The country is pretty divided right now, but we can all agree on at least one thing: Noah Centineo is having a moment.
The 22-year-old South Florida native stars as the crush-worthy love interest in two recent Netflix romantic comedies: “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,” which captured our hearts last month, and “Sierra Burgess Is a Loser,” which hit the streaming site on Friday.
Both films are notable for different reasons, but the biggest shared takeaway has been Centineo is pure rom-com perfection. His good looks certainly help — he has hazel eyes, a wide grin and tousled hair, the last of which has led to Mark Ruffalo comparisons — but it is his disarming and earnest screen presence that has set him apart from his peers.
Entertainment Weekly recently declared it “the summer of Noah Centineo.” The Los Angeles Times put him in Zac Efron territory. And BuzzFeed called him “the Netflix teen rom-com heartthrob of your dreams.” Centineo also earned the esteemed title of Internet Boyfriend — an honor he seems to be taking pretty seriously.
Here is everything you need to know about this summer’s breakout star.
He’s a Disney alum.
Like many young stars, Centineo got his first big break at the Disney Channel. At 15, he was cast in the teen musician comedy “Austin & Ally,” and even back then he was playing a boy-next-door role as Ally’s crush, Dallas. A few years later, he starred in the Disney Channel original movie “How to Build a Better Boy,” playing the dreamboat jock (yes, there’s a theme here) who inspires the main character to craft a robot boyfriend.
His next big role arrived in 2015 when he replaced Jake T. Austin as Jesus in the Freeform drama “The Fosters.” The reportedly 6-foot Centineo was much taller than his predecessor, so the switcheroo led to a very tongue-in-cheek moment where the character’s growth spurt was laughed off as a side-effect of hospital food.
If you find Centineo familiar, but still cannot place him, you might be thinking of Camila Cabello’s “Havana” music video, which took top prize at the MTV VMAs last month. Centineo played the singer’s love interest in the music video (and the film within said music video), which led to a memorable dancing scene.
He seems pretty romantic in real-life, too.
“I love love,” Centineo recently told the Los Angeles Times. “I’ve been in love twice — at least my understanding of what love is. First love is ravaging — it just guts you in the most wonderful way, if you can see through it.”
He’s also talked about some of his past romantic gestures, and all we can say is: swoon.
He once took a girlfriend back to her hometown in Puerto Rico, which she hadn’t visited for years. And he told BuzzFeed his best first date happened around sunset on the rooftop of a W Hotel, where he and a date traded books and “read for, like, three hours.” (“I gave her “Celestine Prophecy,” and she gave me “You Are the One” by Kute Blackson,” Centineo recalled.)
His co-stars love him.
As the sweet, popular jock Peter Kavinsky in “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before,” Centineo has much-discussed chemistry with Lana Condor, who plays the main character, Lara Jean Song Covey. The two have even admitted to cuddling between takes — a habit that led someone on set to take the adorable lock-screen photo that the film’s most observant viewers spotted on Lara Jean’s phone.
Condor told Entertainment Tonight she has “never felt chemistry like this ever before with any other actor that I’ve worked with.”
“I think we both know that it’s special, and I’m just happy that it’s him that I’m going through all this with. We make a really, really good team,” she told the outlet.
Naturally, fans want to know if they are dating in real life. But they are just friends! Centineo recently told People he is single.
Shannon Purser (of “Stranger Things” fame) leads “Sierra Burgess is a Loser,” in which she shares her first on-screen kiss with Centineo.
Purser told Vogue Centineo is “just as charming and sweet and soulful as he appears to be,” and that he would drive her home after work.
He’s also made an impression on other colleagues. Susan Johnson, who directed him in “To All the Boys,” recently told The Washington Post he’s “the Tom Hanks” of his generation.
Tamara-Lee Notcutt, the casting director who tapped him for both “Sierra Burgess” and “To All the Boys,” told Entertainment Tonight she saw something special in Centineo.
“Even though he was confident, there was something very goofy and awkward, as well,” Notcutt said. “He’s just super adorable, very charming and fun.”