Francia Raisa Says Her ‘Secret Life’ Character Was “a Little Bit of Me” (EXCLUSIVE)

"It came to a point where I was like, ‘Do I like blue? Or does Adrian like blue?’”

Elizabeth Randolph - Author

Apr. 23 2024, Published 5:04 p.m. ET

(l-r): Shailene Woodley, Ken Baumann, and Francia Raisa
Source: Getty Images

In 2008, The Secret Life of the American Teenager was a popular teen drama on Freeform (formerly ABC Family). The show followed Shailene Woodley as Amy Juergens, a teen mom dealing with high school and a love triangle between her baby daddy, Ricky (Daren Kagasoff), and her boyfriend, Ben (Ken Baumann).

One particularly memorable character was Amy's rival, Adrian Lee, played by Francia Raisa.

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Since Secret Life wrapped, Francia has taken on many projects, including entering the food and beverage industry with La Victoria and Modelo’s Spiked Aguas Frescas. However, the former teen queen exclusively told Distractify that she can never escape Adrian.

Francia Raisa
Source: Getty Images
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Francia Raisa said people remember her ‘Secret Life of the American Teenager’ character the most.

Francia starred in The Secret Life of the American Teenager for five years, playing the character Adrian. Despite the show being over a decade old, Francia still receives questions about her character's storylines and the show in general. The actor also said she pulled from her real life to play her character.

“Adrian was a little bit of me,” she shared with Distractify while promoting her Modelo partnership. “Actually, I don't know if it was me or the version of me that I was brave enough to be on screen.”

She continued: “That's one of the craziest things about acting, especially being on a show for so long. It came to a point where I was like, ‘Do I like blue? Or does Adrian like blue?’”

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(l-r): Ken Baumann, Greg Finley, Daren Kagasoff, India Eisley, Francia Raisa, Megan Park and Shailene Woodley
Source: Getty Images

Francia had no idea that ‘Secret Life of the American Teenager’ had found a new fanbase on TikTok.

Since Secret Life of the American Teenager ended in the 2010s, it doesn't feel like it's been off the air long enough to be considered "nostalgic” to those who watched it live. However, TikTok users seem to disagree.

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On the app, where many throwback moments are new again, Secret Life of the American Teenager’s scenes have become a part of the Gen Z zeitgeist. Some accounts and videos on the app praise the millennial-age show, while several highlight some of the series’ cringe moments.

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When asked about Secret Life gaining new fans all these years later, Francia admitted she “didn’t know” the show had a solid social media presence. But she doesn’t mind the extra attention or still being recognized by a new generation for being Adrian, comparing her experience to that of a few popular Friends characters.

Jennifer Aniston will always be Rachel to me,” she said. “David Schwimmer will always be Ross to me. To be a character that someone remembers like that. It's kind of cool.”

The actor is also proud of her legacy of being, in her sister’s words, “the cult classics queen,” as many of her roles have been a “reimagining” of sorts.

Grownish, How I Met Your Father, Bring It On, Cutting Edge, everything is just a reimagining of something that was successful,” Francia said of her roles. “Which I think is cool because I grew up with them.”

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