For as many former child stars as there are still in the limelight today (sometimes it seems like practically all celebrities at this point!), there are a ton of young actors who decide not to pursue that career path after a taste of fame. Ferguson, the nerdy, know-it-all brother from Clarissa Explains It All, for example, perhaps unsurprisingly became a software engineer (still working in the entertainment industry; last we heard he was at HBO). Not everyone is so easy to predict, however.
Charlie Korsmo, a child actor whose career highlights include “The Kid” in Dick Tracy, Siggy in What About Bob?, and of course, Jack Banning in Hook, went from adorable child star to libertarian political operative. A Professor of law with a degree from Yale, he is currently working at Case Western and has also been appointed a board member with the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation. Not every child actor goes on to further stardom or a career in computer science or law (although law degrees do seem quite common amongst former child stars); some don’t leave the spotlight by choice or fall prey to the temptations Hollywood offers.
Alisan Porter stopped acting in films in 1991, but she didn’t necessarily give up the wild lifestyle of the Hollywood star. The Curly Sue starlet had always been enamored with singing, and she’s a talented dancer too; her family runs a school for it, so that’s almost expected. But she was determined to make it to Broadway. And she did! She appeared in Footloose: The Musical. She also began to feel the weight of the lifestyle. Alcohol was controlling her every move, and it was boxing her in. Within a short period of time she was married, sober, and the proud mother of two darling children.
And now, she’s ready to take on The Voice, but this time, it’s on her terms.