Ever since Macaulay Culkin blasted Home Alone into the box office stratosphere, it seems that Hollywood has unleashed a drove of movie kids. This summer, actors under 14 have had pivotal parts in everything from action blockbusters (Terminator 2) to domestic dramas (Regarding Henry) to hard-boiled detective yarns (V.I. Warshawski). Ranging from off-the-street discoveries to seasoned performers, these youngsters are now chasing dreams of stardom and profit points. Here’s the current lineup of young actors vying to be the next $200 million kid.
Edward Furlong Terminator 2
Furlong, who just turned 14, is the screen kid of the season, bringing true grit to the role of Resistance-leader-of-the-future John Connor. Discovered by casting director Mali Finn while he was hanging out at a youth center in his hometown of Pasadena, Furlong says being in the summer’s No. 1 blockbuster ”has changed my life — totally.” But it hasn’t all been glitter. Furlong is now in the middle of a legal dispute between his mother and the aunt he’s chosen to live with. But the young actor has already landed his second feature, American Heart, which stars Jeff Bridges. As to who’s the top movie kid, Furlong says, ”I don’t want to get into a duel with Macaulay Culkin; I liked Home Alone, but I think Terminator 2 will end up being seen by as many people.”
Angela Goethals V.I. Warshawski
As Kat Grafalk, the sassy kid who holds her own against Kathleen Turner’s tough-talking private eye, Goethals, 14, is a highlight of V.I. Warshawski. The precocious New York actress, who alternates between stage and screen (she’s currently starring in Lynda Barry’s Off Broadway hit, The Good Times Are Killing Me), can trace an interesting bit of history between her and Culkin: Goethals costarred as as his older sister in Rocket Gibraltar (1988) and later repeated the on-screen relationship in Home Alone. Right now Goethals says she would like to concentrate on ”getting into the swing of high school. My mom (Rosalind, who’s divorced from Goethals’ father) doesn’t want me to be so focused on acting that I can’t do anything else,” she says. ”I’m interested in other things, but I’ll probably continue acting as long as it’s fun.”