Where Are They Now? The Cast of The Neverending Story


When it comes to children’s movies, I have a hard time deciding which is my favorite; it’s either The Dark Crystal or The Neverending StoryBoth movies are pretty dark considering their target demographics, and I can remember certain aspects of each that used to scare me.  And both movies involved some incredible work by puppeteers and voice actors, helping to bring to life the wide array of fictional creatures. 

Unlike The Dark Crystal, however, The Neverending Story featured live human actors that were, in my opinion, perfectly cast for their roles.  Keep reading to find out what happened to not only the on-screen actors from The Neverending Story, but to one of the greatest voice actors, as well.

Barret Oliver as Bastian Bux


Barret Oliver’s acting career didn’t last too long after The Neverending Story, but he didn’t exactly fade into obscurity, either.  After his role as Bastian, Oliver was cast in Tim Burton’s lost, alleged classic Frankenweenie, and then as a the title role in D.A.R.Y.L., for which he earned a Saturn Award.  After roles in Cocoon and its sequel, though, Oliver was pretty much finished was acting; he doesn’t have an acting credit to his name since 1989. 

But there’s more to life than acting, and Oliver picked up photography both as a hobby and a professional endeavor.  As of April 2008, Oliver was teaching photography in Los Angeles, and he had even written a book on photography called A History Of The Woodburytype. Although uncredited, Oliver also worked as a still photographer for Cold Mountain.

Noah Hathaway as Atreyu


After playing Atreyu – pretty much the coolest little kid role in the history of cinema – Hathaway had some minor television appearances on shows such as Simon & Simon and Family Ties before landing the starring roll in the 1986 movie Troll.  Hathaway didn’t appear on screen again until 1994, when he played Phil in To Die, to Sleep. 

This was the last film in which Hathaway has appeared, and after his retirement from acting, he got into motorcycle racing.  Like Atreyu, Hathaway has turned into quite the bad ass, picking up black belts in Tang Soo Do and Shotokan Karate in addition to trying to set up his own chopper shop on the west coast.

Hathway is currently set to lend his voice to Mondo Holocausto!, a movie being written and directed by Anthony Sant’Anselmo, who has not done much aside from voicing some characters on South Park.  I guess we’ll see how that turns out.

Thanks to Lefty Brown’s Corner for the pic.

Tami Stronach as The Childlike Empress


Appearing in The Neverending Story was the first and last acting role for Tami, unless you count her brief appearance in the short Czech television film, Feedy a Zlatovlaska.  And I don’t think we do.  It turns out that Tami is really a dancer by trade and has been dancing since she was a child.  In 1996, she joined the U.S.-based Israeli dance troupe the Neta Dance Company, and she now has her own dance company in Brooklyn.  You can check out her website HERE.

I did a little poking around, and it looks like Tami has gotten back into acting, but instead of on screen, she’s acting on stage in New York.

Alan Oppenheimer as the voice of Rockbiter, Falkor, Gmork, and the Narrator


As one of the greatest voice actors to ever live, Alan Oppenheimer has had steady, memorable work since The Neverending Story.  Oppenheimer appeared on camera on dozens of shows, ranging from Married with Children to Who’s the Boss? to Star Trek: The Next Generation, but it’s his voice acting that without a doubt has paid the bills.  In addition to voicing Skeletor, Oppenheimer has voiced the Transformers Warpath and Beachcomber, Vanity Smurf, various characters on Scooby-Doo, and even characters on the Gummi Bears.  More recently, Oppenheimer has moved into video game voice acting.  One of his notable performances is that of Prometheus in God of War II.

Thomas Hill as Mr. Koreander


Thomas Hill appeared on several television shows following The Neverending Story, including his recurring role as Jim Dixon on Newhart up until 1990.  Hill also appeared on the original “V” series, The Facts of Life, Coach, and like Alan Oppenheimer, Married with Children.  He didn’t have any notable movie roles – unless you count “Attorney” in the 1987 film Black Widow – until he once again played Mr. Koreander in The Neverending Story II.  Thomas Hill’s last role was on an episode of Law & Order in 1993, and he passed away at the age of 81 in April 2009.

Moses Gunn as Cairon


Moses Gunn was a respected, accomplished actor long before appearing in The Neverending Story, so writing about what the Tony-nominated actor had done after his role as Cairon is somewhat of a disservice.  Aside from a role in Leonard Part 6, Cairon appeared in mostly television shows – such as The Cosby Show and an episode of Tales From the Crypt – until his final role as a murder suspect on Homicide: Life on the Street in 1993.  Sadly, Cairon died in 1993 from asthma complications.

When The Neverending Story is inevitably re-made, I have to think that Sam Jackson is going to play this character.

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  1. This movie stands out in my mind, along with The Last Starfighter, because my folks had finally broken down and paid for HBO. I watched these two movies over and over again for several months because they were playing when I first got cable tv in my room…good memories…

  2. My claim to fame, I was born the same day as Barret Oliver, you always like to know that someone famous shares the same birthday but the same year well that is freaky. I loved this film, I was totally captured by the real old book.

    1. This movie has been my favorite for over twenty years ,I feel this movie was meant for me, its sculpted the artist andperson I am today in my whole 34 years of life Ive lived

  3. Actually, I think Keith David would be a much better casting option for Cairon than Sam Jackson. Not only does he look more like Cairon and Mr. Jackson, but his acting style and stage presence is also more of a fit than Sam’s. Just my $0.02.

  4. Long live the never ending story!!! I just bought a DVD copy of one of the most endearing films of all time. I worshiped the childlike empress as a youth, she’s so beautiful and such an amazing talent, I was so surprised she discontinued her acting career after this masterpiece of a movie. “Oh well. ces’t la vie”… This is without a doubt one of the most inspiring movies of all time. I wanted to preserve a copy for the future so my kids can see it some day (if I ever have kids).

  5. I LOVED this movie growing up and now I get to watch it
    with my kids. It still gets me emotional after 25 years!
    It is so simple compared to movies today but is a movie that truly comes alive! It tells such a
    magical story about the human spirit.

  6. @Pat: If you do a Google image search on Noah Hathaway, that IS what he looks like. I think your friend that you mentioned is not the person he claims to be.

  7. This movie was beyond its time. I love the empress explanation of how bastiab is listening to every word thy say as others are following every werd he sez (us the movie goers)

  8. Great article! I do so hope they remake the never ending story and stick more to the book! I mean can’t you picture the night jungle and the colorful desert? And how about the giant hand shaped castle of the evil queen and her army? I mean when I was a kid I loved the movie but when I got older I found that there was, of course, a book long before the movie and of course I read it and I felt jipped. But I guess for 1983 they did a pretty awesome job of it.
    I could see a remake being split into 3 movies based on the original book.

  9. This was my favorite all time movie when I was growing up. I had a crush on Atreyu lol. Now my children watch it and it brings back so many memories. Still love this movie (:

  10. I love the movie still to this day & I am 31. I watch it with my 2 daughters who grew up watching it also. They are now 11 & 9. It would be cool for them to watch it with their children.

  11. My wife and I watch this movie as I write. We went here to find out whatever happened to the various actors. Our child grew up on this movie and between the two of us, I’ll bet we can recite every line.

  12. I REALLY hope that they remake The Neverending Story one day – except I hope that they follow the book more closely. Trust me, if you loved the movies, then you’ll love the books 10x more, because the movies don’t follow the books at all.

  13. I have “had it” with ‘Sam Jackson’…I don’t want to see him in any more new movies. Overkill. This sticking him in every f8888888movie is a dis-service to our intellect. We know why you’re shoving him in every f888movie. He was ok back then, but he’s not the type of actor who assimilates. He’s always the “wise whatever” but onscreen, he just might as well play himself. Every time I turn around…………who are you trying to kid?

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