The Kids From 13 Going On 30 Have Changed A Lot Since 2004

It's difficult to believe 13 Going on 30 was released all the way back in 2004. It seems like just yesterday we were cooing over the burgeoning romance between Jennifer Garner's Jenna and Mark Ruffalo's Matt, or marveling at infamous scene-stealer Judy Greer's ability to make an apparently horrible character still seem like someone you'd want to be friends with. Given how 13 Going on 30 deals with a teenage girl trapped in the body of her future self, the young cast was instrumental to the film's appeal. Among the kids featured in the hit movie, there's an Oscar winner, a soap star, and even a Pretty Little Liar. The years have been kind to this lot, with various successes nipping at their heels in the wake of what — for most of them — was their first major onscreen role.


This is how the 13 Going on 30 kids grew up to impress just as much as their adult counterparts, if not more so.

Christa B. Allen (Young Jenna)

Actress Christa B. Allen was cast in 13 Going on 30 based primarily on her uncanny resemblance to a teenage Jennifer Garner, as discussed in the behind-the-scenes documentary 13 Going on 30: Making of a Teen Dream. It's unsurprising, then, that Allen went on to portray a younger Garner again in the 2009 rom-com Ghosts of Girlfriends Past. In an interview with Today, Allen reflected on the film that kickstarted her career, noting, "I think [13 Going on 30] teaches kids to appreciate their childhood, and to remember where you came from. ... The lesson there is to just be yourself."


Aside from being Garner's younger doppelgänger, Allen has enjoyed a lucrative career on TV, with a starring role in the soapy thriller Revenge. Speaking to Global Grind about her work on the show, Allen gushed about the cast and crew. "This is one of the best groups of people that most of us have ever worked with. I don't know what happened or why, but something fell into place and we all are just there to support each other and there aren't any egos in the group, so that makes coming to work a very good time," she enthused.

Sean Marquette (Young Matt)

Spare a thought for Sean Marquette, who had to play Jenna's BFF/Prince Charming-in-disguise before he turned into Mark Ruffalo and lost all his, as grown-up Jenna notes, baby fat. BuzzFeed enthusiastically celebrated his turning 30 (and flirty and thriving — sorry, had to!) in 2018. Although Marquette didn't turn into Ruffalo in the same manner that his co-star Allen grew up to bear an even more striking resemblance to Garner, he's remained working in the entertainment biz and has stayed in our collective hearts.


Marquette is mostly a TV guy these days, appearing as Johnny Atkins in the hit sitcom The Goldbergs along with its spin-off, Schooled. Speaking about the role to The Fandom Files, Marquette laughed, "Oh my gosh. It's so much fun for me. I look like such a creep and they always put me in a Rush shirt and I get to play a full-on creep. It's so funny!" (According to this Rush fan-site the actor wore a whopping 11 of the band's shirts in one particular Goldbergs episode alone.) He went on to note how important playing Atkins was to him, remarking, "I love that character. That show has been the most incredible experience. So much fun."

Alexandra Kyle (Young Tom-Tom)

Following in her younger castmates footsteps, Alexandra Kyle, who so memorably portrayed a young Tom-Tom (Judy Greer), has found her footing on television. Her eclectic resume has included roles in the likes of NCIS, Days of Our Lives, Without A Trace, and Justified. Kyle is also a filmmaker in her own right, having written and directed the short film Anxiety's Wilma. The short is described on IMDb as a "romantic comedy about a young woman and her anxiety." 


Speaking to Malcolm Holt for his Sunny Side of the Street interview series, Kyle looked back on her time on 13 Going on 30 with awe. "[It] was a dream job for me at the time. I met so many incredibly warm people whom I'm still close with today. I think I also loved getting to be part of such a sweet, lighthearted story. I was so used to playing victims in serious dramas that it was refreshing to play a bad girl in a romantic comedy. It was a complete 180," she shared.

Alex Black (Young Chris Grandy)

While Alex Black starred as a young Chris Grandy in 13 Going on 30, he may actually be better known for another gig. You see, Black was featured as the lovable doof Seth Powers in hit Nickelodeon show Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide. Aside from his part on Ned's, which wrapped in 2007, Black was also featured in a handful of other TV shows, including Charmed, ER, and CSI: Miami. The young actor even appeared in 2002's Tobey Maguire-led Spider-Man as "Boy on Tram." 


His last credited role was all the way back in 2008, in the Hallmark TV movie Generation Gap, opposite Ed Asner. Black has kind of fallen off the radar in the years since. Maybe he just went the way of Seth Powers and got lured off by a particularly attractive basketball. Or maybe he's just living a normal life somewhere. Still, we wouldn't mind seeing him return to the small screen. Maybe in a Ned's Declassified reunion?

Ashley Benson (Six Chick)

Hilariously, the actress Ashley Benson was given only the credit "Six Chick" for her role in 13 Going on 30. Benson has, obviously, gone on to be a well-known TV actress thanks to her starring role in the teen hit Pretty Little Liars. Speaking to AOL about the series wrapping up production after seven years, Benson admitted that she'd grown up considerably over the course of its lengthy run. "I've definitely matured a lot! I started that show at 19, so I'm definitely going to be different at 26," she said. "I've been working consistently for seven years for 16 hours a day, so it taught me self-discipline." 


Pretty Little Liars was clearly a dream for Benson. However, that level of fame has its drawbacks, with the actress admitting to Refinery 29 that the pressure to be perfect all the time is difficult. But she stays grounded thanks to her friends, noting, "It's really about who you spend your time with. A lot of my friends are very normal with normal jobs... I get to learn so much from them and their jobs versus just talking about the industry all the time." 

Brie Larson (Six Chick)

Another super-famous lady credited only as a "Six Chick" was Brie Larson, who would go on to not only land a best actress Oscar for her work on the film Room but to also lead the first female-fronted Marvel movie, Captain Marvel, as the titular superhero. Speaking to The Standard, Larson admitted that she used to flunk every audition, but she persisted because, "I don't know how to live without this job." 


Rather than looking back at the difficult times in her life negatively, the actress uses them in her art. She explained, "The tough stuff teaches you a lot about yourself. It's not until you're faced with something that scares or challenges you that your brain has to reorganize ... I can tap into those moments of rejection and pain, and put them into a film. I'm grateful those things happened." 

She may be hugely successful these days, but Larson isn't counting her chickens. She told The Guardian in no uncertain terms, "Maybe it goes away, but this is the way I've chosen to live: I want to go down or rise up as an artist. I don't want to get swept up in lipstick or whatever the hell." 

Brittany Curran (Six Chick)

Most of Tom-Tom's Six Chicks did pretty well for themselves, given that there's a Pretty Little Liar and an Oscar-winner among their ranks. But Brittany Curran took a more... magical route. The young actress had a starring role on The Magicians, a show that's a sort of Harry Potter for adults. 


She opened up to Lemonade Magazine about how the original audition took a turn thanks to Curran omitting a key scene, which she then had to learn on the spot. Thankfully, they appreciated her gumption. "It went really well! I was told later that one of our producers ... was impressed that I was able to get into the scene without notice." She joked, "So I was like 'ok cool, I will keep f***ing up my auditions from here."

On playing the role of Fen, Curran gushed, "It's an interesting dynamic playing a character like that. It's funny because I play b****es a lot in movies and stuff. So to play this innocent and naive character has been really fun for me." 

Megan Lusk (Six Chick)

Megan Lusk's first role was all the way back in 1999, in the TV adventure movie Search for the Jewel of Polaris: Mysterious Museum. She soon followed it up with a small role in the series The Division in 2003, followed by 13 Going on 30, of course, the following year. Her final role to date was in the hit show Without A Trace in 2005. Since then... nada. Similar to Alex Black, Lusk appears to have stepped out of the spotlight almost completely.


She does have a seemingly active Twitter account with a professional-looking photo for her bio — at least, at the time of this writing. Rather than promoting her own work, though, Lusk mainly uses it to campaign for shows, such as One Day at a Time, to be kept on the air. Likewise, the actress is a vocal fan of Netflix's Grace and Frankie. Maybe she's campaigning to appear in one or both of these shows and is just doing so on the sly?

Julia Roth (Six Chick)

Another Six Chick who's kind of fallen off the radar, though not nearly as much as her co-star Lusk, is Julia Roth. Roth's very first role —movie or otherwise — was actually in 13 Going on 30, with the actress following it up with appearances in projects like Christmas with the Cranks, the 2005 movie adaptation of the hit musical Rent, and the 2008 Owen Wilson vehicle Drillbit Taylor.


Her latest as of this writing was in a 2017 comedy short called Creeper Upper, directed by Misty Stinnett and described on IMDb as a "parody of HGTV's popular show Fixer Upper." Her Twitter is slightly more active than Lusk's — or, at least, its primary usage isn't to champion shows in danger of cancellation. Roth wrote in February 2019 that she was adding "getting stoned and writing fight scenes to [her] resume," so clearly she's still somewhat involved in the business.

Renee Olstead (Becky)

An even younger starlet who went on to enjoy a massive career post-13 Going on 30 was Renee Olstead. You may remember her for playing adult Jenna's neighbor Becky, who admires the main character's purse collection, among other treasures. After 13 Going on 30, Olstead was featured in the likes of TV's The Secret Life of the American Teenager and Grip and Electric and continued her role on the series Still Standing


Movie-wise, Olstead played Jess in the hit horror film Unfriended. On filming the found footage shocker on the fly, Olstead told Collider, "We had a camera that was strapped to a computer, so we got to kind of create the shaking and movement, and reflecting where the characters are with our choices." The actress felt the movie spoke to a lot of very modern fears, explaining, "The majority of the stuff that's on television is stuff that people have shot on their phones and have sent into the newsroom. When something terrible happens, our knee-jerk reaction now is to pull our phones out." 

But just because she's found some success, it doesn't mean that Olstead's ego has gotten bigger. In an installment of her blog series for HuffPost, Olstead offered her secrets to success, writing, "Taking away from someone else will never make you any better. Remember that they have a dream, just like you do, and be supportive."


Gia Mantegna (Gina)

Gia Mantegna was already kind of a household name in 2004, thanks — in large part — to her father, Joe Mantegna, who played Joey Zaza in The Godfather: Part III... and who voiced none other than gangster Fat Tony in The Simpsons. His daughter didn't follow in Mantegna's footsteps necessarily, but she's had no less lucrative of a career. Most notably, Gia Mantegna appeared as the brilliantly monikered Devin Levin in hit sitcom The Middle. She's also locked down parts in Under the Dome, Criminal Minds, and The Dead Girls Detective Agency over the years.


Speaking to Seventeen about her role in the Nickelodeon show Gigantic, Mantegna noted, "It's one of the first projects I've ever done with people in my age range. For the longest time I played the daughter or the troubled teen in those criminal shows where you don't really have a cast of people that are your age. This was the first time that I was able to actually work with people that I could be friends with." On her character Vanessa King, Mantegna told Interview, "I play the villain, but it's not a caricature — she has a heart." Unfortunately for fans, the series wrapped up its second and final season in 2011.

Sara Swain (Sara)

Young Sara Swain made her big-screen debut just a month before starring in 13 Going on 30 alongside Olstead, Mantegna, and the rest of the sleepover squad. Swain, then 16, first popped up in Starsky & Hutch, the big-budget reboot of the hit cop show starring Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson as the eponymous duo. After that busy year, she went on to make several appearances in projects like the Hollywood-set thriller-drama The Truth About Angels and the ensemble comedy 0s & 1s.


Mostly though, Swain's focus seems to be on shorts, as she's starring in the likes of Caruso, All I Want, and Back to the Movies. She's also stepped behind the camera to take on gigs as a cinematographer and producer on 2019's Selfies Fever. The project is described on IMDb as, "A short silent experimental film about quirky characters who try to find themselves through cell phone selfies." Swain also took a starring role in the short. She again took on both on-screen and off-screen roles when she starred in and directed the TV movie Roommates that same year. Obviously, she's been keeping busy.

Sydni Beaudoin (Sydni)

Sydni Beaudoin, whose IMDb page is loaded with bit parts here and there, has kept her calendar packed in the years since appearing as part of the sleepover crew in 13 Going on 30, but she's had work before the film. The actress officially made her big-screen debut in 1997's cult classic comic book adaptation Spawn, alongside actors John Leguizamo and Martin Sheen. A variety of TV roles followed, and Beaudoin appeared in the Justin Theroux-led series The Leftovers, Happyish, Lena Dunham's Girls, and the Netflix sitcom Friends From College, which featured Keegan Michael Key and Cobie Smulders in the cast.


Beaudoin's career hasn't exactly been stacked, as it would appear she chooses projects wisely. Judging by her Instagram account, where she posts plenty of inspirational photos of her working out and pictures of herself hanging out with friends, she clearly has her priorities in order. Beaudoin also appears to be involved in the Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell show Fosse/Verdon, judging by a post from March 2019. However, at the time of this writing, she is not listed as a member of the show's cast or crew on IMDb.