Belfast Telegraph

Penn Badgley: I'm a commodity

Penn Badgley turned himself into a "commodity" in order to be able to fund his love of music.

The 27-year-old actor is best known for portraying Dan Humphrey on the popular teen drama, which came to an end in 2012.

He's now moved on to the music scene with electro band MOTHXR. While Penn might be trying something completely new, he'll never forget what the show did for him.

"A bit like the impact of the moon hitting the Earth all those millions of years ago - at first I was full of fire and molten rock but now it's cooled down and I appreciate what it's given me," he explained to British newspaper Metro when asked about the impact Gossip Girl had on his career.

"I very much had a career before the show but no one else seemed to know about it. That's a necessary function of being an actor today - in order to do the projects you want you have to become a valuable commodity or brand and use that to fund projects you're passionate about, which has happened with this band."

The handsome star admits that some fans head to his sets just to see "Dan Humphrey from Gossip Girl". But it's when he takes people by surprise with his identity that he feels fulfilled.

"At the last New York show, I was talking to some people I knew outside waiting to go in and they didn't realise I was the singer - they just heard the band was cool, so that's really nice," he added.

Penn and co-stars Blake Lively, Leighton Meester, Chace Crawford and Ed Westwick played rich kids with turbulent love lives in the teen show. They've all moved on with their careers and the heartthrob is pleased he's finally following his dreams.

"As bulls**t as it sounds, the most important thing is I've learned to do what drives me - I put that drive on hold for many years, both before Gossip Girl and during," he said.

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