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Rob Lowe Says He Wants Zac Efron to Play Him in a Biopic

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When the time comes for Rob Lowe to get his own biopic, he hopes producers phone Zac Efron to play him.

Sitting down with his son, John Owen Lowe, to spill the E-Tea in association with Ancestry.com, the father-son duo chatted about everything from season 2 of their Netflix show, Unstable, to Lowe’s aspirations for having The Iron Claw actor, 36, portray him. 

“Who would you want to play you in a movie about your life? And let’s say I’m off the table,” John Owen, 29, asked his dad as they interviewed each other. 

“Zac Efron,” Rob, 60, responded promptly. “Iron Claw? Amazing. He’s amazing.”

John Owen Lowe and Rob Lowe attend the Los Angeles premiere of Netflix’s “Unstable” at TUDUM Theater in March 2023.Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic

“No, yeah, Zac Efron would be great,” John Owen agreed sarcastically, prompting his dad to ask what issue he takes with the idea. “I think that — that would be a funny phone call to sit in on. You trying to pitch that to his agents.”

John Owen added, “It would be great casting. I’m just saying I don’t think Zac Efron would do it.”

Back in 2013, Rob even compared himself to The High School Musical alum after Efron sought treatment for issues related to substance abuse. The Outsiders star — who similarly struggled early on in his prolific Hollywood career — shared that he had been in contact with Efron to lend his support and offer advice should he need it. 

He sat down with the late Larry King and called the Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates star “a little bit of a mini-me,” saying he had taken Efron under his wing in a mentor-mentee relationship and expressed his pride in how far the younger actor had come. 

“He’s doing great,” Rob told King at the time. “Whenever I can share my experience with people, I like to do it. It helps me.”

Rob also told the late TV and radio host that Efron had become like family to not just himself, but to his two sons, John Owen and Matthew Edward, who he shares with his wife, Sheryl Berkoff

Speaking of family, in their new sit-down with ET, the father and son discussed taking their own Ancestry DNA tests and finding out more about their genetic makeup, including one familial connection to another major name in the entertainment industry. 

“I was surprised when I found out I was related to some celebrity,” Rob said, adding, “John Cougar Mellencamp.”

Things quickly descended into chaos, however, as Rob and John Owen went back and forth on whether or not the younger of the two would be able to pick Mellencamp out of a lineup or identify any of his songs. John Owen ultimately confirmed he did know the 72-year-old singer, but mostly because he is familiar with Hudson Mellencamp, the “Jack & Diane” singer’s 30-year-old son. 

“Yes, we are — turns out — related. Didn’t know that we’re distant cousins,” Rob said. 

Rob Lowe and John Owen Lowe pose togetherMike Coppola/FilmMagic

It’s all about family for the father-son duo who marked their first collaboration on-screen together in Unstable season 1 last year. In the show, Rob and John Owen star as (you guessed it) father and son. 

John Owen plays Jackson, the shy child of eccentric tech CEO Ellis Dragon (Rob), who is in a downward spiral after the death of his wife. Jackson must step in to help save his father and the company before he spins the whole situation into utter chaos. 

The younger of the two Lowe family members jokes that for fans of the pair, they should soak up all the time they get together on the show as it could be a while before they do another TV show or movie together. 

“Would you do another project with me? If something came up, would you?” Rob asked. “If I wanted you to, would you?”

“It depends on what project,” John Owen joked.

Rob asserted that they could pick up the mantle from the Sheen family, including Martin Sheen, Charlie Sheen and Emilio Estevez, who have collaborated on numerous projects over the years. 

“Yeah, but they cared less about like nepo babies back then,” John Owen quipped. “I got to get away from you, man. I got to go do some other stuff… Maybe in like 10 years.”

Watch the trailer for Unstable season 2 in the player below:

Unstable season 2 premieres on Netflix on Aug. 1. 

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