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Whatever Happened To The Cast Of Old School?

The box office landscape looked a little different back in the early 2000s. Animated movies, studio comedies, and even musicals regularly ranked among the highest grossing films of the year. The stars of sitcoms and sketch shows easily transitioned into lucrative careers on the big screen. It was a time before the Marvel Cinematic Universe took over multiplexes, and, more importantly, a time before streaming services became the preferred platform for releasing mid-budget original films, such as "Old School."

Directed and co-written by Todd Phillips (of "Joker" fame), "Old School" was one of many comedies about the personal lives of developmentally stunted men that dropped around this time. Its three stars — Luke Wilson, Vince Vaughn, and patron saint of awkwardly comedic man-boys Will Ferrell — became well-known names in the subgenre, but "Old School" is still the defining Frat Pack film for many.

It's hard to believe that it has been twenty years since Mitch, Bernard, and Frank went back to school. The entire joke of the movie is that they are far too old to be in a fraternity, and that was then — if there was to be an "Old School" sequel now, the main cast members would all be closer in age to the late Joseph "Blue" Pulaski than their pledges. What has become of the co-eds of Phillips' fictional Harrison University over the last two decades? And just how old are the stars of "Old School" now? Read on to find out.

Luke Wilson (Mitch Martin)

Luke Wilson plays the everyman protagonist of "Old School," Mitch Martin, who comes to be known around town as "The Godfather." Though the movie focuses most of its attention on thirty-something men behaving like adolescents in a frat house, "Old School" is nevertheless a romantic comedy in which Wilson's Mitch tries, fails, and ultimately succeeds in getting the girl.

Offbeat comedies and romances make up a large percentage of Wilson's filmography, especially in the first half of his career. Wilson had been a love interest prior to his role in "Old School" in films like 1998's "Home Fries" and 2001's "Legally Blonde." He also shows up in a cameo in 2004's "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy." The actor and occasional writer-director is probably best known, though, for his frequent collaborations with filmmaker and friend Wes Anderson (he appears in "Bottle Rocket," "Rushmore," and "The Royal Tenenbaums") as well as his starring role in the 2006 cult classic comedy "Idiocracy."

Wilson was in his early 30s when he filmed "Old School" (his character, Mitch, mentions that he's 30). He's in his 50s now and he tends to work across a variety of genres on both the big and small screen, where he can often be found playing dads. He portrays a troubled father in 2019's "The Goldfinch," based upon the acclaimed novel by Donna Tartt, and in 2020's "All the Bright Places." On television, Wilson recently starred in the DC series "Stargirl" as Pat Dugan, and fans can also hear his voice in the animated comedy "Fired on Mars," in which he plays show lead Jeff Cooper.

Vince Vaughn (Bernard Campbell)

Vince Vaughn was at a turning point when "Old School" hit theaters. The actor, who had a small role in "Rudy" and broke out with 1996's "Swingers," stepped out of his comfort zone and into the big leagues with films like 1997's "The Lost World: Jurassic Park" and Gus Van Sant's 1998 remake of "Psycho," playing the iconic killer Norman Bates. He was nearing the height of his fame, but perhaps working on the wrong projects.

Vaughn returned to edgy comedies with "Old School," playing foul-mouthed dad Bernard "Beanie" Campbell, then kept his hot streak going with 2004's "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" and 2005's "Wedding Crashers." He went on to write, produce, and star in 2006's "The Break-Up" with Jennifer Aniston. Like Wilson, Vaughn is also game to shoot a quick cameo for his entertainment industry friends: He pops up in "Anchorman" (as Ron's rival reporter Wes Mantooth) and "Zoolander," where he plays Ben Stiller's coal miner brother.  

Now in his 50s, Vaughn has worked steadily if less prolifically since the '00s. In the last decade, he has leaned toward more dramatic movies and series, many of which have been well-received. Most notably, he starred in the HBO anthology series "True Detective." He also appeared in 2016's "Hacksaw Ridge" and in 2019's "Fighting with my Family," and he produced the 2022 legacy sequel "A Christmas Story Christmas."

Will Ferrell (Frank Ricard)

Will Ferrell is arguably the biggest name in comedy of the 21st century. Though his films aren't quite as dominant at the box office or in the culture as they once were, the "Saturday Night Live" alum and star of hits like "Anchorman," "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby," "Step Brothers," and "Elf" remains an icon, in large part because of his hilarious and influential work in early 2000s comedies like "Old School."

Ferrell got the juiciest role: that of Frank the Tank, a newlywed who almost immediately defaults to binge drinking, streaking through the streets, and inappropriately eyeing up waitresses. A certain kind of agelessness and a complete lack of self-consciousness have always been Ferrell's strengths. He was in his mid-30s when he filmed most of his major hits, but he didn't necessarily read that way. He's in his mid-50s now but he doesn't look dramatically different today, and he's never strayed far from his improv and sketch comedy roots, but he has broadened his artistic horizons somewhat. 

Ferrell still makes screwball comedies like 2020's "Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga" and 2022's holiday themed "Spirited," just not quite as often. In the last ten years, some of his best work has been done offscreen as the voice of President Business in "The Lego Movie" and its sequel (he also appears in human form as Finn's dad). The famed comedian was involved in a serious car accident in 2018, from which he recovered. He's also a partial owner of the LAFC soccer team, who won their first championship in 2022. 

Juliette Lewis (Heidi)

Juliette Lewis was a child actor in the '80s (you might remember her from "National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation") who became an indie darling in the '90s. She became famous for her star turns in films like 1991's "Cape Fear," 1993's "What's Eating Gilbert Grape," 1994's "Natural Born Killers," and 1996's "From Dusk Till Dawn." Her small part in "Old School" capitalizes on her bad girl persona. When Mitch takes an early flight home, he catches his girlfriend in an outrageously compromising position. Their break-up is the catalyst for the rest of the movie, as a heartbroken Mitch moves into the empty fraternity house and tries to get over Heidi.  

Lewis has never really stopped working; she has more than 100 acting credits to her name from her forty-plus year career. The 50-year-old might not be headlining many movies anymore, but she's enjoying a successful second act as a TV star. In addition to a number of guest starring roles on shows like "The Conners" and "Queer as Folk," Lewis plays adult Natalie in "Yellowjackets," Showtime's time-hopping survival thriller about a team of soccer players whose plane crashes. She's also a musician. Her band Juliette and the Licks has been recording and touring on and off since 2003.

Ellen Pompeo (Nicole)

In "Old School," Ellen Pompeo plays the object of Mitch's affection, Nicole. She was relatively unknown when she was cast in the ensemble comedy. To that point, her highest profile work came opposite Jake Gyllenhaal in the little-seen but well-liked film "Moonlight Mile" and in a small role in Steven Spielberg's "Catch Me If You Can" as one of the many young women fooled by Leonardo DiCaprio's con artist character. Two years after her appearance in "Old School," Pompeo would land a gig that would change her life forever. As the title character in the long-running Shonda Rimes medical drama "Grey's Anatomy," Pompeo saw Meredith Grey from her internship at Seattle Grace through 19 seasons.

The actor and producer, who is now in her 50s, stuck with the series as other stars came and went. Pompeo's commitment to "Grey's Anatomy" came at the expense of what may have been a big film career. She was initially reluctant to sign up to a series as she feared she might get bored and she only took the job because she needed the money. Nearly 20 years later, "Grey's" has made Pompeo a household name and a wealthy woman (the highest paid dramatic actress on TV, in fact) who uses her power to advocate for women in the entertainment industry.

Leah Remini (Lara Campbell)

Leah Remini was already a television star when she joined the cast of "Old School." After appearing on "Who's the Boss," "Saved by the Bell," "Blossom," and "Cheers," Remini began playing the character with whom she'd become most associated, that of Carrie, wife to Kevin James' Doug on "The King of Queens." The sitcom ran for nine seasons on CBS, from 1998 to 2007. In "Old School," she plays another wife: Lara, the domestic partner of Vince Vaughn's Bernard Campbell and friend of Will Ferrell's new bride, Marissa. 

"Old School" happened smack-dab in the middle of Remini's tenure on "The King of Queens," so her career trajectory stayed aimed toward television. After her popular sitcom ended, Remini (who is in her 50s now) carved out a niche for herself as a host, documentarian, and author. She became notorious for her ongoing war with the Church of Scientology, of which she was once a member. She made the investigative docuseries "Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath" for the A&E network, much to the displeasure of the secretive organization. Remini also penned a book on the topic.

She later reunited with her longtime co-star Kevin James for the sitcom "Kevin Can Wait," which ran for two seasons on CBS until 2018. Currently, she's the host of the Game Show Network's People Magazine-themed competition "People Puzzler." 

Jeremy Piven (Dean Pritchard)

In the 1990s, Jeremy Piven was familiar to audiences because of his work on the sitcoms "The Larry Sanders Show" and "Ellen." In the latter, Piven played the title character's cousin, Spence. He also appeared as a guest star on "Seinfeld" and "Will & Grace." But the actor and comedian branched out with darker and more dramatic work in films like 1998's "Very Bad Things" and 2001's "Black Hawk Down." Piven plays the killjoy in "Old School." He features as Dean Pritchard — formerly nicknamed Cheese — the uptight administrator who won't rest until he closes the loophole on Mitch's fraternity.

Like some of his co-stars, Piven primarily landed on the small screen after appearing in the raunchy 2003 comedy. From 2004-2011, he played Hollywood agent Ari Gold on HBO's "Entourage," and he was rewarded for his efforts with three Emmys for best supporting actor in a comedy series. Two more series followed: "Mr Selfridge" which ran from 2013 to 2016, and the CBS drama "Wisdom of the Crowd," which lasted for two seasons until 2018. Currently, he performs stand-up comedy. His most recent film role was in the 2023 sports drama "Sweetwater."  

Elisha Cuthbert (Darcie Goldberg)

Kids who watched Nickelodeon in the 1990s will know Elisha Cuthbert from her role on the tween horror series "Are You Afraid of the Dark?" In 2001, she leveled up to network television as Kim Bauer, daughter of Kiefer Sutherland's Jack Bauer in the popular real-time action drama "24." Cuthbert has a small but pivotal part in "Old School" as Darcie. Mitch assumes Darcie's a co-ed and hooks up with her at his rager of a party, but later discovers she's a high school senior and the daughter of his boss, Mr. Goldberg. Darcie shows up a second time at an inopportune moment when Mitch tries to clear the air with Nicole over a coffee date. 

Cuthbert was 21 when she was cast as the stereotypical hot chick in "Old School." She'd put a new spin on that archetype with 2004's "The Girl Next Door," in which she played the character referred to by the film's title: The beautiful neighbor of the protagonist who just happens to be a former adult film star. Though that film announced Cuthbert as a comedic talent, her follow-ups solidified her as a scream queen: She starred in 2005's "The Quiet" and "House of Wax" and 2007's "Captivity." Her career peaked before the decade drew to a close. Now in her 40s, she most recently appeared in the 2022 crime drama "Bandit." 

Seann William Scott (Peppers)

Seann William Scott belonged to a class of young actors who made names for themselves with the 1999 teen comedy "American Pie." He was already famous for playing Steve Stifler in that franchise when he took a cameo in "Old School" as Peppers, the party guest with the rough-cut mullet who enables Ferrell's Frank the Tank to shoot himself in the neck with a tranquilizer gun.

Scott had a fruitful career in comedy and horror following "American Pie." In 2000 alone, he starred in "Final Destination," "Road Trip," and "Dude, Where's My Car?" Shortly after his brief appearance in "Old School," he was cast as Bo in the 2005 remake of "The Dukes of Hazzard," but he largely went back to the well of the franchises that were his bread and butter: "American Pie" sequels, "Final Destination 5," and the animated "Ice Age" movies, for which he provided the vocals for Crash the opossum. 

Scott is in his mid-40s now and still works occasionally. He starred in the TV adaptation of "Lethal Weapon," which ran on Fox from 2018 to 2019, and his latest project is the network's mockumentary series "Welcome to Flatch." A second season aired in 2022. The surprisingly private actor married interior designer Olivia Korenberg in 2019. 

Simon Helberg (Jerry)

Simon Helberg plays one of the pledges in "Old School," a nerd named Jerry who's eager to belong. The actor may not have been a household name at the time, but he was working with some of the best of the best in the comedy space: Helberg worked on short films and web series with Bob Odenkirk, Zach Galifianakis, and Bill Hader. Prior to "Old School," he appeared in 2002's "Van Wilder," and shortly after, he was cast in George Clooney's 2005 film "Good Night, and Good Luck." For about a decade, Helberg did short stints on series like "MadTV," "Arrested Development," and "Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip."

Then, Helberg was cast in the role that would make him one of the most famous alumni of the "Old School" crew. From 2007 to 2019, he played aerospace engineer Howard Wolowitz on "The Big Bang Theory." The extremely popular CBS sitcom ran for 12 seasons on CBS and spawned the spinoff "Young Sheldon." He co-starred opposite Meryl Streep in 2016's "Florence Foster Jenkins" (for which he was nominated for a Golden Globe) and opposite Adam Driver in 2020's "Annette." The trained musician can be seen playing the piano and conducting — for real — in both films.

Craig Kilborn (Mark)

If the name Craig Kilborn rings a bell, it might be because he's the guy who left Comedy Central's "The Daily Show" in 1998 to be succeeded by Jon Stewart. Stewart went on to make the nightly news satire a cultural juggernaut, while Kilborn went on to appear in "Old School" as Mark, Nicole's lying, cheating boyfriend whom Mitch catches with a waitress in the bathroom. Like Stewart, Kilborn tried to juggle a career as a talk show host with a career as a comedic actor. He got his start in radio, doing play-by-play sports commentary before taking the leap to ESPN, where he anchored the marquee program "SportsCenter." "Old School" represented the first time Kilborn played a fictional character.

The actor and presenter found work in feature films for a time. His credits include 2005's "Cursed" and 2006's "The Shaggy Dog" and "The Benchwarmers." But, ultimately, he returned to playing himself on a number of TV series (including "JAG" and "Yes, Dear") and on the types of variety programs that launched him in the first place. From 1994 to 2004, he was the host of "The Late Late Show," and in 2010 he attempted to kickstart a new venture, "The Kilborn Files." Today, Kilborn is hosting on a different platform. He has a podcast called "The Life Gorgeous" and an active Instagram account in which he documents his low-key, happy Southern California existence. 

Snoop Dogg (Himself)

Of the many over-the-top set pieces in "Old School," perhaps the most memorable is the party that Bernard throws for Mitch after his break-up with Heidi. Not only does his friend trick out his frat house rental with speakers from his store, he books none other than Snoop Dogg to provide the night's entertainment. Snoop is on a makeshift stage performing at Mitch-a-palooza when an inebriated Frank the Tank takes his mic and tries to cajole the rest of the guests to join him on a streak to the quad. The rapper and his posse aren't having it; the nude Frank is kept at a safe distance from the musical guest.

Snoop is just as famous today as he was in 2003. Now in his 50s, the Long Beach native has worked as an actor (mostly in cameos) throughout the last two decades, sometimes as himself and sometimes as fictional characters. He lent some of his street cred to his friend Martha Stewart, with whom he co-starred in a 2016 VH1 special titled "Martha and Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party." In 2022, Snoop was part of the Super Bowl halftime show. The multihyphenate also has his hands in cookbooks, wine making, pro wrestling, and of course, the recording industry.