If you haven’t heard, Stranger Things has become one of the most-watched series on Netflix. After premiering in July, the first eight episodes skyrocketed in views to become the third most watched season of a Netflix original series this year. In the short time that it has been on Netflix, Stranger Things has ranked ahead of other Netflix original series such as Making a Murderer, Daredevil, Jessica Jones, and House of Cards. While the show itself is set in 1980s Indiana, several of the actors and actresses who play the adults grew up in the ’90s themselves. Travel back in time and see what the adults of Stranger Things were like before they were famous!
20th Century Fox
Born Winona Laura Horowitz in a farmhouse near Winona, Minnesota, Ryder made her film debut in the 1986 film Lucas
as Rina. When asked how she wanted her name to appear in the credits, she decided on "Ryder" as her last name because a Mitch Ryder album was playing in the background. Her father's family was originally named "Tomchin" but they changed it to "Horowitz" when they immigrated to America from Romania and Russia. She later won critical acclaim and recognition when she appeared in Tim Burton's Beetlejuice
in 1988 as the goth teenager, Lydia Deetz. She also appeared Edward Scissorhands
, Bram Stoker's Dracula
, and eventually won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress for her part in Age of Innocence.
NBC / Netflix
After graduating from Dartmouth College with majors in drama and Italian in 1997, Harbour made his professional debut on Broadway in 1999 in the revival of The Rainmaker
. He also made his television debut in the same year in an episode of Law & Order
as a waiter. He went on to become a frequent guest on Law & Order
, Law& Order: Special Victims Unit
, and Law & Order: Criminal Intent
. In film, Harbour gained recognition for his roles in Quantum of Solace
and Revolutionary Road.
He even shows up as a government official named Dexter Tolliver in Suicide Squad
and can be seen when Amanda Waller is demonstrating the abilities of Enchantress.
Modine is the youngest of seven children and was born in Loma Linda, California. His father managed a collection of drive-in movie theaters which exposed Modine to the cinema as a result. Modine became inspired to pursue acting after watching a documentary about the making of Oliver.
After graduating from high school, he moved to New York City where he studied at the Stella Adler Studio of Acting while working as a chef. Modine made his first film role in Baby It's You
which led to a part in Vision Quest.
He is most likely best known for his role as Private Joker in Stanley Kubrick's Full Metal Jacket.
He also appeared as Deputy Commissioner Peter Foley in Christopher Nolan's The Dark Knight Rises.
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Columbia / Netflix
Buono was born and raised in blue-collar family in The Bronx, New York City. She decided to pursue acting at an early age and landed a role in Harvey Fierstein's Spookhouse
at age 11 without any assistance from adults. In 1992, she had her first role in film in Gladiator
as Dawn. In 1995, she graduated from Columbia University majoring in English and Political Science in only three years. She later appeared in the fourth season of Mad Men
as Dr. Faye Miller and won an Emmy Nomination for her performance.