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For some reason, Hollywood just does not like teenagers. Don’t get me wrong, they love teenage characters. But teenage actors??? Nope. And sometimes, they just cast outrageously old people to play these characters–so, let’s look at some of the biggest gaps between how old a character is supposed to be and how old the actor was, both in movies and tv shows:

All of these characters, unless otherwise noted, are in high school. A high schooler is roughly 15-18. I repeat, these characters are MAXIMUM, EIGHTEEN. The following characters are explicitly high school students, and generally the actors are 10 years older than they should be:


The Amazing Spider-Man: Peter Parker

  • When this movie came out in 2012, Andrew Garfield was 29. (Tobey Maguire was 27 when his Spider-Man came out in 2002).


Glee: Finn Hudson

  • In 2012, the episode “Goodbye” aired, and Finn graduated high school–Cory Monteith was 30 at the time.


90210: Navid Shirazi, Teddy Montgomery, and Andrea Zuckerman

  • When the show started in 2008, Michael Steger was 28 and Gabrielle Carteris was 29. When Season 2 began and Teddy was introduced, Trevor Donovan was 31.


Clueless: Dionne Davenport

  • When this classic came out in 2000, Stacey Dash was 29.


Gilmore Girls: Lane Kim

  • When the show began in 2000, Keiko Agena was 27.


Riverdale: Josie

  • When the show began in 2017, Ashleigh Murray was 30. ‘


Mean Girls: Regina George

  • No wonder she was so pretty. When the movie came out in 2004, Rachel McAdams was 27 (Lindsay Lohan was actually 18).


Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Cordelia Chase

  • Yep. When Charisma Carpenter started in 1997, she was 27.


Grease: Rizzo

  • Stockard Channing was 33 when Grease came out in 1978. Funny enough, when Vanessa Hudgens played Rizzo in the 2016 Grease Live! Performance, she was only 28.

Pitch Perfect: Aubrey and Fat Amy

  • Okay, okay, I know that these are college, not high school, students. But still, a college student is like 19-22, right? Well, when this movie came out in 2012, Anna Camp was 30 and Rebel Wilson was 32, so that’s still about 10 years off of the actual age.


Dirty Dancing: Johnny Castle and Baby Houseman

  • Okay, this one is kinda tricky because we don’t actually know how old he is supposed to be, but he’s probably a few years older than Baby, and Baby is supposed to be 17. So, Baby is 17, Johnny is maybe 21. Well, when the movie came out in 1987, Patrick Swayze was 35, and Jennifer Grey was 27.


Well, that is just a sampling for you. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and you can probably think of some actors in your favorite shows or movies that are just way too old to be playing these characters. Weird, right??

Grace is a JCU senior, double majoring in Theology & Religious Studies and Political Science. She loves social justice, Disney, and joking about absolutely everything. Her specialty is ranking movies.
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