While many of Hollywood's young stars hit their peak before the age of 13, Sean Astin took some time getting film audiences to love and, ultimately respect him as an actor. He portrayed characters that defied expectations and created cult-like followings. He played the role of Mikey Walsh, a fun-seeking teenager in "The Goonies" (1985) where he cried out, "Holy Mackenzie!" He was equally lovable as the very loyal hobbit Samwise Gamgee in the epic trilogy, "Lord of the Rings" (2001, 2002, 2003). But perhaps his most memorable performance was that of the title role in "Rudy" (1993), in which he played a young man who, against all odds, fulfilled a childhood dream of playing for Notre Dame. The son of actress Patty Duke, Astin faced his own real-life drama growing up with his mother's battle with mental illness. However, due in no small part to a charming onscreen persona and an inner strength and sensibility, Astin managed to escape many of the traps his fellow child stars of that era fell victim to, establishing himself as a respectable adult actor.