KJ Apa: Well-known actor and fashion model from New Zealand

KJ Apa is a well-known actor and fashion model from New Zealand, family and friends are very important to him. He has the leading role of Archie Andrews in the drama series Riverdale and has appeared in the soap Shortland Street and the television series The Cul de Sac. His first film role was in A Dog’s Purpose, after which he starred in Altar Rock, The Hate U Give, the coming of age film The Last Summer and in 2020 he appeared as Jeremy Camp in I still believe. For the role of Archie in Riverdale, Apa must have both his hair and his eyebrows dyed and, just like Archie, music plays an important role in Apa’s life. KJ has been featured in the advertising campaigns of ASOS, Fossil and Saturdays NYC, he lives in Vancouver Canada.

KJ Apa from New Zealand

KJ Apa is short for Keneti James Fitzgerald Apa. He is a well-known actor and fashion model from New Zealand and was born on June 17, 1997 in Auckland, he is the son of Keneti and Tessa Apa. His father is Samoan and chief (matai) of a village in Samoa, his mother is European New Zealander. KJ Apa has two older sisters and attended King’s College in Auckland. Apa has good contact with his parents, he sees his father as an example. When he was 15, KJ got a Samoan tattoo on his right shoulder as a tribute to his father. From the Samoan culture, he was raised with respect for others, especially your parents. He is the cousin of former rugby player and rugby coach Michael Jones.

New Zealand and Kiwis

A resident of New Zealand is also called a Kiwi. During the First World War, New Zealand soldiers were called Kiwis, a nickname they appreciated. The residents of New Zealand have now adopted the nickname and KJ Apa also calls himself a Kiwi.

KJ Apa’s hobbies

In Auckland, Apa was an avid rugby player, rugby is the national sport in New Zealand, just like football in the Netherlands. Apa also plays the guitar, because, just like his character Archie in the Riverdale series, music plays a major role in his life. One of the reasons Apa was chosen for the role of Archie was because the main character plays the guitar in the series. Apa loves dancing to the music of Chaka Khan, The Jackson Five and James Brown.

KJ Apa as actor

After high school, KJ became interested in acting. His television debut was in New Zealand in the soap opera ,Shortland Street, where he was part of the main cast in the role of Kane Jenkins. The series ran from 2013 to 2015. He then played the character Jack in six episodes of ,The Cul De Sac,, a television series for young adults. In 2017, he played his first film role in ,A Dogs Purpose, as the teenager Ethan Montgomery, followed by ,Altar Rock, and as Chris in ,The Hate U Give, (a film about class contradictions), both from 2018. In In 2019, KJ played the role of Griffen in the romantic comedy ,The Last Summer,, a coming of age film and in 2020 he played the role of Christian rocker Jeremy Camp in ,I still believe,.

KJ Apa: ,The Hate U Give was powerful. The point was to get kids talking, realizing that empathy is more powerful than sympathy.,


KJ as Archie Andrews on Riverdale

Apa rose to fame as Archie Andrews in the CW drama series ,Riverdale,, in which he played the lead role of red-haired Archie Andrews. Apa has brown hair and has to have his hair and eyebrows dyed every two weeks for his role as Archie Andrews.


Riverdale is an American television series based on the characters from the Archie comic series. The episodes of the first season were broadcast between January 26 and May 11, 2017. Because the first season was so successful, a second season was released on October 11, 2017. This season was also successful and was followed by a third season that aired 10 started in October 2018 and a fourth season was launched on October 9, 2019. The fifth season experienced problems due to the corona crisis, which caused filming to be delayed and will probably be available again on Netflix from January 2021

Pop’s Chock’lit Shoppe / Source: Jeff Hitchcock from Seattle, WA, USA, Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-2.0)

Each episode of Riverdale can be seen on Netflix one day after broadcast in the United States. The series follows the life of Archie Andrews (KJ Apa) in the town of Riverdale, a place that is not as perfect as it seems at first glance, danger lurks everywhere.

Pop’s Chock’lit Shoppe

In the series, Archie and his friends can regularly be found at Pops Chocklit Shoppe, where they like to eat burgers and drink milkshakes. The hamburger joint actually exists, and due to the success of the series, special Riverdale shakes are served.

KJ Apa as model

When Apa was thirteen years old, his mother registered him with a modeling agency (his sister was also a model), nothing happened for two years and at fifteen he was asked to audition for the soap opera Shortland Street. He got the role and his career took off. According to KJ, rugby has taught him how to work well together and the discipline he has acquired has ensured that he works hard and keeps himself in perfect condition. Looking good is very important for his work as an actor/model, so he spends a lot of time in the gym. His acting and modeling work have made KJ a well-known personality, something he doesn’t always like.

Advertising campaigns

In addition to his work as an actor, Apa is asked for various advertising campaigns. His face graces the covers of magazines and can be seen in advertising campaigns for several well-known brands:

  • ASOS – online store for clothing, accessories and care products
  • Fossil – wristwatches and jewelry
  • Saturdays NYC clothing brand/lifestyle


Residence KJ Apa

Apa lives in Vancouver, a place where he enjoys going out. In 2017, the first season of Riverdale, he was involved in a car accident in Vancouver that injured his hand. The accident was caused by Apa falling asleep at the wheel after lengthy filming sessions. The car was a total loss but KJ escaped unscathed.

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