Can you believe the holiday favorite Elf came out way back in 2003? That’s 14 years ago! It seems like just yesterday we were watching Buddy the elf try to navigate New York and find his biological father.
Oh wait, I did watch that yesterday.
Elf has pretty much been on television nonstop throughout the Christmas season, and for good reason. It’s a fantastic movie!
It seems we just can’t get enough of Will Ferrell, who as we all know went on to enjoy a very successful career in Hollywood. But whatever happened to the other stars in the movie? Well, there were so many famous faces in the holiday classic, that plenty of the actors still have long-running careers.
Did you spot Zooey Deschanel? She plays Jovie, the department store elf that Buddy befriends. Of course, it was back when she had blond hair and was a little less quirky, so you may have missed her. She still has amazing singing skills in the movie, though!
But one face you perhaps haven’t seen more of is that of the little chubby-cheeked Michael? He was so cute back then, and one of the youngest actors in the movie. Michael was Buddy’s younger brother in the hit Christmas classic, and his scenes with Will Ferrell we’re some of the best (especially the snowball fight).
So what is he up to 14 years later? Well, Daniel Tay, the actor who played Michael in the movie is all grown up!
Daniel was just 12 years old when he starred alongside some of Hollywood’s most famous actors in Elf, but now he’s 26 and looks completely different!
Daniel’s lost the chubby cheeks and cow-licked hair, and exchanged them for a chiseled jaw and Prince Charming good looks! Perhaps it’s the Christmas magic, but little Michael grew up to be pretty darn handsome!
I bet you’re wondering where can you find Daniel Tay now? Well, sadly he hasn’t done much in the way of acting. He’s actually been pretty quiet, keeping to himself, but he has had a handful of roles over the last decade or so.
Daniel landed roles in the 2006 film Beer League and Brooklyn Rules in 2007. He’s also done some video game voice work for Bully and Grand Theft Auto IV.
He hasn’t been acting at all since 2009 and doesn’t currently have any upcoming projects. Perhaps he’s taken up a new career in Tinsel Town. Well, no. Like many child stars, Daniel faded from Hollywood and is now a regular Joe like you or I.
In the past few years graduated from Yale University with a BA in Economics. He now works as a tutor and SAT instructor at Veritas Prep.
Ah well, all the more likely you could run into him at your local Starbucks!
I guess we’ll all just have to turn on our televisions, load up Netflix and watch Elf for the 17th time this year!
Not every child actor from our favorite holiday movies has disappeared. Did you know the Big Bang Theory‘s Johnny Galecki played Clark Griswold’s son in National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation? Actress Juliet Lewis played Clark’s daughter!
Even the actor who played young Sam from Love Actually, Thomas Brodie-Sangster, grew up to land staring rolls in The Maze Runner and on Game of Thrones.
To see more of your favorite holiday child stars and what they look like now, check out the video below. From Johnathan Taylor Thomas to that nerdy kid in A Christmas Story, I know you’ve got to be curious to see how they turned out!
Happy holiday viewing!