After six seasons, it's hard to imagine anyone but Grant Gustin playing Barry Allen on The CW's The Flash of the hero's own series in 2014, Gustin has brought one of DC Comics' most beloved characters to life on the small screen but it turns out that Gustin himself didn't believe, initially, that he'd get the role. The actor revealed in a recent episode of the Inside of You with Michael Rosenbaum podcast that he was so convinced he wouldn't get the Barry Allen role that he didn't want to go to the audition.
"Even when I got the audition I didn't want to go because I was like I'm not going to get it and I get a lot of audition anxiety and you know, if I don't want to waste my time or their time," Gustin said. "The breakdown [for the character] was even like 20, mid 20s to early 30s or mid-20s to early to mid-30s and, again, I was like 23 and looked like I was 19 maybe and I didn't want to go to the audition at all because I thought it was so irrational to think that I could book it."
Gustin did end up booking the role and has been a fan favorite as Barry Allen ever since, but Gustin went on to explain a bit more about his struggles when it comes to feelings of imposter syndrome and anxiety. The actor also revealed that he frequently doesn't think he's worthy of what he gets or that he doesn't work hard enough for what he has.
“I think one thing I really struggle with - me and my wife were actually talking about it recently, and me and my mom have this conversation all of the time, she’s the one who really pointed out to me that I have Impostor syndrome, for sure," Gustin explained. "I don’t think I ever deserve anything that I get, or that I’m not worthy or I didn’t work hard enough for it, or someone else worked harder or was more talented. That’s something I struggle with all the time, just being okay with where I’m at, and feel like I deserved it or earned it. That’s one thing that really makes me feel lucky all the time, I don’t know how I got to where I’m at, like almost ever."
"Even when I was doing West Side [Story], I should have been a junior in college at the time, and all my friends still work." Gustin continued. "And I was living all of our dreams and doing the Broadway tour of West Side Story. Every day was like ‘Why me, man? Why am I so lucky?’ And I’ve kind of, every step of the way, I’ve felt like that."
Gustin also revealed that anxiety has been "ever-present" in his life since he was a child, something that he has had to deal with in his marriage.0comments
"Since really young, probably four or five, I’ve dealt with anxiety and depression. I had really weird, anxious-type dreams as a really young kid. I don’t want to get too into it, but before we got married, we started doing couple’s therapy, just to be ready for marriage before. There was really nothing going on in the marriage, and then all kinds of things, for both of us, started to come to the surface, and it’s good for us as a couple and as individuals. I knew I had always dealt with anxiety, but getting pinpointed ideas about where things started, and why you were feeling that way. Anxiety’s ever-present in my life, for sure."
The Flash airs Tuesdays at 8/7c on The CW.