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Adorable Child Actors Who Went On To Play Extremely Dark Roles

February 26, 2020 64.0k views16 items

Child actors essentially compete to be the next American sweetheart - which often goes to the cutest and most innocent. And while many stars who begin their career with that sort of stamp owe much of their overall success to the roles that stole our hearts, most want to branch out and attempt to break their typecast as the wholesome character once they've grown up. Oftentimes, child actors who are still famous push the envelope so much, they end up in roles that are extremely dark and completely against what they're originally known for.

Freddie Highmore was cast as an adorable, wide-eyed young boy in his early career, with his breakout role being Charlie in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. But years later, Highmore switched gears and took up the role of Norman Bates in the hit series Bates Motel as a troubled kid living with dark secrets. This complete 180 was a bit shocking for those who watched him eagerly explore Willy Wonka's chocolate factory. 

Check out other stars including Daniel Radcliffe and Mary-Kate Olsen who went from adorable child star to dark and hardened adult in these gritty roles.