Did ‘The NeverEnding Story’ Cast Have Neverending Careers?

Few movies had an impact on my childhood the way The NeverEnding Story did. The story about a kid who finds a book and gets completely, and literally, drawn into the adventure within was something truly magical. The characters, the drama, all of it. I was completely entranced.

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In the more than 30 years since it came out, the cast hasn’t exactly been blowing up the big screen, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t around. What happened to Bastian and Atreyu? Did Falcor and Gmork find common ground and become friends? Of course not, seeing as Gmork got stabbed at the end.

Let’s find out how the careers of The NeverEnding Story cast turned out. Click ‘Start Slideshow’ to begin!

Barret Oliver – Bastian

Acting wasn’t in the cards for the main character of The NeverEnding Story. After some small television roles, Barret Oliver did the Frankenweenie short which would eventually be remade in animated glory. He then went on to film D.A.R.Y.L., in which he played a military robot everyone thought was a little boy. His biggest roles since The NeverEnding Story were definitely in both Cocoon and Cocoon: The Return. After 1989, however, Oliver was done. Nowadays he’s big into the history of photography and even wrote a book about it.

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Noah Hathaway – Atreyu

By far the coolest character in The NeverEnding Story, Atreyu was the hero doing all the cool stuff while Bastian was doing his reading. Other than a couple television roles, the only big thing Noah Hathaway did after the film was Troll, a movie which I haven’t seen but sounds fantastic. That was in 1986, and, other than a role in 1994, Hathaway stayed out of the business until 2012 when he was in Sushi Girl.

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Alan Oppenheimer – Falcor, G’mork, Rock Biter

Alan Oppenheimer may have come into my life in The NeverEnding Story, but he’s been acting since he appeared in The Untouchables in 1963. This article is about what happened since the movie, though, so let’s focus on that. The list is very, very long, so here are some of the highlights: Knight Rider; multiple voices in He-Man and She-Ra, Transformers, Centurions, BraveStarr, Chip ‘n’ Dale Rescue Rangers, The Smurfs, DuckTales, James Bond Jr.; Murphy Brown; Star Trek: Voyager; Gilmore Girls; and many, many more. Most recently, he did a voice on Adventure Time, did some voice work for Fallout 4 and voiced a character in Best Fiends: Boot Camp.

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Tami Stronach – The Childlike Empress

The Childlike Empress only has a couple roles under her belt since before The NeverEnding Story, but it remains Tami Stronach’s greatest role. Her family moved to Israel not long after she starred in the movie, and her time acting since has been spent there. In 2008, she was in a television movie called Fredy a Zlatovláska. She’s in a 2017 film called Poslední z Aporveru, and is going to be in the upcoming Ultra Low, about a bunch of people trying to make it in Hollywood.


Thomas Hill – Carl Conrad Coreander a.k.a. The Bookstore Guy

Before The NeverEnding Story, Thomas Hill was a pretty busy guy. After playing the guy in the bookstore, he kept up the pace for a while. He showed up in V: The Final Battle, the miniseries ending to the show about lizard aliens posing as human-like aliens. He had small roles in The Facts of Life, Married with Children and Coach. He was also a major player in the final season of Newhart. His last movie was in 1990, though he had a small role in Law & Order in 1993. Hill passed away in 2009.

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Sydney Bromley – Engywook

Only three roles were in the cards for Sydney Bromley, who played the male part of the duo of small folks who helped Atreyu find the oracles. He appeared in Pirates alongside Walter Matthau, played Herbert in Anastasia: The Mystery of Anna (that’s the TV movie, not the animated one), and was in a movie called Crystaltone, which sounds like something I need to watch. He passed away just four years after The NeverEnding Story, but he was too important to leave off this list.

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Patricia Hayes – Urgl

The other half of that little crew was Urgl, played by Patricia Hayes. Following The NeverEnding Story, Hayes had a role in Marjorie and Men, Mr Pye and Screenplay. She was also in one of my absolute favorite films, Willow, as the Fin Raziel, who Willow had to transform back into a woman so she could fight Queen Bavmorda. Man, I love that movie. She also appeared in A Fish Called Wanda and various other roles before passing away in 1998.

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Deep Roy – Teeny Weeny

You know Deep Roy, even if you don’t know it. In The NeverEnding Story, he was the guy who rode the racing snail, though another guy provided the voice. After The NeverEnding Story, he played Tin Man in Return to Oz, he was in the old-school Doctor Who as Mr. Sin in a six-part storyline, he was in 2000’s How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The X-Files in 2001 and Planet of the Apes, also in 2001. Then, things got really good for him. Remember Charlie and the Chocolate Factory with Johnny Depp? Deep Roy was ALL of the Oompa Loompas. He is also the weird alien dude who hangs out with Simon Pegg’s character in the new Star Trek films.

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Tilo Pruckner – Night Hob

Teeny Weeny’s friend in that scene, the Night Hob, who rode a giant bat, was played by Tilo Pruckner. After The NeverEnding Story, Pruckner packed up and went to Germany, where has done very well for himself. He was in Die Falscher, a film about the largest counterfeiting operation in history. He’s been in all kinds of movies and shows you may have never heard of, thanks to their German origin, but he was in at least one other English film. I don’t know who would necessarily claim to have been in it, but he played Doktor Richter in Iron Sky, a movie about a secret Nazi base on the dark side of the moon.

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Moses Gunn – Cairon

Though he passed away in 1993, Moses Gunn went on to play quite a few roles following his time playing Cairon in The NeverEnding Story. If you need a refresher, he was the guy who addressed everyone at the top of the Ivory Tower, when Atreyu was revealed to be the warrior who would save the world. Great scene. The same year The NeverEnding Story was released, Gunn was in Stephen King’s Firestarter. He didn’t do many more big movies, but showed up a lot on television, including roles in Hill Street Blues, Highway to Heaven, A Man Called Hawk, The Cosby Show, Tales from the Crypt and Homicide: Life on the Street, which proved to be his final role.

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Gerald McRaney – Bastian’s Dad

Looking at his work history, it seems big films were never really in the cards for Gerald McRaney. After playing Bastian’s father in The NeverEnding Story, he only went on to be in a couple movies, including 2009’s Get Low and 2010’s The A-Team. However, he was all over television, playing lead roles and side ones for decades. He was Rick Simon in Simon & Simon. He played the major dad in Major Dad. He stuck it out as Russell Greene in Promised Land, along with several episodes as the same character in Touched by an Angel. He’s spent the last couple years in roles on This Is Us, 24: Legacy and House of Cards. He’s definitely still going strong.

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Chris Eastman – Bully 1

After tossing Bastian into a dumpster, then later running from his as he flew down the alley on Falcor’s back, Chris Eastman landed a couple more roles. Two spots in Danger Bay and a couple episodes of 21 Jump Street preceded what would be his second major role. In 1990, he snagged the part of Belch in It, based off the Stephen King novel. You know, the one with Tim Curry. He had a couple more roles before taking a break in 1996 only to return to television in an episode of Psych in 2006. He has popped up in Supernatural, Fringe and Almost Human, and had a small part in The Flash in 2014.

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Limahl – Soundtrack Guy

You can’t write about The NeverEnding Story and not talk about literally the first thing you experience when the movie begins: the absolutely amazing and memorable theme song. You may not have known this, but at one point, Limahl was a member of Kajagoogoo, who sang the song “Too Shy.” He didn’t do last long in the band, but he did release a couple songs in 2012 and has showed up with the group for a reunion thing every now and again.

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Jonathan Brandis – Bastian

Jonathan Brandis is one of the sadder Hollywood stories. Dude had a lot of potential, and The NeverEnding Story II: The Next Chapter was just the beginning, even if it wasn’t so good. After he was in the second film, he popped up in the It miniseries, then appeared on Blossom and The Wonder Years. He truly came into his own he starred in Ladybugs alongside Rodney Dangerfield. Playing as a boy dressing as a girl to play soccer made for a great story, and he did a good job. He hit movie gold again when he starred with Chuck Norris in Sidekicks. I would consider his last major role to have been in the television series SeaQuest 2032 from 1993 to 1996. He was in a few movies after that, but nothing which gained a lot of attention. Sadly, in 2003, Jonathan committed suicide by hanging himself in his LA apartment.

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Kenny Morrison – Atreyu

The second Atreyu fared about as well as the first, only scoring a few roles after the movie was released in 1990. Kenny Morrison appeared as a foot soldier in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze and had a single appearance on Star Trek: Voyager. He mostly appeared after that in some independent films, including one called Little Athens which starred Jorge Garcia from LOST and Michael Peña, who was in The Martian and Ant-Man.

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John Wesley Shipp – Barney, Bastian’s Dad

Other than Jonathan Brandis, John Wesley Shipp was probably the biggest name in The NeverEnding Story II. He pretty much went straight from being Bastian’s dad to being Barry Allen in the 1990’s series The Flash. However, I think most folks will know him as Mitch Leery, a.k.a. the father of Dawson Leery in Dawson’s Creek. Most recently, he’s had some luck as The Flash, yet again, playing a character in the latest iteration of The Flash.

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Alexandra Johnes – Childlike Empress

Considering Alexandra Johnes has only had three roles in her entire life, I considered leaving her off this list. Then I saw her production work. As an actress, she was in Zelly and Me, The NeverEnding Story II as the Childlike Empress, a single episode of Sabrina, the Teenage Witch and an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Honestly, that’s a pretty good selection, so I guess she chose her roles well. Behind the camera, she’s done quite a bit. She has produced 22 documentaries, some of which you’ve likely heard of. Gonzo: The Life and Work of Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, Freakonomics, We Came Home and The Mars Generation are among them. She was also a producer on 2015’s The VVitch, which I still haven’t seen, but really want to.

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Jason James Richter – Bastian

Our third Bastian you may have first seen in Free Willy, playing the lead character Jesse, a role he played again in Free Willy 2: The Adventure Home, which released the year after The NeverEnding Story III. I suppose I should also point out that, yes, there was a third NeverEnding Story movie. It seems many people don’t realize this. Anyway, Jason James Richter was in all the Free Willy movies, appeared in a Bones episode, was in the tragic Tekken film (based on the video game series) and had a few movies which didn’t get a lot of play. He does seem to have a couple in the tubes, so that’s cool.

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Jack Black – Slip

No, this is not a joke. Jack Black was absolutely in The NeverEnding Story III, taking on the ever-important role of the bully hunting down Bastian. His character’s name was Slip, and he was a pretty bad dude. I wouldn’t deign to say this was the movie which kicked off Jack Black’s career, but it was in there. Not long after, he would appear in Waterworld, then as part of Tenacious D in Bio-Dome, then The Cable Guy, The Fan, Mars Attacks! and so many, many more, all leading up to his upcoming Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle, a sequel to the classic Robin Williams film.

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Freddie Jones – Mr. Coreander

It’s fair to say British actor Freddie Jones may have taken a step down when he decided to be in The NeverEnding Story III, but at least he was playing a much beloved character. After a decades-spanning career, Jones took the seat as Mr. Coreander, the bookstore guy, but it wasn’t his last. He continued to do multiple television roles, with a bit of film thrown in here and there. Most impressive would be his more than 600 episodes on Emmerdale, a British soap opera which is still going strong.

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Julie Cox – The Empress

It seems by the time the third movie came around, the Empress was no longer childlike. Good for her. Julie Cox took on the role in this movie, which was one of her first. She’s gone on to show in several television movies and series, including 1997’s 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea and 2000’s David Copperfield, both made for television. She was also in 2000’s Dune and the 2003 follow-up Children of Dune. Her latest role was on an episode of Broadchurch as Mrs. Angela Dyer.

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Moya Brady – Urgl

Urgl, the small older lady, was back for the third film, this time portrayed by Moya Brady. She went on to play quite a few bit characters here and there in things like Mary Reilly, My Son the Fanatic and other films you may not have heard of. Her biggest role was from 1995 to 2003 as Roberta Cryer in The Bill. She was in 72 episodes of the show. She popped up in an episode of Doctor Who in 2006. She played Aunty Flo in 2009’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus and was in several episodes of season eleven of Shameless.

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Kevin McNulty – Barney, Bastian’s Dad

The NeverEnding Story III also saw a third iteration of Bastian’s father, this time played by Kevin McNulty. This guy has been in so many things since the film. Movie-wise, he was in The Sixth Man, Fantastic Four (the 2005 version), John Tucker Must Die, Snakes on a Plane, Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer, The Uninvited and Watchmen. Most of work, however, has been on television, where he has starred in a ton of different made-for-TV movies and television shows.

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