Jason Momoa is best known in Hollywood for his roles in high-profile projects like “Game of Thrones,” “Aquaman” and the upcoming “Dune” adaptation.
Momoa started his career in 1999 when he landed a role on “Baywatch” after the show held an open casting call in Hawaii. He and his cousins attended just to “meet chicks,” he said in a recent interview with InStyle, but he walked away with a new career path in mind.
Still, the actor’s success has been a slow burn. “We were starving after ‘Game of Thrones,'” he told InStyle. “I couldn’t get work.”
Momoa’s “Game of Thrones” character was killed off in season one, before the show became a massive hit. The actor struggled to cover the expenses for the house he shares with his wife, Lisa Bonet, and their two children. “It’s very challenging when you have babies, and you’re completely in debt,” he said.
Momoa isn’t the only celebrity to face financial hardship in the midst of a period when the public assumes they are successful. After her second worldwide tour, The Monster Ball, which ran from 2009 to 2011, Lady Gaga found herself $3 million in debt.
“It was funny because I didn’t know!” she told the Financial Times. “I remember I called everybody and said, ‘Why is everyone saying I have no money? This is ridiculous, I have five No. 1 singles.’ And they said, ‘Well, you’re $3 million in debt.'”
Still, Lady Gaga pressed on and was able to pull herself out of the red. Today, she’s worth an estimated $150 million, according to Forbes.
As for Momoa, things have definitely improved. In 2017, he starred in “Justice League,” followed by “Aquaman” in 2018, in which he played the titular role. There’s more on the horizon: He’s completely booked through 2024, InStyle reports.