Jim Carrey was brilliant in the 1990s. From his breakthrough film, Ace Ventura: Pet Detective, to The Mask and Dumb and Dumber, Carrey used skillful physical comedy, malleable face, and absurd expressions to establish himself as a consistently funny presence.
In 1997, he starred in the family-friendly comedy Liar Liar, in which he played a lawyer who was miraculously and unexpectedly compelled always to tell the truth.
“How did he get that way?” you might wonder. The shenanigans begin when his estranged son Max, played by the endearing Justin Cooper, wishes on his birthday that his father can no longer lie.
Cooper was one of those adorable little blond child performers who could have followed in the footsteps of the Olsen twins or Haley Joel Osment, but he’s taken a very different path now. Before we get into Max from Liar Liar’s current appearance and recent activities, let’s go back to his childhood.
Like many other young actors from the 1990s, Cooper made a brief appearance on the popular sitcom Full House. He played Linus Plankton, a character who resembles a Spongebob Squarepants or Finding Nemo figure.
In the seventh season episode, “Support your Local Parents,” Uncle Jesse (John Stamos) and Rebecca (Lorie Loughlin) have twin twins Nicky and Alex and have been married for a few years.
Rebecca begs Uncle Jesse to arrange a playdate for Nicky and Alex because she believes they need more interaction. Linus Plankton is approaching.
Linus is one of those unimpressed teenagers who speaks in overly precocious terms that sound inappropriate for a child his age. Even though the other kids appear to be having a good time, he tells Uncle Jesse that he has attended nicer play dates.
His entire presence is limited to a few brief exchanges with Stamos, whose snark and arrogance perfectly complement Cooper’s straight-guy persona. Cooper’s guest appearance demonstrates how comical and serious he can be simultaneously.
In this 1994-1995 sitcom, Suzanne Pleshette and Hal Linden played parents Jackie and Fred Hansen, who are about to retire and are eager to unwind, travel, and generally enjoy each other’s company.
That is, until one of their two adult sons, who has his wife and children, moves back in. Even though this show is outdated, any millennial forced to return home with their parents may find it to reflect their own experience.
Cooper played Nicky Hansen, one of the grandchildren who suffers from nighttime wetting. According to Robert Leszczak’s book Single Season Sitcoms of the 1990s: A Complete Guide, The Boys Are Back only had 16 episodes.
Not only did Beverly Hills 90210 face competition, but the show’s concept had already been seen by viewers, reducing it to a remake of 1970s sitcoms.
According to Guinness World Records, with the cancellation of As the World Turns, ABC’s General Hospital has surpassed As the World Turns as the world’s longest-running daytime soap opera.
As a result, character arcs can last decades, as in many soap operas, and multiple actors have played certain characters over the years. Fans of General Hospital (GH) refer to Lucas Jones as a character whose life has changed dramatically throughout the show.
Dr. Lucas, one of the genre’s first openly gay characters, is currently played by Ryan Carnes; however, the role was originally played by a young Justin Cooper in 1996. Lucas’ life story begins with his birth in 1989.
Lucas, the son of a mob boss, becomes embroiled in an illegal adoption scandal and faces repeated threats to abduct him from his biological father throughout his childhood.
Cooper played Lucas from 1996 to 1998, when the threat of kidnapping was less likely, and things were, shall we say, a little calmer. In his adult life, Lucas has been poisoned by his cousin, humiliated for being gay, held captive under armed guard, and placed in a coma.
Cooper appeared on an episode of the popular ’90s sitcom Boy Meets World shortly before the release of Liar Liar. The seven-season television show followed Cory (Ben Savage), Shawn, and his best friend Topanga as they grew up (Rider Strong).
Boy Meets World was a hit with children in the 1990s. Girl Meets World, a spin-off series centered on Riley, Corey, and Topanga’s daughter premiered on the Disney Channel in 2014.
When Boy Meets World first aired in 1997, it was in its fourth season, and Cory’s older brother Eric (Will Freidle) had just begun to enter the real world. In the episode “Uncle Daddy,” Eric begins dating a woman with a young son, putting his parenting skills to the test.
Justin Cooper plays the adorable youngster, and Eric’s abilities are discovered to be lacking. But, given his youth—roughly twenty years old—who can blame him?
Cooper provided the moral compass that Liar Liar required and the cute. Cooper’s Max would pout, sulk, and cry just enough to make his father feel like a jerk and make the viewer want Carrey’s Fletcher to get better while lying his butt off.
After years of adult-oriented comedy, Carrey made his first foray into more family-friendly territory with Liar Liar. Ace Ventura, The Cable Guy, The Mask, and Dumb and Dumber all had overtly adult elements, but Liar Liar’s child protagonist and joyful ending broke from this trend, even though the film was still rated PG-13.
Following it, more family films such as How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Mr. Poppers Penguins were planned. Still, the touching scenes with Cooper in Liar Liar may have also prepared him for his foray into more dramatic material such as Man on the Moon and The Truman Show.
Were there a lot of adorable child actors in the 1990s? It appears that way in films like Home Alone, My Girl, Matilda, and Dennis the Menace. There was a time when cute kids having crazy adventures made for a good movie. Of course, Dennis the Menace’s success in 1993 prompted the studio to request a second round in 1998, but this one was never released in theaters.
Dennis the Menace Strikes Again! was one of the many direct-to-video sequels popular in the 1990s. Cooper took over for Walther Matthau and Mason Gamble, who played Dennis and Mr. Wilson in the remake of Dennis the Menace.
Mr. Wilson, played by Don Rickles, is a grumpy character. Naturally, there aren’t many differences in the plots of the two films, with Dennis annoying Mr. Wilson to no end until his antics save the neighborhood from unscrupulous con artists.
Cooper, 31, currently works as an Executive Producer for Fox Sports Radio’s The Ben Maller Show. He has grown up a lot since playing the adorable child in Liar Liar, who frowns and guilt-trips his father into doing the right thing.
Cooper’s Twitter account demonstrates that he has completely transformed into a sports radio host and has given up his acting career. Although he occasionally tweets about topics other than sports, you can find him commenting on actors, music, and movies.
Furthermore, his coworkers appear to make fun of him occasionally; in a previous tweet, Fox Sports’ Brian Noe referred the Claw from Liar Liar. We wish Cooper the best of luck in his new endeavor and thank him for the kind and entertaining memories.