17 Actors Who Unhesitatingly Played Roles Much Older Than Them And Nailed It

The casting process in Hollywood isn’t ideal all the time, sometimes it has been flawed. For example, white actors play people of color, straight males play the lead in LGBTQ+ narratives, and youngsters are portrayed by actors who graduated from high school decades ago. And of course, there are also actors who accept roles much older than their real age.

Well, it seems that most of the time, the roles are limited and not created for a particular actor. However, if an actor is just right for a part, the director may be willing to overlook the age gap. And it may leave you in shock to learn that the actors below played characters with ages drastically different from their own. It could be because of their talent or the magic of makeup. Here is a list of famous actors who do not hesitate to play characters much older than them. Take a closer look!

#1 Carice van Houten in Game of Thrones

Source: © Game of Thrones / HBO and co-producers, Everett Collection / East News

It required several hours of makeup technique and an assistant to transform the forty-year-old actress Carice van Houten into a centenarian. Carys’ makeup-covered face and an elderly woman’s physique were merged in the montage.

#2 Tilda Swinton in The Grand Budapest Hotel

Source: © The Grand Budapest Hotel / Searchlight Pictures and co-producers, Genin Nicolas / ABACA / East News

The magnificent Madame D is 84 years of age. The actress portrayed her when she was just over 50 years old in real life.

#3 Jada Pinkett Smith in Matrix Resurrections

Source: © The Matrix Resurrections / Village Roadshow Pictures and co-producers, © jadapinkettsmith / Instagram

After 18 years, Jada took on the role of Niobe once more, and she was given a new appearance that made the passage of time clear to those who weren’t within the Matrix. The actress still appears to be incredibly attractive after so many years.

#4 Dustin Hoffman in Little Big Man

Source: © Little Big Man / Cinema Center Films and co-producers, PopularImages / Depositphotos

The actor had to be 88 years old to play 121-year-old Jack Crabb in this movie. Fortunately, this was made feasible by Dick Smith’s artistic makeup. The actor is currently in his 80s.

#5 Linda Hamilton in Terminator 2

Source: © Terminator 2: Judgment Day / Carolco Pictures and co-producers, EugenePowers / Depositphotos

When Linda Hamilton portrayed an aging Sarah Connor in the second Terminator movie, she was in her 30s. She was probably forgotten since this sequence was cut from the final version. The actress looks fantastic in her 60s today.

#6 Michael J. Fox in Back to the Future II

Source: © Back to the Future Part II / Universal Pictures and co-producers,  © realmikejfox / Instagram

The actor came back for the sequel to the iconic sci-fi series Back to the Future when he was 28 years old. In this movie, Marty McFly, played by Michael, goes back in time and encounters his 47-year-old self in 2015.

#7 Anthony Hopkins in Legends of the Fall

Source: © Legends of the Fall / TriStar Pictures and co-producers,  © anthonyhopkins / Instagram

Colonel William Ludlow, a veteran, was portrayed on film by Anthony Hopkins when he was in his 50s.

#8 Sally Field in Forrest Gump

Source: © Forrest Gump / Paramount Pictures and co-producers, Jason Mendez / Everett Collection / Depositphotos

At the age of 46, Sally Field portrayed Mrs. Gump in the movie at various ages. She was just 10 years older than the son Tom Hanks played in the movie at the time of the shooting.

#9 Maggie Smith in Hook

Source: © Hook / Amblin Entertainment and co-producers, AFP / East News

In the movie Hook, Maggie Smith, at 56, played Wendy’s grandmother, and with the use of cosmetics, she seemed to be 92 years old. Maggie, who is 81 years old, is shown walking the red carpet in the picture on the right.

#10 Robert De Niro in Once Upon a Time in America

Source: © Oce Upon a Time in America / The Ladd Company and co-producers, s_bukley / Depositphotos

Robert De Niro had to persuade director Sergio Leone that he could play Noodles both when he was a young guy and when he was almost 60 years old. De Niro looks just as he did in his 60s in the picture on the right.

#11 Mel Gibson in Forever Young

Source: © Forever Young / Warner Bros and co-producers, Elizabeth Goodenough / Everett Collection / Depositphotos

Mel Gibson, who was in his 30s, portrayed an older version of pilot Daniel McCormick in this movie. In his 60s, Mel looks fantastic now.

#12 Melanie Griffith in Shining Through

Source: © Shining Through / Twentieth Century Fox and co-producers, vienna report / Bauergriffin.com / East News

The actor who portrayed Linda Voss, an elderly woman sharing her experience for a documentary, was 33 years old. Melanie, who is currently only a little over 60 years old, has been properly taken care of by time.

#13 Marlon Brando in The Godfather

Source: © The Godfather / Paramount Pictures and co-producers,  © The Formula / Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) and co-producers

Marlon used cosmetics to portray Vito Corleone in his 50s and into his late 60s on the big screen. The actor’s actual appearance at age 56 is seen in the image on the right.

#14 Cate Blanchett in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Source: © The Curious Case of Bejamin Button / Warner Bros. and co-producers, arp / Depositphotos

Brad Pitt and Cate Blanchett co-starred in the classic movie as Daisy Williams. The actress portrayed Daisy in this play at various ages. Although the actress was not even in her 40s in real life, her character in the scene on the left appeared to be roughly 57 years old.

#15 Julianne Moore in The Hours

Source: © The Hours / Paramount Pictures and co-producers, Piovanotto Marco / ABACA / Abaca / East News

The actress took on the roles of both the younger and older Laura Brown for this psychological drama. She was in her 40s at the time, and thanks to the makeup, she was able to travel back in time to the correct point for the movie.

#16 Mandy Moore in This Is Us

Source: © mandymooremm / Instagram, Gilbert Flores / Broadimage / Broad Image / East News

Rebecca Pearson is portrayed by Mandy Moore in This Is Us at various points in her life. In order to age into an elderly woman, the 36-year-old actress needed 3.5 hours in the dressing room.

#17 Russell Crowe in The Loudest Voice in the Room

Source: Steve Sands / Bauer Griffin / East News, Invision / Invision / East News

The life of media mogul Roger Ailes is the theme of this miniseries. At the start of the series, the mogul is 55 years old, just like the protagonist Crowe, but he is 77 years old at the finale.