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From local theatre to Mean Girls: Inside Reneé Rapp's rise to fame

From local theatre to Mean Girls: Inside Reneé Rapp’s rise to fame

She finally got to meet the original Regina George x


Mean Girls star Reneé Rapp’s rise to fame might seem overnight and coming from nowhere. She is undoubtedly one of the flavours of the month due to her chaotic attitude to interviews,  drunken birthday Instagrams and killer talent. Fresh off hosting the iconic SNL with Jacob Elordi, it might seem that she popped out of nowhere. However, Reneé is rather accomplished for her mere age of 24. After building an impressive resume as a triple threat, let’s look at her rise to fame.

Reneé Rapp snagged her first theatre award while still in high school

Reneé was a huge part of Hopewell High School’s drama department before moving on to the specialist Northwest School of Arts. In 2018, her teacher Cory Mitchell praised Reneé and her ability to “move an audience” with her stage presence to The Charlotte Observer. Her gong came when she won the tenth annual Jimmy Awards for her turn as Sandra in a production of Big Fish.

Reneé Rapp first played Regina George in the original Broadway run of the musical version of Mean Girls

She wasn’t the first actress to take on the Queen Bee of Northshore High. That honour went to Taylor Louderman. However, Reneé performed the character eight times a week from September 2019 until the whole world went dark thanks to the international effort to slow the spread of COVID-19 in March 2020.

Reneé Rapp is a television star

Reneé got the role of Leighton Murray in the Mindy Kaling-helmed HBO series The Sex Lives of College Girls in late 2020. She upset fans when she revealed that she was leaving at the end of its third season after critics and fans lauded her for playing a character grappling with being a lesbian.

Reneé Rapp is a fully-fledged pop girlie

In 2022, Reneé released her EP Everything to Everyone. Building its success, which included a sold-out US tour, she released the full-length studio album Snow Angel last year, with the ensuing Snow Hard Feelings tour. In late 2023, Reneé dropped a deluxe version of the LP that included a remix of her song Tummy Hurts with Coco Jones and an accompanying video.

Last August, she revealed that her focus was on this side of herself after the Mean Girls promo tour – which included a song with her pal Megan Thee Stallion – while chatting to The Los Angeles Times.

She is openly queer

Reneé might have been so good at playing Leighton because she has direct personal experience of having a difficult time questioning your sexuality.

“I literally hated myself for months because I’m bisexual,” she told The Cut in August last year. Many have taken her calling herself the “little lesbian intern” on SNL last week as her coming out as one.

Reneé has ADHD

Much of her beloved behaviour in interviews might stem from her being diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a condition that can lead to poor impulse control and outbursts. Previously, Reneé spoke about finding having it “really fun” and how it led to her having a “different creative process” with her peers.

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