Elliot Rodger is born in a London hospital to Peter Roger and Chin Lee. His father is a professional photographer, who becomes a film director. His paternal grandfather is George Rodger, a photojournalist who had taken famous WWII images. His mother was born in Malaysia, of Chinese descent. She moved to England when she was young and worked as a nurse on movie sets where, according to Rodger, she became friends with Stephen Spielberg, and dated George Lucas for a short time.
Rodger spent his early years in London and Sussex. The family moves to California when Rodger is five years old.