- Aspiring actor Austin Wallace went viral on TikTok after asking YouTuber Logan Paul for an internship.
- Wallace said he had quit his job as a welder and was turned down by Paul.
- Wallace told Insider that he received negative comments accusing him of asking for a “handout.”
Austin Wallace wasn’t looking for a handout when he approached controversial YouTube star Logan Paul last year for a job.
“I wasn’t asking for anything free. I told him I’d worked for it. So no, I was not asking for a handout on that video,” Wallace, a 23-year-old aspiring actor from Norwalk, Ohio, told Insider.
Wallace said he had quit his $100,000 salary job as a welder in March of 2021 to pursue a career in entertainment. At a press conference in Cleveland, Ohio, he approached Paul for an internship and later posted the experience on TikTok, which shows Wallace crying in his car.
In the video, Wallace tells Paul he took a risk in order to ask him for an opportunity.
“Go make content and do stuff with your friends. I’m glad you quit your job. It takes balls to do that, but now you gotta activate,” Paul says in the video.
“That interaction pushed me like maybe this was a sign that I should try to work on my own brand, my own purpose,” Wallace said.
Wallace said he received a lot of negative comments accusing home of looking for a handout after uploading the video, which has since amassed more than 15 million views.
“I kind of gave up everything, and I was upset, and after all that, that kind of sucked because everyone saw me as the guy that wanted a handout, which that’s not who I am,” Wallace told Insider.
Wallace said he was not asking for a handout but rather an unpaid opportunity to work under Paul as a mentee.
Since quitting his job and posting the video of himself crying on TikTok, Wallace said he lost everything, including his truck, and declared bankruptcy.
“Yeah, I lost everything, but it’s my fault. It’s my fault. It was my choice, but I did lose all of it,” Wallace said. “I don’t want anyone to feel bad about that.”
In the following months, Wallace said he continued to receive backlash from his video, in the form of hateful comments, stitches, and duets on TikTok. However, he was still determined to pursue his dream of being an actor.
“The hate is pushing me to achieve this. I have to do this. If I do not make it, it’s going to suck,” Wallace said.
Wallace moved to New York City from Ohio, auditioning for roles in student films, and told Insider he doesn’t hold resentment towards Paul for turning him down.
“I feel like no matter what, I don’t think I would change anything,” Wallace said. ” I think all of this pushed me to this point, and I believe in faith all the way, and I believe in destiny. This is what is meant to happen.”
He added: “I would’ve been in a job that I’m not happy with, I would’ve been unhappy, and I would’ve never took that risk to do that.”