The Transformation Of Erin Moriarty From Childhood To The Boys - Looper (2024)


The Transformation Of Erin Moriarty From Childhood To The Boys - Looper (1)

Amazon Studios

ByDevon Forward/

At only 26, American actress Erin Moriarty has already got the spotlight on her. In just ten years, Moriarty went from her first screen appearance in the long-running soap opera One Life to Live to a starring role on the hit Amazon series The Boys. Moriarty plays the character Annie January, commonly known as her superhero alter ego, Starlight. At the beginning of The Boys season 1, Annie is preparing for her big debut in The Seven, a group of superheroes similar to the Avengers or the Justice League. Her big dream is to finally be a hero and save people. Unfortunately, her fantasies are shattered when she discovers the poisonous side of superhero life, and that the people she once looked up to aren't the perfect heroes they pretend to be.

The Boys premiered its second season on Amazon on September 4, 2020, earning a 97% Certified Fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. With great critical and viewership success, it was no surprise when Amazon announced that there would be a third season, along with a spinoff series fast-tracked for production. According to Amazon's official plot synopsis, "Set at America's only college exclusively for young adult superheroes (and run by Vought International), the Untitled Boys Spinoff is an irreverent, R-rated series that explores the lives of hormonal, competitive Supes" (via Inverse). Moriarty will likely remain solely in The Boys, but this news hints at a long future with the franchise.

Throughout her career, Moriarty continually gave standout performances in a variety of projects in TV and film. From childhood to playing a superhero named Starlight, here's a look at Moriarty's journey to where she is now.

Erin Moriarty started acting in community theater at 11

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Larry Busacca/Getty Images

Born in 1994, Moriarty grew up in NYC and quickly discovered her passion for acting and the arts. By age 11, Moriarty was already taking on a starring role, playing Annie in a community theater production of the popular Broadway musical (via St. Jean's Players). She continued pursuing acting and got her first on-screen role as Whitney Bennett in One Life to Live in 2010. Soon after, Moriarty also booked a guest role on Law & Order: Special Victims Unit.

Moriarty's passion for the arts extends to books as well. In a 2013 interview with Who What Wear, Moriarty said thatThe Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien and the Shakespeare playA Midsummer Night's Dreamare two of her favorite reads, commenting, "I had a wonderful English teacher in high school who really fed my passion for reading." It's possible that the teacher encouraged Moriarty's love of acting as well.

Moriarty kept building up her career with bigger and bigger roles over the next few years. She graduated from high school in 2013 and decided to take a gap year before college to work, as she explained in an interview with Teen Vogue. Knowing how the entertainment industry generally revolves around Los Angeles, Moriarty also moved from NYC to LA around the same time.

Moriarty moved up to indie films and bigger roles

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CBS Films

Right around 2013 was when Moriarty hit her stride andreally started getting noticed for her acting. She joined the cast of an independent film called Toy's House, co-starring Nick Robinson, Gabriel Basso, and Moises Arias. The movie hit the festival circuit and won multiple awards, and it was nominated for the Grand Jury Prize at Sundance. When the film went out for distribution, the title was changed to The Kings of Summer.

It appears that she got a lot of practice making her mark in projects featuring a predominantly male cast, even before joining The Boys. In the Teen Vogue interview referenced above, Moriarty addressed the cast and crew of The Kings of Summer, saying "we all became close. It was always kind of a boys' club because it was the three boys, plus all of the producers and the director—they're all guys. It's fun to be part of it and to be one of the only girls involved."

In 2013, Moriarty also took on her first main role in the short-lived ABC series Red Widow, in which she plays a teenager who discovers her father was deeply involved with the Mob after he is brutally murdered. Despite many reviews praising the cast, there was a lot of criticism for the formulaic and predictable plot line, withThe AV Clubdescribing the series as "poorly defined, generic, like a variable plugged into an equation."Red Widow was quickly cancelled.

Moriarty nabbed major roles in high-profile TV shows and a SAG nomination

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Marvel Studios/Netflix

Despite the failure of Red Widow, Moriarty quickly got a better role, albeit smaller, as the daughter of Woody Harrelson's Marty on HBO's prestige crime drama True Detective. The series got amazing reviews upon release, earning an 87% on Rotten Tomatoes. Moriarty may only appear in three of season 1's eight episodes, but she is memorable as a rebellious, troubled teenager whose strange behavior inspired many intricate fan theories (via The Daily Beast).

After True Detective came Jessica Jones, which features Moriarty in the main cast of season 1. Moriarty plays Hope Shlottman, a young woman sexually abused and manipulated by the telepathic Kilgrave (David Tennant) to commit dark acts. Hope approaches Jessica Jones (Krysten Ritter) for help in freeing her from Kilgrave's control and taking him down. The first season of Jessica Jones was extremely well-reviewed, and many critics praised how the show made "Kilgrave's powers the centerpiece of a story about consent, and control — which are themes so vital to a story about women," as Liz Shannon Miller described in an article for Indiewire.

Along with her television roles, Moriarty's work with indie projects didn't stop after The Kings of Summer. She had a supporting role in the 2014 sci-fi film After the Dark, and in 2017, she earned a Screen Actors Guild Awards nomination as part of the cast of the drama Captain Fantasticstarring Viggo Mortensen.

Moriarty got her breakout role as Starlight in The Boys

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Amazon Studios

In the years leading up to 2019, Moriarty racked up quite a few more film roles in a variety of genres, including the sports drama The Miracle Season and the horror film Monster Party. Then on July 26, 2019, the R-rated superhero satire seriesThe Boys premiered on Amazon Prime withMoriarty playing Annie, a member of the main cast.

Moriarty'scharacter starts off as the epitome of innocence and purity. When Annie joins The Seven, she fights against the selfish and power-hungry actions of the people at Vaught International by speaking out, but it does no good. After meeting Hughie (Jack Quaid) and later learning of his association with Billy Butcher (Karl Urban) and The Boys, Annie realizes she might have to commit some violence and immoral actions in order to take down Vought and change anything about the world of superheroes.

After the fantastic success of both seasons 1 and 2 of The Boys, Amazon moved fast to get season 3 into production. The Boys season 3 started filming on February 24, 2021, and it is expected to finish sometime in late Summer or Fall of this year (via The Wrap). Right now, Moriarty doesn't appear to have any other projects in the works, but The Boys seems like enough to keep her occupied playing such a complex and fun character. Fans can't wait to see what Moriarty brings to Annie, a.k.a. Starlight, in season 3 of the hit series.


The Transformation Of Erin Moriarty From Childhood To The Boys - Looper (2024)
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