Part of the charm of the Netflix original series Wet Hot American Summer: First Day Of Camp is that so many familiar faces have returned. While many of the counselors are were originally teens played by actors in their 30s, now they're slightly younger teenagers played by actors 14 more years down the line. It's ridiculous and inexplicable and so very Wet Hot. Many of the campers, on the other hand, were actual kids when the 2001 movie premiered. Now they're adults, dealing with all the humiliations, crushes, and bullies inherent in a summer spent at sleepaway camp. Callbacks and returning cast abound, but not over at the long dormant camp radio station. In the series, the voice of Camp Firewood, Arty "The Beekeeper" Solomon, is played by newcomer Josh Dalton. (And on Day 1, he still looks clean!) So, what happened to the original Arty?
In the film, Arty was voiced by Samm Levine (Freaks & Geeks, Inglourious Basterds) and played by Liam Norton. Norton's acting resume is short; IMDB just lists two other projects in addition to Wet Hot: one episode of the rescue series Third Watch and a short film titled Keith and the Juice, which he also wrote the screenplay for. He also has a YouTube account where he uploads gaming videos and movie commentaries. On the original movie site, Norton's bio says that he "appeared on The View as a MENSA representative" and "hopes one day to be the first man to set foot on another planet." (Love it.) Keith And The Juice was produced in 2014, so it seems that Norton isn't out of the game entirely. But he's certainly not the first child actor to take a step back from the business. These former kid stars had the same idea.
1. Charlie Korsmo From Hook, Can't Hardly Wait, & What About Bob?
Now a very professional Charles Korsmo, this actor had an impressive movie run in his youth and teenage years. Now he's an Assistant Professor of Law at the prestigious Case Western University in Cleveland, Ohio. See? He really was as smart as he looked.
2. Mara Wilson From Mrs. Doubtfire & Matilda
Mara Wilson was a personal hero of mine at a very young age, and I'm proud to say that she remains that way. Now, that adorable actress from my favorite '90s movies is primarily a writer. Her Twitter account is a must-follow, and her blog includes entertaining and insightful treatises on life, soda crackers, and movie dad Robin Williams.
3. Josh Saviano From The Wonder Years
Out of all the child stars on this list, Saviano, who played Kevin's best friend Paul on the most nostalgic series ever, has had the most incredible rumor circulate around him. No, Josh Saviano is not Marilyn Manson. He isn't a performer of any kind anymore, in fact. But he is a well-respected lawyer in New York City and kind of a silver fox.
4. Jason Zimbler From Clarissa Explains It All
After Zimbler wrote the book on annoying little brothers, Fergface left the acting world behind in favor of the business side of things. He now works for HBO as a Senior Business Analyst.
5. Ariana Richards From Jurassic Park
Richards dazzled the world with her screams and memorable line delivery ("Is he gonna eat the goat?!") as Dr. Hammond's granddaughter Lex in the original Jurassic Park. She acted in a TV movie called Battledogs (which sounds amazing) in 2013, but now she mostly devotes her talents to another art form: painting. You can even commission a personalized piece from her. I would steer clear of requesting any dino-related imagery though.
6. Jeff Cohen From The Goonies
Chunk love law. Chunk love law so much that Jeff Cohen is now a renowned entertainment lawyer in Los Angeles. He acknowledges his place in the pop culture canon in his LinkedIn profile, but asks that potential clients "not hold that against [him]."
Maybe these ex-actors had the right idea: get in early, have some fun, and get out. The real world will always be there to fall back on.
Images: USA Films; Giphy (6)