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Former teen heartthrob is latest Hollywood celeb trading LA for Austin

James Van Der Beek joins a growing list of celebrities who call Austin home.

AUSTIN, Texas — CULTUREMAP AUSTIN – Just as podcaster Joe Rogan recently did, Dawson’s Creek and Varsity Blues star James Van Der Beek is putting LA in the rearview mirror and relocating to the Austin area.

In a September 30 post on Instagram, Van Der Beek divulged that he, his wife, and their five kids (all age 10 or under) were saying goodbye to their home in Beverly Hills.

“Sometimes a fuller life begins with an empty house. Leaving Los Angeles incredibly grateful for all the friends and memories we’ve made here. Onto the next big adventure!” wrote Van Der Beek, dubbed a former teen heartthrob and “current general heartthrob” by HuffPost.

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The actor didn’t mention where his and his family would wind up. But on her Instagram account, Kimberly Van Der Beek revealed September 30 that they were embarking “on a new adventure in Texas.” She elaborated on the new location in a recent episode of The Make Down podcast, telling the podcast hosts that her family was moving “outside of Austin.”

“I think we’re in a time right now where people are wanting to ground themselves a little bit more into nature. And LA has been a magical place for many years for me. So much life has been lived here,” Kimberly said. “I’m going to go through a process to leave. I mean, I birthed three kids in the home I’m living in, in particular. But you know, I gotta get out of the concrete jungle for a little bit.”

It’s no great surprise that if the Van Der Beeks were pulling up stakes and heading to Texas, they’d settle in Austin. James has previously spent time in the Capital City, filming the 1999 coming-of-age flick Varsity Blues in and around Austin. James played the lead role of sensitive, brainy, inspiring high school quarterback Jonathan “Mox” Moxon. 

Aside from Ackles and Rogan, celebrities who own homes in the Austin area include Willie Nelson, Matthew McConaughey, Sandra Bullock, The Lord of the Rings star Elijah Wood (although his place in South Austin is on the market), Friday Night Lights stars Kyle Chandler and Taylor Kitsch, musician Gary Clark Jr., Supernatural stars Jared Padalecki and Jensen Ackles, and directors Richard Linklater and Robert Rodriguez.

RELATED: Lady Gaga, Ariana Grande 'Rain On Me' video directed by Austin filmmaker Robert Rodriguez

“With ever-rising rent prices and California’s cost of living increasing on the daily, some folks have forged an exodus from the Golden State to find greener, and cheaper, pastures elsewhere in the country,” Variety noted in May. “According to historical data, Arizona, Nevada, and Oregon are some popular places for transplants to move. However, the favorite choice for many Californians is its political (and meteorological) polar opposite: Austin, the capital city of Texas.”

This story originally appeared in CultureMap Austin.


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