30 Actors Who Were Way Too Old to Play Teenagers on TV and in Movies
The Dear Evan Hansen trailer got a lot of attention for the awkward appearance of star Ben Platt, who, at age 27, is playing high school student Evan, just as he did in the Broadway version. While Platt’s appearance is the the one that’s making headlines right now, he’s far from the first actor to play a teenager while actually being a decade or more older. It’s got us wondering: who are some of the oldest actors ever to play teen characters?
We’ve sifted through tons of teen-focused TV shows and movies to try to find some of the most egregious examples of the gaps between characters and the actors playing them (for TV stars, we’ve based the ages off of the actors’ ages when their characters first debuted on screen). You might be surprised to see which of your favorite actors played teenagers well into their twenties or thirties – or maybe not.
Meredith Monroe as Andie McPhee on Dawson's Creek: 29 Years Old
(Also of note: Monroe’s on-screen brother, Kerr Smith – pictured on the left – was 26 years old when he debuted on the show)
Nicola Coughlin as Clare Devlin on Derry Girls: 31 Years Old
Coughlan also began playing 18-year-old Penelope Featherington on Bridgerton at age 33!
Stockard Channing as Rizzo in Grease: 34 Years Old
Famously, most of the cast of Grease was at least a decade older than their characters. Olivia Newton-John was 29 when she played Sandy, Jeff Conaway (Kenickie) and Barry Pearl (Doodie) were both 28, Michael Tucci (Sonny) was 32, Didi Conn (Frenchie) was 27, and Jamie Donnelly (Jan) was 31.