Seven Kids That Grew Up on the Big Screen

February 6th, 2014

Audiences cannot resist the adorable faces of their favorite child stars in the movies they love. Even more fun is watching these children grow and blossom throughout the years into successful, talented actors. Although most child actors fade into obscurity when they reach their teen years and abandon their acting careers for other pursuits, others go on to become some of the most recognized stars of modern times. From Emma Watson to Joseph Gordon-Levitt, these seven actors grew up on the big screen and transformed from cute kids to great actors.


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Emma Watson

Emma Watson quickly rose to stardom when she was cast as Hermoine Granger in "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone," the film adaptation of the first in J.K. Rowling's popular "Harry Potter" book series. She reprised her role through seven more "Harry Potter" films throughout the course of 10 years and grew up with the rest of the cast. Since then, she has starred in films such as "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" in 2012 and "The Bling Ring" in 2013. Ms. Watson now enjoys a successful career in acting and modeling.


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Elijah Wood

Audiences remember Elijah Woods's bright blue eyes from as early as 1988 when he played a child in "Back to the Future Part II." He later starred in the 1993 film "The Adventures of Huck Finn," and as a young teenager he played the lead role in "Flipper" in 1995. In a film review by Roger Ebert, he was heralded as the most talented actor in his age group. However, Elijah's biggest break came in 2001 when he was cast as Frodo, the lead character in "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy. Since then, he has acted in movies such as "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind" and "The Oxford Murders." Although he no longer holds the adorable charm of childhood, Elijah has grown into a talented, versatile actor.


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Lindsay Lohan

Lindsay captivated audiences with her sweet smile, freckled face and red head at age 11 in Disney's 1998 film "The Parent Trap." She returned to the big screen as a teenager in "Freaky Friday" in 2003, and she played the lead role in the 2004 cult classic "Mean Girls." Although as an adult she has been the focus of the paparazzi and tabloids attacking her personal life, she is still widely acclaimed as a great actress and talented recording artist.


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Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Fan-favorite Joseph Gordon-Levitt had a busy life as a child actor, starring in films such as "Angels in the Outfield," "A River Runs Through It" and "10 Things I Hate About You." After taking a break from acting to attend Columbia University, the young actor starred in hit films such as "(500) Days of Summer," "The Dark Knight Rises" and "Inception." He has also started pursuing screenwriting, producing and directing, although he continues to focus heavily on his acting career.



Dakota Fanning

The sweet, fun-loving Dakota Fanning started her acting career at age 7 in the 2001 movie "I Am Sam." She also captivated viewers in films such as "Charlotte's Web," "War of the Worlds" and "The Secret Life of Bees." As a teenager, she has played the role of a cold Volturi guard in the popular "Twilight" franchise. Although Dakota has only recently passed her teenage years, she has grown into a dedicated young actress whom fans are eagerly watching.


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Anna Paquin

At age 11, Anna Paquin won the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her first movie, "The Piano," in 1994. This made her the second youngest Oscar winner of all time. In 1996, Anna charmed audiences again as the lead role in the family film "Fly Away Home." Beginning in 2002, Anna Paquin played the role of Rogue in the wildly popular "X-Men" franchise. The blossoming actress also played the lead role on the TV series "True Blood."



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Drew Barrymore

As a child actor, Drew Barrymore is best remembered for her role in "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial," which also landed her the Young Artist Award as Best Young Supporting Actress in a Motion Picture. After her rebellious teenage years, Barrymore rose to prominence again with romantic comedies, such as "The Wedding Singer," "Charlie's Angels" and "50 First Dates." The lovable actress continues to star in numerous romantic comedies and other works.

These child actors captivated viewers with their cute charm and later entranced them with superior acting skills. Growing up in the movie-making industry has led them to have a sense of professionalism and a firm idea of what it means to be a good actor. Fans hope that these seven actors will continue to star in films, TV series and other works for many years to come.