Louis William Tomlinson, born Louis Troy Austin on (1991-12-24) 24 December 1991 (age 20), is from Doncaster, South Yorkshire, England. Born to mother Johannah Poulston and father Troy Austin, his parents split when he was young and he took on his stepfather Mark Tomlinson's name. He has five younger half-sisters, and two of them had roles as babies on television series Fat Friends, on which he would go along and serve as an extra. After Fat Friends, he attended an acting school in Barnsley. He had small parts in an ITV1 drama film If I Had You and BBC's Waterloo Road. He was a sixth form student at Hall Cross School, a state comprehensive school, and a former pupil of the Hayfield School. He revealed that he failed his first year of A levels at the Hayfield School and ended up going back to Hall Cross and started A levels over again. He had a number of jobs, including at a Vue cinema and at Doncaster Rovers football stadium as a waiter in their hospitality suites.
As a student at Hall Cross, Tomlinson starred in several musical productions. Tomlinson revealed that landing the lead role of Danny Zuko in the Hall Cross musical production of Grease motivated him to audition for The X Factor. Tomlinson cites Robbie Williams as his biggest influence and idol. In an interview with Now Magazine, he stated: "I've always loved [Robbie]. He's just so cheeky, he can get away with anything. His performances are unbelievable." He also admires recording artist Ed Sheeran, describing him as "phenomenal."