10 Things You Didn’t Know About KJ Apa

The first thing you need to know about KJ Apa is that he’ll be presenting at the iHeartRadio MMVAs on June 18. Apa plays the red-headed boy next door, Archie Andrews, in the smash hit series Riverdale based off the classic Archie Comics. But there’s definitely more to know about the dog-loving, sports-playing heartthrob—so, see 10 facts about the up-and-coming actor below.


He’s a kiwi — Apa was born and raised in New Zealand

Check out that accent.


His real name is Keneti James Fitzgerald

He goes by KJ for short. Apa and his father share their first name, which is of Samoan descent.



He’s quite the musician

Apa has major musical chops both on and off the set of Riverdale. His Instagram is loaded with drool-worthy covers and clips like this


His first love was rugby

While in school, Apa had to choose whether he would pursue the sport or follow his passions into the music and acting world. A similar plot line exists for his character Archie Andrews—football star by day, singer-songwriter by night.


Apa was a soap opera star in New Zealand

He played Kane Jenkins in the popular prime-time New Zealand soap Shortland Street from 2013 to 2015. The hospital drama has some serious Grey’s vibes.


Before Riverdale,  he starred in A Dog’s Purpose

In 2015, he was cast as teen Ethan in the feel-good puppy flick.


He’s a huge dog lover

Pups are a prominent feature on his social media accounts.



He has Samoan family roots

His father is a chief in Samoa and Apa got a tattoo to commemorate his heritage on his right shoulder.


He and Cole Sprouse are best friends IRL too

They’re a dynamic duo both on screen as Archie and Jughead, and off screen. You can find their friendship receipts on their social media, which include camping adventure pics and more.


A post shared by KJ Apa (@kjapa) on


He also dabbles in art

Apa worked on this particular piece for two years.



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