In some ways it seems impossible to believe that Chris Pratt, who was so well known for playing the goofy and chubby Andy Dwyer on the TV series Parks and Recreation, would become one of the the most successful action stars on the big screen, but that’s exactly what’s happened thanks to the triple success of the Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers superhero films as well as the Jurassic World franchise. In fact, there was even talk of his becoming the new Indiana Jones, until Harrison Ford decided he would take up the character’s fedora and whip one more time.

Born June 21, 1979 in Virginia, Minnesota, by the time he had reached high school Chris knew two things: he wanted to be famous and make a “s–t ton of money.” By the time he was 19 he was ready to turn that dream into reality. He was waiting tables at Maui’s Bubba Gump Shrimp Factory when he was discovered by actress/director Rae Daw Chong, who cast him in the first film she directed, Cursed Part 3. Other small roles followed, but then, in 2006, he was cast in the TV series Everwood and things continued to press forward. Three years later he was on Parks and Recreation and five years after that was sitting at the top of Hollywood with the success of The LEGO Movie and Guardians of the Galaxy. Bottom line: he had become famous, and made … a lot of money.

As reported by CNBC, he sensed something happening when he met Rae Daw Chong: “The moment she told me she was bringing me to L.A., I knew. I was like, ’This is what I’m going to do with the rest of my life.'”

For a behind-the-scenes look back at the TV shows and films of Chris Pratt, please scroll down.