Few actors are built like Alan Ritchson. Literally.
Alan first debuted as an actor in 2005, when he portrayed Aquaman on The CW Smallville series. Even among a show full of heartthrob actors playing superheroes, he certainly stood out with his tall build and handsome appearance. Since then, he became known for his roles in Blue Mountain State and Titans. In 2022, he began portraying the title character in Reacher on Prime Video. In 2023, he also appeared in Fast X.
But while Alan Ritchson may be known for his musclebound physique and charm, many have been surprised to find out that he appeared on TV even earlier than his time on Smallville. In fact, he technically got his start on television with American Idol!
Check out how he did on his audition and how he looks back on his time as part of the popular reality singing competition.
Yup, Alan Ritchson was totally on 'American Idol' way back when.
Alan first auditioned for American Idol back in 2004 during the show's third season. Surprisingly enough, his audition video isn't that hard to find.
Upon appearing in front of the judges, he immediately makes an impression on Paula Abdul, who admitted to being completely taken by Alan's good looks. Fellow judges Randy Johnson and Simon Cowell even decided to take a step back and invited Alan to jokingly woo Paula with his singing audition.
Of course, looks weren't the only thing that Alan had going for him when it came time for him to sing. His rendition of "You Are the Sunshine of My Life" by Stevie Wonder wowed the judges, especially as he went down on one knee to charm Paula. Ever the actor, however, Alan even made a show of hugging an all-too-amused Paula as the other judges tried to separate them.
Despite the theatrics, Alan got a pass from Randy and Paula to move on to Hollywood.
Alan didn't make it past the initial round of Hollywood tryouts and never appeared during the live competitions, which was eventually won by Fantasia Barrino. However, he would go on to have a massively successful career in acting almost immediately after his brief stint on Idol.
Interestingly enough, he spoke briefly about his time on the show in 2023. During his guest appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Alan was asked about having been on American Idol. Alan admitted that his first passion even before acting had always been writing songs. He even revealed that on Idol, he'd been helping some of his fellow competitors with a songwriting challenge.
However, his appearances on the show were apparently edited to make him look like he'd been slacking off during the songwriting process, something that he was jokingly embittered about decades after becoming a successful actor.