Jackie Earle Haley

Actor, Director

7/14/1961 (60 years old) Northridge, California, United States

Child stars never have an easy time segueing into adult roles — that is, if they make the transition at all. So it was no surprise that the career of diminutive and adorable Haley, one of the biggest juvenile actors of the '70s, stalled post-puberty. After tackling a number of TV guest spots as a child, the 15-year-old Haley made his name as a talented but tough baseball player in the original Bad News Bears and its subsequent sequels. With his feathered hair, freckled face and wiseass attitude (he cursed, smoked and rode a motor-scooter), be became the crush of bad-boy loving tweens everywhere. In 1979, he gave a winning performance as one of four blue-collar bike-riding buddies in Breaking Away, and reprised the role in the film's short-lived TV spin-off. But when he hit his twenties, he hit a wall. Except for his turn in Losin' It opposite future megastar Tom Cruise, he appeared mostly in low-rent projects and in 1993, after completing the grade-Z flick Maniac Cop 3: Badge of Silence (in a supporting role, no less), he quit showbiz and made ends meet by delivering pizzas, driving limos and working security. Eventually, however, Haley would become a successful commercial director and even launch his own production company. But acting was still in his blood, and in 2006 he made an incredible comeback in a pair of high-profile movies. Although the highly anticipated remake of All the King's Men went bust, his riveting turn as a pedophile in the lauded indie Little Children revitalized his acting career, earned him rave reviews and a number of accolades, including Oscar and SAG nominations and a New York Film Critics Circle Award. Riding the crest of his career resurgence, he made a comic appearance in the Will Ferrell sports comedy Semi-Pro (2008). In 2009, he turned serious for much darker roles as psychopath Rorschach in the high-profile comic-book film Watchmen and as a memorable mental patient in Martin Scorsese's eerie Shutter Island. He solidified his return to stardom by agreeing to portray the legendary horror villain Freddy Krueger in the 2010 reboot of A Nightmare on Elm Street and its planned installments. He also kept busy on the small screen with a supporting part as a mysterious computer hacker on the Fox series Human Target.

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