Superstars And A-Listers We Sort Of Forgot Were Nickelodeon Stars When They Were Young

List Rules
Vote up the superstars who most owe their stardom to getting slimed.

Everyone's got to start somewhere, and sometimes that somewhere might include getting slimed. These superstars, A-listers, and box office draws weren't born famous. It took years of hard work, dedication, and sometimes starring on a basic cable sitcom with a laugh track.

Here are a few megafamous folks who got their start on Nickelodeon. Vote up the superstars who owe their fame to the beloved kids' network. 


  • 1
    54 VOTES

    Fifteen (1991)

    Before Ryan Reynolds started pranking Hugh Jackman, shilling gin, and ruling the box office, this Canadian superstar was a player on Nickelodeon's teen-focused soap opera. 

    Ryan Rodney Reynolds (born October 23, 1976) is a Canadian-American actor, comedian, film producer, and screenwriter. He began his career starring in the Canadian teen soap opera Hillside and had minor roles before landing the role of Michael Bergen on the sitcom Two Guys and a Girl between 1998 and 2001. Reynolds then starred in a range of films, including comedies such as National Lampoon's Van Wilder, Waiting..., and The Proposal. He also performed in dramatic roles in Buried, Woman in Gold, and Life, and starred in action films such as Blade: Trinity, Green Lantern, and Safe House. In 2016, he starred as the title character in Deadpool. The film received critical and commercial acclaim ...more
    • Age: 46
    • Birthplace: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    54 votes
  • 2
    47 VOTES

    Are You Afraid of the Dark? (1995) 

    At 15 years old, the La La Land and The Notebook actor Ryan Gosling played Jamie Leary in an episode of the spooky series titled "The Tale of Station 109.1," about a radio station that connects to the afterlife. 

    Ryan Thomas Gosling (born November 12, 1980) is a Canadian actor and musician. He began his career as a child star on the Disney Channel's The Mickey Mouse Club (1993–1995), and went on to appear in other family entertainment programs, including Are You Afraid of the Dark? (1995) and Goosebumps (1996). His first starring film role was as a Jewish neo-Nazi in The Believer (2001), and he went on to star in several independent films, including Murder by Numbers (2002), The Slaughter Rule (2002), and The United States of Leland (2003). Gosling gained wider recognition in 2004 with a leading role in the commercially successful romance The Notebook. For playing a drug-addicted teacher in Half ...more
    • Age: 42
    • Birthplace: London, Canada
    47 votes
  • You Can't Do That on Television (1986)

    Best known for her angsty music and occasional dip into acting, superstar songstress Alanis Morissette was a child actor on one of Nickelodeon's first shows, You Can't Do That on Television. She played herself on the sketch series that is best remembered for its green slime. 

    Alanis Morissette
    • Age: 48
    • Birthplace: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    38 votes
  • Drake & Josh (2006)

    Prior to her role in High School Musical, Vanessa Hudgens played love interest Rebecca as a guest star on the popular tween series. 

    Vanessa Anne Hudgens (born December 14, 1988) is an American actress and singer. After making her feature film debut in Thirteen (2003), Hudgens rose to fame portraying Gabriella Montez in the High School Musical film series (2006–08), which brought her significant mainstream success. The success of the first film led to Hudgens' acquiring a recording contract with Hollywood Records, with whom she released two studio albums, V (2006) and Identified (2008). Since the release of her studio albums and the High School Musical franchise, Hudgens has focused on her acting career. She has appeared in the films Bandslam (2009), Beastly (2011), Sucker Punch (2011), Journey 2: The Mysterious Island ...more
    • Age: 34
    • Birthplace: Salinas, California, USA
    27 votes
  • Kenan Thompson
    Photo: Nickelodeon / NBC

    Cousin Skeeter (2001), Kenan & Kel (2001)

    Kenan Thompson made a name for himself in the kiddie variety show All That and the movie Good Burger, but before he started teaming with Kel, he played second fiddle to a puppet on Nick's Cousin Skeeter. 

    Kenan Thompson (born May 10, 1978) is an American actor and comedian. He has been a cast member of the NBC sketch comedy series Saturday Night Live since 2003, making him the longest-tenured cast member in the show's history. He was also the first regular cast member born after the show's premiere in 1975. He currently stars on the NBC sitcom Kenan, which premiered in 2021. Thompson began his acting career in the early 1990s, and was an original cast member of Nickelodeon's sketch comedy series All That, where he often collaborated with co-star Kel Mitchell. In 1996, they began starring in their own sitcom Kenan & Kel (1996–2000). Thompson also had roles in The Mighty Ducks franchise, Good ...more
    • Age: 44
    • Birthplace: Atlanta, Georgia, United States of America
    40 votes
  • 6
    36 VOTES
    Ariana Grande
    Photo: Nickelodeon / NBC

    Victorious (2010)

    Before she was selling millions of albums to adoring fans, Ariana Grande was a supporting player in Nick's Victorious, before she got her own series Cat & Sam.

    Ariana Grande (born June 26, 1993) is an American singer, songwriter, and actress. A multi-platinum, Grammy Award-winning recording artist, she is known for her wide vocal range, which critics have often compared to that of Mariah Carey. Born in Boca Raton, Florida, Grande began her career in 2008 in the Broadway musical, 13. She rose to prominence for her role as Cat Valentine in the Nickelodeon television series, Victorious (2010–2013) and in its spin-off, Sam & Cat (2013–2014). As she grew interested in pursuing a music career, Grande recorded songs for the soundtrack of Victorious and signed with Republic Records in 2011 after the label's executives discovered videos of her covering ...more
    • Age: 29
    • Birthplace: Boca Raton, Florida, USA
    36 votes