Case in point — the fact that we have published two installments of this article about teen stars of history and you are still here for part three, thirsty as ever for another look into the past. Well, start scrolling and consider your thirst quenched.
Adam Faith (1950s)
One of the United Kingdom's very first pop stars, Adam Faith burst onto the scene in the late '50s and really came into his own during the early stages of the decade that followed. A rock and roll teen idol across the pond, Faith managed to get two consecutive No. 1 hits under his belt - first with "What Do You Want?" in 1959, and then "Poor Me" in the following year.
Faith was a consistent hitmaker during this time and eventually ventured into the world of acting - starring in shows such as "Budgie" and "Love Hurts." In 2003, Faith passed away after suffering a heart attack. He was 62 years old.
Cliff Richard (1950s)
There might not be a British teen idol quite as iconic as the one and only Cliff Richard. Many would go as far as to say that the 21.5 million single-selling singer is the UK's answer to Elvis. So that should give you an indication of just how much of an impact he has had.
During the early days, Richard was a rock and roll sensation, with hits like "Move It" under his belt. But he would soon progress into mainstream pop as the '60s came. While he is known for having been a teen idol back in the day, Richard has maintained consistent success throughout his life, right up until the present day.
Tommy Steele (1950s)
Many regard Tommy Steele to be the UK's very first teen idol. And when you consider the fact that this crooner had his first hit single back in 1956 with "Rock with the Caveman," that actually makes perfect sense. Steele even had his rise to fame portrayed in the movie "The Tommy Steele Story."
Amazingly, the film's soundtrack was the first from the UK to reach number one on the UK Albums Chart. As the '60s progressed, Steele moved away from the rock and roll scene and became more of an all-around performer. In 2020, Steele got the ultimate British honor when he was knighted by the Queen for his contribution to British culture.
Marty Wilde (1950s)
Marty Wilde was certainly one of the people responsible for making rock and roll popular in the UK back in the '50s. With hit singles such as "Endless Sleep," "Sea of Love" and "Bad Boy," he was no stranger to chart success.
Wilde also had hits in both the '60s and the '70s, but it was his teen years that fans will best remember him for. And the success ended up running in the family - as his daughter Kim Wilde also made a name for herself in the world of pop - creating the '80s single "Kids in America," among others.
Clark Brandon (1970s-1980s)
He might not be the biggest household name on this list - but Clark Brandon certainly had a memorable time during his teen years. The young kid from New York blew up early on with roles in shows such as "Mr. Merlin" and "Out of the Blue."
He even starred alongside the legendary Jim Varney in the movie "Fast Food." After that, Brandon took a step back from acting and entered the director's seat, helming projects for movies such as "Dark Secrets," "Skeeter," and "The Last Road," to name a few. Up until 2018, Brandon was actually the dean at the Arete Preparatory Academy in Southern California.
Lance Kerwin (1970s)
To say that Lance Kerwin was a prolific '70s teen star would be the understatement of the century. At one point, it seemed like the young actor was in absolutely everything - featuring in shows such as "Shazam!," "Gunsmoke," "Wonder Woman," and "Little House on the Prairie," to name a few.
Kerwin also had a decent amount of acting roles throughout the '80s but ended up taking a hiatus during the mid-'90s. In 2022, Kerwin finally returned to TV, appearing in the historical drama film "The Wind and the Reckoning." Sadly though, just a year later, Kerwin passed away under tragic circumstances.
Kristy McNichol (1970s-1980s)
Kristy McNichol really had some longevity when you consider how long she stayed relevant in the world of TV. Back in the late '70s, she rose to stardom with her role as Letitia "Buddy" Lawrence in the drama series "Family."
While she continued to appear sporadically on TV, she would end up having another prominent role about a decade later, playing Barbara Weston on the sitcom "Empty Nest." She also had a hit role in the movie "Little Darlings." She stepped away though from acting at the turn of the millennium and in 2012, McNichol came out as gay, having been in a relationship with Martie Allen for more than two decades.
Rick Springfield (1970s-1980s)
It's impossible not to think about the '80s without thinking about the classic number "Jessie's Girl." Rick Springfield was responsible for that hit record. However, he had already been rocking it for more than a decade prior, having been part of the pop-rock group Zoot. The Australian-born singer continued to churn out the tunes for the next few decades.
Springfield also ventured into the world of acting, starring in movies such as "Hard to Move" and the TV series "High Tide." He also famously starred in the daytime drama "General Hospital" as Dr. Noah Drake. In more recent times, Springfield showed up in an episode of "American Horror Story."
Kent McCord (1960s-1970s)
Some teen idols end up being best known for just one thing - and this can probably be said for Kent McCord. During the late '60s and early '70s, the talented young actor rose to fame with his role as police officer Jim Reed on the procedural drama "Adam-12."
McCord would never be able to eclipse the fame he got from that role. However, he did appear in a string of movies, including "Airplane II: The Sequel" and "Predator 2." Despite stepping out of the limelight over the last few decades, McCord still connects with his fans through conventions and virtual meetings.
Pamela Sue Martin (1970s)
Has there been an actress who has given a more iconic portrayal of Nancy Drew than the incredible Pamela Sue Martin? The young star really made the role her own in the TV show "The Hardy Boys/Nancy Drew Mysteries" during the late '70s.
Martin continued to garner fame in the '80s with her role as socialite Fallon Carrington Colby in the soap opera series "Dynasty." For the good part of two decades, Martin didn't star in anything, but had a small renaissance in the '00s with cameos in shows such as "That '70s Show" and "The L Word." She has been married three times and had one child.
Tony DeFranco (1970s)
While The Partridge Family was certainly one of the most iconic families that the '70s had to offer, we can't forget about the DeFrancos. This pop music family group offered plenty of fun hits during their time, and Tony DeFranco was at the forefront of their success.
He was just 13 years of age when he released his first hit single, "Heartbeat - It's a Lovebeat" along with his siblings, Benny, Marisa, Nino, and Merlina. Over the last few decades, DeFranco has been doing less acting and has been more active as a real estate agent for Sotheby's International Realty.
Cheryl Ladd (1970s)
There is no denying that Cheryl Ladd's biggest claim to fame was for her role as Kris Munroe in the hit series "Charlie's Angels." Despite having the pressure of filling the shoes left by the late, great Farrah Fawcett, Ladd made a huge impact on the show and would continue to get work for many years afterward.
She also starred in movies such as "Purple Hearts," "Millenium," and "Poison Ivy," to name a few. In more recent times, Ladd competed in "Dancing With The Stars" in 2022, but unfortunately, she ended up finishing in 14th place out of 16 contestants. Ouch!
Buddy Holly (1950s)
We think it's safe to say we can call Buddy Holly a teen idol. After all, he only ever made it to the age of 22 after tragically passing away in a plane crash. Prior to this untimely event, Holly was arguably the man who revolutionized rock n' roll.
At such a young age, Holly was a serious trailblazer making music with a sound that was full of attitude for his era. With hits like "Peggy Sue" and "That'll Be the Day," people were quick to fall in love with Holly's music. Dying at such a young age immortalized Holly, and people still revere him to this day.
Karen Carpenter (1970s)
Has any singer had a voice quite like Karen Carpenter's? The female half of the band The Carpenters stole the hearts of millions of listeners around the world with her iconic vocals. With hits such as "Ticket to Ride" and "Close to You," it seemed like there was nothing that The Carpenters couldn't achieve.
Sadly though, during the '70s, Karen's health started to decline as she suffered from anorexia. Her final years were marred by poor health, failures to ignite her solo career, and a marriage that lasted only a year. In 1983, Carpenter passed away after suffering a cardiac arrest. She was just 32 years of age.
Gary Coleman (1970s-1980s)
One of the quintessential child stars of the '70s and '80s was the late, great Gary Coleman. He stole the hearts of many viewers with his role as Arnold Jackson in the hit sitcom "Diff'rent Strokes." Of course, Coleman made the line "What'chu talkin' about Willis?" his own.
Unfortunately, though, Coleman was never able to outgrow his childlike persona, which put a major stunt on his efforts to branch out into other roles. Also, Coleman faced many financial problems later on in life. In 2010, Coleman passed away after suffering a brain hemorrhage. He was just 42 years old at the time.
Jodie Foster (1960s-1970s)
It feels like Jodie Foster has been around forever. And that makes sense, seeing that she technically started her career at the tender age of two! She was the star of many commercials and made her acting debut in 1968 in the show "Mayberry R.F.D." In the '70s, Foster would go on to star alongside the one and only Robert DeNiro in the Martin Scorsese-directed "Taxi Driver."
Amazingly, she was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role. Over the years, Foster has also had starring roles in classic movies such as "The Silence of the Lambs" and "Panic Room." She also has many director credits to her name.
Frankie Lymon (1950s)
Frankie Lymon was a teen star during the '50s and had the voice of an angel to back up his manly charm. He reached the pinnacle of pop music at the time with his group the Teenagers and their song "Why Do Fools Fall in Love." But things weren't always peachy for Frankie.
He had his fair share of personal and legal problems, which caused him to lose his fame and fortune. At just 25 years of age, Lymon ultimately passed away after failing to battle his demons. Despite this, Frankie left behind a big legacy and paved the way for future stars.
Goldie Hawn (1960s-1970s)
Goldie first became famous in the '60s, and caught many peoples' attention on the sketch show "Rowan & Martin's Laugh-In." She quickly became a household name and would make a pretty smooth transition into Hollywood. She put her acting chops on full display in movies such as "Overboard" and "Private Benjamin."
Hawn went on to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role in the 1970 flick "Cactus Flower." Of course, Hawn has managed to stay relevant in Hollywood ever since. Not only has she been with Kurt Russell for a long time - but her kids Kate and Oliver Hudson, and Wyatt Russell, are big stars in their own rights.
Don Most (1970s)
There is no denying that Donny Most will forever be remembered for his role as Ralph Malph in the classic TV sitcom "Happy Days." Despite often being eclipsed by co-stars such as Ron Howard and Henry Winkler, most certainly added his own unique flavor to the show.
Viewers were enamored by his witty humor and it didn't take long before people around the world knew his name. Unfortunately, though, he was never quite able to move on after such an iconic role - despite trying to venture into new roles. Since the turn of the millennium, Most has enjoyed small success as a voice actor.
Carrie Fisher (1970s)
When you come from the kind of Hollywood royalty that Carrie Fisher came from, it made sense that she would also get her fair share of fame and success too. The daughter of Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, Fisher is obviously best known for her role as Princess Leia in the "Star Wars" franchise.
But even before she donned the iconic robe, Fisher appeared in movies such as "Come Back, Little Sheba" and "Shampoo." Unfortunately, Fisher's life post-"Star Wars" was plagued by personal problems and addiction. She ended up passing away in 2016 at the age of 60. Her mother passed away just a day later, leaving her daughter Billie Lourd completely heartbroken.
Kurt Russell (1960s-1970s)
It might be a bit of a stretch to say that Kurt Russell was ever a teen idol. But he is one of the most famous actors in Hollywood over the last 50 years and he did have some pretty memorable roles as a child. So we think this counts. He started his acting career at the age of 12, appearing in the western show "The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters."
And he even showed up on shows like "Bonanza." In the '60s, Russell signed a deal with Disney, in which he'd star in films such as "The Computer Wore Tennis Shoes," "Now You See Him, Now You Don't," and "The Strongest Man in the World." Of course, Russell will be best remembered for his work later on in life.
Hayley Mills (1950s-1960s)
During the late '50s/early '60s, Hayley Mills became a popular teen star, featuring in Disney films such as "The Parent Trap" and "Pollyanna." But Mills wouldn't be remembered just for her teen star efforts. She also made a smooth transition into older roles, gaining plaudits from critics and audiences alike for her roles in movies such as "Whistle Down the Wind" and "The Chalk Garden."
Mills also featured in numerous British TV shows, showing that she was a hit both in America and "across the pond." Mills has been married once, been in two other high-profile relationships, and has two children.
David Soul (1970s)
Prior to his breakthrough role as Ken "Hutch" Hutchinson in the popular hit series "Starsky & Hutch," David Soul was already impressing audiences with his sporadic appearances on numerous TV shows. These included the likes of "I Dream of Jeannie," "Star Trek," and "All in the Family." He also had a main role in the hit sitcom "Here Come the Brides."
But Soul's career continued to build after his teen years, with a fairly successful dive into the world of music. He went up the charts with his debut single "Don't Give Up on Us." Soul's last role came in the 2013 movie "Filth."
Harrison Ford (1970s)
What else can be said about Harrison Ford? Truth be told, the Hollywood superstar was never exactly a teen star - especially since his big breakthrough came playing a young adult as Han Solo in the "Star Wars" franchise. In fact, Ford was a self-taught carpenter before his acting took off.
But he always looked younger than he was - we'll give him that. With some good luck, he managed to impress George Lucas in an audition for the 1973 movie "American Graffiti." And just like that, Ford's career took off kind of like the Millenium Falcon. Ford has led two major franchises in his lifetime, and most recently reprised the role of Indiana Jones in its fifth installment.
Barry Williams (1970s)
Born in ’54, Barry Williams knew that he wanted to be an actor from a young age. He made his TV debut on "Dragnet" in 1967. Two years later, they took the world by storm as Greg Brady on "The Brady Bunch." Once the show ended in 1974, Williams tried switching to the musical theater but was continuously typecast as the Greg Brady type character.
Williams also fancies himself a rapper. In 2000 Williams parodied Eminem’s "The Real Slim Shady" titled "The Real Greg Brady." And as far as what he’s up to recently? Well, his latest film, "Flea," came out in 2018, with him starring as the Marsh Man.
Richard Thomas (1970s)
Known to many as John-Boy from "The Waltons," Richard Thomas had built up an impressive acting record by his 20th birthday. One of his first major film roles was in "Winning" in 1969, where he played alongside Paul Newman. Now if that's not a great education in acting, we don't know what is.
After leaving "The Waltons," Richard experienced a successful theater career, which included "Fifth of July" and "Richard II." In 2009-2010, Thomas appeared in the Broadway play "Race" by David Mamet. He acted alongside James Spader, Kerry Washington, and David Alan Grier. He also had a minor role in the hit Netflix series "Ozark."
Mississippi-born Elvis Presley had his big break with the hit “Heartbreak Hotel” and became a household name in and out of the US. His smooth voice and shaking hips welcomed us into the era of rock n’ roll. Elvis had a seemingly bottomless pit of hits and became the synonymous face when it came to pop music.
What started as a glamorous career in the 1950s was waning towards the late 1960s. His problematic private life took a toll on The King's health as well. At 42 years old, Elvis died from a heart attack. In 2022, Austin Butler played Elvis in a titular biopic.
Ricky Nelson (1950s)
Ricky Nelson grew up to be handsome and famous but had to work very hard as a child actor. He started out in the sitcom "The Adventures of Ozzie and Harriet." His family and friends quickly saw he could also sing and dance - so he made the smooth transition into music.
Nelson would go on to have a staggering 54 songs on the Billboard Hot 100, including the popular number "Poor Little Fool," which turned out to be the first number one on the Hot 100 chart. Over time, the dwindling fanbase made Nelson less popular. He tragically died in a plane crash in 1985 during his comeback tour.
Bobby Vee (1960s)
In 1961, Bobby Vee came out like a shiny new toy with his hit song “Rubber Ball.” But the truth is that he'd been releasing flops for years prior. “Rubber Ball” is what turned him into an international star. The UK fans were particularly fond of him, with 10 of his hits charting at number one.
Vee was good friends with Bob Dylan. The two met when Dylan was young and still performing as Robert Zimmerman. Years went by, and Bobby kept playing his songs to his beloved fans until 2011 when he was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. He passed away 5 years later.
Sal Mineo (1950s-1960s)
Salvatore "Sal" Mineo became a full-blown celebrity when he starred in "Rebel Without a Cause" alongside James Dean. The performance earned him an Oscar nomination, as well as a fanbase stretching as far as the eye can see.
He went on to star in many other hit films ("Giant," "Crime in the Streets," and "Exodus," to name a few). He was the first star to publically come out of the closet in the late 1960s. He found his unfortunate, untimely death at the hands of a mugger when he returned to his Los Angeles home after a rehearsal. He was 37 at the time.
Corey Feldman (1970s)
Corey Feldman got his start in the '70s. His first role was at the age of three in a McDonald’s commercial and had a role in the 1979 film "Time After Time." He and Corey Haim became good friends, and both struggled with substance abuse as they moved into their young adulthood.
Corey later starred in classics such as "Stand By Me," "Gremlins" and "The Goonies," to name a few, before turning to music. His music career didn't enjoy the same success as his acting career. He released 5 studio albums, the latest of which, "Angelic 2 the Core" (2016), flopped miserably.
Christopher Knight (1970s)
Christopher Knight is commonly known as Peter Brady from "The Brady Bunch." He later made guest appearances on other famous TV shows of the time, as well as a few sporadic film roles. While Knight made his first few bucks as an actor, he later found more success in the business world.
Knight went into the tech industry, eventually founding a few companies. The last one he founded, Eskape Labs, was bought out by a big US tech company. Romantically speaking, the man’s been married four times. Hopefully, with his latest wife, Cara Kokenes, there’s a little more lasting power.
Mark Hamill (1970s)
Forever Luke Skywalker, Mark Hamill actually started his way as a TV actor. He later landed roles in shows such as "The Texas Wheelers" and "General Hospital" in the 1970s and was very popular even before landing the role of Luke. He had a small role in George Lucas's movie "American Graffiti" and went on to play Luke shortly after.
Luke won Hamill two Saturn Awards and a substantial place in American cultural history. Although he didn't manage to develop as a live-action actor - Hamill had a very successful voice-acting career over the years. He keeps acting to this day and has several newly announced acting projects to look forward to.
Bobby Rydell (1960s)
Bobby Rydell made the women of the 1960s swoon with a single stare and it was clear that everyone else wanted to be him. He became famous in the ‘50s on Paul Whiteman’s "TV Teen Club" as a regular cast member. After many years on the show, Rydell turned to music, which didn't take off that well.
Eventually, however, he was cast in the hit 1963 movie version of "Bye Bye Birdie." Despite numerous health issues and undergoing kidney and liver transplants, he was still performing around the world and had no plans of slowing down. Unfortunately, though, he ended up passing away in 2022.
Vincent Van Patten (1970s)
Son of the actor Dick Van Patten, Vincent was encouraged to take the spotlight as a young boy, and he appeared in many commercials as a kid. He soon transitioned into bigger roles, starring in numerous films and TV shows, the first of which was "Bonanza."
But Vincent is more than just an actor. He is also a talented tennis player with a well-established career and titles, as well as a successful poker player. So even though he doesn't act anymore, he has other ways to make a living. Vincent actually comes from a family full of celebrities. His uncle, Tim Van Patten, is a famous TV director.
Bobby Sherman (1970s)
Bobby Sherman Started out as an actor, but it did not take long for his other talents to shine as well. His first television appearance was on the show "Shindig!" and then he started leaning into music as well. His music career won him five gold albums and seven Top 40 hits. Now that is pretty impressive for an actor who also sings!
When Bobby Sherman felt like his Hollywood career was not fulfilling his creative needs anymore, he ended up going down a different path. He retired from show business and started a career as an EMT and a sheriff's officer. Talk about a career change!
Dean Martin (1950s-1960s)
Two things that made Dean Martin irresistible are his charm and charisma (but to be fair, there were many other things). These were only two of the reasons why he was nicknamed “King of Cool.” Everything he did, he did effortlessly well — from his comedy duo with Jerry Lewis to his acting and singing.
In his later career, Martin focused more on his music and recorded an average of four albums a year in the 1970s. Martin, who was a heavy smoker, suffered from lung cancer and other respiratory problems. He passed away on Christmas day of 1995 at 78 years old.
Marlon Brando (1950s-1960s)
Marlon Brando's career, popularity, and influence are unmatched. He had his big break in 1954 with the film "On the Waterfront" and went on to become a Hollywood staple. He is considered to be the first actor to popularize the Method Acting style.
Brando was one of the highest-paid actors in the world and received a record $3.7 million for just 13 days of work in his cameo on 1978’s "Superman." His most famous film is undoubtedly 1972's "The Godfather," a film that is widely regarded as the greatest film ever made. He passed away in 2004, at 80 years old.
Connie Stevens (1950s - 1960s)
Stevens got her start on the hit Warner Brothers TV series “77 Sunset Strip” before she released her novelty song in 1959. It was a duet with another actor on the program, Edward Byrnes. It got high on the Billboard Hot 100, all the way to number four.
She had plenty of other releases, including the number three hit on the Billboard Hot 100, “Sixteen Reasons,” which she released in 1960. She was also in several big movies at the time, including starring opposite Jerry Lewis, and continued to get a few small roles here or there through the decades. She made her directorial debut in 2009 with “Saving Grace B. Jones.”
James Darren (1950s - 1960s)
After being discovered by casting director Joyce Selznick, James Darren became a teen idol almost immediately, including starring in films and releasing a string of pop hits, which include his biggest, “Goodbye Cruel World,” which reached number three on Billboard in 1961.
Of course, like many of these teen idols, he decided he wanted to pass to adulthood. He was able to do so thanks to a role in the gritty 1961 World War II film “The Guns of Navarone.” After that, he achieved success as an impulsive and adventurous scientist, Tony Newman, in the science fiction TV show “The Time Tunnel,” from 1966 to 1967.
The Shangri-Las (1960s)
An American pop group in the nineteen-sixties, the Shangri-Las charted numerous times thanks to their melodramatic and often heartbreaking songs. They got their start in Andrew Jackson High School in Cambria Heights, part of New York City.
The group was, for the most part, two sets of sisters: Mary and Elizabeth “Betty” Weiss, and identical twins Marguerite “Marge Ganser and Ann Ganser. The two Ganser sisters have sadly passed away, and before long, Betty Weiss decided she wasn't a fan of being on stage or touring. This flash-in-the-pan band didn't go on to do much more, but their songs are still fun to throw on.
Johnny Tillotson (1960s)
Johnny put the time and work in to finally make it big. He had a musical variety show while he was in college at the University of Florida, and once he graduated, he signed with Cadence Records and moved to New York City. His big hit “Poetry in Motion” got to number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and all the way to number one on the UK Chart Singles.
Tillotson was known as a crossover artist, able to make it big on both the pop charts and in the country music world. The kid even got a Grammy nomination thanks to “It Keeps Right On a-Hurtin.'”
Henry Winkler (1970s - 1980s)
Even if the name doesn't ring a bell, the fact that Winkler played the epitome of cool as “The Fonz” in “Happy Days” will help you picture him. Thanks to the immediate star power the show gave him, he's still doing plenty in and around the entertainment industry.
He's a character actor that still gets plenty of roles, including in “Arrested Development,” “Numb3rs,” “Royal Pains,” and even “Children's Hospital” on Cartoon Network. During his spare time, he writes a children's book series, “Hank Zipzer,” which is now at seventeen books, and spends time with his wife and children. Winkler recently starred as Gene Cousineau in the HBO series "Barry."
John Travolta (1970s)
After starring in huge movies like “Carrie,” “Saturday Night Fever,” and “Grease,” the world was John Travolta's oyster. Unfortunately, the eighties were a rough period for the actor, and he released a number of box office bombs such as “Blow Out” and “Staying Alive.”
It was only thanks to Quentin Tarantino that Travolta got another chance at Hollywood, thanks to a starring role in the cult classic “Pulp Fiction.” Due to the tragic death of his son Jett in 2009 and a 2012 lawsuit, Johnny boy, has been keeping a low profile but has had a few roles to speak of.
Shaun Cassidy (1970s)
As David Cassidy's brother, Shaun was close to fame for a while before he got his own career. This former teen heartthrob was young detective Joe Hardy in “The Hardy Boys Mysteries,” alongside Parker Stevenson as the older Frank. Just like David, Shaun adjusted well to adult life, and after teen and twenties full of “Tiger Beat” magazine articles, Shaun has settled down and taken to the stage, acting in Broadway dramas.
During the nineties, he returned to the TV behind the camera, writing and producing shows like “American Gothic” and “Invasion.” His life is quiet on his two-acre Los Angeles ranch with his family.
Dion DiMucci (1960s)
Dion, as he was known, had lots of big hits, but only one of them, “Runaround Sue,” made it to number one. He was one of the rare teen idols at the time who had real musical ability beyond chords and a stage presence. He made it into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1989 – his fans include legendary musicians such as Bruce Springsteen, Paul Simon, and Lou Reed.
This journeyman is still releasing music and can always be found in the studio, on tour, or playing live on Facebook. He's still got plenty of life in him, even for someone who's playing for fifty years.
Brian Hyland (1960s - 1970s)
After small hits, Hyland suddenly delivered an anthem of the sixties thanks to his most famous song, “Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Yellow Polkadot Bikini.” The novelty song reached number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and sold almost a million copies in just two months, with over two million total.
Additional hits include “Let Me Belong to You” and “I'll Never Stop Wanting You.” As the decade advanced, the hits racked up, and Hyland began to branch out, producing more than just pop music, including the psychedelic single “Get the Message,” which reached number ninety-one. He even had relative success in the seventies and eighties and continues to tour to this day.
Troy Shondell (1960s)
While “This Time” was Troy Shondell's biggest – and only – hit, he had been writing and performing music for almost ten years, since he was fourteen. Until that point, while his songs had been well-received, they hadn't made it to the charts. “This Time,” however, made him an international star, charting both in the United States and the United Kingdom.
However, Shondell turned out to be a one-hit-wonder, and he follow-up “Tears From An Angel” saw no chart success. Yet Shondell continued to write and perform until 2010 when he called it quits. In January of 2016, he died from complications of Alzheimer's and Parkinson's disease.
Mark Wynter (1960s – 1970s)
While he began his entertainment career as Terry Lewis, he decided to switch to Mark Wynter to avoid confusion with famous comedian Jerry Lewis. Wynter placed fourth in the 1961 edition of the Eurovision Song Contest, but that didn't stop him.
He recorded a cover version of the Jimmy Clanton hit “Venus in Blue Jeans,” which helped him find big success, though none of his other musical outputs would reach the same heights. His musical career continued until 1968, at which point he developed into an actor in films, musicals, and plays – he even appeared in the 1978 “Superman” movie.
The Beach Boys (1960s – 1970s)
The year they released their second album, “Surfin' U.S.A.,” was also one of the last years the Beach Boys were a pure pop group. Their sun-and-fun sound had them dismissed by most critics, yet teens loved the sounds of their songs. With distinguishing vocal harmonies and musical ingenuity, they became one of the most influential acts of the rock era.
They were one of the few American bands who maintained their standing during the British Invasion in the sixties. Their 1966 album “Pet Sounds” and its single “Good Vibrations” made them rock innovators. Though members have passed away or quit, the band continues to perform.
The Hudson Brothers (1970s)
These brothers only rose to prominence thanks to the established star power of “The Sonny & Cher Show.” Less than a year later, in 1975, the brothers had their own variety show, “The Hudson Brothers Show.” They later moved on to children's programming with “The Hudson Brothers Razzle Dazzle Show.”
The same year they began their variety show, they had two songs – out of four – that made it to the Billboard Hot 100: “Rendezvous” and “Lonely School Year.” The musical talent didn't stop there – one of the brothers, Bill, met and married Goldie Hawn in 1975 when Hawn was pregnant with their daughter, none other than actress Kate Hudson.
Andy Gibb (1970s- 1980s)
British-born singer Andy Gibb had star power in his family. He was the younger brother of Bee Gees members Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb, but he didn't need to be part of the family act to get his own fame. His first album “Flowing Rivers” proved he had the musical chops, and he got his first number one song, “I Just Want to Be Your Everything,” when he was nineteen years old.
Three more top twenty singles followed the hit, and then Gibb fell into addiction and depression. When he turned thirty, he attempted a comeback but died just a few days later due to myocarditis – inflammation and weakness of the heart due to substance abuse.
Willie Aames (1960s – 1970s)
During the sixties, Willie Aames was a child actor who had plenty of big appearances, including on “Gunsmoke,” perhaps one of the biggest shows of the decade. When he reached adulthood in the seventies, he had spots on “Cannon,” “Medical Center,” and “The Waltons.”
He was the first actor to play Felix Unger's son, Leonard, on “The Odd Couple,” a role that fellow teen star Leif Garret would take over. Aames starred in “Eight Is Enough” as Tommy Bradford from 1976 until 1981. After that, he became an ordained minister and appeared as the Christian superhero Bibleman in a video game series of the same name from 1995 until 2004.
Jimmy Baio (1970s)
That name probably looks familiar, and yes, Jimmy Baio is Scott's cousin (to be fair, we can see a resemblance). Another cousin is Joey Baio, who had success as an actor in the fifties and sixties. There isn't a whole lot we can find about the youngest Baio.
But we do know he began his television career at the age of thirteen when he played an uncredited role on “Ellery Queen.” In 1976 he joined the cast of “Joe and Sons,” which only ran for a single season, and then became part of “Soap,” playing Billy Tate, staying with the show until 1981.
The Bay City Rollers (1970s)
Formed in 1967, this Scottish group went through plenty of lineup changes before they struck it big and caused music and fashion crazes alike. They had major chart success in the United Kingdom and later got all the way to number one on Billboard with “S-A-T-U-R-D-A-Y Night.”
The boys seemed unstoppable when their next song, “Money Honey,” got to number nine. Teen gals of the era loved the music and looks of the boys, but their star power faltered thanks to a revolving door of members who couldn't take the strain. Several of the members still play the songs, but there is no official Bay City Rollers anymore.
Dirk Benedict (1970s)
Long before he was the handsome and skilled space pilot Lt. Starbuck in the original “Battlestar Galactica,” Dirk Benedict had a role in the short-lived 1974 TV series “Chopper One,” and also starred in the cult classic horror film “Sssssss” from 1973. Yup, that is the name of a movie, folks.
He played a lab assistant to a scientist who had a bad habit of turning his assistants into snakes. Benedict is best known for his role on the classic eighties show “The A-Team,” in which he played Lieutenant Templeton “Faceman” Peck. The opening to that show references his “Battlestar Galactica” role.
Michael Biehn (1970s)
Most people will likely remember Michael Biehn from two major roles in the eighties: Sgt. Kyle Reese in the 1983 sci-fi thriller “The Terminator,” and Corporal Dwayne Hicks in the 1986 movie “Aliens.” But during the seventies, he had lots of roles in traditional media as well as science fiction that held lots of viewers tuning in just to see him.
He paid his dues in the acting world, working his way up the ladder on shows such as “James at 16,” “Logan's Run,” and “Family.” It was the short-lived series “The Runaways” from 1979 that got him his place in teen magazines.
Sandra Dee (1950s - 1960s)
Sandra began her entertainment career as a child model, later moving on to televised advertisements, breaking into the film when she was a teenager. She became famous for playing ingénues and earned a Golden Globe Award as a promising newcomer. She became a household name thanks to “Imitation of Life” in 1959. She was darling, driving men wild with just one look.
Her career continued into the sixties, but by the end of the decade, it had begun to dwindle. Her publicized divorce with Bobby Darin marked the beginning of the end, and she rarely acted after 1970. Dee died in 2005 of complications from kidney disease.
Loni Anderson (1970s)
From a childhood of playing dress-up to getting second place in the Miss Minnesota pageant at eighteen, Loni Anderson was destined for greatness. When she and her family relocated to California, both Anderson and her husband started getting acting roles. Anderson found herself in popular shows such as “S.W.A.T.,” “Police Woman,” “Three's Company,” and “Barnaby Jones,” though she never had starring roles.
That changed in 1978 thanks to a poster she posed for, which caught the attention of Hugh Wilson, who needed someone to star in the sitcom “WKRP in Cincinnati.” Anderson proved to be the breakout star of the series. She went on to get plenty of roles after the series ended and even got married to Burt Reynolds.
Catherine Bach (1970s)
If you're of a certain age, you're intimately familiar with Catherine Bach, or at least with the outfit she wore as Daisy Duke on “The Dukes of Hazzard.” Not many get a piece of clothing named after them, and Bach earned her right to become part of television history.
Long before she joined the Dukes, she starred in the Burt Lancaster movie “The Midnight Man” in 1973 – her very first acting role – and she also played alongside Clint Eastwood in “Thunderbolt and Lightfoot.” Bach became a poster queen, selling millions of her in her Daisy Duke getup – producers apparently hired her as soon as they saw the outfit she had picked out for the character.
Farrah Fawcett (1970s)
With the one-two punch of “Charlie's Angels” coming out the very same year, Farrah Fawcett posed for her legendary bathing suit poster – you know the one – there was no way she wasn't going to become one of the biggest names of the decade almost overnight.
It went like this: You either had a crush on Fawcett, or you spent hours in the bathroom trying to replicate her hairstyle. Her bright smile, big eyes, and enviable figure made her someone who could sell a movie, a TV show, or even a shaving cream just by saying hi. Fawcett and Michael Jackson actually passed away on the same day in 2009.
Pam Dawber (1970s)
Dawber got her start as a model in New York City but decided to make the shift to acting, appearing in commercials until she got big. That embiggening came thanks to “Mork and Mindy,” where she played Mindy McConnell, the Earth girl who befriends a space alien – played by Robin Williams in his own breakout role.
The show ran from 1978 until 1982 and is still remembered fondly until this very day. Since then, she was on “My Sister Sam” and also married actor Mark Harmon in 1987. The two have a pair of children. Truth be told though, the family stay very private and away from the public eye.
Susan Dey (1970s)
When she was only seventeen years old, Susan Dey won the role of Laurie Partridge on “The Partridge Family,” which would go on to produce another teen idol in David Cassidy. In 1972, Dey starred in her first feature film, “Skyjacked,” which starred Carlton Heston. She played Elly Brewster, a passenger on an airline flight who discovers a bomb threat.
When she stopped working on “The Partridge Family,” she appeared in television movies and had numerous television roles. From 1986 until 1992, she worked on the series “L.A. Law,” earning a Golden Globe as Best Actress in a Leading Role – Drama Series.
Paul Anka (1950s)
One of Canada’s most precious stars, Paul Anka is one of the most famous songwriters of his (and our) time. Two of his greatest hits are “Put Your Head on My Shoulder” and “Lonely Boy.” So that should tell you everything. But wait, there's more.
Anka was born in Ottawa and got his big break thanks to his uncle, who lent him the $100 he needed to record his first song at 14 years old. One of the biggest names in the 1950s, Anka is still active. In 2009, Anka said that he co-wrote Michael Jackson’s hit “This Is It” and was awarded %50 in royalties.
Shelley Fabares (1950s-1960s)
Shelley Fabares started her career as a 10-year-old child actress. She was very young but still managed to steal the show in "The Donna Reed Show." Despite her saying that she could not sing, teens simply could not get enough of her, which led her to try her hand at music anyway.
And sure enough, it was a risk that was definitely worth taking. Fabares had a short-lived marriage to notorious producer Lou Adler after which she married her current husband, actor Mike Farrel. She never stopped acting and even produced the SAG Award show from 2004-2011. These days, she takes it pretty easy.
Ron Howard (1970)
Many child actors are prone to depression or problematic behaviors as adults, but it seems like Ron Howard skipped that part. His acting career started when he starred in "The Andy Griffith Show" as Opie Taylor. He later got another famous role on "Happy Days" as Richie Cunnigham.
In the 1980s, Howard started directing, which brought us other cinematic masterpieces such as "A Beautiful Mind," "Willow," and " Apollo 13." He also recently directed the spinoff Star Wars movie - "Solo: A Star Wars Story." Nearing his 70s, Howard is an inseparable part of America’s acting legacy. And his daughter, Bryce, is also a talented actor/director.
Lesley Gore (1960s)
Lesley Gore became famous at the tender age of 16 when her hit “It’s My Party” would play non-stop in every radio station possible. With the right look, voice, and attitude, she had the full package, which did not go unnoticed by her many US fans.
Gore had an over 20-year-long commercial success before she decided to turn to music composition. She worked on the soundtracks of famous films such as "Grace of My Heart" and "Fame." The star later came out of the closet and with her partner — a jewelry designer named Lois Sassoon. The two were together for more than 20 years. In 2015, Gore passed away after battling lung cancer.
Peter Barton (1970s)
The short-lived TV show "Shirley" ran for a very limited time, but it still made Peter Barton a star. He was soon cast on a much bigger role in the show "The Powers of Matthew Star." Barton's popularity extended well into the 80s and won him numerous fans.
In a weird turn of events, one of his most devoted fans bequeathed him a substantial fortune when he passed away, making him $1.3 million richer. So even though Barton hasn't really done any acting work for the last few decades, he found himself being financially very fortunate anyway! His last role came in 2005, in the film "Repetition."
Robby Benson (1970s)
Throw a dart at a big sheet of movies from the seventies, and you're likely to hit Robby Benson. Let's see; he's been in "Jory," "Jeremy," "The Rothschilds," "One on One," and "The Chosen," to name a few. He was also in "Search for Tomorrow," a show running 71-72.
You almost certainly know Benson for the voice-work he did for Disney's "Beauty and the Beast." What character was he? Why the Beast himself! Surprisingly, most of the projects he has worked on in the past two decades don't involve live acting — he makes music, does voice acting, directs, and has even published books!
Marie Osmond (1970s)
Believe it or not, some Osmonds were not even in the family band. Marie Osmond became famous as a solo artist in the 1970s. Her most famous song was "Paper Roses," a cover she did of Anita Bryant’s song. She went on to co-host her own show with Donny, her teen idol brother.
Marie gradually transitioned from music to TV. She competed on "Dancing with the Stars" and joined Carrie Ann Inaba, Sharon Osbourne, Sheryl Underwood, and Eve as a regular panelist on the show "The Talk." Marie has been married three times (to two different men) and has a whopping eight kids!
Bobby Darin (1960s)
Guys wanted to be Bobby Darin, and girls wanted to be with him. This New Yorker started out in Holywood as a lyricist for star Connie Francis. He came to his own and saw success as a musician with songs like “Beyond the Sea,” “Dream Lover,” and “Mack the Knife.”
Bobby's career skyrocketed, making his face worldwide famous. It took a dip, however, when he found out the truth about his birth mother — whom he thought was his sister his whole life. Darin's unfortunate passing was in 1973 due to heart problems. He died at 37 - but in the picture, you can get an idea of what he would have looked like if he lived longer.
Sally Field (1970s)
Sally Field’s career almost transcends time, so picking the peak decade of it is next to impossible. Still, she did have a pretty good run in the 1970s, kicking it off with her role in the classic movie "Smokey and the Bandit," in which she starred alongside Burt Reynolds. She topped off the decade with a 1979 Oscar for her role in the movie "Norma Rae."
Field starred in more timeless movies than we can count, like "Forrest Gump" and "Mrs. Doubtfire." She is incredibly talented and has even performed live on Broadway! In 2018, Field published a memoir, titled "In Pieces."
Pat Boone (1950s-1960s)
Before his claim to fame as a musician, Pat Boone enjoyed being the most popular guy in his Nashville high school and drawing cartoons for the school newspaper. He later graduated summa cum laude from Columbia University.
Boone recorded a cover of Fats Domino's "Ain't That a Shame" and soon became a trendsetting star. With popularity levels that rivaled Elvis Presley's, he later branched out to acting, writing, philanthropy, and activism. As of today, Boone has sold more than 45 million records worldwide. And he has had a whopping 38 Top 40 hits to his name. He still does a bit of acting today.
Leif Garrett (1970s)
Leif Garrett started making his way through the spotlight as a child actor, but he did not reach his teen idol status until he started making music in the 1970s. After appearing in a number of films as a child, Garrett transitioned into music and the rest as they say, was history.
He released his first album in 1977, naming it after himself. It featured cover versions, mainly of hits from the two decades prior (so, the 50s and 60s by our count). His immense popularity has seen highs and lows, normally as a result of legal troubles surrounding him. And he hasn't released any music since the '80s, so there's that.
Tab Hunter (1950s)
Tab Hunter had his eyes set on acting from the get-go. Even his Coast Guard friends called him "Hollywood" because movies were all he could talk about. All this talking made Hunter one of the biggest names of his time.
On Valentine's Day of 1956, he got 62,000 cards! After making a name for himself in several Warner Bros. hit films, Hunter started dabbling in singing. By the 1970s, rumors about Hunter’s romantic tendencies caused a decrease in his popularity. That didn't stop him from having a 35 year-long loving relationship with Allan Glasser, a movie producer who mourned his 2018 passing.
David Cassidy (1970s)
Without a shadow of a doubt, David Cassidy is best known for his role as Keith Partridge from the classic '70s musical sitcom "The Partridge Family." This was the role that turned Cassidy into a teen idol sensation and in many ways, this decade was his for the taking.
As the years went on, Cassidy continued to show up in shows such as "Alfred Hitchcock Presents," "The Best Stiller Show," "Malcolm in the Middle," "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," and many more. Sadly though, at the age of 67, Cassidy passed away in his Fort Lauderdale home on November 21, 2017.
Paul Newman (1960s)
Actors who pursue careers in other fields are nothing new, but Paul Newman was probably one of the first ones who did it well enough to become a pro. Even with roles in iconic films like "The Hustler" and "Cool Hand Luke," Newman still made time for another career as a race car driver.
He was pretty good at it, too, and even won some titles. Paul Newman worked with some of the very best actors in his heyday, including the likes of Tom Cruise and Robert Redford. He retired from acting in 2007 and passed away a year later at 83 years old after fighting lung cancer.
Frankie Avalon (1950s-1960s)
Frankie Avalon had the eyes of many young women on him in the ‘50s after singing "Venus." Other hits were just up ahead, topping charts left and right. Wanting to appeal to teens and adults alike, he didn't want to be categorized as a teen idol.
He later starred alongside Annette Funicello in the "Beach Party" movies. Avalon tried to appeal to different audiences in the 1970s with the song "Beauty School Dropout" from the "Grease" soundtrack. Now in his 80s, he doesn't perform much apart from small guest appearances. He did, however, release a cookbook! We can't help but wonder what dishes he has come up with.
Annette Funicello (1950s)
We all know that stars like Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera started out in the Mickey Mouse Club, but the show has been creating stars long before those two icons were even a thought in the world. In fact, this is how '50s teen star Annette Funicello got her claim to fame.
Funicello was adored by the fans and by Walt himself, who gave her the role of Anita Cabrillo in "Zorro," the TV show. By the 1980s, Funicello had a well-established career as an actress and musician, but it came to an abrupt end when she was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. In 2013, Funicello passed away.
Luke Halpin (1960s)
Animal-based movies and TV shows like "Flipper" were incredibly trendy back in the 1960s. We don't know why exactly - they just were. And then "Jaws" came along in the '70s - but we digress. The franchise "Flipper" was maybe named after the dolphin, but Luke Halpin was definitely the star playing the role of Sandy Ricks.
Halpin stuck with the character for the rest of the franchise as well as the TV show. He kept acting until shifting into stuntwork in the 1980s. Now well into his 70s, Halpin and his wife live in Florida. Unfortunately, he is battling both stage five neck and head cancer (in remission) and Alzheimer’s disease.
Jack Wild (the 1960s-1970s)
Jack Wild made his acting debut as Dodger in the musical "Oliver!" in England in 1968. He was 16 at the time and was already nominated for an Oscar for that role. His stature in the industry at the time sent him to the US for a role in the kids' show "H.R. Pufnstuf" — a role which paid him $1 million!
Success took its toll on Wild, who smoked and drank regularly. At 24 years old, the problem became so severe he could no longer act. After an extensive rehab process, he regained enough strength for short on-screen performances. He passed away in 2006 after battling aggressive cancer.
Scott Baio (1970s-1980s)
You're likely to remember Baio from "Happy Days," but he was also one of the title characters on the spin-off "Joanie Loves Chachi." He also had the lead role in "Charles in Charge." He went on to have other cinematic roles in films like "Baby Talk," "Perry Mason and the Case of the Fatal Fashion," and "Very Mean Men."
Baio is not only an actor but also a philanthropist — when his daughter Bailey has been diagnosed with a couple of severe health problems; he founded the Bailey Baio Angel Foundation to provide financial aid to families in similar situations.
Mark Lester (1960s-1970s)
Mark Lester made a name for himself playing the title role in the musical film "Oliver!" in 1968. And it is safe to say that he will forever be remembered for that iconic role, and for asking for more porridge in the cutest way imaginable. He was quickly showered with other acting suggestions, including in European cinema, making him an international star.
Lester had a tough time dealing with his success. At 18 years old, he became reckless with his money and descended into substance abuse. A year later, he decided to retire from acting. He trained in martial arts and became a certified osteopath.
Connie Francis (1960s)
Connie Francis was close to giving up on music after releasing singles that didn't really end up catching on. Her father then asked her to record a cover of the song “Who’s Sorry Now?” And guess what - it turned out to be exactly what she needed in order to take her career to the next level.
She rode that fame horse through the 1960s but sadly, it didn't carry her through the ‘70s. After being brutally attacked in a hotel room she stayed in, she sank into depression for a while. Francis pulled through many personal tragedies over the next decade. Despite being well into her 80s, she's still active.
Fabian Forte (1950s-1960s)
Just like "American Idol," "American Bandstand" was a huge springboard for young singers. And just like Kelly Clarkson, Fabian Forte owes his career to that show. It really kickstarted his career and after that, Forte never looked back.
Forte only started thinking of a singing career when he was spotted by Bob Marcucci, the owner of Chancellor Records. At first, he turned Marcucci's offer down, but he came around eventually. He went on to have hit songs like "Turn Me Loose" and "Tiger." Looking back on his career, Fabian (as he was originally known as) can be very proud having had 11 of his songs reach the Billboard Hot 100.
Davy Jones (1960s)
Commonly known as the frontman of The Monkees, Davy Jones was actually an actor first. His fun attitude and good looks helped him get the part of Jack Dawkins (Artful Dodger) in "Oliver!" — the West End musical.
Jones decided to pursue a career in music when he saw The Beatles perform. He did okay as a solo artist, but things really changed for him when he joined The Monkees. “I Wanna Be Free” and “Daydream Believer” were the hits that introduced Jones to significant fame. In 1971, the band broke up, and Jones went back to acting until he passed away from a heart attack in 2012.
James Dean (1950s)
James Dean's career was not a long one, but it definitely left a mark on the Industry. As an aspiring actor, Dean was a film extra before getting his big break at the prestigious Actors Studio in the 1950s. When people saw his talent in "East of Eden" in 1953, he officially became an icon.
His rugged image made "Rebel Without A Cause" a 1955 hit, but sadly, he never got to enjoy the film's success. At 24 years old, Dean, who liked racing cars in his spare time, died in a tragic racing crash before the movie was released.
Neil Sedaka (1960s)
Neil Sedaka has been one of the most popular performers and songwriters since the 1950s. He got his big break after he departed from his previous musical group, the Linc-Tones, and embarked on a solo career. With hits such as "Oh! Carol," "Calendar Girl," and "Happy Birthday Sweet Sixteen" under his belt, it was clear that the world was at his feet.
Over the years, Sedaka slowly transitioned from teen idols to appeal to a more diverse audience. He never stopped making music and released his latest album, "I Do It for Applause," in 2016. In 1983, Sedaka was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.
Donny Osmond (1970s)
How many albums has Donny Osmond recorded throughout his life? Try 60. That's right folks. That's six times ten. Quite a staggering figure. This Osmond brother also found success among his family in The Osmonds, the band that brought stardom to them all. Later, Donny also had a variety show with his sister Marie.
In the eighties, Donny released a solo pop album and also made a turn as Gaston in a Broadway production of "Beauty and the Beast." The Osmonds still perform together in Las Vegas, and Donny also appeared in the ninth season of "Dancing With the Stars," which he won!
Johnny Crawford (1950s-1960s)
Johnny Crawford is another star who became famous at a young age thanks to the "Mickey Mouse Club." To be fair though, it was very long before Britney, Christina, Ryan, and Justin were even alive! Mouskateers of our time are nothing new, but Crawford was one of the firsts.
He later came to his own at 12 years old (!), playing the role of Mark McCain in the western series, "The Rifleman." He proved himself as an actor and a singer (five top-40 singles!), and his popularity knew no bounds. He led a long, fruitful career, and unfortunately passed away in 2021.
Paul Petersen (1950s-1960s)
"The Donna Reed Show" propelled many actors to stardom. Paul Petersen, a child star at the time, played teenager Jeff Stone on the show from 1958-1966, much to the enjoyment of his growing fanbase. Eight years - now that's a long time for a kid of his age.
He was pursued by many record labels after singing "My Dad" and "She Can’t Find Her Keys" on the sitcom. Over the years, he was discovered as an author as well, writing novels and an autobiography. Now, as he approaches his 80s, he campaigns for child actors' welfare. He has been married on three separate occasions and has three children.
Ann Margret (1960s)
Ann Margret is mostly known as the sweet girl singing "Bye Bye Birdie" in a high-pitched-yet-pleasant voice. Her part in the film became an iconic cultural reference that stuck around for decades. Margret went on to star in more films in the 1960s, establishing herself as an it-girl. But that wasn't all.
In the 1970s, Ann was involved in a horrible accident after which she needed extreme facial reconstruction. Thankfully, the surgery was successful, and she was able to bounce back from one for many would have been a career-ending moment. In her case, she continues to act, most notably in shows like "Law & Order" and "CSI."
Roy Orbison (1950s-1960s)
Roy Orbison is mostly known for his hit single "Oh, Pretty Woman," which became the theme song for the successful movie of the same name. However, the Big O signed his first record contract long before that in 1956. His first big hit was "Ooby Dooby," which was recorded with his college friends.
Orbison became influential to many famous artists such as The Rolling Stones, and he even toured with the Beatles in 1963. His popularity took a dip in the 70s and resumed in the 80s. He passed away from a heart attack in 1988 at 52 years old.
Julie Dawn Cole (1970s)
Julie Dawn Cole got her start as the extremely spoiled child Veruca Salt in "Willy Wonka and The Chocolate Factory." Now that's one cool film to get a headstart in. However, her character's image stuck, and she was later cast to play roles of snobbish mean girls quite frequently. Talk about being typecast!
Julie now has a drama school for children and works as a psychotherapist. She is a mother of two and leans on her background as Veruca Salt to aid in parenting. Whenever her daughter, Holly, would do something bratty, Julie would say, "Is there a problem, Veruca?" which always slowed the girl's roll.
Dwayne Hickman (1950s)
In another life, Dwayne Hickman would have been a priest. In this life, he's a superstar. Hickman owes a lot of his career to Bob Cummings, who cast him as "Chuck" on his show when he was still in college! In 1958, Hickman was cast in "The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis" as the titular character for four years.
However, like many teen stars, he became stereotyped and was only offered certain roles. Later on, Hickman found more success in being involved in production roles, working at CBS as a programming exec! Well, you know what they say — when one door closes, another opens!
Jackson Five (1970s)
The Jackson Five rose to prominence with their hit single, "I Want You Back," and took the world by storm. Young Michael Jackson eventually turned out to be the biggest star of them all, but he was also probably the most troubled one too.
His many successes, as well as his more troubling moments, can be credited to his father, Joe, who was notoriously tough with his children. He conceded to treating them harshly in an interview with Oprah and constantly made his children rehearse, especially in the early days of the band. The rest of the Jacksons still nurture showbusiness careers.
Troy Donahue (1950s-1960s)
Before becoming an actor, Troy Donahue (then Merle Johnson Jr.) studied for a journalism degree. With his eyes set on Hollywood, he met with an agent who advised he changed his name and started booking him acting gigs. His breakthrough role was in the film "A Summer Place" alongside Sandra Dee. With his incredible good looks, the fans soon appeared in masses.
Dealing with the success sent him to a downward spiral of substance abuse, which was hard to recover from. After his rehab, Donahue appeared in a number of small roles. He passed away from a heart attack in 2001 at 65 years old.
Jay North (1960s)
The modern cartoon version of "Dennis the Menace" is nothing like the older, live-action one starring Jay North. North became famous as Little Dennis back in 1959, and the show ran up until 1963. This role brought on many more suggestions for other acting parts. And for a minute there, Hollywood was Jay's oyster.
Years later, adult North transitioned into voice acting for animated shows, these included "The Flinstone Comedy Hour" and "The Simpsons," to name a few. In 1977, North quit acting altogether and joined the Navy. Later on, in more recent times, he has become an activist for child actors' welfare.