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The American Horror Story Actor You Didn't Know Was A Preschool Teacher

At first glance, you wouldn't think that the worlds of acting and teaching have much overlap. Yet upon closer inspection, the two fields share many commonalities. Both involve capturing and holding an audience's attention. Both often require dealing with self-centered individuals throwing tantrums. And both usually need a degree of improvisation in order to make the "performance" work. 

In that context, it therefore comes as no surprise that many of Hollywood's big names have resumes that include teaching stints in addition to acting credits (via Best Life). Legends like Andy Griffith and Billy Crystal were teachers before breaking into show business. Sylvester Stallone, Hugh Jackman, and Mr. T all worked as gym teachers before making it big – and we pity the fool who acted up in Mr. T's class. While not in the same realm of fame as the others, one "American Horror Story" actor actually worked full-time as a preschool teacher and kept acting as a side gig.

American Horror Story's Ben Woolf kept his day job

Actor Ben Woolf, who received a diagnosis of pituitary dwarfism in childhood (via Time), first appeared in the inaugural season of "American Horror Story," playing Thaddeus Montgomery, a murdered and dismembered child who was resurrected by his father à la Dr. Frankenstein. Long after his parents' death, the rebuilt child haunted the basement of "Murder House." Woolf returned to the series in "Freak Show," playing the monosyllabic Meep who has a talent for decapitating chickens with his mouth. Framed for murder, Meep is arrested and beaten to death by fellow inmates.

In a promotional interview ahead of the premiere of "Freak Show," Woolf revealed that when he wasn't acting he worked as a preschool teacher. The actor said he loved working with children because "you kind of live in a different world that doesn't have any rules, that has more imagination in it," which he felt was akin to acting.

Ben Woolf died in 2015 from a stroke that was induced by being struck in the head during a traffic accident in Los Angeles.