Child actors are cuter than actual children: FACT. It’s a point that’s perfectly exemplified every year, when an increasing number of the little tykes seem to appear on cinema screens. To celebrate, we take a look back at the 10 cutest child actors ever.
Son of Will and Jada Pinkett, Jaden first made his mark on the big screen starring alongside his dad in the Oscar-nominated drama The Pursuit of Happyness. At the age of eight, Jaden had an impressive screen presence and in The Karate Kid (out on Blu-ray and DVD November 15th) he’s truly come of age.
The original child star, Shirley became a box office sensation back in the 30s. She started her career at the age of three, turned Bright Eyes into a hit at the age of five and received a special Oscar at the age of six. Shirley retired from films altogether at the age of 21 and has spent her life working for various organisations.
The blond-haired, blue-eyed Macaulay started acting at the age of four but it wasn’t until the grand old age of 10 that he became a household name. In the hit comedy Home Alone and its sequel Home Alone 2: Lost In New York, his precocious performance won him plaudits worldwide.
Haley Joel Osment
Haley Joel first drew attention as Forrest Gump’s son in 1994 but it took a role as a young boy plagued by ghostly visions in The Sixth Sense for Hollywood to truly stand up and notice. At the age of 11 he was the second-youngest performer ever to receive an Oscar nomination for a supporting role.
At just six, Jonathan charmed audiences worldwide with his performance as Renee Zellweger’s son in Jerry Maguire. His witty one-liners and natural screen presence proved him to be more than capable of acting alongside Tom Cruise. He also gained fame in the Stuart Little films.
Dakota’s breakthrough performance happened when she was seven as Sean Penn’s daughter in I Am Sam. She continued to gain fame in War of The Worlds, Man On Fire and Charlotte’s Web, making her one of the most consistently successful child actors ever. Most recently she has been seen in the Twilight saga.
Starring as Mel Gibson’s daughter in Signs when she was just five, Abigail quickly gained fans for her refreshingly non-precocious acting skills. Five years later, her performance in Little Miss Sunshine gained her an Oscar nomination. She has since been seen in My Sister’s Keeper and Zombieland.
Mara was the go-to young actress in the early 90s after her performance in Mrs. Doubtfire made her a star. Further film roles included Miracle On 34th Street and Matilda. She went back to school, rare for a child actor, and graduated from NYU in 2005.
The only British star on the list, Freddie was something of a late bloomer with his first major role in Finding Neverland coming at the age of 12. The year later he starred in the remake of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, opposite Johnny Depp again. Up next, he’s slated to play a young Nigel Slater in a TV movie of his life.
The most controversial figure on the list, Drew was first in a TV commercial at just 11 months old. When she was seven, she made her mark on Hollywood in Steven Spielberg’s ET. A troubled childhood left her in rehab by 13 but she bounced back and since starred in Scream, The Wedding Singer and Charlie’s Angels.