It's Hard Being Famous. One Thing Zac Efron Wishes He Could Do Without Being Recognized

 Zac Efron in The Iron Claw.
Credit: A24

Zac Efron rose to fame in the aughts thanks to his role as Tory Bolton in one of the best Disney Channel original movies, High School Musical. His career has only skyrocketed since then, landing him in critically acclaimed movies like The Iron Claw and getting his very own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Being as famous as Efron definitely comes with perks, but there are also times the actor wishes he could live a normal life without constantly being stopped and recognized by fans.

His new Netflix film A Family Affair briefly touches on the same negative experiences that come with fame. Efron plays Chris Cole, an action movie star who falls for his longtime assistant’s (Joey King) mother, played by Nicole Kidman. Personality-wise, they might be polar opposites, but Efron shares some common hardships with his character, which served as a talking point during his interview with ETOnline during the red carpet premiere. When asked if there is anything that he wishes he could do without being recognized, Efron said:

Going to the grocery store is kind of hard.

Ironically, Efron’s character struggles with the same task in the critically-mixed film and hasn’t stepped foot in a grocery store in years. While most people find grocery shopping a mundane chore, because Chris Cole hasn’t done it for himself in years, he takes a vibrant interest in the errand. He even asks his assistant to tell him what has changed about them (endless Oreo options) and what has stayed the same (the vegetable “shower”).

While it’s unclear if director Richard LaGravenese and writer Carrie Solomon had already included that trait in the script prior to casting Efron, he can’t help but get a kick out of the similarities.

And then he put it in the film! Their were like new things in the grocery store that I had not seen before and it was like oddly exciting.

A quick search reveals that the last time Efron was photographed grocery shopping was in 2014, which could mean that he, too, sends an assistant to handle that chore. Given that, it makes sense why he would be so excited that the film’s climatic, romantic gesture scene takes place inside a grocery store. In fact, both the director and the writer shared fond memories with USAToday of Efron and Kidman disappearing between takes to pursue the aisles of the real-life store.

Grocery shopping isn’t the only task Efron wishes he could do with being recognized, though. In June, he told CinemaBlend’s own Sarah El-Mahmoud that he would love to go to an amusement or theme park without being stopped for pictures. Fortunately, the HSM star doesn’t let his fame stop him from doing what he wants — like riding his favorite rollercoaster 12 times in one day.

While it’s unlikely fans will spot Efron in the grocery store anytime soon, they can catch the actor by streaming A Family Affair with an active Netflix subscription.