So he penned his own movies: 2007's Superbad and 2008's Pineapple Express. Now, the Knocked Up star is so in demand the superhero flick he will star in and co-wrote, The Green Hornet, is being directed by acclaimed director Michel Gondry, the man who turned him down for a role in the Jim Carrey and Kate Winslet 2004 movie Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.
"I auditioned for the Elijah Wood part," Rogen tells WHO magazine while visiting Sydney to promote the animated family comedy, Monsters vs Aliens, he and Reese Witherspoon voice monsters in. "And I was tell Michel Gondry, 'I f--king auditioned for you, dude' and he's like, 'Oh, I did not know!' But, yeah, that was just like one of a thousand movies that I did not get cast in."
The former stand-up comedian doesn't feel proud that he's championed the everyman as leading man. "Not really because I had no choice," he says with a laugh. "I would've loved it if I'd championed the stoner handsome guy if that's what I was but I guess I'm happy that that's how it's turned out. Now in LA I can tell that there are people who move there trying to be actors because of my success probably. I'll see a chubby guy with glasses, scraggly facial hair and curly hair and I'll be like, 'That guy wouldn't have f--king moved here if I wasn't in a movie.' But they do and good for them!"
The 26-year-old Canadian has just become the ninth man to appear on the cover of Playboy in its 56-year history, following in the footsteps of comedy greats including Peter Sellers.
The Freaks and Geeks star only placed one condition on posing for the magazine. "They told me they wanted me to be on the cover of Playboy and I was like, 'Can I wear clothes?' and they said, 'Yes' so I said, "Okay, I'll do it.' "* For Seth Rogen's take on the Oscars Vanity Fair party that he was at with Madonna and Jennifer Aniston, plus details on how he trimmed down, see the interview in this week's WHO, on sale now.