He’s risen from humble beginnings to become one of the world’s brightest young stars. And for London-born actor Joseph Morgan – star of The Vampire Diaries and its spin-off The Originals – aiming high has brought great rewards. Besides his TV work, Morgan has also starred in big-budget motion pictures such as Alexander and Immortals. However, his life outside of what you see on the screen is just as interesting. So join us as we count down 20 facts about Joseph Morgan that he’d prefer to keep under lock and key…
20. Bold first audition
At the age of 21, Morgan sought out his first acting role – and he certainly didn’t go the modest route. In fact, his first audition was for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. He was up for the part of Tom Riddle, but unfortunately he was passed over.
19. Comic book aficionado
You probably already know that Morgan is a fan of the supernatural genre, but did you know that he’s also a huge comic book nerd? It’s true. While attending Comic Con in 2013, he tweeted, “The only bad thing about Comic Con is I never seem to have any time to get any comics #subtlehint.”
18. “Torn” over his first celebrity crush
In 2015 Morgan was asked by Entertainment Weekly to name his first celebrity crush. His response? Australian pop star Natalie Imbruglia. Yes, it seems he was quite smitten with the singer best known for her 1997 hit song “Torn.” However, after finding out that she didn’t actually pen the track herself, he admits his interest waned!
17. The name game
Often, when you hear that someone has had a name change, you wonder whether they’ve got something to hide. Well, Morgan was actually born Joseph Martin. So, are there some skeletons in his closet we don’t know about? Over to you, Joseph!
16. Taking a leap of faith
Facing your fears is something that takes a lot of bravery, and it seems Morgan wants to confront his. Yes, he confessed in an interview that he’s keen to try skydiving but has a fear of heights. Confusingly, Morgan then said that he doesn’t get scared looking out of plane windows, before adding that he would likely need a shove in the back when it came to the big jump!
15. Trading places
Did you know that Morgan actually lived in Wales for 11 years? You do now. He was born in 1981 in London, England, but relocated to the Welsh city of Swansea where he remained for a little over a decade. You can take the boy out of London, but you can’t take London out of the boy…
14. Apt to partake in apps
Anyone wanting to make Morgan happy should give him a smartphone with the Audible and Uber apps installed. Yes, he says he loves the former because it allows him to listen to audiobooks, and he feels the same way about the latter due to its great service. To be honest, we’re not sure if everyone feels the same way about Uber…
13. Jack of all trades
Think Morgan is a one-trick pony? Think again. Not only has he appeared in front of the camera, but he’s worked behind it as well. He’s also directed and written short films such as With These Hands, Revelation, and Carousel – proving that there’s no end to the star’s many talents.
12. Making the list
Everyone likes to be complimented now and again, and we’re sure Morgan is no different. So, given that, it’s fair to say that he was most likely flattered when BuddyTV ranked him number 84 in their roundup of “TV’s Sexiest Men of 2011.” Sorry, ladies: he’s a married man.
11. Ladies’ man
Speaking of his love interests, Morgan certainly had a few before he settled down with his wife Persia White, who is nine years his senior. The two most notable romances were with Australian actress Claire Holt and Ben Hur co-star Emily VanCamp. However, since getting together with White in 2011, Morgan has been firmly off the market.
10. He loves to play the bad guy
Yes, that’s right – he said as much during a 2011 interview with Collider. “Playing a villain, in my opinion, is a lot more fun,” Morgan told the entertainment website. “You get to say a lot more. There’s often the stoic anchor-hero role who’s the tent-pole of the drama. I’ve always had an incredible interest in the villains, which are a lot more fun to play.”
9. The name’s Morgan, Joseph Morgan
Do you think Morgan would make a good James Bond? Well, you aren’t the only one. In fact, there are whispers going around that Morgan is being considered as the next 007! Of course, currently it’s all hearsay and speculation, but it’s worth pondering over regardless.
Joseph Morgan may not be one of the most seasoned actors around, but that doesn’t mean that he hasn’t created his own little empire. Through acting projects, brand endorsements and various other enterprises, Morgan is estimated to be worth $3 million. Moreover, with his star continuing to rise, that figure is only going to increase.
7. Not always a critical darling
Unfortunately, even though he has been cast in some lucrative roles, a few of Morgan’s past projects have been far from critically lauded. In fact, movie reviewers slated the likes of Angels Crest, Open Grave, Church Ball, and Alexander.
6. He has a stepdaughter
When Morgan married Persia White, he also took on some of her family, including her daughter Mecca. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Mecca is following in her mother and stepfather’s shoes by stepping into the world of cinema. To this end, she graduated in 2016 with a degree in film/cinema/video studies from The Los Angeles Film School.
5. Humble beginnings
Morgan hasn’t always made a living as an actor. In fact, when he was younger, he got a job working with fruit and veg at an indoor market in Swansea. Sadly, though, his wages were dismal – just $3.50 an hour, in fact – so he ended up quitting after just five weeks. What little money he did earn, he spent on a keyboard from his brother.
4. All inked up
If you’ve seen Morgan with his shirt off, you’ll know that he’s got several tattoos on his body. Among them is an elaborate feather/bird design on his left arm and chest, and a simple triangle on his back. The latter is a celebration of the bond Morgan enjoys with two friends he’s had since his teenage years. They sport identical triangles, too.
3. He’s a betting man
He might come across all squeaky clean, but Morgan enjoys things like gambling as much as the next man. In fact, it’s how he met his fellow co-star from The Originals, Charles Michael Davis! Morgan told The Huffington Post in 2013 that they bumped into each other at a poker club.
2. No assistance needed
Unlike a lot of modern-day actors, Morgan isn’t one to sit it out when the going gets tough on film sets. Rather, he jumps at the opportunity to show everyone what he’s made of. Incredibly, Morgan performed all of the stunts in Ben Hur himself – without the need of a stunt double. Impressive!
1. Fluffing his lines
Everyone gets nervous on the first day of a new job, and Morgan is no different. Indeed, while filming his very first scene for The Vampire Diaries, Morgan actually messed up his opening line. It was probably a bit embarrassing, but then again, nobody’s perfect…