Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy 50th to My Favorite 30-Year-Old High School Student...

Today, Gabrielle Carteris—who will forever be known as Andrea Zuckerman on the original Beverly Hills 90210—turns 50. That's pretty amazing, considering that she played a high school student when she was 30 years old! (The show also premiered with 26-year-old Ian Ziering and 25-year-old Luke Perry playing high school students as well, so Gabrielle wasn't alone.)

Hollywood has a long history of ignoring age when casting. Angela Lansbury, at age 37, played 34-year-old Laurence Harvey's mother in The Manchurian Candidate, and this year, 51-year-old Melissa Leo plays mother to 40-year-old Mark Wahlberg and 37-year-old Christian Bale in The Fighter.

But it's the adults playing high school students that is always amusing—Stockard Channing and Jeff Conaway were 33 and 27, respectively, when they played high school seniors Rizzo and Kenickie in the movie Grease.

However, in a magical world of syndication and movies on DVD and cable, these actors remain in high school matter what a frightening prospect that is.

Happy birthday, Gabrielle!

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