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Updated on Jun 24, 2020. Posted on Jun 18, 2020

18 Actors Who Played Parts Vastly Out Of Their Age Range Because Apparently Age Is But A Number

Turns out high schoolers are rarely played by actual high schoolers.

1. Stockard Channing was 33 when she played high schooler Rizzo in Grease.

Paramount Pictures

Most of the teens in the film were far older than their characters.

2. Sasha Pieterse, who played 15-year-old Alison, was 12 when the pilot for Pretty Little Liars began shooting.

ABC Family

Her costars Lucy Hale, Troian Bellisario, Shay Mitchell, and Ashley Benson were 20, 24, 23, and 20, respectively.

3. Bianca Lawson, who played high schooler Maya, was 31 when the pilot for Pretty Little Liars was shot.

ABC Family

That means the age gap between the actors who played Maya and Alison (who were supposed to be the same age) was 19 years.

4. Mila Kunis was 14 when she began playing Jackie on That '70s Show.


Her costar (and now husband) Ashton Kutcher was 19.

5. Jason Earles was 29 when he began playing Hannah's teenage brother, Jackson, on Hannah Montana.

Disney Channel

Now he's 43, the same age as John Cena.

6. Sara Canning was only 22 when she started playing Aunt Jenna in The Vampire Diaries pilot, while Nina Dobrev (who played her niece Elena) was only 20 at the time.

The CW

Several of her costars, who played teenagers, were older than her.

7. Thomas Brodie-Sangster was actually 14 when he played a kid in Nanny McPhee.

Universal Pictures

Thomas Brodie-Sangster is well-known for looking younger than his age.

8. Keira Knightly was only 18 when she played a bride in Love Actually.

Universal Pictures

This means she was only five years older than Thomas Brodie-Sangster, who played a little kid.

9. Shirley Henderson, who played Moaning Myrtle in the Harry Potter films, was actually 37 when she appeared in the second film.

Warner Bros. Pictures

That would've made her around 40 when she reprised her role in the fourth film three years later.

10. Amy Poehler was only 33 when she played the mom of a high school junior in Mean Girls.

Paramount Pictures

She was only seven years older than Rachel McAdams, who played her daughter.

11. Ashleigh Murray was 28 when she began shooting Riverdale as teenager Josie.

The CW

She left the show last year to star in spinoff Katy Keene, which takes place five years in the future.

12. Gwyneth Paltrow was only 22 when she played 32-year-old Brad Pitt's wife in Se7en.

New Line Cinema

The characters were supposed to be high school sweethearts.

13. Amanda Seyfried was 27 when she played the teenaged Cosette in Les Misérables.

Universal Pictures

While Cosette's age is not confirmed in the film, there is a time jump of only nine years after we see Cosette as a young girl (played by the 10-year-old Isabelle Allen).

14. Laurence Fishburne was only 14 when he played a soldier in Apocalypse Now.

United Artists

He lied about his age to get the part.

15. Julianna Rose Mauriello was 16 in 2007, when she finished playing the 8-year-old Stephanie in LazyTown.


She was actually replaced by Chloe Lang when the third and fourth series began production a few years later, as she'd gotten too old.

16. Jennifer Lawrence was only 21 when she played a widow in Silver Linings Playbook.

Paramount Pictures

Director David O. Russel thought she was too young for the role, but her audition convinced him. Lawrence actually has a bit of a legacy of playing roles older than her actual age.

17. Andrew Garfield was 31 when the second Amazing Spider-Man came out, featuring his character graduating high school.

Sony Pictures Releasing

His costar Emma Stone was 25 when the second film came out.

18. And finally, Sally Field was 65 playing 20 years younger when she was filming Lincoln.

Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

She was 10 years older than Daniel Day-Lewis, and Mary Todd Lincoln was supposed to be 10 years younger than her husband.

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