Andrew Keegan addressed rumors that he started a cult.
Keegan, 45, appeared on iHeartRadio’s “Pod Meets World” — co-hosted by Boy Meets World alums Danielle Fishel, Rider Strong and Will Friedle — on Monday, February 12, where he discussed rumors that he was a cult leader in Venice, California. In the interview, Keegan admitted that after moving to the Golden State in his early 20s, he became “immersed in the culture and the community” of Venice Beach.
“There was this interesting group of hippie types, if you will, in Venice,” the 10 Things I Hate About You star explained. “I’m sure if you went on the west side, there’s definitely a lot of spirituality. I was connected with some folks and we had this opportunity. This old Hare Krishna Temple, it was sitting there empty and we were like, ‘Why don’t we get some people together and let’s open this place up?’”
The old temple would later become the home of Full Circle, a “spiritual community center” based in Los Angeles, according to the official website. “Looking back, it was insane. I was putting down 10s of thousands of dollars, but we opened it up and spent three years and really did build an amazing friend group,” Keegan said. “We went through something really significant from 2014 to 2017.”
Full Circle was formed in 2014 in an attempt to “do some positive things for the community,” the 7th Heaven alum shared. It was that same year that rumors of cult-like activity within the group began to circulate after a Vice article titled “One of the Stars of 10 Things I Hate About You Started a Religion” was published.
“I look back at it now and I’m like, I don’t know anybody else who is being called a cult leader, so it’s kind of like a badge of honor,” Keegan joked.
According to the actor, Full Circle is the “opposite of what you would imagine” based on the rumors and news stories written about the group. “They just really created a very interesting, colorful story and put it together,” he said. “We did almost 1,000 events in three years, and it was actually really hard. It was really beneficial to a lot of people, I still hear about it now, where people are like, ‘That was such a great time.’”
During the podcast, Fishel compared Full Circle to “a group of people at Burning Man” rather than “a group of people at Heaven’s Gate,” comparing the group to the ‘70s doomsday cult run by Marshall Applewhite.
“There was no doctrine,” Keegan continued. “We were just getting people together. The Co-Creator’s Handbook was the handbook we used. For all intents and purposes, it was a really cool community center for a bunch of people in Venice for a few years.” Full Circle’s community center permanently closed in 2017, but the group hosted events and posted to social media through 2021.