The Mickey Mouse Club's Famous Alumni
From Ryan Gosling to Britney Spears to Justin Timberlake, they made it through various incarnations of The Mickey Mouse Club to launch standout careers. Ahead, 11 of the most successful graduates of MMC.
Early Star Quality: As a Mouseketeer, Gosling didn’t get much screen time because, in his words, the show’s producers ”realized that I wasn’t really up to snuff in comparison with what some of the other kids were able to do.” But when he did get a shot at the spotlight, the future Oscar nominee’s easy charm was palpable.
Where Are They Now? He made his directing debut with 2015’s Lost River, a fantasy film starring Mad Men‘s Christina Hendricks that was received to mostly negative reviews. But he’s sticking to acting for his next projects, having recently starred in Damien Chazelle’s La La Land and First Man, Adam McKay’s The Big Short, and Shane Black’s The Nice Guys.
Early Star Quality: The ”SexyBack” singer had that pitch-perfect falsetto down even before his voice changed.
Where Are They Now? The ex-*NSYNCer released the two-part album 20/20 Experience, in 2013 — the same year he appeared in both Runner Runner and the Coen Brothers’ Inside Llewyn Davis. In early 2018, he dropped his fifth studio album, Man of the Woods, not long before headlining the Super Bowl halftime show.
Early Star Quality: That unbelievable voice! Xtina was born sounding like a full-grown soul singer.
Where Are They Now? The pop star has been keeping busy with TV, appearing as a coach on NBC’s The Voice and in a guest role on ABC’s Nashville. After a six-year break following the release of 2012’s Lotus, she finally dropped her latest album in 2018, Liberation.
Early Star Quality: Britney’s dance moves were crisp and precise from the very beginning. And though she’d eventually surrender to Auto-Tune, her growly alto wasn’t half bad either.
Where Are They Now? After releasing eight albums and nabbing multiple Grammy nods, Spears got her own Las Vegas residency — titled “Britney: Piece of Me” — that kicked off in December 2013. In 2016, she released her well-received ninth studio album, Glory, and reclaimed the VMA stage with a performance of its lead single, “Make Me…”
Early Star Quality: Her hair, obviously; even in the early ’90s, Keri’s curls were bouncy and flawless. She was also a surprisingly good rapper.
Where Are They Now? The former Felicity star has received plenty of positive attention for her starring role in FX’s The Americans, which ended in 2018. Up next, the actress may be headed for a certain galaxy far, far away…
Early Star Quality: *NYSNC’s future frontman boasted a gorgeous, smooth tenor that was almost too mature for its Disney Channel setting.
Where Are They Now? Like several of his fellow Mouseketeers, Chasez went the reality route: He was a judge on America’s Best Dance Crew from 2008 to 2012.
Early Star Quality: DeLoach shined most in the comedy skits, which foreshadowed the kind of work she’d go on to do years later.
Where Are They Now? The one-time girl group member — she was in Innosense, a ’90s band that opened for Britney Spears and *NSYNC — currently appears in MTV’s Awkward and has guested on multiple shows including NCIS, Castle, and Mad Men.
Early Star Quality: Tony’s pipes and guitar-playing skills were on full display in the ’90s MMC — especially when he was harmonizing with fellow Mouseketeer JC Chasez.
Where Are They Now? Lucca opened for *NSYNC in the early ’00s and released six albums later that decade — but he achieved new fame after placing third on season 2 of The Voice. The singer was subsequently signed to coach Adam Levine’s record label, and has since had his music featured on various TV shows including Parenthood and Friday Night Lights.
Early Star Quality: Sunny, perky Whelchel proved early on that she’d be a natural on a sitcom, even if her comic timing wasn’t really put to the test on the ’70s Mickey Mouse Club revival.
Where Are They Now? Whelchel spent nine years playing Blair Warner on The Facts of Life, and returned to television in 2012 as a contestant on Survivor: Philippines, where she was a runner-up.
Early Star Quality: This triple threat was the only Mouseketeer selected by Walt Disney himself — and though she later claimed her vocal range is ”about three notes,” her skill and wholesome persona made her the original show’s most popular cast member by far.
Where Are They Now? Before she died in April 2013 at age 70, Funicello starred in six Beach Party films in the ’60s and re-entered the public eye in 1992, when she revealed that she had been suffering from multiple sclerosis for several years. Funicello established the Annette Funicello Research Fund for Neurological Diseases one year later.
Early Star Quality: Grady, who originally went by Don Agrati, parlayed his clean-cut good looks, charisma, and musical talent into a role on My Three Sons when he was just 16.
Where Are They Now? After Sons was canceled in 1972, Grady embarked on a second career as a singer and composer, including the theme to The Phil Donahue Show. He died of cancer on June 27, 2012.