Zac Efron drew concern from his fans after wearing sunglasses indoors during an interview with the Today Show.
While promoting his upcoming film The Iron Claw on the Today Show, the 36-year-old actor donned sunglasses as he sat beside his costars Jeremy Allen White, Harris Dickinson, and Stanley Simons. Efron explained to the hosts that the reason he was wearing them inside was to cover up an eye “infection.”
Host Craig Melvin joked as he introduced the actors, “Zac Efron is a legitimate, bona fide Hollywood superstar but that is not the reason he is in shades right now.”
Immediately, a sheepish Efron apologised, “No, I’m sorry, man. I feel weird being in shades.”
“I just have a bit of an eye infection,” the High School Musical star explained. “But I really wanted to be here. It’s such a good movie, and I want to come see you guys and tell everyone about it.”
Viewers took to X, formerly known as Twitter, to voice their concerns about the actor’s appearance.
“Omg Zac wearing shades inside is not normal,” one fan wrote. “He’s not well. He’s having eye problems for sure.”
Another added, “Zac Efron wearing these sunglasses indoors isn’t gonna dispel any of the rumors or worry going on about him.”
This isn’t the first time the actor has faced scrutiny online for his appearance, with many commenting on his seemingly different jaw. The rumours first began to swirl in April 2021 after the actor appeared in a promotional clip for an Earth Day special with Bill Nye. Eagle-eyed fans at the time quickly pointed out a difference in Efron’s facial structure, many questioned whether the actor’s oddly pronounced jaw was due to plastic surgery.
But the star addressed plastic surgery speculation in September of this year, reminding fans others that a year ago he shared that he’d shattered his jaw after smacking his chin against a fountain. In an interview with Men’s Health, Efron commented on what he dubbed “jaw-gate,” and he explained that the noticeable change was due to the accident and the physical therapy that he underwent.
He explained that while running through his house in socks he slipped and fell, smashing his chin against the granite corner of a fountain, and knocking himself out. The actor added that when he woke up, his “chin bone was hanging off his face”. According to Efron, his inner jaw muscles had to work harder to compensate as a result of the injury and they grew. He noted that he tried to “mediate” the growth through the help of a specialist and physical therapy.
“The masseters just grew,” he said. “They just got really, really big.”
Efron and his co-stars were promoting The Iron Claw, which follows the true story of the Von Erich brothers, who became wrestling icons in the 1980s but grappled with a series of horrific tragedies from 1959 to 1993 that has since been dubbed the “Von Erich curse.” The film will be released in theaters on 22 December.