Celebs We Are Not Used to Seeing Young
Starting her career back in the 50s, Jane Fonda’s first moments on stage were not only in the movie Tall Story but during her modeling career well before she even began acting. But she wasn’t the same Jane Fonda we know her as today until 1965 when she was cast in Cat Ballou.
Can you believe this actress has already passed 80-years-old? It’s nearly impossible to tell when watching her latest hit series, Grace and Frankie, which only premiered in 2015. She’s also known for her unforgettable roles in Monster-in-Law, Book Club, and plenty of others over the years.
For our favorite celebs, looking and feeling good is all part of the job. Especially when those wrinkles come out to play. But what did these stars look like before they aged so gracefully? Get ready, because these celebs looked like totally different people back in their youth!
Before taking on the voice of God in Bruce Almighty or making memorable appearances in The Dark Knight trilogy, Morgan Freeman showed off his many talents. During the 60s, he spent the majority of his time touring with a musical group as his acting career hadn’t yet taken off.
Up until age 57, Freeman had only found himself in minor movie roles. His role as Red in The Shawshank Redemption in 1990 was his first time in the spotlight, and clearly, he blew all of Hollywood away. If there’s one takeaway from this admirable actor’s journey, it’s to never give up on your dream, no matter what age.
Being the oldest of nine children, Susan Sarandon had endless responsibilities to attend to before she could follow her dream of being an actress. After graduating from college, she landed her breakthrough role in the soap opera The Rocky Horror Show in 1975, but still had a lot to prove.
But the actress wanted to do more than just be a soap opera star, so she kept improving her acting skills, and eventually tackled her more memorable roles in The Witches of Eastwick, Thelma and Louise, and many other films. Sarandon has built quite a name for herself and can still be seen on the big screen present day.
It seems like anytime you flip through the channels on the TV, one of Alec Baldwin’s movies is bound to come on. But before his film career took off, the actor was an extremely handsome Broadway star, when he appeared in Loot in 1986. Next came his brief TV series career, when he starred in Doctors and Knots Landing.
Once Baldwin hit age 30, that’s when he indeed became a Hollywood icon, making his movie debut in Forever Lulu. From there, everything else pretty much took off, as he went on to star in The Hunt for Red October, It’s Complicated, The Departed, and many other films, plus his unforgettable performances on Saturday Night Live.
We all know how amazing of an actress Meryl Streep is, but did you know she’s also an Ivy League graduate? Before getting into the film industry, the actress graduated from Yale and then started her as a stage actress. Next came her Emmy-winning role in Julia, which was the jumpstart to her successful career.
In recent years, Streep has made show-stopping performances in Mamma Mia, The Devil Wears Prada, Little Women, and more. Even in her 70s, this actress is truly unstoppable and plans to continue doing what she loves for as long as she possibly can. After all, she did earn her title as one of the best actresses of her generation.
Well before he took the Golden Globes’ stage or sat in his cubicle in The Office, Ricky Gervais was a part of a new wave pop band with his good friend Bill Macrae, while he was studying at UCLA. He followed his short-lived career as a pop star by trying to build a career in radio podcasts until he turned 40 and started down a new path.
Clearly turning 40 isn’t bad for everyone, as this was when Gervais landed his role as David Brent in the British series, The Office. And essentially, the rest was history. We now count on this British to keep us on the edge of our seats during the Golden Globes, when he’s not starring in movies on the big screen.
Sarah Jessica Parker will forever be known as Carrie Bradshaw from the iconic series Sex and the City, but it turns out SJP was a Hollywood star far before she conquered the streets of NYC in her Manolo Blahniks. At age 11, the actress made her debut on Broadway, and then entered the film industry in 1984 when she appeared in Footloose.
Before SITC, Parker starred in Hocus Pocus and The First Wives Club, but once she turned 33, everything changed, as she became fashionista Carrie Bradshaw, taking NYC by storm alongside her unpredictable girl gang. Since the series ended, the actress has starred in Failure to Launch, Divorce, and various other productions.
Christopher Walken had many other interests before his acting career took off. For starters, he was a die-hard Elvis fan, all he wanted was to master the famous Elvis hairstyle! He also split his time between training as a dancer and taming lions in the circus, essentially risking his life every time he entered the ring.
Once he put this practice to rest, the actor landed some TV roles before starring in Deer Hunter in 1978, where he became one of Hollywood’s most prolific actors. Some of his more memorable characters were in Hairspray, Wedding Crashers, and Batman Returns.
Early on in her career, Julie Andrews was named “Britain’s Youngest Prima Donna” in the 50s, before staring in Mary Poppins, a timeless classic. This role landed the actress her first academy award at the age of 29, leading her to her next big hit, The Sound of Music.
In more recent years, Andrew has stolen our hearts as the Queen of Genovia in The Princess Diaries, and her voiceovers in Despicable Me and Aquaman. This British beauty’s presence, and even just her voice, is one of a kind, and these films would not have been nearly as memorable without her.
Before graduating from Regis College, Bill Murray worked as a golf caddy to save up some money, while he wasn’t performing as the lead singer of his rock band. After he graduated, his brother invited him to join an improv comedy club, where he discovered his true calling.
Once he found his love for comedy, Murray joined the cast of Saturday Night Live in the 70s. Next came his first movie, Meatballs, which led to his more notable roles in Caddyshack, Ghostbusters, and Scrooged. He went on to become one of the most loved actors of his generation, always filling us with laughter.
Maggie Smith lived a very long life before her acting career took off at the age of 67, and she went on to appear in the Harry Potter series. For most of her life, the English actress worked as a stage actress starting in the 50s, before staring in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, where she won her first academy award.
It’s hard to imagine Smith as anyone other than Hogwarts professor Minerva McGonagall or Violet Crawley in Downton Abbey. Through these two very different roles, the actress was able to gain a variety of audiences, while maintaining a sharp TV and movie presence in the second half of her life.
With over 150 movies that he’s been a part of, Samuel L. Jackson has become one of the highest-grossing actors of all time. But before he ever even walked into an audition, the actor was a social activist, heavily involved in the Civil Rights Movement. In college, he studied biology and then got a job as a social worker.
Until one day, he discovered his love for acting and completely shifted gears. His first major production was Goodfellas in 1990, and then Pulp Fiction in 1994 after being recognized by Tarantino. Clearly, Jackson was always a legend, just switched paths a couple of times. He hasn’t even aged since he began his career!
Long before Betty White became an iconic loveable and hilarious Grandma all over TV, she was a youthful model back in the 30s, before she made it as an actress. After being told she wasn’t photogenic, White took to the radio industry before she became the first woman to produce her own sitcom, Life With Elizabeth in the 50s.
After The Betty White Show, which only ran for one year during the 70s, came Golden Girls, which was really this star’s time to shine, and from then on, she became the go-to Hollywood Grandma. From The Proposal to You Again, to her many voiceovers, White has won over movie watchers all over the world even at 99 years young.
Liam Neeson wasn’t always an action star all over Hollywood. He started his acting career back in Ireland, where he grew up, and worked extremely hard to make a name for himself once he came to America and entered the cut-throat Hollywood world, where he only started off as a stage actor.
Over time Neeson starred in more and more films, mostly the ones that are guaranteed to give us all nightmares, like Taken and Silence. His breakout role didn’t come about until he was 42 when he was cast in Schindler’s List. He eventually landed a few lighter roles, in Star Wars, Love Actually, and numerous others.
Long before Slash ever even got his hands on a guitar, he went by his given name, Saul Steinberg, and innocent boy growing up in London. Since both of his parents worked in the entertainment industry, it was no surprise that he moved to LA and eventually formed his own band, the Road Crew.
In 1985 he joined Guns N’ Roses, which put him on the path to a successful music career. The name Slash came from a friend of his who claimed that he was always rushing to get from one place to the next, so it just seemed fitting. To this day, he rocks the stage with his long curly hair, tattoos, shades, and classic graphic tees.
It’s true, Robert Downey Jr. first appeared in a movie at just 5-years-old, but this was only because it was his father’s movie, Pound. Having parents in the industry definitely helped him jumpstart his acting career, but he ultimately took the risk of moving to Hollywood and making a name for himself without his parents.
Downey Jr. starred in many coming of age hits throughout the 80s, before winning his first Academy Award for Charlie Chaplin in 1992. While he took a rather lengthy break from acting after that, it must’ve been for the better because this actor came back hot when he landed the most successful role of his career in 2008, Iron Man.
Throughout her 74 years thus far, Diane Keaton has indeed done it all. With her successful career in acting, directing, producing, photography, real estate development, writing, and singing, this Hollywood gem is unstoppable. After graduating from high school, she moved to Manhattan to discover what the future had in store for her.
Once in the unpredictable city of Manhattan, Keaton studied acting and then began her Broadway career, which was a great segway into Hollywood. She was cast in her first movie, The Godfather, in 1972 and has been a hit ever since. She then won her first Oscar at 31 for Annie Hall.
This 96-Year-Old may be retired now, but just a few years ago, he was thriving as one of America’s favorite game show hosts, regularly bringing out smiles and laughter on The Price is Right each afternoon. But this star wasn’t always on camera, there was a time when only his voice was valued.
During his college days, Barker was a part-time radio host and then moved to California after he graduated where he landed his very own radio show, The Bob Barker Show in 1950. He didn’t start his TV career until he was 33 when he got his first job as a host in Truth or Consequences, and then The Price is Right in 1972.