The Truth About The Girl Who Plays Elle In The Kissing Booth

Actress Joey King has starred in The Kissing Booth, The ActRamona and Beezus — just to name a few projects. After getting her start as a child actress in The Suite Life of Zack & Cody, King worked constantly until she successfully made the transition to an adult actor. With the sequel to The Kissing Booth a reality, King has increasingly become a household name, known for showcasing her tremendous talent and radiant presence in Hollywood.


But there's more to King than just her acting career; she is a fully-formed human being with passionate convictions and a desire to see the world become a better place. An avid supporter of both Black Lives Matter and the Pride movement, King isn't afraid to speak up when there's injustice and fight for what she believes is right. So what else is there to know about King, who's poised to skyrocket into fame and fortune? Read on to discover all of the details about her that you never knew.

Long before playing Elle in The Kissing Booth, Joey King knew that she loved acting

When Joey King started acting professionally, she was only four years old, so it's safe to say that performing has always been her passion. "Since we were little, my sisters and I just always had a desire to express ourselves in a way we couldn't explain until we started doing little local theater plays together," the Kissing Booth star told Schön! magazine. "Then we really understood that we loved to entertain people and provoke emotion from people." 


Once King got a taste of what it felt like to be on stage, she was hooked — and there was no going back. "Ever since then I've loved the feeling of being on a set and [bringing] characters to life," she continued. Clearly, she was pretty good at it from the start, too, as she was cast consistently from that point on, as noted by her IMDb profile. 

The Kissing Booth's Joey King cares deeply about politics

Keeping up with current events can sometimes feel like an arduous task, especially when it seems like there's no end in sight to the breaking news cycle. But that hasn't stopped Joey King from becoming even more active in politics, something that didn't exactly come naturally to her. "I even had a hard time figuring out how to register to vote," she explained in an interview with Teen Vogue. "And that's OK to be able to say that it's confusing to figure out." She added that it can also be difficult to parse which issues you should be informed about — and that there shouldn't be any stigma about that either.


King decided she needed to educate herself about politics as much as possible considering she has a huge platform that she can use to enact change on a global scale. She explained, "I think I'm really proud to be able to say something that means something to me."

After The Kissing Both came out, Joey King's Instagram blew up

According to the Los Angeles Times, no one really expected The Kissing Booth to be a hit film, let alone a viral sensation. Despite the critical panning, though, that's exactly what happened. The success of the film also skyrocketed the lead stars into celebrity. That's when King's Instagram following went from 600,000 to millions nearly overnight.


Since then King's following has only grown larger, something the star attributes to her online authenticity. in an interview with W magazine, King said she thinks "the reason people follow me and why I love Instagram is because I am myself." She continued, saying, "It's important to me to remain true to myself on Instagram, and it's also important to have certain things be just for me."

King also curates what she shares in order to keep it real. "I look at my Instagram and there are so many weird, fun things on there I'm happy I shared because it was such an organic moment," she continued. She added that it's also important to maintain that sense of spontaneity.

Joey King doesn't look anything like Elle from The Kissing Booth in this film

When Joey King was cast in the super intense role of Gypsy Rose Blanchard for the Hulu series The Act, the actress had her work cut out for her. That included some major cosmetic changes, which was not exactly an easy prospect. "Shaving my head was something I was a nervous about even though I had done it before," she confessed in an interview with As If. Given that King had been the recipient of a host of negative comments after doing it in the past, that's totally understandable.


Fortunately King ended up feeling differently about this time around, as she could really see just how gorgeous she truly is. "I don't know what has happened to me over the years, but the negative comments people say don't really register anymore, which I'm so thankful for because I feel beautiful," she continued. "I feel proud of myself." We are so here for this, Joey! You tell 'em!

Playing Gypsy Rose Blanchard changed Joey King

In addition to transforming herself physically in order to play Gypsy Rose Blanchard in The Act, Joey King had to transform herself mentally so that she could truly inhabit the character. It wasn't an easy task. In fact, King said it was the biggest challenge she'd ever had to face in her career. "I wanted to really become her — to transform myself entirely, lose all vanity, lose all ego, lose everything I thought I knew about acting, just throw it out the window," she told Variety. " That does sound intense.


As it turns out King was completely up for the task, even garnering herself an Emmy Award nomination for her performance. Naturally, she walked away from the experience with a new perspective on her life and her work. "I learned a lot about myself as an actor and what I can do," she continued. "I pushed my limits." King said she also felt really fulfilled and proud of her abilities and had truly changed for the better.

Joey King believes Gypsy Rose Blanchard should be freed from prison

More often than not, when an actor signs up to star in someone's biopic, the person they're portraying has passed away after living an extraordinary life. But that's not the case for The Act, as the girl King was playing is very much alive — something King was very keenly aware of during filming.


The real Gypsy Rose Blanchard is serving a ten-year sentence for killing her mother, who had Munchausen syndrome by proxy and abused Blanchard for years. King is sympathetic to Blanchard because of all that she endured. "No one deserves the life that she had," she shared in a chat with Vanity Fair. "The fact that she's in prison still, it's heartbreaking to me." 

King would rather see Blanchard in a position where she could not just recover from her trauma, but truly thrive and heal. "I think she deserves a much better life now," she continued. "She deserves to be free and deserves to be in therapy, not behind bars."

Joey King and Patricia Arquette bonded for life on the set of The Act

Joey King didn't star in The Act alone, of course, as Gypsy Rose Blanchard was very close to her mother Dee Dee Blanchard for much of her life. Luckily for King, the veteran actress Patricia Arquette was cast as her mother and later won an Emmy Award for her performance. King has only good things to say about Arquette, who helped her navigate the intensity of her role. "I learned so much from her, not just as an actor, but as a human being," she gushed in an interview with Awards Daily. "She's one of the greatest people I've ever met."


While some actors may walk away from a tough job like this one and go their separate ways, the opposite is true for King and Arquette, who bonded significantly in their time together. "I'm so thankful that I met her and that I have her in my life now," she continued. "She's one of those people where we're friends for life."

This is how The Kissing Booth's Joey King unwinds after a long day

While being a movie star may sound like a dream job because of the fame and fortune that can come with it, the profession can actually be quite grueling thanks to the long hours spent on set. Acting can also takes an emotional toll on a person, as noted by The Guardian, which is why Joey King has a go-to chill-out method. "One thing I do to get out of a mindset and kind of just unwind is, um, I love watching HGTV," she confessed in a chat with Byrdie. "And so my favorite way to unwind after a hard day of work is to watch House Hunters."


Part of the reason King loves the channel is because it just gets her mind off of her work, and part of her affection for it is due to nostalgia. "I grew up watching it every single night," she continued. "That and I love Monopoly, so like, a good board game and some HGTV? Sign me up." Sign us up too, Joey.

This is Joey King's idea of a perfect day

From the looks of it, Joey King lives a pretty charmed life. Her career is thriving, she's young and beautiful, and she has no shortage of friends in high places, as is indicated on her Instagram page. So if King could have the perfect day, what would that look like for her? It may not be as lavish as you'd expect.


"When it's cold out I like waking-up in my cozies and drinking hot coffee on my couch watching The Great British Baking Show and Rick and Morty with my dog," she explained to As If. "Then I would make homemade pasta for dinner." That sounds not just relatable, but pretty darn nice.

As for what King would do on a hot summer day, it would most definitely start out on the beach. "I love the feeling of being sun exhausted after a long day on the beach, going home, getting into my cozies and watching my favorite shows with a black licorice popsicle," she continued. "That's the best summer day!" We're inclined to agree.

While filming Slender Man, Joey King developed a strange health problem

Joey King hasn't only starred in mainstream films and shows like The Kissing Booth and The Act, she's also appeared in a few horror films, like The Conjuring and Slender Man, as noted by her IMDb profile. And as she tells it, she doesn't mind appearing in scary flicks, despite the bad rap they often have. "I think what attracts me so much to it is that the horror fan base is so loyal and dedicated," King told Refinery 29. "The reactions people always have to horror movies is just the greatest thing."


As scary as Slender Man was to watch, something even scarier happened to King while she was filming the movie. "I got an unexplainable illness," she revealed in an interview with L'Officiel. "I started losing platelets in my blood and they wanted to give me a transfusion, but I refused." The condition only improved when King started filming The Act, a series in which she plays a girl who's constantly sick. Uh, how weird is that?

We could learn a thing or two about kindness from the girl who plays Elle in The Kissing Booth

With everything that Joey King has going for her, you'd think that the comments on her Instagram posts would be all praise. But when she shaved her head, she experienced her fair share of online bullying, which is something that she just doesn't understand. "It's crazy to me how much people thrive off of bullying others," she explained in an interview with As If. "I think it's getting better as a whole, but it is not getting better on the social media front at all." That's why they say to never read the comments though, right?


King has also seen strangers going after each other in her comments section, as well as directing their vitriol in her direction. Thankfully, she's learned not to take any of it personally. "I'm very fortunate that I'm a confident and happy person, because if I wasn't these cruelties would shatter me," she continued. "We have a lot to learn about kindness." Louder again for the people in the back, Joey!

The Kissing Booth's Joey King tried her hand at producing

Joey King has been acting for a long time, considering she got her start all the way back in 2006. In that time, she's seen a lot of scripts — both good and bad — which have sometimes left her wanting more.


"A lot of times, you feel like something's missing," she shared in a chat with Awards Circuit. "Or sometimes you feel like you could be doing more to make yourself a better actor, or you could be creating that role for yourself that you really want." That's what inspired King to get her start in producing, which she did for the film Camp.

Producing has been an experience that King dubbed enlightening and something she definitely plans to do more of in the future. "I'm learning so much and I think that's the most valuable part of [producing]," she continued. As of this writing, King is also set to be a producer for The In Betweens, and hopefully many more projects down the road. Either way, though, King has a good outlook. "Whether I make a lot of films in the future, whether they're amazing or they're learning spaces, it's just so incredible to see all the work that's being put into it," she said.


This is how The Kissing Booth costars Joey King and Jacob Elordi got together

One aspect of Joey King's life that piqued the interest of the Hollywood gossip machine was her brief romance with actor Jacob Elordi. The two met on the set of The Kissing Booth, in which they star as each other's love interest. "We were so close and throughout filming, I was just best friends with Jacob," she revealed to Seventeen. "I guess there was no [specific] moment, but I feel like the friendship kind of naturally was like, 'Oh hey, this person is super frickin' awesome.'" That's when the sparks started to fly and the friendship naturally blossomed into a romantic relationship.


While the pair were happy together for a time, King and Elordi ultimately broke up after about a year of dating, which King confirmed on the podcast Mood with Lauren Elizabeth. While it was sad to see them part, we'll get to see them reunite — at least onscreen.

This is what it was like for Joey King to work with Jacob Elordi on The Kissing Booth 2

Have you ever had to work on an important project with your ex? Was it super easy, kind of awkward, or 100 percent unbearable? That, of course, is what fans of The Kissing Booth wanted to know when The Kissing Booth 2 finally became a reality. Well, that wasn't lost on Joey King, who opened up about the experience on the podcast Mood with Lauren Elizabeth. "I know what everyone wants to know, of course," she confirmed. "It was crazy. It was a wild experience. But honestly, it was a really beautiful time." That shows just how mature both she and Jacob Elordi are — true professionals.


King also said that being back on The Kissing Booth set helped her become a more mature woman. "I learned a lot about myself and I grew as an actor," she continued. And as for what King had to say about working on the love scenes for The Kissing Booth 2 with Elordi? "It was fine. It was good," she added.