Jason Momoa, all 6’4″ and 215 lbs of him, is best known for his roles as Ronon Dex in Stargate Atlantis and Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones. He’s also going to be joining the DC universe as Aquaman, headling his own superhero movie due for release in 2018. But when he’s not impregnating the mother of dragons or posing topless, what does he do? What is lurking behind that sexy smoudler and notorious eyebrow scar? What do we not know about Khaleesi’s Sun and Stars? There’s got to be more to this guy than just intimidating good looks and the ability to flawlessly rock the long hair while speaking a made up language on horseback. Check out 15 things you didn’t already know about America’s great, Jason Momoa, before he takes over Hollywood completely.
15. His Background
Jason Momoa is an only child and was born with the artistic gene; his mom was a photographer and his dad was a painter. Besides a flair for the arts, Jason’s parents are also credited with giving him his ethnically diverse good looks. His father, Joseph, is Hawaiian. While his mother, Coni, is German, Irish and Native American. Put all that together and you get Jason! While Jason was born in Hawaii, he and his mother moved to Iowa where he spent the majority of his childhood. He later returned to Hawaii to bond with his father and rediscover his Hawaiian roots. It was there that his Hollywood career would take off. Because who gets discovered in Norwalk, Iowa? We’re going to guess almost no one. Good call on returning to Hawaii, Jason. Surfer dude fits you well.
14. He Studied Marine Biology
Isn’t that just the sweetest? Jason is a friend of the fish! And talk about doing some intense character work for his role as Aquaman. After Jason finished high school he began his studies in marine biology at a college in Iowa. He even traveled down to the Florida Keys at one point to do some field research. His schooling then took him to Colorado State University where he studied wildlife biology. But before he got too far down that path and we lost Momoa to academia, he returned to Hawaii to reconnect with his father. We’re sure you would’ve made an awesome marine biologist, Jason. But we’re sure glad you decided to grace our screens with your presence instead. Maybe you can call up Leo and work on a marine biology documentary with him next?
13. He’s A Man Of Many Interests & Hobbies
If you thought acting and marine biology were enough, just you wait. Jason Momoa has dipped his toes into many different oceans of interests. The man has tried it all. I guess there is something to be said about following your passion, or passions, in Momoa’s case. For example, when he was younger, Jason Momoa travelled to France to study pastel painting. Can you imagine Khal Drogo sitting behind an easel right now? The same guy who pulled someone’s tongue out through their throat was busy mixing paint colors! But that’s not all. Momoa then travelled to Tibet to study Buddhist teachings. So he was artistic, academic, and spiritual? Color us impressed. And just think of all the frequent flyer miles this guy racked up. Looks like he had a passion for travelling the world as well.
12. “You Wanna Know How I Got This Scar?”
Just like the Joker, there’s a story behind Jason Momoa’s famous left eyebrow scar. Unfortunately, that story boils down to a bar fight – or an “altercation” as his people have called it. Jason was involved in said altercation at a bar in LA. Another bar patron smashed a glass across Jason’s face. Jason had to get 140 stitches and was left with a glaring scar across his left eyebrow. Instead of trying to cover it, Jason embraced his new look and the scar became his signature. In fact, he received the scar shortly before starting his role as Khal Drogo in Game of Thrones where the battle wound fit in nicely. We’ve always thought a scar made you look like more of a badass. Except the one I have on my knee for walking into a table. That scar is just sad.
11. He Began His Career As A Model
Ah, like so many great actors before him (Jennifer Lawrence, Mark Wahlberg, the list goes on), Jason Momoa began his Hollywood rise to the top as a model. In fact, he won Hawaii’s Model of the Year in 1999 with his good looks and on-set charm. As the winner of Hawaii’s Model of the Year, Jason also got to host Miss Teen Hawaii, which sounds like every 19 year old boy’s dream come true. But Jason had his sights set on a different dream. Shortly after his lustrious modeling career was recognized, Jason snagged his first major acting gig. He went on to star on Baywatch Hawaii for three years. We can’t imagine a more perfect role for the Hawaiian native who was first discovered while working at a surf shop.
10. He Could’ve Been Real Life Baywatch
So just like Momoa’s marine biology studies have prepared him for his role as Aquaman, Jason also did some deep character work for his role on Baywatch. Jason Momoa was working at a surf shop and as a lifeguard before filming the TV series. He was actually the youngest lifeguard in the history of the Gulf Coast when he assumed the post in his mid-teens. Talk about doing your homework! And if you ask us, nothing sounds better than sunning ourselves on a Hawaiian beach with the hunky Jason Momoa standing guard. If he ever wants to return to his lifeguard job, we’ll be the first ones to hit the beach with our fabulous floppy hats and autograph books. Not that Jason needs to lifeguard anymore now that he’s a bonafide actor. But, you know, if he wants a throwback moment, we’re more than willing to get a cramp in the ocean so he can save us!
9. How He Nailed His GOT Audition
When you see Jason Momoa as Khal Drogo on Game of Thrones, it’s hard to imagine anyone else in the role. Of course the gorgeous and menacing Momoa makes the perfect leader for the Dothraki and lover for our favorite, Khaleesi. But it wasn’t always so apparent that Momoa should be the Khal. For a guy with Baywatch and Stargate Atlantis on his resume, producers may have had a hard time imagining him as a ruthless leader. So Jason decided to show them. During his audition for Game of Thrones, Jason performed the Haka, an intimidating Maori war chant used to psych out the opposition on the battlefield. The casting team was so impressed that they asked Jason to come back and perform it again so they could get it on tape. And thus, a Khal was born!
8. He’s More Than Just An Actor
Besides being an actor in front of the camera, Jason can also be found behind the camera. In 2014, Momoa not only starred in the movie, Road to Paloma – he also co-wrote and directed the film. Talk about being involved in a project! Better than that, the film also starred Momoa’s wife, Lisa Bonet. Road to Paloma, a drama thriller, premiered at the Sarasota Film Festival in April 2014. It had a limited release in theatres later that summer and can now be found on video on demand. The movie received positive reviews and sees Momoa playing Robert Wolf, a Native American who avenges his mother’s death and hopes to spread her ashes and lay her to rest before the law catches up with him. We can’t wait to see what this multi-talented star cooks up next.
7. His Son Has The Longest Name Ever
Like seriously, the longest name in the world. Jason Momoa and Lisa Bonet’s son is named Nakoa-Wolf Manakauapo Namakaeha Momoa. Now that’s a mouthful! Can you imagine having to write that all out whenever you fill out an official form? Does that even fit on a driver’s license? But, as it turns out, each part of their son’s name has a special meaning for the couple. Nakoa means warrior and Mana means strength – attributes Jason and Lisa wanted their son to inhabit. Kaua, meaning rain, and Po, meaning dark, describe the strange weather on the night of his birth in 2008. Los Angeles doesn’t see a lot of dark and rainy days, so Lisa and Jason decided to honor the change in weather. And, Namakaeha is a middle name that Nakoa shares with his dad, Jason. Aww, cute!
6. He’s Related To Lenny Kravitz… Kinda
Okay, they’re not like related-related by blood or anything but they are connected. So Lenny Kravitz used to be married to Lisa Bonet. The two actually eloped in 1987 when Lisa was only 20 years old. A year after they were married, Lisa gave birth to their daughter, Zoe Isabella Kravitz. Zoe Kravitz is now known for her acting roles in X-Men: First Class, the Divergent series and Mad Max: Fury Road. In 2003, Lisa and Lenny separated which worked out well for Lisa and Jason, who met in 2005 and married in 2007. Which makes Jason Momoa Zoe Kravitz’ stepfather. That’s a lot of talent and good looks in one extended family! Can we think of the slightly uncomfortable yet incredibly attractive Christmas gatherings this group must have? If you need some extra people at your next big family bash, we’re free!
5. He Loves His Wife – Like Seriously Loves Her
We love when celebrities swoon over their partners. It’s awesome watching someone who is usually so stoic and strong absolutely turn to putty when talking about their significant other. And that’s exactly what happens when Jason Momoa talks about his wife, Lisa Bonet. The two have been together for 11 years, married for nine, and the parents of two children. And throughout all that, their love is still alive. When asked about his wife, Jason said, “She’s an angel. She’s amazing…. She’s so amazing because I’m such a dipshit.” In their movie, Road to Paloma, Jason even wrote Lisa’s part to be his love interest. How cute is that? But wait, it gets even cuter. Jason admits that he had always wanted to work with his wife but when they got on set, she made him shy. We’re melting over here.
4. He Had A Full Head Of Dreadlocks
We know Khal Drogo can rock a sexy man braid but a full head of dreadlocks? Yup, Jason can rock those too. He had the dreadlocks when he got his role on Stargate Atlantis. The producers had first asked Jason to cut them off but later allowed him to keep them. The dreadlocks became a trademark of Jason’s character. But after season four of Stargate Atlantis, Jason had had enough. The weight of his dreads were actually causing him to have headaches. So Jason hacked them all off. The writers had planned to incorporate Jason’s haircut into season five of the series but the network wasn’t having it. So Jason had to have his dreadlocks reattached. But the process proved too much. So he switched to wearing a wig. Who knew guys could have such crazy hair drama?
3. He Has A Special Sock
So typically when actors have to do nude scenes, they’re given a flesh colored sock to put over their special bits. And knowing what we know about Game of Thrones, Jason was definitely going to be needing that special sock. But he had something a bit more fun up his sleeve. Given that the initial sex scenes between Jason Momoa’s character, Khal Drogo, and Emilia Clarke’s, Daenerys Targaryen, are far from friendly, Jason wanted to do something to put Emilia at ease and insert some humor into the difficult scene. So instead of wearing the traditional flesh colored sock, Jason surprised Emilia with a big fluffy pink sock. Most guys don’t like it if you laugh when looking at their package, but of course Jason is confident enough to invite a little laughter.
2. He Struggles With Sex Scenes
Okay, it’s not as bad as it sounds. Jason struggling with sex scenes in this case, is actually a good thing. Because the sex scenes he had to do at the beginning of his arc on Game of Thrones were tough to watch. We can’t even imagine how hard they would be to film. Jason admitted, “It’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever had to do, because I love Emilia, she’s someone that I love and adore to this day. You have to kind of separate [yourself from] it.” Jason explained that after the filming was over, there were lots of apologies and warm moments between him and Emilia. And based on all of their interactions in person and on social media, it’s clear that there is no love lost between Jason and Emilia.
1. He’s Doing Justice League For His Kids
Not all of Jason Momoa’s work is kid-friendly. In fact, some of it is barely adult friendly. There’s slim chance that Jason and Lisa are sitting down their kiddos to watch daddy beat up and rape some people on this week’s episode of Game of Thrones. Which is why Jason was so excited to get the role of Aquaman in the DC Universe. Jason revealed that his son is a huge Batman fan and his daughter loves Wonder Woman. He says, “It’ll be cool for them to see me in something because they’re not going to be watching Game of Thrones or Red Road anytime soon, but now they can see Daddy kicking ass in IMAX.” Jason is also stoked to be representing a superhero who is so connected to his Hawaiian ancestry and to be one of the few brown-skinned superheroes. We can’t wait to watch you save the world, as both Aquaman and Jason Momoa.