50 Adult Actors Who Played Teenagers Onscreen Whether They Looked The Part Or Not
The Karate Kid was really a karate adult!
Darren Barnet is currently 30 playing 16-year-old Paxton on Never Have I Ever.
Stockard Channing was 33 when she played Rizzo in Grease.
And Michael Tucci was 31 when he played Sonny in Grease.
Gabrielle Union was 27 when she played a high school senior in Bring It On.
Emma Thompson was 36 when she played 19-year-old Elinor Dashwood in Sense and Sensibility.
Stacey Dash played 16-year-old Dionne in Clueless when she was 28.
Chad Michael Murray played a high school senior in A Cinderella Story despite being 22 at the time.
Judd Nelson was 25 when he played the eternally angsty Bender in The Breakfast Club.
Jennifer Grey was a full decade older than 17-year-old Baby when she filmed Dirty Dancing.
Tobey Maguire was 26 when he played 17-year-old Peter Parker in Spider-Man.
Meanwhile, Andrew Garfield was 29 when he put on the spider suit in The Amazing Spider-Man.
Tom Holland was the most appropriately aged Peter Parker, but he was still 21 playing 15 in Spider-Man: Homecoming.
Rachel McAdams was 25 when she played Regina George in Mean Girls.
At 29, Alan Ruck was much too old to be skipping school in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off!
Despite being 28, Chase Stokes plays 16-year-old John B on Outer Banks.
Cole Sprouse was 25 when he first started playing 15-year-old Jughead Jones on Riverdale.
Winona Ryder played 18-year-old Susanna in Girl, Interrupted when she was 28.
Ralph Macchio was 22 when he played Daniel Laruso, so The Karate Kid was actually a karate adult!
Nicola Coughlan is 33 playing a 16-year-old on Derry Girls.
Gabourey Sidibe was 26 when she played 16-year-old Precious in Precious.
Channing Tatum was 26 when he played Duke Orsino in She's the Man.
Daenerys Targaryen was supposed to be 15 years old at the start of Game of Thrones, but Emilia Clarke was 25.
Leonardo DiCaprio played a 17-year-old con artist in Catch Me if You Can when he was 28.
Barbra Streisand played a 17-year-old in Yentl, despite being 41 at the time of filming!
Tom Welling starred as 14-year-old Clark Kent even though the actor was 24 when Smallville premiered.
Henry Winkler was 28, a full decade older than the Fonz, on Happy Days.
Ncuti Gatwa is 28 but currently plays 17-year-old Eric on Sex Education.
Francia Raisa was certainly "grown" when she played a first-year college student at the age of 31 on Grown-ish.
Timothy Granaderos was 31 when he played 16-year-old Monty on 13 Reasons Why.
Rebel Wilson played 18-year-old Fat Amy in Pitch Perfect when she was 32.
Annie was 19 in Season 1 of Community, but Alison Brie was 27 when the show began.
Ashleigh Murray was 28 when she started playing Josie McCoy on Riverdale.
Dominique Fishback was 29 when she played the street-smart teenager Robin in Project Power.
Florence Pugh played 13-year-old Amy March in Little Women at 22.
Wood Harris played a teen football star in Remember the Titans when he was 31.
Keiko Agena was 27 when she started playing 16-year-old Lane on Gilmore Girls.
Mae Whitman played a high school senior in The Duff when she was 26.
Antwon Tanner started playing 16-year-old Skills on One Tree Hill when he was 28.
Shirley Henderson was 37 when she first appeared as 14-year-old Moaning Myrtle in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Crystal Reed was 27 when she played 16-year-old Allison Argent in Teen Wolf.
Taylor Kitsch was 25 playing a sophomore in high school on Friday Night Lights.
Jessica Barden was 28 when she played 17-year-old Alyssa on The End of the F***ing World.
Jason Earles was 28 when he started playing 15-year-old Jackson Stewart on Hannah Montana.
Ross Butler was 10 years older than his 13 Reasons Why character at the start of Season 1.
Bianca Lawson was 33 when she played 17-year-old Maya St. Germain on Pretty Little Liars.
Alexa Demie was 29 when she played 17-year-old Maddy Perez on the first season of Euphoria.
Cory Monteith was 27 when he first started playing 16-year-old Finn Hudson on Glee.
Jesse Metcalfe was 28 when he played the serial cheater John Tucker in John Tucker Must Die.
Drew Seeley was 26 when he played a high school senior in Another Cinderella Story.
And finally, Meredith Monroe played high school sophomore Andie McPhee on Dawson’s Creek when she was 29.
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