We all love movies and some of us have watched countless of them. Some movies we loved were box office hits and others were not so well received by the critics. In the past, actors and actresses may have been forced into some uncomfortable roles. It is not that the movies they acted in were not good; some of the storylines were excellent, but questions regarding the young celebrity’s maturity to play the roles were often brought up. Did some of these roles scar the celebrities for life? Or did these roles force them into growing up faster than they needed to?
Child advocates will soon speak out about children in movies that are more mature than they should be. As a viewer, you may have been unaware of how old these actors and actresses really were, and you may be a bit shocked when you read about their true age at the time of filming. To prevent accusations of child extortion, some directors will choose to cast celebrities who are older than the parts they are expected to play. Continue reading for the list of 15 celebrities who were too young for their movie roles.
15. Dominique Swain in Lolita
Lolita is a 1997 film which starred Dominique Swain who was fifteen at the time opposite Jeremy Irons. It was a bit controversial because its plot revolved around her stepfather, a middle-aged professor falling in love with her. The film was good, and the plot was well written, but at fifteen, some of the shots taken of Dominique were very provocative. Maybe you will feel somewhat better knowing that the physical scenes were carried out by a stunt double. It still doesn’t change the fact that a fifteen year old was involved in such a taboo movie. If you realized Dominique’s character was fifteen, it would have been uncomfortable to watch. Despite having a stunt double, the dialogue was very mature and inappropriate for a fifteen year old to perform.
14. Miley Cyrus in Hannah Montana
Did you know that Miley Cyrus was only twelve when she was cast as Hannah Montana? Disney had some doubts about casting her to the role and they looked for another actress to play the part, but no one had quite the attitude and talent of Miley Cyrus. Although she was twelves, she played the role well and the role set her up for her music career. Then after her stint on Disney was over, Miley did some really eccentric things to rebrand herself. Maybe she just needed some time to be a child. Nonetheless, at twelve Miley did an excellent job of playing a teenager who lived a secret double life. What probably helped was her dad being a part of the cast and on set with her.
13. Dafne Keen in Logan
Logan was bound to be a violent movie because all Wolverine movies are. Dafne Keen starred alongside Hugh Jackman in the mutant film. She is fierce and her abilities are very similar to Wolverine. Her character Laura participates in a very violent battle at the end of the film that sees her slashing and shredding her enemies with her claws. Hopefully, the filmmakers told her that everything was fake and the blood was not real. A stunt double probably should have been used for that scene as no child would want to participate in such gory activities and killings. Luckily, behind the scenes and in production, it does not look as bad as we see it on screen, thanks to the CGI team who do a splendid job.
12. Kristen Dunst in Interview with the Vampire
At ten years old, Kirsten Dunst was cast with the hottest men in Hollywood, Brad Pitt,and Tom Cruise. She played Claudia. Her character was ten years old but had been stuck at that age since the time she was bitten. She is a child, but she has no qualms about biting and slaying others. In the movie, her character shares a kiss with Brad Pitt’s character. This is gross for several reasons. She is a kid kissing a grown man and she is at the age where she is supposed to find men disgusting. This movie may have been her coming of age, but it is good for us to remember that she had other roles besides Mary Jane in the Spider-Man series. Hopefully, she has autographs from Brad and Tom.
11. Linda Blair in The Exorcist
A kid should always be allowed to be a kid and should never have to worry about demon possession or even pretend to be possessed. Linda Blair played the role of a possessed character. It was a terrifying role, and The Exorcist will always be remembered as one of the best horror films of our time. Despite it being based on a true story, no thirteen year old should have to experience that fake trauma. The images of Linda were terrifying, and her character was forced to do some inhuman things by the demon that possessed her. There is so much wrong with this part, like Linda cursing at her mother while using a crucifix to bring herself pleasure. You probably overlooked that part, but Linda was too young for that part.
10. Ryan Simkins in Garden of the Night
Ryan Simpkins is known for her role in Pride and Glory. Few may remember her as the child actress in the film Gardens of the Night. It is a 2008 film and her character was kidnapped and forced to prostitute at the age of eight. She was an excellent actress but there were some awkward scenes where she developed a friendship with a male victim and together they used their imagination. As time passes, her character’s actress is changed but it does not add to the situation of her pretending to be a child prostitute as the more disturbing scenes took place when she was a child. It is an issue that a child should not have to deal with ever, even if it was a reality for some.
9. Brooke Shields in Pretty Baby and The Blue Lagoon
Before Brooke Shields was known as the wife of Charlie Sheen, she was a child actress who looked years beyond her age. Her role in the movie Pretty Baby was inspired by the true story of Eva Ionesco. Eva was a child model who was forced into pornography by her own mother who is a famous photographer. Eva was pictured in Playboy Magazine when she was eleven. Brooke was forced to play the twelve year old, and in some scenes, she was filmed nude. In The Blue Lagoon, Brooke’s character is trapped on an island and again, she is nude with her blonde hair covering her breast. Don’t worry. The intercourse scenes were done by her stunt double and not by her.
8. Nikki Reed and Evan Rachel Wood in Thirteen
Thirteen is a true story, starring Nikki Reed and Evan Rachel Wood who were both fifteen at the time the film was shot. Nikki Reed was one of the writers of this film’s story and what is terrifying is that it is a semi-autobiography. The film’s plot takes a look at most of the ills plaguing society: drug and alcohol abuse and teenage promiscuity. Nikki Reed was probably well known for playing Rosalie Hale in the Twilight Saga and Evan Rachel Wood plays Dolores Abernathy in the HBO Series Westworld. Acting in the movie probably did them some favors by propelling their acting careers, but it still does matter, because they were too young for the roles they played. It is a coming of age movie but the actresses played their roles well.
7. Sasha Pieterse in Pretty Little Liars
Sasha Pieterse was twelve when she auditioned for the role in the hit series Pretty Little Liars. The actress, now twenty one, was cast as Alison DiLaurentis. If ever you followed the series, Allison’s character was a total liar and what she did in the series was totally uncool and she basically bullied her friends. Nonetheless, Sasha did not have to play to act in too many scenes, because Alison was dead, and her character barely made many appearances in the show. When her character did, she was mainly shown lying in a casket. Why would you put a twelve year old in a casket, especially when she is very much alive? The series is not a movie, but Sasha was too young to be playing the role of such a manipulative teenager.
6. Isabelle Fuhrman in The Orphan
Isabelle’s performance in The Orphan was thrilling and terrifying yet brilliant. She played an 11-year-old orphan who was really a 33-year-old woman. She was able to hide her age because her physical growth was stunted by a condition called hypopituitarism. She was also a serial killer. Isabelle’s character was very violent and some of the scenes were inappropriate for a child. In one of the scenes, she kills her adopted father but seduces him. Her acting was good, and the movie was excellent but critics feared that it would dissuade people wanting to adopt older kids out of fear that they are sociopaths with serious issues.
5. Darlan Cunha and Douglas Silva in City Of God
This film received several awards despite it having a lot of violence directed at kids. Darlan and Douglas’ characters live in the slums of Brazil. Most of the people in this film never acted before this movie was filmed. They are kids living in the slums, named the City of God and there, they are exposed to extreme violence. In the slums, drugs and guns are the norm, but these children are users, dealers and killers. The movie may have shed a light on some of the realities for them and highlighted that some children just don’t have time to be kids, but it was a bit too much for the young actors who were trained to use guns and kill in the slums. At least they got some exposure to the world of acting.
4. Abigail Breslin in Little Miss Sunshine
Abigail Breslin is one of those child actresses that we grew to love. She had so many roles, some of them appropriate and some of them not so appropriate. Little Miss Sunshine was definitely one of the not so appropriate movies that she starred in. She was a member of a highly dysfunctional family and they were not exactly citizens of the year and were terrible influences on her. Imagine her grandpa was kicked out of his nursing home! In the movie, she enters a children’s beauty pageant. For the talent segment, she does a dance that could only be performed at a gentleman’s club. Little Abigail does a striptease. A routine taught to her by her dirty grandpa. That part was highly suggestive and inappropriate for young Breslin to play.
3. Kataya Berger in Piccole Labbre
Katya Berger had a head start in the acting industry. Her father was a famous actor and her mother was an actress and songwriter. Piccole Labbre is a film that is set after World War 2. She starred in the film at the age of twelve. In the film, a veteran fell in love with her twelve year old character. It was unconventional but she performed many nude scenes. After Piccole Labbre, she continued acting in other unconventional films in which she was nude. She stopped acting at seventeen. A twelve year old should never have to be naked in front of an audience and worse yet, a camera. It must have scarred her for life. No wonder she left the industry when she was old enough to make her own decisions and never looked back.
2. Leo Fitzpatrick in Kids
Kids centered around teenagers who were dealing with topical issues. The movie was very real and the kids were forced to deal with issues relating to drug and alcohol abuse and intercourse. Fitzpatrick, who is then fifteen, played Telly. In the movie, he makes out with his girlfriend. He was not the only underage member of the cast but the majority of them were. Even Rosario Dawson was a child actress in this film. Kids was controversial because teenagers should not have to deal with those issues along with HIV and rape at such an early age. However, those are the realities that lots of kids face, so it is best to show them on film. They could, however, use some older cast members next time.
1. Macaulay Culkin in The Good Son
Macaulay was known for staring in the Home Alone franchise as Kevin McAlister. At thirteen, he played the sociopath Henry who befriends his orphan cousin Mark. Elijah Wood was his orphaned cousin. Henry is obsessed with death and he is very manipulative. At some point in the film, his relationship with his cousin is strained because his cousin is afraid of him, much to Henry’s delight. He causes traffic accidents and attempts to kill his little sister. Why would Culkin go from playing such a sweet lovable boy in Home Alone to a sociopath in The Good Son? We loved Macaulay, but at thirteen, the tole of Henry was just a little too dark for him. He did a great job, but he was just too young for the role.
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