!’ In a way that made me feel like what I was doing was just stupid and wrong.”

Aww, poor Shawn!

At least those bullies can eat their words now.

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6. Ryan Gosling

The actor hated being a kid because he was bullied and had no friends in school.

Aww, Ryan!

Thankfully, he did have one pal: his Micky Mouse Club co-star, Justin Timberlake! They even lived together!

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7. Tom Cruise


Since Tom's family moved around a lot when he was a kid, he had trouble making friends.

"So many times the big bully comes up, pushes me. Your heart's pounding, you sweat, and you feel like you're going to vomit," he recalled to Parade. "I don't like bullies."

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8. Mark Ruffalo

Instagram | @markruffalo

The actor revealed that he was bullied when he offered encouraging advice to a kid who was also bullied.

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9. George Clooney


He's been called the Sexiest Man Alive by People (and the rest of the female population), but as a kid, he was bullied for his Bells palsy.

“This was the worst year of my life. Children can be very cruel. I was mocked and bullied, but these difficulties made me stronger," he said.

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10. Henry Cavill

Instagram | @henrycavill

Imagining Henry Cavill AKA Superman as "fat" is just too hard to believe.

But Henry Cavill was bullied and kids called him "Fat Cavill" as he was growing up.

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"Although I really was fat, it was cruel to call me like that. But children tend to be cruel," he said in an interview.


He was also called a "quitter" because he struggled to talk to girls, but thankfully his muscles and wicked six-pack abs do all the talking now.

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11. Ryan Reynolds

Instagram | @vancityreynolds

He could get any girl he wants now, but back in high school, the charmer struggled to talk to girls.

“It took me a while to learn how to talk to girls. Until I was 18, I looked like a Vietnamese girl myself," he said on Conan.

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He also struggled with school in general, which led to him eventually being kicked out.


This was due to the principal having an old rivalry with his dad.

“My family, we just thought he had a doctorate in [expletive]," he said.

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