"They lined you up and you had to sing a song. I had no song prepared, so I just sang the same song that the girl in front of me sang. It was 'Eternal Flame' by the Bangles," he said. "Then I basically made up this monologue on the spot for the comedic acting part or whatever, and I kept getting called back and called back."
"I didn't have a headshot, I had nothing," Bomer continued. "They called me and they were like, 'We think we're going to bring you down to Orlando for a screen test.'"
Despite initially getting the call to head to Florida for a final round of auditions, Bomer didn't end up going.
"I was so excited, I had time to prepare, I got a real monologue together, I prepared a song," Bomer said. "I think I got called at the last minute and they ended up not bringing me down. They were probably like, 'Who is this kid? No one's going to come with him. He'd be on his own.'"
Bomer isn't the only one to just miss being a part of that iconic group. In Jessica Simpson's memoir Open Book, the 39-year-old singer described her own near-miss experience that same year, where she "choked" during her final audition and "cried for days" after not landing the role.
Another almost-role in Bomer's career was one that was eventually played by Armie Hammer in Call Me by Your Name. Before Luca Guadagnino was signed on to direct the 2017 flick, Derek Simonds worked on an adaptation and considered Bomer to play the leading role.
"I had met with Derek years ago when he was involved in Call Me by Your Name, and we’d hit it off creatively and had a great conversation," Bomer recalled. "I obviously loved the material; I loved talking with him about it. I thought it had real potential. Then he went on to do other things and I went on to do other things."
One role Bomer did land was that of Neal Caffrey on the USA series White Collar, which ran from 2009 to 2014. When ET spoke with with Bomer last month, he gushed about the love the series continues to receive from fans.
"It’s just so moving to hear from fans, hear about their experience with the show and what they enjoy about the show. That will never get old," he said. "It was one of those sets where we just had an absolute blast. Every day, everybody came, prepared to work, we all had a great time together, we all genuinely loved each other, everyone was on time, no one ever stormed off to their trailer."
"So the fact that you can have that kind of experience on set -- and sometimes you have that experience on set, but then it doesn't really translate on the screen and it doesn't really resonate with people -- but the fact that we had that kind of experience creatively and it's resonated with people, that just is the icing on the cake," he continued. "We're all really grateful for the fans of the show, the people who have been there since day one, and the people who are just now discovering it on Hulu. We all love each other."