Appreciating Chris Pratt’s Admirable Career as an Actor

For many actors, life before fame looks very different from the glamorous lives they lead as celebrities.


Clare Daudelin

Chris Pratt has acted in numerous movies and TV shows, including “Parks and Recreation” and “Jurassic World.”

Nicholas Hounton, Staff Reporter

When movies come into the picture, Chris Pratt is likely one of the world’s most recognizable modern actors. He is well known for his roles in “Parks and Recreation” and “Guardians of the Galaxy.” While people can recognize his talents, do they know how he reached his prominence?

When the topic turns to a reward for a class, a movie is one of the staple options. It’s simple to set up a middle ground that the majority of the class can be satisfied with, and when movies from Marvel are played, Chris Pratt isn’t an uncommon face to see.

Born as the youngest of his family in 1979, Christopher Michael Pratt has two siblings; an older brother, Cully, a sheriff sergeant, and an older sister, Angie, who is a sales representative. First raised in the city of Virginia, Minnesota, his family moved to Washington when he was three years old and he attended Lake Stevens High School until 1997.

During high school, Pratt was a successful member of the wrestling team. When the wrestling coach asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, Pratt said “I don’t know,” according to an interview with CNBC. “But I know I’ll be famous.”

Continuing to chase fame, he attended community college for acting and decided not to take any other classes. However, he felt that little progress was being made, so he dropped out before the end of the first semester and never went back.

Later that year, a friend of his gave him a choice that would shape his life for the years to come: a one-way flight to Maui, Hawaii. Pratt agreed, and soon enough was living in a van with his buddy, taking minimum hours to pay for necessities like food, gas, and fishing supplies. It wasn’t much, but he was satisfied with the lifestyle. It was “a pretty awesome place to be homeless,” he said in an interview with The Independent, a British newspaper.

The opportunity to act came to him while he was working as a waiter at Bubba Gump Shrimp in Hawaii, an international seafood restaurant that’s widely known for being included in the cult classic “Forrest Gump” in 1994. While working, he got into a conversation with one of the customers, a director named Rae Dawn Chong. The topic of her movies came up and she asked if he was good at acting. Pratt decided that less than a semester of classes was enough for him to brag about.

Taken to Los Angeles, he was ready to start his new life in acting. Life didn’t have such smooth plans for him though, the movie directed by Chong was never released. According to Pratt, it simply “sucked” and he began struggling to find new roles to act in.

Determined to find a new acting job, Pratt stayed in LA and waited tables again.

“It was a terrible restaurant, I was a major contributing factor to how terrible it was,” Pratt said on The Norton Show.

To save money, he’d regularly eat plates of leftovers and get in trouble for it. This continued until he managed to get a starring role in “Everwood” in 2002. Finally, he got off the ground and into more notable roles, “Parks and Recreation” being one of them.

“Parks and Recreation” ended in 2015, but Pratt had already been cast in movies like “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “The Lego Movie,” and “Jurassic World.” He had succeeded in his goals of fame after a long road of trials and tribulations. 

Along the way, Pratt proved himself as a likable man to those around him. He made his way to a successful actor through a mixture of perseverance, hard work, and luck. Nowadays he’s recognized by some Lasallians as an actor in great movies to watch with friends.