When movie timelines span decades and lifetimes, it's crucial for casting directors to pick actors and actresses that look the same. Otherwise, they wouldn't be believable as "younger" and "older" versions of the same person. Sometimes the casting is perfect, and sometimes, well... not so much. Just take a look at this list of actors who played the same character at different ages.
Sometimes the casting is a no brainer - like actors have younger siblings who totally look like them. For example, Jamie-Lynn Spears played her big sister Britney's "young version" in Crossroads, and Elle Fanning played Dakota's "younger version" in I Am Sam.
But it's not just about nailing the look - it's also about perfecting the mannerisms of the actor you're portraying. Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Bruce Willis were actors in the same role at different ages in the movie Looper. As Gordon-Levitt explained during the press tour for the movie, he took a careful study of Willis to ensure that audiences felt as if they were actually the same person. River Phoenix actually made it a point to study Harrison Ford (the person) instead of Indiana Jones (the character) in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.
Perfect casting or not believable at all? It's time for you to judge. Vote up the younger and older versions who look the most alike!
Rachel McAdams almost didn't play the young Allie Calhoun in The Notebook. According to Seventeen, McAdams got the script the night before she auditioned and had to do some last-minute cramming to prep for the role.
Ewan McGregor and Alec Guiness both played Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars movies. And both were actually featured - or rather, both of their voices were - in the 2015 Star Wars movie directed by J.J. Abrams.
As Abrams told Entertainment Weekly, "a clever editing trick" was used to bring back the voice of the late Alec Guinness. He passed away in 2000.
Elle Fanning plays a young Cate Blanchett (and a young Madisen Beaty) in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button. And as Strange Culture Blog notes, Fanning has also appeared in another movie with the stars of Benjamin Button - she played Brad Pitt's and Cate Blanchett's daughter in the movie Babel.
Robert De Niro and Marlon Brando both won Academy Awards for their portrayals of Don Vito Corleone in The Godfather movies. De Niro won for his portrayal of the young Corleone in The Godfather: Part ll and Brando won for his portrayal of the elder Corleone in The Godfather: Part l.