Follow TV Tropes

This entry is trivia, which is cool and all, but not a trope. On a work, it goes on the Trivia tab.


Children Voicing Children

Go To

Often in animation, a female voice actress will voice a young child character, possibly because it's not always easy to work with kids, and the inevitability of a little boy's voice breaking once he reaches puberty.

Other times, there just happens to be a good kid VA available for the job. However when the child actor starts getting a bit older, then this results in the character they voice getting replaced by a different child actor. This mostly happens with boys for the reasons mentioned above. You're much more likely to see children voicing children in films, as voice recording for a film takes much less time than an TV series that could last years.

Often overlaps with Amateur Cast, as young children don't need to be professionally trained actors to sound convincingly like young children.

Contrast Dawson Casting, where older actors play younger characters.


    open/close all folders 


    Asian Animation 
  • While not much is known about Simple Samosa's voice actors due to the end credits refusing to list them, going off of a joke in the episode "Simple Hitchki" where Samosa's group meet their voice actors, the child characters Dhokla and Vada are voiced by children (in the original Hindi dub, at least).

    Films — Animation 
  • In The Book of Life, the Detention Kids, alongside the kid versions of Manolo, Maria, and Joaquin, are all voiced by child actors.
  • The Boxtrolls has Eggs and Winnie voiced by two pre-teen kids Isaac Hempstead Wright and Elle Fanning.
  • Blanky from The Brave Little Toaster is voiced by then eight-year-old Timothy E. Day.
  • Cats Don't Dance:
    • The Enfante Terrible Darla Dimple's two voice actors (speaking and singing) were both in their early teens at the time of the movie's release.
    • Pudge was also voiced by a preteen boy.
  • The 2003 direct-to-video sequel to Charlotte's Web titled Charlotte's Web 2: Wilbur's Great Adventure brought in actual young boys to voice a group of lambs who ostracize Cardigan from the flock and continue mocking him. The most notable is Cardigan the lamb who was voiced by Harrison Chad, best known as the original voice of Boots the Monkey from the Nick Jr. series Dora the Explorer from 2000 till 2007. note 
  • Agnes in Despicable Me and 2 was originally voiced by Elsie Fisher, who was 6 when the first film came out and 9 when the sequel came out. Despicable Me 3 replaced Fisher with the 7-year-old Nev Scharrel. This also applies to the Japanese dub, where child actress Mana Ashida, who was five at the time, provided Agnes' voice.
  • Disney Animated Canon and spin-offs:
    • In perhaps one of the oldest examples, the title character of Pinocchio was voiced by 12-year-old Dickie Jones.
    • In Bambi, Donnie Dunagan, Cammie King, and Peter Behn voiced Bambi, Faline, and Thumper as children. All three were born in 1934 and the film was released in 1942. Young Flower too is voiced by a child but he went missing at the age of eight.
    • Kathryn Beaumont provided the voices of Alice in Alice in Wonderland and Wendy in Peter Pan. She was respectively 10 and 13 at the time when the each film began production. In the latter film, Peter Pan himself was voiced by 14-year-old Bobby Driscoll, just a few years older than the character's physical age, and John, Michael, and all the Lost Boys except Cubby were also voiced by young boys.
    • The Sword in the Stone: No less than three different child actors played Arthur while the movie was in production: Richard and Robert Reitherman, animator/director Wolfgang Reitherman's sons, and Rickie Sorensen. Rickie is also a case of Dawson Casting, as he was 17 at the time.
    • Roo from the Winnie the Pooh franchise is usually voiced by a young boy. Exceptions include Crossdressing Voices Dori Whitaker in Tigger Too and Sara Sheen in Christopher Robin. Christopher Robin is usually voiced by a young boy too.
    • In The Jungle Book, both Mowgli and Hathi Jr. were voiced by young boys. Mowgli was voiced by 12-year-old Bruce Reitherman, who was also the first voice of Christopher Robin and the brother of Richard and Robert Reitherman, who had voiced the young Arthur in The Sword in the Stone.
    • For The Aristocats, Marie, Toulouse, and Berlioz were all voiced by actual children (Liz "Louise" English, Gary Dubin, and Dean Clark respectively). The same goes for all foreign dubs of the movie including the Japanese version. However, in recent years, Marie alongside Toulouse and Berlioz are occasionally voiced by grown women in Japanese and French.
    • Skippy, Sis, Tagalong, and Toby from Robin Hood (1973) are voiced by actual children.
    • Penny in The Rescuers is voiced by a young girl - the then-eight-year-old Michelle Stacy.
    • The younger versions of the titular characters in The Fox and the Hound were voiced by Keith Coogan and Corey Feldman, the latter of whom would later be known for his role in Gremlins.
    • Scottish mouse girl Olivia Flaversham in The Great Mouse Detective was voiced by an actual Scottish 8-year-old girl, Susanne Pollatschek.
    • 12-year-old Joey Lawrence provided the voice for the titular Oliver in Oliver & Company. Oliver's eventual owner, 7 (8 by the end of the film)-year-old Jenny Foxworth was voiced by now-retired child actress Natalie Gregory.
    • Chip in Beauty and the Beast was voiced by the then 8-year-old Bradley Pierce.
    • In The Lion King, the cub versions of Simba and Nala were voiced by Jonathan Taylor Thomas and Nikita Calame, who were 12 and 13 at the time of release respectively. Simba's singing voice was also provided by Jason Weaver, who was a young teen at the time.
    • Six-year-old Lilo Pelekai in Lilo & Stitch was voiced by Daveigh Chase, who was almost 12 by the time of the film's release. Chase reprised the role in the franchise's first TV series and its pilot and finale films, where Lilo ages from seven to almost ten years of age in-universe, and Chase's voice does deepen a bit late into the second season.
      • Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch, set between the original film and Stitch! The Movie, has seven-year-old Lilo voiced by Dakota Fanning instead. Fanning was eleven years old at the time of that film's release.
      • All the other kids in the Western continuity were also voiced by kids during its run. Mertle Edmonds, in particular, was voiced by Miranda Paige Walls (born April 2, 1992) for the first film and one of the video games, and then by Liliana Mumy (two years and a fortnight younger than Walls) in the rest of the franchise. Averted in the East Asian Spin-Off shows, as all the kids in the English versions of those shows are voiced by adults with experience in anime dubbing.
    • Jeremy Suarez voiced Koda in both Brother Bear and its sequel. He was 13 at the time of the first one's release and 16 at the time of the second's. His voice had deepened quite a bit by then.
    • The preteen versions of Anna and Elsa from Frozen are voiced by children, even when singing. This is true of most foreign dubs of the film as well.
    • Moana is the first Disney "princess" film to feature a teenage princess voiced by an actress younger than the actual character, with 15-year-old Auli'i Cravalho voicing 16-year-old Moana.
    • In Encanto, five year old Antonio Madrigal was voiced by Ravi Cabot-Conyers, who was ten when the film released.
  • Don Bluth:
    • 10-year-old Judith Barsi as the orphan Anne-Marie in All Dogs Go to Heaven, and Ducky in The Land Before Time.
    • Like Ducky above, The Land Before Time had Littlefoot and Cera voiced by children: then 12-year-old Gabriel Damon and then 8-year-old Candy Hutson.
    • In An American Tail, Fievel was always voiced by a little boy: Phillip Glasser in the first two movies and Thomas Dekker in the Direct to Video sequels when Phillip Glasser got too old. In the first film, Tanya was also voiced by a child, Amy Green.
    • In Rock-A-Doodle, Edmond was portrayed by a nine-year-old in the live-action part. He was voiced by the same nine-year-old as an animated cat.
    • The child characters in The Secret of NIMH were voiced by actual children.
    • 7-1/2-year-old Michael Nunes, 7-year-old Tawny Sunshine Glover, and 8-year-old Kendall Cunningham voiced Li’l Bee, Gnatty, and Baby Bug in Thumbelina (1994).
  • The child characters in the English dub of the Norwegian animated film Ella Bella Bingo are voiced by kids.
  • Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio: Pinocchio and Carlo, young boys, are voiced by Gregory Mann, who would have been somewhere from 11–13 during filming.
  • The animal children that the titular character teaches in Horton Hears a Who! (2008) were all voiced by kids. Most notably, Katie was voiced by 8-year-old Joey King in one of her earliest acting roles.
  • While Robin in The LEGO Batman Movie is voiced by a grown man, the Mexican Spanish dub actually cast a real teenager, Emilio Treviño, who was 17 at the time of the film's release.
  • In the 2000 animated films and TV series based on Dutch-German children's book series The Little Polar Bear (Lars der kleine eisbär in German and "Lars de kleine ijsbeer" in Dutch), all of the child characters (such as Robby and Lars) were voiced by young children in the original Dutch and German version. Foreign dubs had some of the child characters voiced by women.
  • Child characters in Pixar films:
    • John Morris voiced Andy throughout the 15-year span of the first 3 Toy Story movies, effectively growing up with him. Sid was also voiced by 12-year-old Erik von Detten, and Bonnie from Toy Story 3 was voiced by 9-year-old Emily Hahn.
    • Dot in A Bug's Life, voiced by 9-year-old Hayden Panettiere.
    • In Monsters, Inc., toddler Boo was voiced by Mary Gibbs (pictured above), the little daughter of Pixar employee Rob Gibbs. The crew had to follow Mary around with a microphone and assembled Boo's lines from the things she said while she played, as Mary was unable to sit still during recording.
    • Nemo in Finding Nemo, voiced by 9-year-old Alexander Gould. He was replaced by the 11-year-old Hayden Rolence for the 2016 sequel, as Gould would've been too old to reprise his role (they did give him a brief cameo role to make up for it). Squirt, Pearl, Sheldon, Tad, and Darla were also voiced by children.
    • Dash in The Incredibles was voiced by 11-year-old Spencer Fox. Similarly to Nemo, the sequel has Fox replaced by the similarly-aged Huck Milner, since Fox was too old to reprise the role.
    • Russell (9-year-old Jordan Nagai) and Ellie as a child in Up.
    • Rejected recordings of Mary Gibbs from Monsters Inc were re-used for some scenes featuring Riley as a toddler in Inside Out, while an unknown child actress recorded some lines where she had spoken dialogue.
    • The Good Dinosaur: Arlo, the 11-year-old dinosaur, was voiced by the 2001-born Raymond Ochoa. His voice deepened not long after he finished recording his lines. The human child Spot was voiced by the even younger Jack Bright.
    • In Coco, Miguel was voiced by 12-year-old Anthony Gonzalez.
    • In Luca, Luca was voiced by 14-year-old Jacob Tremblay, and Alberto was voiced by 17-year-old Jack Dylan Grazer.
    • In Turning Red, Mei was voiced by 12-year-old Rosalie Chiang.
  • In The Point, then 10-year old Mike Lookinland voiced Oblio.
  • Kimi's classmates in Rugrats in Paris were played by children who had won a contest.
  • SCOOB! features the younger versions of Mystery Inc. (except Scooby) being voiced by children.
  • In The Swan Princess, Prince Derek and Odette's younger selves were voiced by the ten-year-old Adam Wylie and the nine-year-old Adrian Zahiri.
  • In Wolfwalkers, Honor Kneafsey (Robyn Goodfellowe) was twelve and Eva Whittaker (Mebh Óg MacTíre) was eight when recording started. While Kneafsey had previous roles, Whittaker never acted before.
  • Emily Prime in World of Tomorrow was voiced by an actual four-year-old, who was recorded having actual unscripted reactions to toys and pictures.

  • The entire genre of children's choirs and boychoirs— probably the best known are Vienna Boys' Choir, the Choir of Kings College Cambridge, and Libera— showcases children's high treble voices. Such choirs largely got their start in the Middle Ages when women weren't permitted to sing in church, so the treble parts in choral music were given to boys. Naturally, once the singers' voices cracked, they were retired from the treble section.
  • The voice provider for the Vocaloid voice bank Oliver was a 13-year-old boy, and the voice provider for Kaai Yuki was a grade school-aged girl.
  • Because anyone can make one, there are UTAU voice banks recorded by kids. Notably Kasane Teto's voice provider was only fifteen when she recorded Teto's first voice bank. Though Teto is technically supposed to be 31.

  • Both 13 and the recent revival of Bye Bye Birdie averted this, casting real teens to play the teen characters. Ditto for certain stage productions of High School Musical, notably those by real high school theatre departments.
  • Amy Nuttall was 16 when playing Christine in The Phantom of the Opera on the West End, and to date is the youngest leading actress ever featured in the London production. Christine is almost always played by an actress in her mid- to late 20s, because most younger singers don't have the training needed for the demanding numbers.
  • The cast of Newsies. Neil Patrick Harris made a joke at the Tonys about the "hyper-acrobatic 35-year-old 15-year-olds" in the show.
  • The 1991 Broadway production of The Secret Garden cast then 11-year-old Daisy Eagan, the youngest female recipient of a Tony Award, as 10-year-old Mary Lennox.
  • Dear Evan Hansen made headlines for casting 16-year-old Andrew Barth Feldman in the highly demanding role of the 17-year-old title character. (The first person to play the role was 23 year old Ben Platt, who won a Tony award for his performance.)

    Video Games 
  • The Adventures of Willy Beamish: Willy Beamish was voiced by Michael Zibelman, and it's his only acting credit.
  • In Bravely Default, Victoria F. Stein is a mage with the appearance of a child. Fittingly, she's voiced in Japanese by Kanon Tani, who was an actual child at the time of recording. On the other hand, the English dub avoids this by having her English voice provided by Carrie Savage.
  • In The Cluefinders games, actual children voice all the characters. This makes it a little jarring in The Incredible Toy Store Adventure when they're suddenly voiced by completely different people, as the previous voice actors no longer sounded like children who were ten and eleven.
  • In Detroit: Become Human, nine-year-olds Emma and Alice are voiced and portrayed by child actress Audrey Boustani, who was around the same age as her characters, as her sole acting credit.
  • Disco Elysium: Little Lily is described as "barely four or five years old", and her Final Cut voice actor Honor Davis-Pye was about 11 during production.
  • In Dissidia Final Fantasy, The Onion Knight, a Kid Hero who's explicitly the youngest of the heroes (which puts him at fifteen or younger) was voiced by 19-years-old Aaron Spann. He also had previously voiced Joshua in The World Ends with You, who's fifteen at least in appearance.
  • 10-year-old Atreus from God of War (PS4) is voiced by the then 13-year-old Sunny Suljic. The sequel, God of War Ragnarök, is set three years later, with Suljic's voice deepening and Atreus now visibly older to match.
  • Kingdom Hearts:
  • League of Legends: When Nunu & Willump got their Visual and Gameplay Update in 2018, Nunu was recast to child actor Lucas Jaye, who was 11 when he recorded for Nunu.
  • 9-year-old Daniel Diaz from Life Is Strange 2 is voiced by Roman George, who was in his early teens at the time.
  • In many Living Books CD-ROM games, kid characters were voiced by actual children.
  • In the original Lunar game for the Sega CD, Lunar: The Silver Star, 15-year-old protagonist Alex is actually voiced by a then preteen Ashley Parker Angel. For the first remake, Silver Star Story, Working Designs, the series publisher, considered replacing Angel because he hit puberty but ended up calling him back in anyway, feeling that this "new" Alex was a bit more "grown-up" than the original.
  • The first Mega Man Legends game had MegaMan Volnutt voiced by the 14-year-old Corey Sevier, but in the second game, the role was given to Susan Roman (who voiced Mayor Amelia in the first game). Cue players wondering why MegaMan suddenly sounded younger between games.
  • In the Disney PC game Nightmare Ned, 10-year-old Ned Needlemeyer was voiced by then 10-year-old Courtland Mead, known for other Disney roles such as Gus Griswold from the show Recess.
  • In Ni no Kuni, the 13-year-old Kid Hero Oliver is voiced by the 10-year-old Adam Wilson.
  • Laura in Silent Hill 2 was voiced by the eight-year-old Jacquelyn Breckenridge. She wasn't told about the dark nature of the game she was voicing for, of course.
  • Sonic the Hedgehog:
    • The games originally played this trope straight with eight-year-old Tails, who was voiced by the then-teen Corey Bringas in Sonic Adventure and Sonic Shuffle and his younger brother Connor in Sonic Adventure 2. William Corkery voiced Tails in Sonic Heroes, Sonic Battle and Sonic Advance 3, with other cast members stating Corkery was around 10 at the time he recorded his lines for Heroes. He's then been voiced by women from 2005's Shadow the Hedgehog on.
    • This was also present in Japanese, where Tails was voiced by then-8-year old Kazuki Hayashi in Sonic Adventure and was replaced by Atsuki Murata in Shuffle and Adventure 2. Ryō Hirohashi would assume the role starting in Heroes and is still currently voicing Tails to this day.
    • In addition to Tails in Heroes, William Corkery's older sister Emily Corkery provided the voice for six-year-old Charmy Bee, being about 13 at the time. He has since been voiced by adult female voice actors from Shadow the Hedgehog on; this has always been the case for him in Japanese.

    Web Animation 

  • Mashiro Kurata is the unique casting exception in BanG Dream!, a multimedia franchise with a cast of teenage high school girls voiced and performed in real-life live rock concerts by women in their 20's and 30's. Her actress Amane Shindou was 15 years old when the character was first introduced in the mobile game BanG Dream! Girls Band Party! in 2019.
  • In the Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation: Mo Dao Zu Shi audio drama adaptation, the toddler Wen Yuan is voiced by Yu Shuhan, who was two years old at the time of the recording.
  • Incredibly, Maria Callas began her opera career at the age of 15, as the leading lady in Cavallera rusticana, which is about a young, knocked-up village girl, probably about 15-16. Since it requires performers who can sing over an orchestra, this trope doesn't have many opera exceptions, folks.
  • This one is in "Other" because it derives from Theatre, Live-Action Film, and Television: Patty Duke in three separate productions of The Miracle Worker. Duke was able to play Helen Keller on Broadway well into her teens, and played her again in the 1962 film adaptation, partly because she was very small: even in adulthood she has never grown taller than five feet. Her height presented a particular challenge to the producers of the 1979 TV remake, in which she played Annie Sullivan, because she was cast opposite fifteen-year-old Melissa Gilbert — confronting audiences with a seven-year-old Helen Keller who was taller than her teacher.
  • The Full Cast Audio book recordings, which was founded by Bruce Coville, always uses age-appropriate voice actors for every book they record.
  • In the notorious "Friday" video, 13-year-old Rebecca Black and her real-life friends (who are presumably in the 12-14 range) play characters who are at least 16, as one of them is driving a car. This has been observed and lampshaded in many parodies.
  • In the music video for Aerosmith's song "Crazy", 17-year-old Alicia Silverstone and 16-year-old Liv Tyler play two students who skip class and go on a road trip together. The fact that this is an exception is surprising because the video is fanservice-heavy and even features Liv doing a striptease at one point. Not to mention the fact that Liv is lead singer Steven Tyler's daughter.
  • Lots of examples posted on this tumblr, with comparison photos of the actors when they were actually teenagers.
  • Inverted with JoJo in the music video to "Leave (Get Out)". She was only 13 but was pretending to be a 15-17 year old high schooler.
  • In The Nutters, the whole cast were the same age as their characters (sixteen-seventeen).


Video Example(s):


Sam Lavagnino as Catbug

Sam Lavagnino was around 5-6 years old when he was cast for the role of Catbug, the resident Ridiculously Cute Critter of Bravest Warriors.

How well does it match the trope?

5 (4 votes)

Example of:

Main / ChildrenVoicingChildren

Media sources: