15 Things You Didn't Know About Brie Larson

Starting October 16, you can go see the new film Room and be completely shattered by the lead performance from Brie Larson.

Larson plays Ma, a young woman who was kidnapped as a teenager and forced to live in a garden shed with the son she gave birth to while in captivity. Despite unwanted visits from her captor (her son's biological father), she creates a happy existence for her child, forever fighting back her own pain. Larson is marvelously good, and it already seems likely that she'll (at the very least) be nominated for a Best Actress Oscar. And she's already reportedly taking over for Jennifer Lawrence in an onscreen adaptation of the memoir The Glass Castle.

But Larson has been impressive for a long time now, to the extent that we're convinced she can do pretty much anything.

We're just saying, if you're not already obsessed with Larson, you should be. Here, some facts that you might not have known about her.



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She took major inspiration from an American Girl.
Did you love your American Girl doll? Maybe not as much as Larson — birth name: Brianne Sidonie Desaulniers — loved hers. She told Jimmy Fallon that she adopted the last name Larson because of pioneer girl Kirsten Larson. She wanted the doll to be part of her family.

For what it's worth, she told Glamour in 2014 that Larson is a "family name from my great-grandmother."
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Photo: Erik Pendzich/REX USA.
Her first language was not English.
Larson initially spoke French. She told The Film Stage: "It’s something that as I got older and I started learning more English, I started losing more and more of my French speaking. But it is in there and I do know some of it still."
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Photo: Peter Brooker/REX USA.
Her big break was on Jay Leno's Tonight Show.
Larson started young. At age 6, she told her mom that acting was her "dharma." Her first job was starring in a parody commercial for Jay Leno called "Mudslide Barbie" when she was 7. The young actress told Kidzworld (yep) that "it was this Barbie commercial where I got to pour mud all over Barbie dolls and watch the heads pop off. It was so exciting, a lot of fun."
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She starred on a WB sitcom.
Larson plays one of Bob Saget's daughters in the short-lived sitcom Raising Dad, which began airing in 2001. The show actually features an awesome cast of now-more famous women including Larson, Kat Dennings, and Meagan Good.
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She was a pop star in the making.
Had she taken a different path, Larson might be headed for the Grammys rather than the Oscars. She released a pop album in 2005 called Finally Out of P.E. The video for the song "She Said" features a Napoleon Dynamite reference. 2005! Whatta time!

According to a recent Variety profile, Larson very much fell into the music industry after recording the song "Invisible Girl." She said: "I had no aspirations for that, but within seconds, I had a record deal. Tommy Mottola signed me, and I was being flown all over the U.S. to write songs for my album."
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She was in one of your favorite rom-coms.
Larson played one of the evil Six Chicks in 13 Going on 30, alongside Pretty Little Liars' Ashley Benson. She also played a mean girl in 2004's Sleepover.
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She has almost played some major parts.
Imagine Larson in Juno instead of Ellen Page or Olivia Thirlby, or in Thirteen instead of Evan Rachel Wood. In a New York magazine feature, Larson said she was up for all those roles.
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She didn't stop rocking...
Though Larson's pop career didn't pan out, she did rock out in 2010's Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, singing a Metric song.
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She's been a superhero, sort of.
If you didn't watch Larson on the third season United States of Tara, you missed her as Princess Valhalla Hawkwind, the alter ego of her character Kate Gregson. Even out of context, Princess Valhalla's music video is pretty spectacular.
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Photo: Matthew Baron/BEImages.
She's into mycology.
Larson revealed in a Reddit AMA that she's has studied mycology, the biology of fungi. "That may seem like the strangest, but I'm passionate about it," she wrote. Further proof she's into fungi? "Mushroom forager" is part of her Twitter bio.
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She's been behind the camera.
She co-wrote and co-directed the short film The Arm, which won the Special Jury Award for Comedic Storytelling at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. Another short, Weighting, screened at SXSW in 2013. (She also starred in that one.) During her Reddit AMA in 2013, she wrote, "I can't see myself acting for much longer, at least not full time. I've started fading out of that and moving towards writing/directing."
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She has taken multitasking to a whole new level.
She once told Conan O'Brien that when she was a kid, she attempted to eat dinner in the shower thinking it would be a "great time-saver." It didn't go well.
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She was one of the guys.
Larson has some top-notch celebrity buddies. She shared a New York magazine cover with friend Shailene Woodley, and starred in Jenny Lewis' video for "Just One of the Guys" with Kristen Stewart and Anne Hathaway.
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Photo: Michael Buckner/Variety/REX USA.
She's really into Star Wars.
Larson's love of Star Wars helped her break ground with Jacob Tremblay, the boy who stars as her son in Room. "She likes Star Wars, like me. So that's why we’re best friends," Tremblay told People. Even before this anecdote started making the rounds, Larson was open about her Star Wars fandom. Asked why her Reddit username is TonTonClub in the aforementioned AMA, she responded, "It's a reference to Star Warts. Am I spelling it right? Star Warts?" (She's not exactly a passive Reddit user who just pops by to promote projects. She's delved deep into the site.)
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She's a film connoisseur.
Larson has highbrow taste in films. She was a fan of Gone with the Wind and Fried Green Tomatoes by the age of 8, according to The Guardian. Discussing her teen years, she told BuzzFeed: "I’d want to hog the one TV in our house to watch [Jean-Luc Godard’s] Masculin Féminin, and one time my mom just snapped at me: ‘I don’t want to read subtitles all day. I’ve worked all day, and I want to watch Top Chef, and I don’t want you to judge me for it.’"
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