'Yellowjackets' cast young and old: Get to know the actresses behind the Showtime hit

The multi-timeline thriller stars '90s icons and incredible newcomers—meet the 'Yellowjackets' cast, young and old

Yellowjackets cast young and old
(Image credit: Kailey Schwerman/SHOWTIME)

Surprises abound in Yellowjacketsmany are unpleasant, but one of the happier revelations is how on-point the casting is for the Yellowjackets cast, young and old. 

The Showtime series, which follows a high school girl's soccer team as they fight to survive in a remote forest following a plane crash, follows two timelines equally: that of the stranded teenagers in 1996, and their surviving adult counterparts in present-day 2021. (At least, the survivors that we know of so far!)

Because of the dual timeline, the series is packed with great actresses, a mix of fresh faces and familiar names. Let's get to know the Yellowjackets cast, shall we?

*Warning: slight spoilers ahead!*

'Yellowjackets' cast young and old: who's who?

In the Yellowjackets main cast, there are eight actresses playing four characters: as teenagers in 1996 and as their adult selves in 2021. And the resemblances are uncanny. Let's meet the ladies!

1. Shauna

Yellowjackets cast young and old, Melanie Lynskey, Sophie Nelisse

(Image credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

Showtime's character description of Shauna reads: "Now married to the former prom king, Shauna is one of a handful of survivors of the plane crash. Twenty-five years later, she's on a mission to reclaim her agency—and her life—while doing everything in her power to keep her darkest secrets safe."

High-school Shauna is played by Sophie Nélisse, a 21-year-old Canadian actress best known for her role in Monsieur Lazhar, the film adaptation of The Book Thief. Adult Shauna is played by Melanie Lynskey, a New Zealand native who starred in cult '90s flicks like Heavenly Creatures and But I'm a Cheerleader and was most recently seen in Netflix's star-studded Don't Look Up.

2. Natalie

Yellowjackets cast young and old, Juliette Lewis, Sophie Thatcher

(Image credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

"Despite her natural talent, Natalie's punk rock spirit and habit of finding trouble make her the unlikeliest member of the team. How will those traits play in the wilderness?" reads Showtime's character description of teenage Natalie, played by Sophie Thatcher. The 21-year-old Chicago-born actress started acting onscreen in 2016 and can next be seen in The Book of Boba Fett on Disney+. 

As for her adult counterpart, portrayed by '90s it girl Juliette Lewis, "grown-up punk Natalie struggles to quiet the demons that still haunt her from her time in the wilderness." Along with starring in films like Natural Born Killers, What's Eating Gilbert Grape? and Cape Fear, for which she scored an Academy Award nomination, Lewis is the frontwoman of the rock band Juliette and The Licks. 

3. Misty

Yellowjackets cast young and old, Christina Ricci, Samantha Hanratty

(Image credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

In the '90s, "Misty is the Yellowjacket's equipment manager. Eager to please and easy to overlook, Misty's abundance of team spirit belies a hidden dark side," says Showtime's description. The younger Misty is played by 26-year-old Samantha "Sammi" Hanratty, a former child actor who's been working since she was 10. 

Showtime says of adult Misty: "[her] hidden dark side has led to a profession where can fully employ her talents," namely as a hospice nurse. Playing the creepy caretaker is Wednesday Addams herself, Christina Ricci. The '90s teen icon notably starred in Casper, Now and Then, Mermaids and The Opposite of Sex.

4. Taissa

Yellowjackets cast young and old, Tawny Cypress, Jasmin Savoy Brown

(Image credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

"In her youth, Taissa was the star player of the Yellowjackets squad. Now, 25 years later, her political ambitions threaten to detail the survivors' pact of secrecy," reads her Showtime character description. 

The actress behind young Taissa is 27-year-old Jasmin Savoy Brown, best known for her role on HBO's The Leftovers. (Fun fact: She's been dating fellow The Leftovers actress Camille Killion since 2015.) Her adult analog is Tawny Cyprus, a TV regular you may recognize from shows like House of Cards, The Blacklist, Supergirl and Rescue Me. 

5. Jackie

Yellowjackets cast young and old, Ella Purnell

(Image credit: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty)

"Jackie is the Yellowjackets' magnetically charismatic, effortlessly popular, occasionally entitled team captain. She and Shauna have been best friends since childhood," says Showtime. The teenager is played by 25-year-old British actress Ella Purnell, who was also seen this year in Arcane, Star Trek: Prodigy and Army of the Dead

So far in the series, Jackie doesn't have an adult counterpart, leading viewers to believe that she doesn't make it out of the Canadian forest with her best friend Shauna and her fellow teammates. However, other Yellowjackets junkies think that it may be a red herring and Jackie may actually still be alive. What side of the conspiracy are you on?

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To round out the extensive cast, we have:

  • Steven Krueger as Ben Scott
  • Courtney Eaton as Lottie
  • Liv Hewson as Van
  • Jane Widdop as Laura Lee
  • Warren Kole as adult Jeff Sadecki
  • Jack Depew as teenage Jeff Sadecki
  • Peter Gadiot as Adam
  • Alex Wyndham as Kevyn
  • Kevin Alves as Travis
  • Keeya King as Akilah
  • Luciano Leroux as Javi
  • Sarah Desjardins as Callie
  • Alexa Barajas as Mari
  • Rekha Sharma as Jessica Roberts
  • Carlos Sanz as Coach Martinez
  • Tonya Cornelisse as adult Allie
  • Pearl Amanda Dickson as teenage Allie
  • Rukiya Bernard as Simone
  • Aiden Stoxx as Samm

Yellowjackets airs on Sundays at 10pm ET on Showtime and can also be streamed on Hulu.

Christina Izzo is the Deputy Editor of My Imperfect Life. 

More generally, she is a writer-editor covering food and drink, travel, lifestyle and culture in New York City. She was previously the Features Editor at Rachael Ray In Season and Reveal, as well as the Food & Drink Editor and chief restaurant critic at Time Out New York

When she’s not doing all that, she can probably be found eating cheese somewhere.