The Untold Truth Of Zoey Deutch

Over the past few years, Zoey Deutch has skyrocketed to fame. The daughter of director Howard Deutch (who frequently collaborated with John Hughes) and "Back to the Future" actress Lea Thompson, Deutch seemed destined for a career in the spotlight.


After getting her start on the Disney Channel with a recurring role on the show "The Suite Life of Zach and Cody," Deutch seamlessly transitioned into more adult roles, appearing in the "Zombieland" sequel, Netflix's "The Politician," the comedy "Dirty Grandpa," the comedy "Everybody Wants Some!!," the Netflix rom-com "Set It Up," the J.D. Salinger biopic "Rebel in the Rye," and, more recently, the dark social media influencer satire "Not Okay." Deutch has quickly climbed the ranks to become one of the most in-demand actresses in Hollywood.

Curious to learn more about this up-and-coming movie and TV star? Here are a few things you never knew about Zoey Deutch.

She is passionate about championing for gender equality in Hollywood

As a young woman entering the Hollywood scene, Zoey Deutch isn't afraid to speak up about the gender inequalities that pervade the industry. Even though Hollywood was forced to reconsider gender stereotypes and biases thanks to the #MeToo movement, according to Deutch, the industry still has a long way to go — and she's prepared to pave the way for change.


"For all the discussion about gender inequality in Hollywood, there really isn't as much action as you would think," she told Glass magazine. "The numbers and statistics are still staggering in terms of how many films were directed by women and men last year. We need to create the space and opportunities for women and continue to have the conversations."

It sounds like Deutch will continue not only standing up for equal opportunities for men and women in the acting industry, but also championing for female directors.

Zoey Deutch was born into Hollywood royalty

Zoey Deutch is, without a doubt, a talented young actress — as it turns out, her talent runs in her blood. As the daughter of "Pretty in Pink" director Howard Deutch and "Back to the Future" actress Lea Thompson, Deutch was surrounded by titans of the industry. In fact, she literally grew up on movie sets. "My first steps were taken on a movie set. My first word was 'lipstick,' in my mom's makeup trailer," she told Porter. It's no wonder Deutch found herself drawn toward acting as a child.


However, as the actress explained to Elle, she didn't feel pressured to follow in her parents' footsteps — instead, she felt that she had an understanding support system. "More than anything, I felt support and a deep gratitude for knowing that this path was an option; I know that's not a luxury offered to most — choosing the life of an artist, a writer, an actor, a singer doesn't even seem possible," she said. "I feel very grateful that my passion was encouraged."

She has an obsession with playing scammers

In the 2022 Netflix movie "Not Okay," Zoey Deutch plays a young girl who finds herself racking up Instagram followers after faking a story about a trip to Paris. The film explores society's relationship with influencers and how the desire for internet stardom can lead some to scam their way to the top.


As Deutch prepared to play the role, she became more and more intrigued with the real-life scammers on which her character was based. In fact, she realized that many of her roles fit into the "scammer" type. "I didn't know it at the time — I've now become aware of it — but I have had a real interest, maybe obsession, with playing quote-unquote 'unlikable scammers,'" she said to AV Club, citing "Flower," "Buffaloed," and "The Politician."

For Deutch, playing the scammer allows her to explore a complex role that reflects the truth of our society. "I'm not sure exactly what it is that makes me so drawn to these people," she went on. "But for Danni, I never saw her as the hero or the villain. I always saw her as this amalgamation, this foil for all these different things happening in our culture."


Zoey struggles to play the romantic lead

At first glance, Zoey Deutch may strike you as someone who was destined to play the ingenue. However, as the actress explained to Vulture, she has become eager to shed her typecasting as the romantic lead. In "Buffaloed," for instance, she felt that her character was more of a "love letter to strong, inconvenient women."


"Do I see myself as a strong, inconvenient woman?" she went on. "I don't think I identify with that. But I do identify with drive and having this real force and motivation that is kind of inexplicable."

In her first few roles, Deutch explained, she was cast as the romantic lead. "And it was really, really hard, because you're trying so hard to deepen it, root it, ground it into something that it'll never be," she said. "Because at the end of the day, as an actor, you're just a piece of the puzzle. You're not the whole thing. So it was exhausting and difficult." Since then, Deutch has kept her eye out for more complex female roles.

Animal work helps her get into character

Like many actors, Zoey Deutch has her own unique technique for getting into character to play a role. While some actors use music, back stories or immersion in the role, her approach is a little different.


As the actress explained to Backstage, she was trained using improvisation techniques, and she works with an Alexander Technique teacher, Jean-Louis Rodrigue, to improvise different animals for each of her characters. "I love, love, love animal work," she said. "It allows me to base my characters not just off of people and experiences that I've had, which are limited. No matter how much I want to believe I lead a cultured, open life, I'm in a bubble. So it opens your world up."

The actress used octopus improvisations to enter into her character for "The Politician." "She's a trickster, an animal that needed to be able to change colors and shape and camouflage, disappear," she explained. To prepare for her role in "Rebel in the Rye," she was a dolphin, per Backstage.


She had a small role in a Marvel film — before it was cut

While Zoey Deutch has already become one of the biggest stars of her generation, she was almost part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU), too. "I played 'girl in the bathroom' who got attacked by the lizard coming out of the toilet in 'The Amazing Spiderman,'" she told Jimmy Fallon. "I was in one scene, I had no lines, I was so excited."


Her scene even appeared in the trailer as part of the film's promotional material at Comic-Con, leading many of Deutch's friends to assume that she had a big role in the film. "They were like, 'Oh my God, you're the star of 'The Amazing Spiderman,'" she said. Sadly, when Deutch finally got to see the movie in theaters, her scene had been cut from the film altogether. "But I think technically I'm in the MCU," she said. Fallon went on to show Deutch's scene that never made it into the movie, which featured a huge lizard approaching Deutch and another girl in the bathroom.

Zoey Deutch is also a producer, thanks to her sister

While Zoey Deutch's career may still be in its early stages, the young actress has already branched into producing as well as acting. Her first film as a producer was in 2017. "I've been acting for 10 years and was like, 'I think I can be useful here. I think I could use my knowledge for good,'" she explained to AV Club. "It was definitely a conscious decision." She explained that she didn't feel the need to act as a producer on every acting project she took on, but that producing "Not Okay" was a welcome surprise.


Apparently, Deutch first got into producing thanks to her family. "My sister [Madelyn Deutch] wrote ['The Year Of Spectacular Men'] and we read it and were like, 'This is amazing,'" Deutch recalled. Her sister asked the whole family to get involved. "I have always had a very producorial mind from a business standpoint," she said. Deutch said yes — and, as she put it, "It sparked this new part of my life."

She has a very stringent skincare routine

One look at Zoey Deutch and you'll probably assume she has a pretty regimented beauty routine — and you'd be right. As the actress explained to Harper's Bazaar, skincare has become more and more important to her over the years. "At this point in my life, I try to wear less makeup and focus on repairing damaged skin," she said. "I spend so much time on my skin, it's crazy." Her basic skincare routine involves removing her makeup, using a Kate Somerville toner, a Kate Somerville moisturizer, and, as she put it, "a plethora of weird masks and things."


In an interview with Marie Claire, Deutch went into more detail about her favorite products. "La Mer The Eye Concentrate is my skincare's secret weapon because it makes me look and feel better," she said. She also loves the iS Clinical Cream Cleanser, the La Mer Soft Cream, EltaMD Moisturizer, and Neosporin Lip Balm.

Zoey Deutch has learned to manage her anxiety

While Zoey Deutch may seem to have her life together, it doesn't always feel that way for the actress. "I have anxiety, like so many other people," she told Glass magazine. "And I'm so glad so many people are opening up about anxiety, depression, mental illness, etc. Anything to help normalize it."


Deutch has been dealing with anxiety since she was just 2 years old, when she would hold her breath until she fainted. "I could physically make myself pass out before I could speak. It was called fainting baby disorder," she explained. While her anxiety was sometimes crippling for Deutch, over the years, she learned to embrace it. "My anxiety motivates me, it is where a lot of my ambition stems from. ... It can be crippling, but more times than not, I am grateful for my anxiety. However, it's taken a while to get there."

She has a complicated relationship with social media

As a young millennial, Zoey Deutch has always been surrounded by technology, and her journey with social media has been filled with ups and downs. "My best friend Willa [Bennett] and I had MySpaces together when we were, like, 10, and we were doing this thing that now is a thing before it was a thing, and we were really good at it, and we loved it," she told Elle. "We were always taking these artsy pictures. It was very creative; it wasn't as hollow as I find it to be now. It was a form of expression in a way that you don't necessarily identify with social media."


In more recent years, Deutch has begun to tire of the popular social media platforms and to worry about their impact on people's collective mental health. While social media can be fun, she said there is a "side that I find to be deeply toxic, and I despise it."

Zoey described how she got her part in Everybody Wants Some!!

In 2016, Zoey Deutch starred in Richard Linklater's "Everybody Wants Some!!" — a "spiritual sequel" to his famous 1993 film "Dazed and Confused." As she told Refinery29, she got the part after a lengthy audition process. It began with a self-tape, after which she was asked to fly to Austin, Texas to meet Linklater. "I met Rick ... at a restaurant and had lunch with him," she recalled. "And then he drove me to my own audition with him."


Following that audition, she met with actor Blake Jenner and Linklater again. Instead of another audition, the group simply discussed "art and life and the film and characters." "At the end of it, Rick handed me a stack of five CDs and I left," she said. "I remember looking at the CDs in the car ride to the airport thinking, one, what a sweet consolation prize. And two, where am I going to be able to play these?!" Not only did she get the part, but she eventually found a CD player. "It ended up being music to listen to [while we were] shooting," she said, which helped her get into character.

She had a quarter-life crisis at 25

In case you hadn't heard, the mid-life crisis is a thing of the past — we're doing the quarter-life crisis now. Apparently, we're all spiraling faster than ever — and Zoey Deutch is no different from the rest of us.


"I'm about to be 25 and the whole quarter-life crisis dread thing is real," she confessed to Glamour in 2019. As Deutch went on to explain, she doesn't usually overthink things in her life. "I wouldn't consider myself as a typically philosophical creature," she said. "I'm more of a person who is like, 'let's go get chicken,' or 'eat lipstick!'" However, as her 20s progressed, she found herself questioning things more. "Why are we all here? What does it all mean? What's the point?" she said. "I can be driving and thoughts like that will just pop in my head ... but maybe this all stops at 30?" Sounds like Deutch's quarter-life crisis could not be more relatable.

Zoey Deutch was bullied in school — but learned from the experience

It's hard to imagine a star like Zoey Deutch ever being bullied — however, as the actress told Porter in 2019, as a child, that's exactly what happened. "I had a terrible time in middle school. Just the worst," she recalled. "There were a lot of coughed insults when I walked down the halls, and there was some pushing and shoving, but mostly it was just people talking behind my back."


As a young adult in the acting industry, Deutch's experience with cruel children at school actually helped her stay grounded and positive. "Now I'm in a profession where everyone talks behind your back," she said. "But I rarely pay attention to it and I never do it to others. It's none of my business what other people think about me, and I meditate on that mantra." It sounds like there was one positive outcome from her difficult time in school.

She loves thrifting and takes inspiration from vintage fashion

You might assume that a successful actress like Zoey Deutch would shop at the top designer shops. However, the actress has humbler (and more sustainable) tastes when it comes to shopping. "My favorite pastime is going to estate sales and finding strange jewelry," she told Harper's Bazaar. "I shop at thrift stores like Goodwill and places like that." However, she does occasionally buy things firsthand at stores like Rachel Comey and Opening Ceremony.


In another interview with L'Officiel, Deutch explained that her style influences were quite classic. She loves wearing everything from "flowy prairie girl dresses" from the '70s to Levi's jeans from the '90s. "I've always been obsessed with Katharine Hepburn and all the suits that she wore," she said. "She paved her way through history straddling the line of what was conventionally accepted in fashion and beauty. Getting dressed up makes me feel in charge."