I was asked recently who my favorite child star is. It’s a difficult question to answer. Right now I’m really into Shia LaBeouf and Hayden Panetierre. But at 21 and 17 respectively, neither can be considered a child actor anymore. Dakota Fanning annoys me, as does her little sister. The Harry Potter kids are all grown up. Who’s left?
The mother of all child stars, of course – Drew Barrymore. She’s the one that started it all. As little Gertie in E.T., Drew stole the show. The scene when she first meets ET and they both scream is iconic. (I can say this because I have a postcard hanging above my desk with that scene on it.) There was nothing cuter than Drew Barrymore in the 80s, even when she was lighting things on fire in the movie adaptation of Stephen King’s Firestarter. And then things went downhill. If you’ve read Drew’s autobiography, you’ll know she had a drug and alcohol problem and landed herself in rehab at the young age of 13. Unlike today’s drama queens, Drew actually cleaned up after rehab and – shock of all shocks – continued on to have a successful career. She’s known for being the rom-com go-to girl, starring in flicks like Happily Ever After and The Wedding Singer. She is the epitome of an excellent child star. She had her cute stage, her rehab stage, and her successful real actress stage.
She’s the youngest person to ever host Saturday Night Live and Steven Spielberg is her godfather. How much cooler can you get?