Sometimes we forget the fact that even the most A-list, red carpet celebrities once lived a normal life just like us. They each have their own story from their childhood that somehow brought them the success that they achieved later in life. For some, the limelight found them before they even entered high school, while others did not find fame until well into their 30’s.
Regardless, one thing is certain, every star, big or small was once an adorable and innocent child that had no idea what success and adventures awaited in the future. Take a look at our collection of celebrity childhood photos and see if you can guess who they belong to. Some of these might be harder than you would expect.
This Adorable Princess Grew up to Be…
This New York native was born in Brooklyn in 1982. She fell in love with the stage at the early age of six while watching her mother perform in Les Miserables. In high school, the star participated in many plays and also sang soprano with the U.S High School Honors Chorus at Carnegie Hall.
She later began performing with various theater companies such as the New Jersey’s Paper Mill Playhouse, the American Academy of Dramatic Arts, and the Barrow Group Theater Company. When she first began her acting career, many compared her to her favorite actress, Judy Garland as well as Audrey Hepburn. Identity revealed on the next page!
Hathaway made her acting debut in 1999 with the comedy series, Get Real. She then decided to drop out of college to fully pursue acting. This allowed her to commit to her breakout role in the 2001 film, The Princess Diaries, where she had the esteemed opportunity to star alongside Julie Andrews.
She has since experienced immense success in Hollywood and even got to play Fantine in Tom Hooper’s film, Les Miserables. This was the same role that Anne watched her mother play when she was six years old. Hathaway’s continued success has earned her an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and a Golden Globe. She is now one of the highest-paid actresses in the world. null
This Fashionable Angel Grew up to Be…
This California girl says that she grew up around music. Her parents exposed her to folk artists such as Bob Dylan early in her life. At first, her older brother joined her in her early musical pursuits but eventually took his career in a different direction while little sister became a star.
She joined her famed musical group in 1986 when she was 17 years old. They released their first self-titled album in 1992 but its ska-pop sound was not yet well received. It wasn’t until their third album in 1995 that the group sky-rocketed into the hearts of mainstream audiences. Identity revealed on the next page!
Following the success of Stefani’s group No Doubt, the musician decided to pursue a solo career. She released her debut solo album in 2004 and her career continued to thrive from there. She debuted her clothing line L.A.M.B in 2003 and in 2005 introduced the world to the Harajuku Lovers line, which was heavily inspired by her love for Japanese culture.
Stefani has earned countless awards and continues to wow her fans with her upbeat music and colorful style trends. She still releases music both through solo work and No Doubt. She also appears as a judge on The Voice, which is where she met her boyfriend country musician, Blake Shelton.
This Class Clown Grew up to Be…
Born in Chicago, Illinois, this funny guy attributes his mother for his charming sense of humor. According to him, at an early age, he used to try to make her laugh to get attention. Before getting involved in his high school drama department, the comedic actor described himself as being a quiet child.
After moving to California at the age of 16, his comedic side finally began to shine through to his peers. When graduating in 1969, his classmates voted him the funniest kid in class. After high school, he decided to pursue acting and in 1973 received a full scholarship to The Julliard School of performing arts. His fellow students and teachers describe him by his funky style, his uninhibited energy, and his ability to perform foreign accents. Identity revealed on the next page!
This is one man who needs no introduction. Throughout his career, this legendary comedian managed to make audiences uncontrollably laugh and ugly cry time and time again. Williams began his pursuits as a stand-up comedian in the mid-1970s and eventually established a career in stand up as well as television and feature films.
He is most known for Hollywood hits such as Mrs. Doubtfire, Good Will Hunting and voicing the Genie in Disney’s Aladdin. This is just the start of a long list of career successes. Williams earned an Academy Award as well as two Primetime Emmy Awards, six Golden Globes, two Screen Actors Guild Awards and four Grammy Awards. Sadly, the star’s life was cut short in 2014 at the young age of 63.
This Hopeless Romantic Grew up to Be…
Born in New Hampshire, but raised in Longwood, Florida, this sweet girl began writing her own music when she was only 13. Even before this, she starred in local productions and began attending Stagedoor Manor performing ats camp when she was 12.
She was discovered by chance when a local delivery man overheard her in the studio and sent a copy of her demo to a friend working at Epic Records. The young star released her debut album while in her first year of high school in 1999 and was a huge success from there, touring with big-name groups such as Nsync and Backstreet Boys. Identity revealed on the next page!
Since her early success in the ’90s, Moore’s career has not slowed down, and she has since sold more than 10 million albums worldwide. In addition to topping the charts with her catchy singles, Moore also achieved quite a fantastic track record in her acting pursuits.
She made her feature film debut in 2001 in Dr. Dolittle 2 but did not achieve worldwide fame until after landing roles in movies such as The Princess Diaries, A Walk to Remember and Chasing Liberty. She also voiced the character of Princess Rapunzel in the Disney animated movie. More recently, she has starred in the hit series, This is Us, which has earned her two Screen Actors Guild Awards.
This Magical Child Grew up to Be…
This adorable girl might look especially familiar as she actually rose to fame when she was only two years old. She starred in a popular television sitcom from age two until she was eight years old.
She also appeared in over 100 commercials and guest-starred on other popular shows of her time. In high school, as a cheerleader and homecoming queen, this child star became the stereotypical “it” girl. Although we see less of her as an actress, she has continued a career in the limelight in her adult years. Identity revealed on the next page!
Erin Murphy, as well as her twin sister, Diane, both shared the role of Tabitha Stephens in the television sitcom, Bewitched. Later in the series, as Tabitha got older, Erin became the only sister to take on the role. Murphy also starred in Lassie while she was still a young girl.
Since then, she has worked as a television host and correspondent and has also appeared on various game shows both as a contestant and a celebrity judge. Today she is a fashion, beauty and luxury lifestyle writer as well as a motivational speaker and spokeswoman.
This Kind Soul Grew up to Be…
This cutie was born in Concord, California and by the age of 10 had already lived in 10 different houses, as his family moved a lot throughout his childhood. When speaking about his young years, this Hollywood star recalls being “a geek that was horribly shy,” but that he was also a good, responsible kid.
After graduating from high school, he went on to college to study theater where he would spend a lot of his time going to plays. He later dropped out of college and became an intern at the Great Lakes Theater Festival in Cleveland Ohio, where he spent three years learning the ropes of theater production. It seems this paid off; In 2010, Times magazine named him one of the “Top 10 College Dropouts.”Identity revealed on the next page!
Hanks might have been shy as a kid, but we are glad he managed to break out of his shell and become the Hollywood megastar that he is today. We can all thank Hanks for some of the best films in movie-making history, including Forrest Gump, Sleepless in Seattle, Apollo 13, You’ve Got Mail, Cast Away, and so many more! Not to mention, voicing the lovable Woody in all four of the Toy Story film series.
Hanks is now the fifth-highest grossing actor and has brought home two Golden Globe Awards as well as two Academy Awards, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a People’s Choice Award. If that wasn’t enough, in 2016 Hanks was also presented a Presidential Medal of Freedom from former President Barack Obama.
This Generous Lady Grew up to Be…
Born in Mississippi, this little one grew up living in rural poverty with her mother and grandmother. At age six, she moved to Wisconsin with her mother and then later was sent to live with her father in Nashville Tennesse. Despite her struggles as a young girl, she managed to thrive in high school. Not only did she excel in her high school speech team and earn a spot on the honors list, but this overachieving lady also received the title of highschool president…Not too shabby.
At the age of 17, she won the Miss Black Tennessee beauty pageant and began doing the news part-time at a local black radio station. After high school, she secured a full scholarship to Tennesse State University, where she studied Speech Communications and Performing Arts. During college, she also landed a job as a co-anchor on a CBS television station. Identity revealed on the next page!
Winfrey has come a long way since her days living in poverty. She now stands proud as the wealthiest African-American of the 20th century, and it can not be denied that she deserves it. Oprah frequently credits her grandmother for her eventual success. Because of her, she learned how to read and write before the age of three. She was also encouraged by her grandma to recite poems and verses during church, which earned her the local nickname, “The Little Speaker.”
Oprah knew early on that she wanted to be a talk show host. Her dreams came true in 1985 at the age of 31 when she began broadcasting The Oprah Winfrey Show. The show went on to receive multiple prestigious awards, which led to the expansion of her brand through a monthly magazine called O: The Oprah Magazine. The star-studded host also dipped her toes in acting and made her film debut in 1985 with The Color Purple. She has since gone on to star in several other films.
This Friendly Girl Grew up to Be…
This girl was born to act. After being born in Los Angeles, California, she moved to New York City and discovered acting at the young age of 11. When she was 19 years old, she began performing in Off-Broadway productions and also made her on-screen debut with a minor role in the sci-fi film, Mac and Me.
Soon after, she returned to Los Angeles where she landed her first television role on Molloy and in the television adaption of Ferris Bueller. Both shows were canceled, which followed with a streak of unsuccessful film and television roles. Lucky for us, she did not stop trying. Identity revealed on the next page!
After feeling down about her career, the head of NBC entertainment encouraged Aniston and helped land her a role in an upcoming new sitcom called Friends. As we all know, Friends was just the start of Aniston’s unstoppable career from then on out.
Aniston starred in Friends as Rachel Green from 1994 until 2004. This role gained her worldwide recognition, a slew of impressive awards and eventually brought her back to the silver screen. Today she continues to shine both in television and movies and has even co-founded a production company of her own called Echo Films.
This Songbird Grew up to Be…
Born for the stage, in Surrey, Egland, this future star began performing when she was only ten years old. Both her mother and step-father were vaudeville performers, which along with her incredible singing voice, made for an obvious transition into show business. She made her professional solo debut at the age of 12, becoming the youngest solo performer ever to be seen in a Royal Command Variety Performance.
She continued to perform in music halls throughout her teenage years and starred in several plays on West End theater. At 14, she made her television debut on the BBC program, RadiOlympia Showtime and made her first film venture in 1952, when she was 17. She made her Broadway debut in 1954, and her career kicked off from there. Identity revealed on the next page!
Julie Andrew’s first won the world over with her starring role in the 1964 Walt Disney film, Mary Poppins, which earned her a well deserved Acadamy Award. She continued to work on broadway up until 1965 with the release of her second musical role, The Sound of Music, which is one of the highest-grossing movies of all time.
After a short hiatus, prompted by her discouragement from being typecast, Andrews returned to the big screen in 1979. She has since proved her talented range to the world. She continued acting through the 80s and 90s as well as in the 2000s, with her most notable starring role as Queen Clarisse Renaldi in The Princess Diaries.
This Little Prince Grew up to Be…
Born and raised in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, this aspiring rapper never had any intention of going to college. He attended Overbrook High School after which he was offered a scholarship at Massachusetts Institute of Technology which he turned down.
He wanted to pursue his music and started his career as the MC of a hip hop trio with his childhood friends. They released their first single in 1985 when he was 17 years old. In 1990 he began his first of six seasons starring in a popular NBC series after which he moved on to film. Identity revealed on the next page!
After the success of his hit show, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Will Smith was and still is an unstoppable force, releasing hit movie after hit movie. In fact, he is the only actor to have eight consecutive films gross over $100 million in the domestic box office and 11 gross over $150 million internationally.
Smith has collected a long list of blockbuster hits through the years. Some of his memorable roles include, Men in Black, I Am Legend and Independence Day. That isn’t to say that he has left his music aspirations behind him. Smith has also graced us with hits such as “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It,” “Miami,” and “Wild Wild West.” Most recently he took on the role of the Genie in the live-action remake of Disney’s Aladdin.
This Ball of Laughs Grew up to Be…
This future comedian was born in Florida but moved to Los Angeles with her family at an early age. Both her parents, as well as her godmother, were musicians. Her mother even featured her daughter’s name in one of her popular love ballads.
Unfortunately, her mother passed away at the young age of 31, but she was able to overcome this hard time and find success through comedy. During her time at the University of California, Santa Cruz, this aspiring artist took to music, joining several musical groups, after which she decided to pursue her career in comedy. Identity revealed on the next page!
In May 2000, Maya joined the cast of Saturday Night Live and quickly became a crowd favorite. Some fan-favorite sketches include her impression of Donatella Versace, “Megan,” “Wake-up Wakefield,” and “Gemini’s Twin.”
Rudolph has also appeared on other television shows and has starred in numerous hit movies such as Bridesmaids, Grown Ups, Sisters and most recently, Wine Country. Something tells us this is not the last we will see of Ms. Rudolph.
This Soulful Singer Grew up to Be…
Born in North London, this girl grew up around music and her love for jazz was largely influenced by her family. Many of her maternal uncles were professional jazz musicians and her grandmother was a jazz singer. After toying around with her brother’s guitar, she bought her own when she was 14 and began writing music a year later.
In July 2000, she became the featured female vocalist with the National Youth Jazz orchestra. At age 17, she signed with Island Records and later released her debut album in 2003 leading her rise to fame. She is known for her beehive hairstyle, tattoos, and winged black eyeliner. Identity revealed on the next page!
This English singer-songwriter is known for her deep, expressive vocals. After the release of her debut album, Frank, Amy blew up in the music scene. Many of her hit singles were influenced by her jazz roots and, apart from two covers, Winehouse co-wrote every song on the album. She later went on to release Back to Black in 2006.
This album sold 3.58 million copies in the UK alone, becoming the UK’s second-best album of the 21st century so far. Back to Black has sold over 12 million copies worldwide and has won five Grammy awards. Tragically Amy got caught up in a world of indulgences and passed away at the early age of 27. Her legacy will forever live on.
This Midwest Kid Grew up to Be…
This actor, film producer, and DJ was born on January 28, 1981, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa and is the second of three children. At age seven, he began taking piano lessons and modeling in his hometown. In 1989, his parents sold their business and the family moved to Los Angeles so he could pursue an acting career.
He went on to achieve recognition as a child actor, starring alongside big-name stars such as Jamie Lee Curtis, Bruce Willis, Melanie Griffith, and fellow child star, Macaulay Culkin. He also appeared in a variety of big-name commercials and music videos. The rising star would receive his big break in 1999, at the age of 18.Identity revealed on the next page!
In 1999, Wood was cast as Frodo Braggins in The Lord of the Rings trilogy which brought him immense success. This would continue until 2003, after which Wood’s was cast to reprise the role in the first of the Hobbit trilogy in 2011. His Hollywood career continued in momentum from there, being cast in movies and TV shows across a wide variety of genres.
In 2005, Wood started his own record label called Simian Records and in 2010, he founded The Woodshed (later re-branded as SpectreVision), a production company that promotes horror films. From 2016–2017, Wood starred as Todd Brotzman on the BBC America series Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency.
This Russian Superstar Grew up to Be…
This starlet was born in Soviet Ukraine in 1983. Her mother tongue and the common language within her family is Russian; they had decided to leave the USSR because they saw “no future” there for her and her brother.
In 1991, when she was seven years old, her family moved to Los Angeles with $250.
At age nine, her father enrolled her in acting classes after school at the Beverly Hills Studios, on her first audition, she landed the role for a Barbie commercial. Her first television roles took place in 1994 and in 1998, the age of 14, she was cast in her most famous role to date.Identity revealed on the next page!
That ’70s Show ran for eight seasons and earned Mila two consecutive Young Star Awards as Best Young Actress in a Comedy TV Series. In 1999, Kunis was placed in the role of Meg Griffen on the animated sitcom Family Guy. In 2001 Kunis transitioned to film starring in 2001’s Get Over It and Forgetting Sarah Marshall in 2008.
She landed her best performing film yet with 2010’s Black Swan in which she was nominated for her first Golden Globe. She starred alongside Justin Timberlake in the 2011 romantic comedy Friends with Benefits. In 2012, she co-starred with Mark Wahlberg in Ted, her most commercially successful film to date. Kunis co-starred in the comedy Bad Moms in 2016 and alongside Kate Mckinnon in 2018’s The Spy Who Dumped Me.
This Iconic Princess Grew up to Be…
Born in California to parents who were no strangers to life in the limelight, this bundle of joy says she spent most of her childhood with her head stuck in a book. She spent her early years reading classic literature and writing poetry. It didn’t take her long to transfer this passion to the stage, and she made her Broadway debut at the age of 16.
Performing quickly got in the way of her schooling, which resulted in her dropping out and enrolling in a drama school in London. She made her film debut in 1975 at the age of 18 and two years later, in 1977 she received the role that would change her life forever. Identity revealed on the next page!
In 1977, Fisher received her breakthrough role as Princess Leia in George Lucas’ science-fiction film, Star Wars: Episode IV. This film then became the iconic franchise that exists today, in which Fisher continued playing the role of Leia until she passed away in 2016, at the age of 60.
Even after her passing, the franchise made no attempt to replace Fisher in the role of Leia and continue to utilize old footage of the star in order to keep her alive within the Star Wars universe. In addition to Star Wars, Fisher also starred in a wide range of films and television series. She has also written several semi-autobiographical novels and screenplays.
This Comedic Diva Grew up to Be…
After joining a local improvisational comedy troupe, while attending Dartmouth College, this star-to-be knew she wanted to pursue a career in comedy. In addition to the improv group, she also created a comic strip for the college’s daily newspaper and wrote for the Dartmouth Jack-O-Lanter, a campus humor magazine.
She also had the opportunity to intern on Late Night with Conan O’Brien. After graduating in 2001 with a bachelor’s degree in playwriting, the aspiring comedian moved to New York to pursue her career. In 2004 she received a role in a popular television series that would later make her name known to millions of fans across the world. Identity revealed on the next page!
Kaling was 24 years old when she joined the cast of the American adaptation of the British television series, The Office. After the shows’ seventh season, Kaling was promoted to executive producer. She left the series after the ninth season but returned to the guest star in the series finale.
Since The Office, Kaling has gone on to create her own series, The Mindy Project, which she wrote produced and starred in. This show would run for six seasons. The star continues to appear in a variety of films and TV shows. She has also published two memoirs about her life, which have both appeared on the New York Times best-seller list.
This New York Native Grew up to Be…
This bright-eyed little girl was born in The Bronx, New York City. She began to pursue show business as a teenager, participating in youth theater groups and taking dance lessons. She has been quoted saying that her dance teacher was her role model growing up. She also gives major credit to Jennifer Lopez for teaching her how to dance, as the pop star would sometimes substitute teach her dance classes.
She made her television debut when she was 17 years old and went on to star in several shows and movies from there, starring alongside the likes of Chris Rock and Brad Pitt. Today she continues to land leading roles and is widely known for a popular ABC drama series which she stared in from 2012-2018. Identity revealed on the next page!
Most recognize Washington for her six years staring as Olivia Pope in the ABC drama series, Scandal. The show was a huge success, earning the actress numerous prestigious awards and an outstanding reputation that continues to follow her career today.
In addition to Scandal, Washington is also well known for her roles in Save the Last Dance, Django Unchained, and in the Fantastic Four films, to name a few. In 2016, she took on the lead role in the HBO movie, Confirmation, which earned her a third Primetime Emmy Award nomination. In 2018, Forbes named Kerry Washington the eight highest-paid television actress.
This Socialite Grew up to Be…
While some find or work their way into the spotlight, others are born under it. Such is the case for this little diva. Born in Los Angeles, California, this future reality star grew up with both family and friends in high places. In her 20’s she began hanging out with pop culture elite and she continued to live her life among Hollywood stars and high society icons.
At the age of 26, the future star and her two sisters opened their own boutique clothing store. Her family then gained huge popularity through their reality television series, which has since earned numerous awards and is credited for changing the face of reality television. Identity revealed on the next page!
You guessed it! It’s hard not to recognize the unique origin story of the reality star, Kim Kardashian and the rest of the famous Kardashian family. Their show, Keeping Up with the Kardashians began airing in 2007 and continues to captivate audiences today, over a decade later.
The series skyrocketed Kim, her siblings and her half-sisters to fame. Today Kim has ventured into various endorsement deals and has launched several successful clothing collections and fragrances. She has also found major success through her use of popular social media platforms. In 2012, after two failed marriages Kim married musician and record producer Kanye West. Today Kim and Kanye have four children together.
This Funky Kid Grew up to Be…
Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, this dancing superstar grew up surrounded by a diverse array of musical genres. His father, a half Puerto Rican, half Ashkenazi Jewish man from Brooklyn, was a Latin percussionist. His mother, originally from the Philipines, was a singer and a hula dancer. Naturally, he grew up with a musical background and instruments all around the house.
His biggest inspiration was his Uncle, who was an Elvis impersonator and encouraged him to get up on stage at a young age. At four years old, he was already performing five days a week with his family’s band, The Love Notes and quickly became known for his adorable Elvis impersonations. Identity revealed on the next page!
When speaking about his childhood, Mars, born Peter Gene Hernandez, once said, “Growing up in Hawaii made me the man I am. I used to do a lot of shows in Hawaii with my father’s band. Everybody in my family sings everyone plays instruments… I’ve just been surrounded by it.” It was his sister in Los Angeles that played Bruno’s demo for the head of A&R at Dr. Dre’s After Math Entertainment record label.
After graduating high school, Mars, moved to Los Angeles to pursue his career in music. It was then that he changed his name to Bruno Mars, based on the nickname his father gave him when he was younger. He did this to prevent stereotypes that would stem from his Latin birthname. Today Bruno Mars stands as one of the best-selling artists of all time, has won countless awards and was even named by Time magazine as one of the 100 most influential people in the world. null
This Hearthrob Would Grow up to Be…
This actor was born in 1973 in San Diego California. He was raised in a large Catholic family of Mexican descent. As a child, he started to learn dance at the age of three, training in tap and jazz. He was also active in, karate and wrestling. The future star was discovered at his dance recital by a talent agent when he was ten years old. He was first featured in local ads and commercials before hitting the TV screen.
He began acting in 1984 and In 1989, he was cast as in the television series that would define the career for five years following. The series became a 90’s staple and he is largely recognized for the role still today. Identity revealed on the next page!
Lopez achieved great star exposure with his role on Saved By the Bell. He went on to star in a handful of TV movies, and voice animated projects. He also went on to host a variety of shows including Extra, America’s Best Dance Crew, X-Factor, iHeartRadio Countdown and he is now hosting Access.
While hosting, Mario continues to act with cameos on popular TV sitcoms such as Jane the Virgin and Brooklyn Nine-Nine. In 2012, he married actress Courtney Mazza and together they are proud parents of three beautiful children. They even have a reality show on VH1 sharing their family life with their fans.
This Handsome Brit Grew up to Be…
This blue-eyed little guy was born and raised in England, where he used to love singing and covering songs by music legends such as Elvis Presley. He even formed a band while still in school and together they won a local battle of the bands competition. This was when he realized he was destined for fame.
His beautiful voice and undeniable charm were discovered after the future star entered into a televised music competition. Although he did not make it to first place in the competition, he did catch the eye of one of the judges, who knew he had the potential to be big. Soon, the whole world would know his name and face. Identity revealed on the next page!
Styles may not have won the popular singing competition, Britain’s X-Factor, but his audition did change the course of his life forever. Harry entered the competition as a solo contestant but was assembled into a group with four other contestants by famed judge, Simon Cowell. Together the five of them made it to the season’s final and finished the competition in third place.
After the X-Factor, Harry Styles, Louis Tomlinson, Zayn Malik, Niall Horan, and Liam Payne continued pursuing their dreams as a group, naming their newly formed boy band, One Direction. They became a huge hit in the UK and quickly won the hearts of fans all over the world. After their success, Styles decided to pursue a solo career and his singles continue to top the charts. He made his acting debut in 2017 with the war film, Dunkirk.
This Gorgeous Queen Grew up to Be…
This English born star has been a member of the Playbox Theatre Company since she was three years old. Although she was not born into show business like some others on this list, the future star made her professional acting debut at the early age of 14.
She received most of her education on set alongside her fellow young co-stars. When describing her childhood before entering the limelight, she was quoted saying, “My childhood was pretty fun. We had pigsties, barns, and a paddock, and used to muck around in the mud.” Sounds like a far cry from her life of glitz and glamour. Identity revealed on the next page!
Turner received the role of Sansa Stark in the HBO fantasy series Game of Thrones when she was 14 years old. She played Sansa until the shows eighth and final season, which aired when she was 23 years old. This was her first television role which she auditioned for after being encouraged by her drama teacher.
Sophie made her movie debut in 2013 with Another Me. Since Game of Thrones, she was welcomed into the X-Men universe, so far starring in two of the ongoing film series. Turner has become a popular figure for young audiences and recently said her “I dos” with Jonas Brother, Joe Jonas.