When one hears the name Rob Lowe, they are probably immediately transported back to the famous actor’s glory days wherein he solidified his presence as a 1980s heartthrob starring in iconic projects such as “The Outsiders,” “Class,” “The Hotel New Hampshire,” “Oxford Blues,” “St. Elmo’s Fire,” “Youngblood,” “About Last Night,” and “Square Dance” (per Variety). But it turns out there’s much more than meets the eye when it comes to this famous Brat Pack member — an exclusive club that included the creme de la creme of young 80s stars, including Tom Cruise, Emilio Estevez, Judd Nelson, Nicolas Cage, and Sean Penn (per New York Magazine).
According to Lowe, however, he does not like to dwell in the past. Instead he believes that being present is the key to life. “I really, really try to live for today,” he once told The Guardian. “It’s one of my main goals: to try and live in the now. It’s why I love the theatre; it’s why I love golf, because it’s a discipline. In your golf game if you’re not in the now, you suck. Theatre, it’s the same thing. If you let up for a second, you’re dead. It’s a metaphor for life. It’s a muscle: you have to practice living in the present.”
Keep reading after the jump to learn all about the inspiring transformation of actor, producer, and director Rob Lowe.
Rob Lowe got his start as a paper boy
As reported by E! News, talented actor Rob Lowe got his start running a paper route in a less than stellar area of town. “When I would go around to collect money, people would shut the door in my face. I learned that sometimes a job doesn’t actually get you paid,” he explained about the stint.
Unfortunately, that would not be his only non-acting gig. According to Lowe, at the ripe, old age of 15, he also served as a projectionist at the Malibu Cinema before striking it big in Hollywood. “I was more interested in one of the girls that worked there and got distracted and put the reels of the movie on in the wrong order. There was a riot in the theater as people demanded their money back and I was fired immediately,” he divulged.
Perhaps this was the exact moment he realized that he was meant to be on the big screen, as opposed to operating the projector assigned to it.
Rob Lowe weathered a high-profile scandal
Unfortunately, Rob Lowe’s meteoric rise to fame has not been all rainbows and sunshine. In 1988, during the midst of his professional heyday, he experienced a tremendous setback.
Per The Guardian, Lowe became tabloid fodder and a social and professional pariah quite literally overnight when it was uncovered that he had welcomed two female fans back to his hotel room, one of whom happened to be only 16 years old at the time of the encounter. The kicker? They made a sex tape. It should be noted, however, that Lowe denies that he knew the girl was underage at the time, per USA Today.
As one can imagine, backlash was swift. It was reported that the case was settled out of court and Lowe was sentenced to community service, but his career took a massive hit and he was limited to much smaller roles until he finally clawed his way back up the ranks.
Still, Lowe maintained that he has zero regrets in life. “I would do everything the same,” he told The Guardian’s Elizabeth Day. “If you go back in time to try to change things, you could end up changing the future, and I like where I am in my life. I love my life, I’m really grateful for the things I have, and if I did something different it wouldn’t turn out this way.”
Rob Lowe got sober
On a positive note, the aforementioned sex tape scandal and subsequent fallout turned out to be the catalyst for Rob Lowe’s sober lifestyle.
During an appearance on Sirius XM’s “The Jess Cagle Show” (via USA Today), Lowe credited the disgrace for saving his life. “People talk about it, I go, ‘I think it’s the best thing that ever happened to me,'” he maintained. “Honestly, I do, ’cause it got me sober. Sober got me married. I’ve been married 29 years, and I have two great sons. I don’t think any of that happens without going through that scandal. I really don’t.”
Still, Lowe is adamant that one must resolve to get sober for his or herself. “Nothing can make you get sober except you wanting to do it,” he dished during an interview with Variety. “The threat of losing a marriage, losing a job, incarceration — you name the threat, it will not be enough to do it. It’s got to be in you,” he emphasized. “The reason that people don’t get sober 100% of the time when they go into programs is that people aren’t ready when they go to use the tools.”
Now it appears he relishes in his sober lifestyle. “One of the great gifts of recovery is that you start living your authentic life,” Lowe declared. “You start living your actual values and living as who you truly are.”
Rob Lowe added 'author' to his resume
Along with being an accomplished actor, Rob Lowe also managed to snag the beloved and highly coveted title of not only author, but a New York Times best-selling author to boot!
As reported by Variety, in 2011 Lowe published a New York Times best-selling autobiography aptly titled, “Stories I Only Tell My Friends.” In 2015, he was bitten by the writing bug yet again when he published a second memoir, “Love Life,” in which he recounts personal stories about “men and women, actors and producers, art and commerce, fathers and sons, movies and TV, addiction and recovery, sex and love” (via Amazon).
Still, his work was not met without its fair share of criticism. In a review for Lowe’s second book, The Washington Post referred to it as “a well-written work of benevolent narcissism.” Yikes! Fortunately, it does not appear that Lowe allows the naysayers to get to him. In the closing of his second book, he ponders what he will do with all of the free time once his children flee the nest before ultimately coming to the conclusion, “I could write another book, I guess.”
Rob Lowe's political views have also tranformed
Though a thespian by nature, Rob Lowe is also passionate about politics. According to Lowe, he identified as a Democrat in his younger years, even campaigning for former Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis. But as he grew older he shifted to more conservative ideals, eventually becoming an avid supporter of actor-turned-politician Arnold Schwarzenegger and his quest to become California’s governor in 2003.
“You know, there’s that great quote: ‘If you’re young and you’re not a liberal, you have no heart. If you’re older and not a conservative, you have no brain,’ he explained during a 2009 interview with The Guardian. “I started out being a really, really liberal Democrat. [That changes] as you get older and you have children and you get more life experience. I’m what you would call an independent moderate. I haven’t crossed the aisle, so to speak,” he declared.
Still, he is adamant that he has zero political aspirations himself. “I’ve gotten to believe it’s more fun to play politicians than actually be them,” he said. “I’ve been lucky enough in ‘The West Wing’ and ‘Brothers & Sisters’ to talk about the issues that are important to me with none of the awful mud-slinging or public scrutiny you have in politics,” he stated.
Quite the transformation, indeed! Bravo, Rob Lowe!
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