Shia LaBeouf made headlines this weekend when he showed up to the premiere of his new film, Nymphomanic, wearing a paper bag over his head that read “I am not famous anymore.” And then again, just yesterday, he put on an art exhibit in LA called “#IAMSORRY,” where he apologized to visitors and press for his strange behavior. He even cried, guys.


But what was Shia like before he got famous and during the height of his fame? Here’s 15 things you probably didn’t know about Mr. LaBeouf (pronounced “La-Buff,” for starters).

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1. Shia is of mixed descent. His mom is an Askenzic Jew and his dad is a French Christian. Shia grew up celebrating both religions’ holidays, but he identifies himself as Jewish. He even had a Bar Mitzvah at 13!

2. His parents are clowns. Literally. Shia’s often in interviews referred to his parents as hippies, but did you know they were also professional clowns? When he was younger his parents would dress up as clowns and sell hotdogs across the street from their apartment in Glendale, California.

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3. Shia started out in comedy. He got his start in the entertainment business by telling dirty jokes at comedy clubs, starting at age 11.

4. He also went to AA meetings. As a kid, Shia often attended Alcoholics Anonymous meetings with his father, who was an alcoholic and a drug addict. Talk about too much too soon, eh?

5. He never wanted to be an actor. Shia got into acting because his family was poor and he wanted to make money. Interesting.

Getty Images
Getty Images

6. When he was first starting out, Shia pretended to be his own agent because he and his family couldn’t afford a real one. Eventually, he found his agent in an ad in the Yellow Pages.

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7. Shia won a Daytime Emmy Award in 2003 for his role on Even Stevens. The Disney show was his first “big break.”

Disney Channel
Disney Channel

8. His name has an interesting meaning. Shia means “praise God” and LaBeouf means “beef,” so technically his name translated from Hebrew to English means “praise god for beef.”

9. Shia got accepted to college. He was going to attend Yale University’s drama school, but he ended up booking a role in the new Indiana Jones movie alongside Harrison Ford instead. So, Shia never ended up going to college.

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10. Shia considers his second father to be Jon Voight, Angelina Jolie‘s real father. The two worked together in 2003’s Holes and have been close ever since.

11. In 2007, Shia booked the lead role in Disturbia, which was his first “adult” movie. He still has a scar on his rib cage from doing a stunt in the film as a permanent reminder of it.


12. Also in 2007, Shia LaBeouf got arrested at a Walgreens in Chicago for Misdemeanor Criminal Trespassing. Here he is explaining the drunken incident to David Letterman in 2009:

13. When he’s not in movies, Shia is directing them.  He directed Cage’s music video for “I Never Knew You.” And through Cage, Shia met rapper Kid Cudi and the three of them all make short films together.

14. And speaking of music videos, Shia went full-frontal nude in a 2012 French music video. Here it is below, but warning, this is NSFW at all:

15. And then there was that time that he walked a red carpet wearing a paper bag in 2014. But you already knew that, so…

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Which of these Shia facts is the most surprising? Are you weirded out by the whole paper bag thing? Tweet us @OKMagazine.

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