Once a charming child star, Arjay Smith has evolved into a nimble, expressive, and dependable character actor. Shortly after breaking onto the kid-friendly television scene with a recurring part on the unruly classroom sitcom "Nick Freno: Licensed Teacher," he landed his first lead role as a suburbanized extraterrestrial on Nickelodeon's otherworldly "The Journey of Allen Strange." As he entered his teen years, he took to such adult-oriented fare as the rich political drama "The West Wing" and the hit comedy series "Malcolm in the Middle," scoring a continuing part on the latter show as the banished older brother's fellow military-school cadet. He's since emerged as one of primetime's most consistent guest stars, making one-off and recurring appearances on everything from "The Bernie Mac Show" to hard-edged police procedurals such as "NYPD Blue" and "CSI: Miami." Extending his talents to films, Smith has turned up in, among others, the 2004 natural-disaster epic "The Day After Tomorrow" and Michel Gondry's playful "Be Kind Rewind," a comedic ode to the quaint days of video cassettes. In 2012, Smith finally joined a regular series with a prominent role on the crime show "Perception," starring Eric McCormack.