The 12 Oldest Actors to Play Teenagers in Film and TV
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12 Actors Much Older Than Jennifer Lawrence Who Were Still Playing Teenagers

By Dustin Rowles | Seriously Random Lists | July 15, 2015 | Comments ()


The trailer for David O. Russell’s Joy debuted this morning, and because the Internet is fueled by rage and indigence, we’ve all decided to get up in arms over the fact that Lawrence has been cast as middle-aged Mom, Joy Mangano, despite the fact that Lawrence is only 24 years old. I don’t know why the Internet decided to get mad about it today (the casting decision was made over a year ago), except we are currently occupying that pop-culture dead space between Comic Con and the Emmy Awards.

She’s an Oscar winner, the hottest actress on the planet, and probably one of the few who can stand to work with David O. Russell, so I’m not sure this level of outrage (via Jezebel) is warranted:

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There’s a lot of reasons to hate on Russell, but I’m not sure that casting Jennifer Lawrence at any age is one of them, so long as Lawrence can pull it off convincingly, and Lawrence usually can. After all, this is not her first old-lady rodeo: She played a 39-year-old widow in Silver Linings Playbook, and someone else who was probably pushing 40 in American Hustle. It’s such a thing that I’m surprised every time when I’m reminded that she’s only 24.

But, we must be aggrieved!

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They sell those crazy pills over the counter at any Los Angeles pharmacy!

Anyway, given the fact that Lawrence is 24 playing a “middle-aged mom” (Hey! 35 is not middle aged! It’s the new 15!), let’s look at the reverse of that. Here’s 12 actors who were older than Lawrence (in some cases, much) who were still playing teenagers.

1. Taylor Kitsch was 28 years old when he was still playing a high-school football player on Friday Night Lights.


2. Did you know that The Fonz on Happy Ways was supposed to a high-school drop-out (in fact, he re-enrolled in high school briefly) when Henry Winkler was actually 29 years old? He wouldn’t have even passed as a teenager on 21 Jump Street. (In fact, most of the cast of 21 Jump Street was 22-25 years old playing twenty-somethings who looked like teenagers).


3. Meanwhile, Rachel McAdams was a 27-year-old playing a high-schooler in Mean Girls. She was eight years older than Lindsay Lohan.

And yet, if you only had photos to go by, who looks 35 now, and who looks 27?



4. Charisma Carpenter was 27 years old when she began on Buffy the Vampire Slayer, playing the only 16 year old who had already started to form laugh lines.


5. Alison Lohman (where is she now?) was 27 years old when she played the 16-year-old lead in Flicka, and to be honest, she could’ve pulled off 14.


Of course, that was the twist in Matchstick Men, wasn’t it?


6. We all know that Stacey Dash was 29 when she played a 16 year old in Clueless.


Now that she’s 48, however, she’s finally starting to look 29 (she clearly sold her soul to the Karl Rove the Devil).


7. You may not remember this, but Leonardo DiCaprio’s character in Catch Me If You Can was 16 years old when DiCaprio played him at the age of 28.


8. Daisy Fay in The Great Gatsby was supposed to be 17 years old, yet she was played by then 28 year old Carey Mulligan, who had come off playing high school students in both An Education and Never Let Me Go. (DiCaprio was 38, playing a 27 year old Jay Gatsby).


9. Alan Ruck somehow pulled off a high-schooler in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off. He was 30.


Then again, no one blinked an eye when he dated then 36-year-old Sutton Foster in Boneheads. Ruck was 56 at the time.


10. Speaking of Amy Sherman-Palladino shows, Keiko Agena was playing a high-schooler at the age of 30. How is that even possible?


11. That rivals Gabrielle Carteris’ 14 year age difference in Beverly Hills 90210, where the 18 year old high-school student was being played by a 32-year-old actress.


12. Of course, Stockard Channing is the all-time winner in this category. She actually could’ve been a middle-age mom when she played an 18-year-old beauty school dropout in Grease. She was 34. The real-life Channing was already on her third husband.


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