We’ve all seen the memes about You, and anyone who’s watched it is probably at least a bit in love with Joe Goldberg, or perhaps his non-stalker self, the actor Penn Badgley. If that’s you, and you want to know more about your new celeb crush, we’ve got everything you need to know about him. Who is Penn Badgley? Read on to find out…

Acting from a young age 

penn badgley young
Source: Life and Style

Penn Badgley started acting at age 11, after relocating with his mother to California after his parents split up. His first-ever acting credit was as a voiceover artist in Mario Gold 64 and Mario Tennis 64 in the late 90s. This developed into his first screen acting credit in Will & Grace, and then roles in Daddio, The Brothers Garcia and What I Like About You.

His first significant role was as Philip Chancellor IV on The Young and Restless from 2000 to 2001. He then stared in Do-Over, The Mountain, The Bedford Diaries and scored his first film gig in John Tucker Must Die in 2006.

Singer and Gossip Guy

penn badgley gossip girl
Source: E! Online

In 2007, Badgley was cast in the CW’s series Gossip Girl as Dan Humphrey. He initially declined what would turn out to be a breakthrough role but accepted after the producers struggled to find an alternative. The part won him six Teen Choice Award nominations and helped pave the way for the rest of his career.

He then went on to act in Easy A, Margin Call, Greetings from Tim Buckley, Parts per Billion, Cymbeline and The Slap, before landing his role in You. Alongside this, he has been working in a band! Originally called MOTHER, and since changing their name to MOTHXR, the band is signed to Kitsune and Washington Square Music and make indie-pop music.

Love life 

who is joe goldberg
Source: Glamour

Whilst working on Gossip Girl, Badgley dated his co-star Blake Lively for three years! The two had known each other since childhood and got closer during their time on the show. So not only is he a hit actor and everyone and their mum’s celeb crush right now, but he is also Ryan Reynolds’ competition! Wild.

After he and Lively split, he dated Zoe Kravtiz for two years and then met his now-wife, Domino Kirke, following his and Kravitz’ break. Badgley and Kirke have been dating since 2014, and in February 2020, they announced their first child.

who is penn badgley
Source: The Guardian

Baha’i faith and morality

Forever a kind soul, the You actor is far removed from his psychotic character on the show. He opened up in an interview about his spirituality, describing how he sees justice and spirituality to be connected. This is part of what led him to the teaching of Baha’u’llah and the Baha’i Faith. He has been practising the religion since 2015 and is an outspoken defender of the Baha’is under persecution in Iran.

His spirituality also extends to Ayahuasca rituals in South America with a Shaman, and he has recounted his experiences with a “glittering spiritual tool” and performed a monologue at the Ayahuasca monologues in New York in 2012.

He has also spoken publicly about his political beliefs. He openly supported Barack Obama in 2008 and appeared alongside Blake Lively in an Obama commercial in 2008. He is also a member of the American Red Cross’ National Celebrity Cabinet, a group of celebs who promote the Red Cross and is an outspoken ally of the Black Lives Matter movement.

A multi-faceted man

who is penn badgley
Source: Elle

Not only is Penn a great actor, a gorgeous guy and a kind heart, but he is also quite intelligent. In order to act, he had to graduate high school early, and he finished at age 14. He later applied and was accepted into the University of Southern California but chose to defer and pursue acting instead.

Penn Badgley’s net worth

Between his time on Gossip Girl and his recent fame with You, Penn’s net worth is estimated to be around $8 to $9 million. But of course, we can never know for sure – just know that he’s doing alright for himself!