Josh Peck: Be More Resilient | E178

Josh Peck: Be More Resilient | E178

Josh Peck rose to fame when he was a teenager starring in Nickelodeon’s hit show Drake & Josh. Despite living his dream of being an actor, Josh struggled with low confidence that took over his life, which ultimately manifested in a struggle with body image and sobriety. What Josh learned about himself in his darkest moments led him to launch a flourishing career as an actor in TV and movies and an incredible following on social media. Today, Josh is not only an actor and social media sensation, but also a podcaster and the author of the new memoir Happy People Are Annoying. Josh’s story is one of growth, passion, and acceptance. In this episode, Hala and Josh chat about Josh’s love for acting and humor, how Josh launched his career as an actor and his experience on Drake & Josh, how getting typecast affected his career, pivoting from TV to movies to social media, Josh’s struggle with body issues and sobriety, and what his career journey taught him about achieving happiness.    

Topics Include:

– On the title of his book, Happy People Are Annoying

– How did Josh first get interested in performing? 

– How did he start to learn about humor? 

– How he overcame the doubters 

– The story of telling the president of nickelodeon he wanted to be on All That

– Experience on Drake & Josh 

– The relationship between humor and insecurity

– Pivoting after Drake & Josh ended 

– Staring in the movie the Wackness 

– How getting typecast affected his career

– Losing weight 

– Josh’s experience with drugs and when he realized he needed to get sober 

– What his career journey taught him about achieving happiness 

– Dealing with the letdowns and criticism 

– Starting his social media journey and how he gained millions of followers 

– What is next for Josh 

– Josh’s actionable advice 

– Josh’s secret to profiting in life 

– And other topics…

Josh Peck is an American actor, comedian, and YouTuber. He began his career as a child actor in the late 1990s and early 2000s, and had an early role on The Amanda Show. Josh became famous for his role in the Nickelodeon sitcom Drake & Josh from 2004 to 2007, and in its two television films in 2006 and 2008. 

Josh also acted in films including Mean Creek (2004), Drillbit Taylor (2008), The Wackness (2008), ATM (2012), Red Dawn (2012), Battle of the Year (2013), Danny Collins (2015), and more. He played the main role in the Disney+ original series Turner & Hooch, and Hulu Original How I Met Your Father (2022). In 2017, Peck started a comedic lifestyle YouTube channel, Shua Vlogs. Josh is the author of Happy People Are Annoying.  

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Hala: [00:00:00] Hey, Josh, welcome to young and profiting podcast. Thank you so much for having me. I am super hyped for those who don't know and who might be living under a rock. You are a young comedian and actor. You actually started on Nickelodeon shows like the Amanda show and the Drake and Josh show, which pretty much defined the TV conception of most millennial childhoods, especially those younger millennials.

Hala: And. I have a lot of 25 year old dish girls that work for me. And they were freaking out that you were coming on this show more than Matthew McConaughey being on the show that just goes to show that you are truly an icon of our generation. Well, 

Josh: it's a great honor. And you really, if you really sit down and think about it, McConaughey is fine.

Josh: Good actor, but see, offering up what Peck's offering amongst her 


Hala: Yeah. And since their Nickelodeon days, you've had multiple film and millennial roles. You become a huge social media influencer with over 20 million followers across Instagram, YouTube, and TechTalk. And on top of [00:01:00] everything, you're now an author with your new members.

Hala: Happy people are annoying. So let's start there. What's up with the title of your book. Why are happy people so annoying? 

Josh: Well, my book agent told me that'd be a good title and I realized I should go with the people whose business it is to sell books. I'm only half joking. I, I wrote a 30 page proposal for this book and I had no title.

Josh: And initially I sort of was working with titles, like the millennial guide to survival or everything. I wished someone had told me, and I didn't love any of those, but I, as you know, like there's nothing easy about titling anything, your podcast, your book, your kid. And so once my agent read the proposal, she sort of pitched this idea.

Josh: In a weird way. The book sort of grew into the title, which was like this idea that I had gone throughout my whole life. Assuming that like happiness or what I thought it was, was reserved for people who were generationally wealthy, attractive [00:02:00] the quarterback. And I just thought that I didn't receive the same sort of manual for living that everyone else had been given at birth and my journey facing challenge and trial and walking through it has helped me to sort of define what happiness is for.

Hala: Yeah, I love that. And I have to say your memoir was super easy to read. It was inspiring. It was funny. It was relatable even though I'm not an actress and never did acting before, but I related to a lot of things that you said, and I feel like a lot of people who read your book did as well. And I think my audience is going to really resonate with.

Hala: So let's start off with your childhood. You grew up in hell's kitchen, you had a single mom as a mother. You never met your father and you were up and down financially as a child. And at eight years old, you actually started developing your love for comedy and ended up doing standup. So let's start there.

Hala: How did you first get into performing? 

Josh: I think just having a mother who was sort of like this unrealized performer, like her great love has been [00:03:00] musicals and singing and just kind of stand up comedy. She's just a natural entertainer. And she used that superpower to be a great business person. And yeah, we certainly struggled financially, which I don't think is a new experience for anyone with a single person.

Josh: Especially a woman in the eighties, like having to deal with all like, sort of like that toxic masculine workforce, what she was sort of those waters she was navigating, I would imagine required her to sort of arm herself with those tools of like, when I walk into a room. I'm going to crush it with a joke immediately.

Josh: And then you're going to know who has the power here. So I knew immediately, like there's a currency to like having the ability in which to take over a room and comedy can be that superpower. And even at eight or nine, it doesn't matter. You're immediately upgraded to the adult table as soon as you prove that.

Josh: You're funny. 

Hala: That's super, super interesting. So how did you kind of hone your chops? Like how did you practice and start to learn in this. 

Josh: think I [00:04:00] was just obsessed with television in sitcoms and talked about my best friends growing up were Billy Madison and Eastman Tura and the fresh prince of Bel air.

Josh: Like, I didn't know that I was sort of putting in my 10,000 hours. It just saw thought that I was obsessed with TV. Like all my other friends were, but in a weird way, I was like absorbing the rhythms and comedy is very, for the most part subjective, but there isn't justice. To comedy and that if it doesn't get a joke, it's really hard to interpret that it works.

Josh: So I like the idea of being like, there's no debating this. If I get a laugh and laughter kind of like crying is involuntary. Like there's no interpreting that. I got it. And I get the pat on the back for that one. 

Hala: It was like that instant gratification, right? Oh yeah. You changed. Yeah. 

Hala: And so it seems like your mom was really supportive throughout your journey, but actually people like your grandparents really thought that there was [00:05:00] no lifelong career trajectory as an actor and they thought it wasn't really a stable profession.

Hala: So how did you kind of move through that even though there were some naysayers in your life? 

Josh: Well, I think just inherently, there were people in my life like family members, I mean, People had no problem, especially then in the nineties, like giving their opinion about how ridiculous it is that the idea of having a, a full, realized life in this crazy profession.

Josh: And their pragmatism or their nervousness isn't without reason, but even now in today's day, I would say, look at my son told me that he wanted to be an actor when he was 18 or 19. I would certainly be like, are you sure you don't want to be a dentist? How about he managed? Because. It's a crazy business.

Josh: It's a big swing, even though I feel like many of us feel like we know some actor in our life or [00:06:00] some performer or some influencer nowadays, it still is the, the lesser taken path. And because of that, it affords you some really big wins and possibilities for greatness and also a lot of uncertainty.

Josh: So it was understanding. But I went to performing arts high school when. 12 years old. And I remember I was suddenly surrounded by people. I mean, my school had alumni like Claire Danes and Jesse Eisenberg and Alicia keys, but even, maybe not as big as they were just like working kid actors who are on Broadway shows or TV show.

Josh: And I was like, well, they're making grownup money. So suddenly it seemed possible. Cause I was, you know, making 20 bucks a weekend, performing a Caroline's certainly not enough to pay your rent, but I was like, wow, these kids are doing the thing that I love. And they're making a grownup salary. Like maybe this is possible.

Hala: Yeah. And so you believed in yourself [00:07:00] enough where at one point in your memoir, you talk about meeting the president of Nickelodeon for the first time and you were in love with the show, all that. Which is like the kid's version of Saturday night live for those who don't know. And you mustered up the courage to actually tell him that you wanted to be on the show.

Hala: So I'd love for you to share that story. And some of the lessons that you learned. Well, 

Josh: I would audition for Nickelodeon a lot as a kid. And the Viacom headquarters was in a building called 15, 15 Broadway, which I imagine is still there. And it sort of had all their subsidiaries housed in the strike.

Josh: Ganek building that. If you watch MTV now or have for the last 25 years, Whenever they're doing, like, I mean, back in my day, there was a show called TRL, but like whenever you see them sort of overlooking times square, that is 15, 15 Broadway. So I would audition in Nickelodeon all the time and I would basically tell them like, listen, I'm young, I'm Bonnie and I'm chugging.

Josh: Like, you need me, trust me, like I [00:08:00] have the secret sauce and they were like, well, maybe we need you, but we'll see. And slowly but surely I would do a commercial or do a TV show for them. And then I booked this movie called snow day, which was my first movie, my mom and I fly to Canada first time out of the country.

Josh: And one day I'm just like chatting with some guy who had a great laugh and I'm giving him some material from standup. My mom sort of saddles over to me and is like, do you know who that is? It's the president of Nickelodeon. And she said, you should tell me you want to be on all that. Because until that point I could not get a call back for all that I would audition.

Josh: I would pray. I would try to suck up to the casting director, but I was just not what they were looking for. And so I tell him that, and nine months later, I got a call from him saying, congratulations. I'm going to move your mom and you out to California, and you're going to be on the Amanda show. And I don't know what that lesson is other than shoot your shot.

Josh: Yeah, 

Hala: it is shoot your shot and [00:09:00] don't be afraid of asking for what you want. I mean, you have the courage to ask for what you want. Turn out exactly how you wanted, but it was a huge step in your career that I think really changed your life. So 

Hala: drake and Josh was really like your mega hit that I think everybody knows you from.

Hala: I'd love to hear about how that turned into you, leading the show with Drake and also the best and worst parts of you being on that. 

Josh: Well, we were both in the Amanda show together and initially it was sort of ice by the producers of that show because I think they were sort of strongly encouraged to put me on the show by that president.

Josh: I'm not sure that idea was theirs. So initially I just kind of sat around and watching people like Amanda Bynes, who was so much more talented than I was, and seeing like what her secret sauce was and trying to learn from her. Resenting the fact that I was kind of sitting on the bench and over time, I think you'd like, well, eventually they're paying me and I'm here.

Josh: So I imagine they'll give me a shot. [00:10:00] And they did. And it worked out in my favor. And so when they, when Nickelodeon needed a new buddy comedy Drake and I were just a really good off. And that's what sort of led to Drake and Josh. And I think the best part of that show in hindsight is the fact that, you know, 20 years later, people still talk about it, that it still means so much to families and that they knew let us into our homes, which is a very like privileged opportunity, even more so than.

Josh: You know, everyone wants to be in the gigantic Marvel movie or like the big, huge blockbuster, but there's something special about having to show that like the whole family can sit around and like watching their living room. It's very intimate. And I think that's what the show has been for a lot of people and even generations now, which is really special.

Josh: And I think the hardest part of the show was just, I was sort of introducing myself to the world in a body that I wasn't quite comfortable in because I was pretty overweight. I think navigating those waters of being a public person, getting to do something that I [00:11:00] dreamt of doing while also feeling like just massively insecure was where they were challenging waters to now.

Josh: Yeah. 

Hala: So I want to stick on this for point, cause I think this is a really important piece of your story. So my team always gives me quotes and stuff in my research, and there was a couple that really stood out and they were the reason why people are funny is usually not funny. And you have another quote, real artists take the misery and sadness out of life and translate that into art.

Hala: So is there some real reason why, you were funny as a kid, like, was it more like masking this insecurity that you had I'd love for you to share more about. 

Josh: Certainly. I mean, when I meet like really attractive people, now that try to go joke for joke with me. I always want to say to them, like, listen, there's a chance I'm funnier than you, but trust me, I traded for a second for your face.

Josh: I would have traded at all, but I certainly cause why not? I mean, listen, I live a pretty normal [00:12:00] life. All things considered, but being a public person, like I'm not going to delude myself. Like I do get. A little bit of special treatment here and there. Like maybe it's easier to get a reservation at a restaurant.

Josh: I mean, I'm not that fancy or like, I'll be like in a coffee shop and people will be like, oh, it's on me. And I'd be like, don't give me the free coffee like this. I can afford. and so I have to like remind myself, like, oh, like most people don't get this Josh. Like, so having an understanding of like your privilege, attracted people, get that all the time.

Josh: A lot of people grow up that way. Right. Where they're just like, oh, people are so friendly. I'm like, yeah. To you. And so I just think that the need, in which two. Create this defense mechanism to sort of navigate your way through the world. Isn't necessary for certain people, but for a guy like me, it certainly was.

Josh: And there was a legacy of the big, funny guy. So it made sense. Maybe if I grew up in a really athletic community, [00:13:00] being the big guy, it would've made sense to try to go be an offensive lineman for my high school football team. But in New York, growing up with a mom, I had, it was to be funny. Hmm. 

Hala: I love that.

Hala: It's like you use that as a way to kind of shine and be likable, even though you felt like on the outside, you weren't just being liked for your luck. You got to be liked for your personality, basically. I 


Josh: so. And I think there was a need to, I felt like I walked into situations at a disadvantage that people made snap judgment about me being that weight of like, oh, your you lack willpower or you're slovenly or something.

Josh: Okay. I didn't want to be that great. I just wanted to be at an even sort of at the same level as everyone else. 

Hala: Um, yeah, so something that I found very, very interesting growing up, watching Drake and Josh. Everybody thinks that you're super rich and that you made it for life off that show, but it turns out you were only paid like a hundred grand a [00:14:00] year for like five years or something on that show.

Hala: And it really was tough after it ended to continue to monetize that fame because there was no social media, Hollywood in the two thousands is very different from Hollywood now. So I'd love for you to kind of share some more on that and give us some color about that situation. 

Josh: It's gross to talk about money, but the reason I felt compelled to do it was that I believe there was this misconception of like what a guy like me coming from that show where we should be at in life, the moment it's over fiscally and just how much runway you, you actually have.

Josh: I remember this woman after she read the book or saw some, excerpt from an interview was like, I work with kids and I make 50 grand a year. Like, who are you to say this? And I was like, ma'am, first of all, no one is debating you that you should be making way more money. And what you do is way more important than what I was doing.

Josh: I just think the difference is is that no one thinks you're making a million a year, [00:15:00] but a lot of people thought I was. And so I think the reality is. When you finish a show like that, if you're making a middle-class income, you only have a year or so runway, if you've been smart with your money before, it's important to find another job, especially if you're sort of helping support the family.

Josh: The way that I was at that age, which was my honor, cause my mom sort of gave up so much of her life to come help me. It was challenging. And I think naturally we see kids like that. And if they do have to do a job to pay the bills, which maybe isn't necessarily some Oscar award winning part, but it's just something that's sort of, again, for a paycheck, we instantly judge them and think like, what'd you do blow all your money.

Josh: Like, what are you just some, some cliche who, you know, had a Bentley or something when in reality, they're just, there wasn't as much as people thought 

Hala: it. So interesting. It's kind of sad. Like, I feel like Nickelodeon, you probably feel like did a lot [00:16:00] for your career, but do you ever feel like they sort of took advantage of you considering how big that show was and how little money you made off of it?

Hala: In 

Josh: hindsight? I don't really, yes, no, I'm kidding. I don't complain. I don't begrudge it because I'm lucky enough to be so happy with where I'm at now. And I think things are certainly better from what I. 

Hala: Yeah. So what happened after you ended up drinking Josh? How did you pivot considering that your television career was.

Josh: Certainly. I mean, I don't know. I mean, my television career was over, right. The show was over. So I think that's not the best way to phrase it because it's like your career isn't over as an actor until you stop acting. So it's just what's next. So that's really what it was. 

Josh: What was it? 

Josh: So I wound up starring in this movie called the Wackness with my favorite actors, sir, Ben Kingsley and method, man, and Mary Kate Olson.

Josh: And we wound up winning Sundance and it was like this in the movie that I dreamt of doing, because you know, at 21, what I [00:17:00] really wanted my whole life was just to be an actor. I didn't want to be a movie star and I didn't want to be, I certainly didn't want to be a child star and I didn't want to be. The funny fat guy, I just want to be an actor amongst actors.

Josh: And I remember getting that opportunity. because

Josh: I loved doing the kind of stuff I was reading on Drake and. But it came a bit naturally to me, just being sort of like big and funny and sticky.

Josh: And that was a huge part of me, but movies like mean Creek and eventually the Wackness that was, um, another side that I really wanted to explore something more grounded in subtle because those were the sort of movies I loved growing up. Yeah. 

Hala: And so we're looking at you right now. You're pretty fit. Back in the day you were about a hundred pounds or so heavier, right?

Hala: You, you're a bigger guy and you are often typecast, like, you know, as a big funny guy, how did you feel that limited your potential in any way? Well, 

Josh: it just limited me as long as I wanted to stay that way. I think back [00:18:00] then bigger guys were limited to sort of two kinds of roles, which was the bully and the best friend.

Josh: And main Creek, actually that movie I was playing a bully, but it was the first time I actually got to play this fully realized person because he was sort of this tragic character, this kid who so desperately wanted friends, the only way in which he knew to sort of do that was just sort of antagonize kids just so they would notice him.

Josh: And I remember when that movie came out and it was so well received. I thought I can't wait another 10 years for another part like this to come around, like for a big guy to actually play a real person. So I've lost the weight. And there were certainly people who were like right now, you're part of like a pool of four or five guys vying for these roles.

Josh: But if you lose weight and you get down to a normal weight, like you're going to be going against Jake Gyllenhaal for roles. Like, are you sure you want to do this? And honestly, Jillian all doesn't have to audition for movies. So damn handsome and talented, [00:19:00] but like they basically were saying the pool is much wider if you are at an average in quotes weight.

Josh: But I knew that I wanted to be able to play those other roles and it was necessary for me in addition to all just the inner reasons I did it, that I want it to be healthier and more comfortable in my own school. 

Hala: Yeah. And so you had tried many, many diets before that. What did you do to actually get the weight off?

Hala: Oh, it's 

Josh: just boring. I just ate better and worked out more and I feel bad saying next people always want some kind of hack. I know I did at that time, but I guess the only thing I can ever say to people who are on their own journey to, to perhaps lose a bit of weight or get healthier is I was just sort of sick and tired of being sick and tired.

Josh: I'd tried so many different ways to just, and inevitably I had to feel completely over my way to try it, someone else's. And so I always say to other people, if you're feeling hopeless or you're feeling like your way doesn't work anymore, I'm sorry you're going through that. But it's, [00:20:00] it's a great place to start and pain can be a great motivator and you never learn anything on a good day.

Hala: Yeah. I love that. Okay. So you lost all this way. You accomplish this big goal and you eventually turned to another. Other than food and that was drugs and alcohol. And in the book you described the first time he ever did drugs, and you say that it made you feel typical. What do you mean by that? That it made you feel typical?

Josh: I think I'd spent my entire life up until that point. I was having this very specific experience. I was working in this adult career as a young kid, since I was 12 years old. And there was a lot of responsibility. My M Bialik coma, big van. Especially because she's done this beautiful job of transitioning from starting as a young actor and sort of growing up into this great adult performer.

Josh: She said, as an actor, you're not really allowed to have a bad day now. there are plenty examples of, of actors having bad [00:21:00] days on set, but it's very important that you come and you show up ready to do what you have to do because there's a lot of money riding on it. And so I think that was my last.

Josh: Up until I was 18, 19 years old. And I felt like I had to be sort of very measured with everything I did cause I had so much riding on it as opposed to what a lot of 18 and 19 year olds want to do, which is to be frivolous a bit reckless and basically stupid. And so when I was 18, 19, and I was experimenting in this these ways, I felt very typical and I had lost all this weight.

Josh: And I felt like I, I was making up for lost times. I think 


Hala: Yeah. And so what was the turning point? Can you share the story when you realized that like you have to get sober and that like enough was enough and you want it to kind of change your life for the better, in that 

Hala: way? 

Josh: So I lost a hundred pounds and I thought I'd be all better. And then I wasn't, I was still the same head, just in a new body.

Josh: [00:22:00] So then I tried drugs and alcohol and, uh, that didn't work. either And so then I figured, well, success and prestige maybe that'll work. So I, uh, do this movie as I talked about the Wackness. And as I said, like my dream when I was 16 in that movie mean Creek was to one day come to the Sundance film festival, which at this time to me was like better than the Oscar.

Josh: And to be thin and to have like a movie I was proud of and it came true. Like I was 21 and I remember the movie was screaming there and like Quentin Tarantino's at the screening, like these heroes of mine. And I'm working with my hero, sir, Ben Kingsley, like I'm an actor nerd. So for me, this was like Michael Jordan.

Josh: And that night, the reviews start coming in and they're beautiful. And it was truly everything I'd ever hoped. for And I think I imagined that I'd wake up the next morning and the old Josh would be gone. That, that voice inside my head that woke up a few [00:23:00] minutes before I did every morning, that told me all the reasons why I'd never be enough, that it would just be gone.

Josh: And I woke up the next morning and that voice was still there. And it was like this terrible realization that I said, oh no, I'm bottomless. It had been like a, a suspicion. I'd had my whole life that no matter what I tried to. fill That hole in the soul with it. It'll just never be enough. And I remember I, I flew home that day and everyone who was part of the movie was like, are you nuts?

Josh: Like you're going home. This never happens. Like you never have a hit movie at a festival like this, and you're, you're just going to leave. And I was like, yeah, I got to get outta here.  and two weeks later I got sober and I think it was that realization and also taking some action that allowed me to 

Josh: do.

Josh: that Wow 

Hala: That's a really, really powerful story. And thank you so much for sharing that. So what you said reminded me of this thing called the arrival fallacy that people keep mentioning on my [00:24:00] podcast. And basically what that means is like you achieve something. And you're like waiting and waiting and you think everything you're going to be happy.

Hala: Finally, when like, once this happens, I'm going to be happy and then it happens. And then you're like, oh, now I have to find the next achievement to like dangle in front of my face until I'm happy. So what has your whole career journey taught you about achieving happiness? 

Josh: It's a great question. I love the way you phrase it.

Josh: Look, I think society. Tells us that you'll be all better. If you can just afford this vacation or you'll be all better. If you can just buy a Beamer or you'll be all better when, when you can fly private. But the reality is is that like The gift is that you get to try because there's so many people who are born into circumstances throughout this world who never even get the chance to try. And so the fact that you're like maybe in a place where there's some financial insecurity or just life insecurity, but you get to put your best foot forward [00:25:00] and work your butt off.

Josh: Like that's a gift. And I have to remember that 

Josh: and I've every corny slogan is true. You know, it's about the process, not the result and in all these things. For me, it's never been luckily about the billboard. It's never been about like going and doing some cool red carpet thing or all the cash and prizes.

Josh: It's just, I really like the moments between action and cut. It's a puzzle for me. I remember I was in, I've had this great like year, last year of, you know, it was working really consistently and I'm working on this really cool thing now. And I'm so lucky. And so I've been in acting class the last couple months.

Josh: Cause I was like, don't get, Rusty's stay prime, stay ready. And I remember my acting, I did the scene. I'm acting teacher goes, well, you really didn't consider this or yeah, you miss this. And I remember thinking in my head, I was like, I'm never going to be perfect at this thing. Like, it's like this puzzle that [00:26:00] has a hold on me.

Josh: Like I just want to figure it out and I'll never fully figure it out. Even if one day I do it superbly. And the verdict's still out on that. So I'm lucky to have a thing that really grabs me still. 

Hala: Yeah. And it's more like you're not necessarily basing your happiness on achieving that next big gig.

Hala: You're basing your happiness on being the best actor that you can be and enjoying your craft. So I think that's really 

Josh: true. 

Josh: we all want to succeed. We're all bombarded with hustle, hustle, hustle, and optimize your life cram as much as you can into a 24 hour period. But like, what has helped me is finding the virtue in what I do.

Josh: And it's easy to think as an actor, like what's virtuous about what I do. It's self-serving just to like so that I can get more followers and make more money. But the reality is is that. People live really hard lives and they come home and they turn on a show and they lose themselves in it for an hour or two hours or [00:27:00] 20 minutes.

Josh: And they can forget about their troubles or what's going on in their family or their boss. Who's a jerk or whomever. And just kind of feel like a relief that comes, that watches over them. By watching what an actor or a producer or director is able to provide So like there's virtue to that. So that's a reason to do what I do and to make it about something bigger than me.

Josh: Because if it's just about me getting that next role, because I really want the announcement on Twitter, then it's never going to be enough. 

Hala: Yeah. And I feel like people can relate to that no matter what profession they're in. acting is a tough business. And I actually was really happy that in your memoir, you didn't try to.

Hala: Cover over the fact that it's really a hard business to be in there's lots of ups and downs. So I'd love to understand like how you dealt with all the downs. 

Josh: I, uh, have therapy support, good friends being sober [00:28:00] and never laying down. I've heard someone say. If you're walking through this shit, just try not to sit down.

Josh: There were so many moments where I wanted to quit. There were so many moments where I was just like looking at my life at 32 33 years old in an audition room for, I dunno, maybe I've gone on a thousand auditions in my life and for the 900th time being like, I thought I'd be further by now. I thought I wouldn't have to do this at a certain point.

Josh: And here I am still singing for my supper. I also am very like comfortable in that place. And every time I've done something, I did a show with John Stamos, where I played his son on this Fox show, which I wish I could time travel back to 13 year old Josh and tell him that one day we'd be able to pass for John Stamos, his son, and that everything was gonna work out.

Josh: And that maybe I should, should hold back on second. And that show was this great thing. And everyone was like, this is a moment like, and then [00:29:00] that show was a great experience and then got very canceled. Or last year I did this show for Disney plus Turner and hooch. So proud of it, one of the best experiences, and that show only went one season.

Josh: So like I'm comfortable in that place of like go to an audition, get the pages, memorize it, go in there and realize that. Nobody's really thinking about me. I'm there to serve a purpose. Hopefully I can help whatever puzzle this writer or director has set up for themselves where they're like, I really got to fit these roles.

Josh: Like maybe I can be that guy. And if I'm not, well, maybe you're closer now to who you're supposed to pick because you realize someone like me is definitely not who you need. And I've heard that said before about auditions. Like you're either going to help them. By being the right guy for the role or help them get closer to realizing who they don't need either way Europe service.

Josh: And I have to remember that. 

Hala: So many great lessons. I feel [00:30:00] like that you're sharing right now. Something that was super interesting to me was that in your book, you say that you tell people that your life either existed. B R D or a R D before the film red Dawn. And after the film red Dawn. So how did you deal with, since we're talking about rejection, how did you deal with the criticism of that film and how did you sort of reinvent yourself after.

Josh:  Well, I 

Hala: Red Dawn was just sort of like the amalgamate or sort of the apex of all the things that I thought I needed in my life. I basically was like 23 playing Chris Hemsworth's brother, which sounds crazy to me. Don't worry. And I, I thought my whole life, I was like, this was what I wanted to be was the bad-ass action star.

Hala: When in practice, But I was so full of imposter syndrome that I actually let it turn me into a fraud and I let go of everything that had always been working for me. And the result was this very stilted, uncomfortable, not great performance in the movie. And I sort of took a lot of [00:31:00] flack. But I think it's important to like flop and keep going and normalized flopping.

Hala: I'm glad I got to do it at a time where I was young enough to where I could really learn from it and that it had to happen. And in the moment I really thought like, this is it. When this movie comes out, I'll die. And it came out and the reviews came out and I. I just kept walking and I think that's important to know.

Josh: And I don't 

Hala: on my podcast, male models. I've been lucky enough to interview like serial entrepreneurs, Gary Vaynerchuk and Damon John. And I remember I asked them, how long do you mourn a loss? When a company doesn't quite live up to expectation or something falls through a deal or something, how long do you let it affect you?

Hala: And they both like, literally took a moment and said minutes And I was like, really, because I like to be wounded. I like to take weeks to get over things, but I was like, yeah, that's how you [00:32:00] do it. Right? Like that's how you become as successful as them. You just keep pushing Yeah. It's not about how many times you fall down.

Hala: It's about how quick you get back up. And it must be tough being an actor, because a lot of us who have more normal jobs, you know, you might do bad at work one day or even get fired, but it's not like plastered all over the internet. Nobody knows. So it must be even harder when you're an actor and you're getting all these outside people kind of giving you that negativity.

Hala: So, like we said before, when you ended Drake and Josh, social media wasn't really a thing back then. There was no like influencers yet. Right? So you actually started your social media journey on vine. I'd love to hear about what got you started on social media, how you kind of got your first big break and how you parlayed it into the millions of followers that you have.

Josh: I mean, the show ended in 2007, so it wasn't even like social media was wasn't even remotely a thing. Like Facebook had been around for what, two years. But other than that, I mean, YouTube existed kind of

Josh: in 2013 I made my [00:33:00] first vine cause I was a fan of the app. And for anyone who doesn't remember, it was a gear original ticket.

Josh: And suddenly I started to get these followers. And I remember thinking after a couple months, when I ended up at a hundred thousand followers, it was a real inflection point. Like I can really lean in or maybe stop doing it and people would have just forgotten. And I even had agents and managers calling me at that time saying to me, like, what are you doing?

Josh: Like we're trying to make you not just like the goofy guy from that kids show. And you're like making. Silly videos and your card is this, does this hurt us? And I was really lucky to have an apostle during that time, my buddy Rami, who worked in social media early on and he said, listen, Josh, don't let anyone tell you.

Josh: They know what this is because I work in it. And even, I don't know, but I'll tell you that being able to go straight to your followers, affecting hundreds of thousands of people, finding out what they like, what they don't like and everything in between. That's powerful. So do this. Do it every day. And that's what I did.

Josh: I made a vine a day, [00:34:00] because until that point I'd always been at the mercy of the gatekeepers. I'd always needed five people to sign off on me for me to get a role in the 18 months before it came out. But suddenly I was going straight to my audience and with the click of the upload button, I could deliver content.

Josh: So as long as they didn't have an ego about the way in which I was doing it. As long as I didn't think, well, I really need a trailer and some fancy coffee, if I'm going to be acting and instead said, this is your job. So just do it, whether it's on your phone or for an IMAX camera. And the result was really great and it grew.

Josh: To a good amount of success on buying Instagram, YouTube, and even Tik TOK and brought me 


Hala: now. Yeah. And honestly, I love what you're saying. You're basically saying for a long time, and I always talk about this for a long time. Everything that you did required a gatekeeper to say like, yes, you're, you know, you're welcome Josh.

Hala: Like we pick you, we choose you now you get to create your own life because you own it. You own these social media channels [00:35:00] and you can communicate directly with your followers and monetize that. So I think that's super powerful. 

Josh: I think it's so necessary. And in 2013, the rock didn't have 300 million followers and Kevin Hart and Jack Black Warren on YouTube.

Josh: Like it wasn't as normal then. So it was a bit more of a leap, but I think the line has totally blurred between traditional and social media people. And I think now it's just about the content and yeah, it afforded me security to get married, buy a house, have a kid that I don't know of acting would have ever given me.

Hala: I love this. Thank you so much, Josh. So what are you up to today? What's new. What is, what is coming out for 

Josh: you? I have this movie, called 13, the musical coming out August 12th on Netflix and a Amman. how I met your father right now in Hulu and yeah. And just making tic-tacs and chatting with you.

Josh: And, my podcast male models that I'll plug I'm a fan. [00:36:00] 

Hala: Okay. Cool. So we'll stick all those links in the show notes. You guys can follow Josh. And so I always ask two last questions at the end of the show, and then we do something fun at the end of the year. So the first one is what is one actionable thing my young and profits can do today to be more profiting tomorrow.

Josh: Oh, wow. That's a great question. I would say. Find someone today that you can do something nice for, ideally, because we're talking about young and profiting, like someone in the business space, someone who can do you a favor down the road, figure out how to do a favor for them today.

Josh: That's 

Hala: a really good piece of advice. And what is your secret to profiting in life? Oh, 

Josh: profiting in life. Yeah. I mean, it sort of connected to that first thing. I mean,

Josh: Doing nice things for other people becoming indispensable, helping people. I mean, it has an immediate payoff because of just the karmic sort of payout, [00:37:00] which is immediate, right?

Josh: You feel better. It's the best way to get out of self. But if you do these things, what you'll find is when people are in a position then to spread good will to pay it forward, when they have an opportunity, you're going to be at top of mind. Like people go out and they become super selfish and they're like, no, I have to wrestle money and and prestige goodness in the world.

Josh: I got to go out and get mine. And it's like, well, good luck because no, one's going to think of you first for anything. But if you've got a great track record of being there for people of being a reliable, good source of good work, then the moment they have an opportunity to spread that good will they're going to think of you first.

Hala: That is such a great lesson. Thank you so much, Josh. I love this conversation. I think my audience is gonna love it. Where can everybody go learn more about you and everything that you do? 

Josh: I guess just, um, follow me on Instagram shoe a Patty. [00:38:00] Thank you so much for having me. I really love chatting with you.

Josh: You're awesome at this. 

Hala: Thank you so much, Josh. Great conversation.