Where Are They Now: The “Matilda” Edition


In 1996, one of the most beloved films geared toward children debuted in theaters: Matilda. In many ways the predecessor of Harry Potter, Matilda was an American adaptation of a children’s fantasy novel by British author Roald Dahl. It tells the story of Matilda Wormwood, a brilliant and neglected child who discovers that she is telekinetic. With the help of her newfound powers, she fights back against her school’s cruel principal, Agatha Trunchbull, as well as her unkind parents. The film became a near-instant classic on behalf of its stellar mix of adventure and humor as well as its outstanding cast, which included Mara Wilson, Danny DeVito, Rhea Perlman and Pam Ferris. Even today, it still holds an approval rating of 90% on the website Rotten Tomatoes.

Nevertheless, twenty years have passed since the cast left the world of Matilda—in fact, they recently reunited in 2013 to celebrate the film’s 17th anniversary—and they have each moved on to new things. So, where are the actors and actresses who played your favorite characters now? Keep reading to find out!

Mara Wilson (Matilda Wormwood)


Mara Wilson made a name for herself as a young actress by starring in the films Mrs. Doubtfire, the remake of Miracle on 34th Street and Matilda. She also guest-starred on the television shows Melrose Place and Pearl. However, she took an extended break from the acting field in 2000, returning after more than a ten-year hiatus to lend her voice to the series Demo Reel, star in the film Billy Bob Joe and guest star on Broad City and BoJack Horseman. She is now a writer and social media commentator.

Danny DeVito (Harry Wormwood)


Danny DeVito is, without a doubt, one of the most iconic actors to ever live. Over the course of his impressive career, he has amassed numerous credits, including the films One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, Terms of Endearment, L.A. Confidential, Romancing the Stone, Ruthless People, Twins, The War of the Roses, Batman Begins, The Rainmaker, Drowning Mona, Big Fish, Relative Strangers, Matilda, Deck the Halls, Nobel Son, When in Rome, The Lorax and All the Wilderness. Of course, most people remember him from the show Taxi, in which he played the character everyone loved to hate, Louie De Palma, and the show It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, in which he played Frank Reynolds. Fans can expect to see him in the upcoming films Triplets, The Comedian and Animal Crackers.

Rhea Perlman (Zinnia Wormwood)


Just like her husband, Danny DeVito, to whom she has been married for thirty-four years, Rhea Perlman has had an extensive and successful acting career. She landed her first major television role in 1982 as Carla Tortelli in Cheers, which lasted for eleven seasons. Afterward, she took parts in the films Sunset Park, Carpool, Matilda, Love Comes Lately and The Sessions. She also guest-starred on the shows Pearl, Kate Brasher, Hung, Robot & Monster, Kristie and The Mindy Project. Fans can expect to see her in the upcoming film Lemon as the character Esther.

Pam Ferris (Agatha Trunchbull)


Before playing the terrifying Mrs. Trunchbull in Matilda, Pam Ferris was scoring roles in the shows Connie, Dramarama, A Sense of Guilt, Cluedo, The Darling Buds of May, Middlemarch and The Rector’s Wife. In the years since starring in Matilda, Ferris has landed parts in the show Where the Heart Is, Paradise Heights, Clocking Off, Rosemary & Thyme, Jane Eyre, Little Dorrit, Luther and Call the Midwife. She’s also starred in the films Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Piccadilly Jim, Children of Men, The Other Man, Malice in Wonderland, Jackboots on Whitehall and The Raven. She’s currently slated to be doing voice-acting for the films Ethel & Ernest and We’re Going on a Bear Hunt.

Embeth Davidtz (Miss Honey)


After playing Miss Honey, the sweet and encouraging teacher who takes Matilda under her wing, Embeth Davidtz scored roles in the films Fallen, The Gingerbread Man, Bicentennial Man, Bridget Jones’s Diary, The Hole, Thir13en Ghosts, Junebug, Fracture, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Amazing Spiderman, Paranoia and The Amazing Spiderman 2. She also guest-starred on Citizen Baines, In Treatment, Californication, Mad Men, The Secret Life of Marilyn Monroe and Ray Donovan. She has no upcoming projects at this time.

Kiami Davael (Lavender)


In the years since playing Lavender in Matilda, Kiami Davael has guest-starred on several shows, including The Pretender, Conan, Moesha, In the House, The Steve Harvey Show and Grown-Ups. She also landed a part in the film Bruno. In 2012, she wrote her first short film titled Reckless. She has no upcoming projects on the horizon.

Jimmy Karz (Bruce Bogtrotter)


Jimmy Karz’s acting career was relatively short-lived. After playing Bruce Bogtrotter in Matilda, he scored roles in The Wedding Singer and guest-starred on ER. Then, he quit acting entirely. He is now in the midst of training to be a doctor at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Jacqueline Steiger (Amanda Thripp)


After playing Amanda Thripp in Matilda, Jacqueline Steiger guest-starred in the shows Dharma & Greg, Judging Amy and Force Push as well as the films Beautiful and An American Rhapsody. She’s also ventured into stage acting with Buffy the Musical and Antigone. After taking a short break from acting to finish school, Steiger has returned to working in the industry, this time focusing on creating her own content. Check out her website for more info: http://jacquelinesteiger.com/

Brian Levinson (Michael Wormwood)


Last but not least, we have Brian Levinson, who played Matilda’s older brother, Michael. His only after-Matilda credit is a guest spot on Seinfeld—before that, he made appearances in the shows Roseanne, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and Phenom—but he has since disappeared from the biz.

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