It’ll be 20 years this summer since Mean Girls was released in theaters and became an enduring pop-culture sensation, providing us with endlessly quotable lines (“Stop trying to make fetch happen!”) and launching the careers of many of its young stars. The success of the movie ultimately inspired a Broadway musical of the same name, which was released in 2018—and now the franchise has come full circle, with that Broadway musical being adapted into a big-screen remake.
Mean Girls (2024) arrived Jan. 12 and features an entirely new cast including Reneé Rapp as Regina George and Angourie Rice as Cady Heron. The only returning cast members are Tina Fey as Ms. Norbury and Tim Meadows as Principal Duvall, but the release of the new Mean Girls has still inspired plenty of nostalgia for the original ensemble. Here’s a guide to where the cast is now.
'Mean Girls' Cast: Where Are They Now?
At 17, Lohan was already a well-known young star when she was cast in the lead role of maths whiz Cady, having starred in two acclaimed remakes—1998’s The Parent Trap and 2003’s Freaky Friday. But the success of Mean Girls launched her to a new level of fame, though she became known more as a celebrity than as an actress. She starred in films including Herbie Fully Loaded (2005), A Praire Home Companion (2006) and I Know Who Killed Me (2007), but off screen she was struggling with substance use disorder and various legal troubles. She ultimately took a hiatus from acting for several years, aside from a brief comeback in the 2013 thriller The Canyons. More recently, she returned to acting in the 2022 Netflix holiday movie, Falling For Christmas. In March of 2023, she welcomed her first child with husband Bader Shammas.
Seyfried scored a number of major TV roles after Mean Girls, in shows like House, CSI and most notably Veronica Mars, where she played the pivotal role of Veronica’s murdered best friend. Her starring role in the smash hit musical adaptation Mamma Mia! (2008) propelled her to stardom, and after that she appeared in movies including Jennifer’s Body (2009), Dear John (2010) and Red Riding Hood (2011). She also played a lead role in the HBO series Big Love. More recently, Seyfried earned an Emmy for her tour de force performance in Hulu’s The Dropout, where she played disgraced Theranos founder Elizabeth Holmes.
McAdams, who was an unknown when she was cast as ultimate queen bee Regina, was the true breakout performer of Mean Girls. The summer of 2004 was a turning point for her—just a week after the release of Mean Girls came The Notebook, the iconic romantic drama in which McAdams stars opposite Ryan Gosling. After that duo of releases, McAdams became one of the most in-demand actresses in Hollywood, and starred in a huge number of movies including Wedding Crashers (2005), The Time Traveller’s Wife (2009) and Spotlight (2015). She also made her TV debut in 2015 in the second season of HBO’s True Detective, and more recently has become a part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, playing Dr. Christine Palmer in the Doctor Strange franchise.
Chabert was one of the more experienced actors in the young cast, having done voice work as a child in movies including Anastasia (1997); she also starred as one of the Salinger siblings in the Fox series Party of Five (1994). After Mean Girls, she appeared in movies including Ghosts of Girlfriends Past (2009), and in 2010 she starred in the Hallmark Channel movie Elevator Girl. That began a new phase of her career—to date, she’s now appeared in more than 30 Hallmark movies. “I found a real home in Hallmark,” she told Vulture in 2022. “I’m able to be more of who I am here than possibly anywhere else I’ve worked.”
Lizzy Caplan as Janis Ian
Not long after Mean Girls, Caplan starred in the buzzy disaster movie Cloverfield (2008), and went on to appear in several other big movies including Hot Tub Time Machine (2010), 127 Hours (2010) and Now You See Me 2 (2016). She’s also had a successful career on television, appearing in New Girl, True Blood and Party Down before landing the lead role of Virginia Johnson on Showtime’s acclaimed series Masters of Sex. More recently, she’s appeared in HBO’s Fleishman Is In Trouble and the Paramount+ TV adaptation of Fatal Attraction.
Daniel Franzese as Damian
As Cady and Janis’s “too gay to function” BFF Damian, Franzese was responsible for delivering some of Mean Girls’ most iconic lines, including “She doesn’t even go here!” Since playing the role, he’s gone on to roles in several TV shows such as Looking, Recovery Road and Conviction.
Franzese has also spoken about how playing Damian helped him to come out as gay in his own life. “What Damian did for a lot of queer people and people of size—which I found out later on—it gave them an identity in pop culture where they weren’t made fun of,” he told People in 2018. He’s never made fun of for being big or for being gay.”
Jonathan Bennett as Aaron Samuels
After playing North Shore High School's resident heartthrob, Aaron Samuels, Jonathan Bennett had roles in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, Smallville and Veronica Mars. He also starred in several Hallmark Channel Christmas movies, including Christmas on Cherry Lane and The Holiday Sitter. Speaking about Mean Girls, he once said, "I owe my entire life, my entire career" to the movie. "Everything about who I am today I owe to Tina Fey, [producer] Lorne Michaels and Lindsay Lohan."
Tina Fey as Ms. Norbury
In addition to playing math teacher Ms. Norbury, Fey also wrote the screenplay for Mean Girls, which she based loosely on Rosalind Wiseman’s parenting advice book Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and New Realities of Girl World. At the time, Fey was a veteran cast member and writer on Saturday Night Live.
Shortly after Mean Girls, Fey created and starred in the long-running NBC cult classic sitcom 30 Rock, which takes place backstage at an SNL-like sketch comedy series. She later co-created the Netflix sitcom Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and has also continued to act in a number of movies including Date Night (2010), This Is Where I Leave You (2014) and Whiskey Tango Foxtrot (2016). She reprises the role of Ms. Norbury in the 2024 movie musical remake of Mean Girls (which is based on the 2018 Broadway show she wrote and produced).
Tina Fey brought in Saturday Night Live alum Tim Meadows to play Principal Duvall in the original Mean Girls. He subsequently made appearances in TV shows like Everybody Hates Chris, Reba and more recently, Poker Face and the Fey-produced Girls5Eva. On the big-screen, he's had memorable turns in Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story, Trainwreck and Hubie Halloween, and most recently in 2023’s Dream Scenario, which also stars Nicolas Cage. Meadows reprises the role of Principal Duvall in the 2024 movie musical remake of Mean Girls.
Amy Poehler as Mrs. George
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler were constant collaborators around the time that Mean Girls came out (and they're still touring together to this day). After playing "cool mom" Mrs. George, Poehler went on to team up with her SNL partner-in-crime for 2008's Baby Mama, and the following year, starred in Parks and Recreation, which would run until 2015. Her memoir, Yes, Please, came out in 2014.
Ana Gasteyer as Cady's Mom
Fey enlisted yet another SNL alum, Ana Gasteyer, to play Cady's mom in the 2004 movie. Following Mean Girls, she starred in all three seasons of Suburgatory as well as episodes of The Good Wife, The Mindy Project, Girls and more. She also starred alongside Poehler in the Netflix movie Wine Country.