Get ready for so much Punky Power! ‘Punky Brewster’ is back in a brand-new revival, with Soleil Moon Frye returning as Punky Brewster. In honor of the revival, take a look back at the original cast then and now.
For all the ’80s kids out there, you’re about to feel all the throwback feels. The Punky Brewster revival premiered Feb. 25 on Peacock, nearly 40 years after the original series premiered. The new series features Punky Brewster, the precocious little girl from the beloved ’80s series, all grown up with kids of her own.
Soleil Moon Frye and Cherie Johnson reprise their iconic roles in the Peacock series. Over the last 37 years, the cast has gone on to have success in front of the camera, behind the camera, and more. Sadly, two main cast members have passed away. See the original cast of Punky Brewster then and now.
Soleil Moon Frye
Soleil Moon Frye, 44, began playing Punky Brewster when she was just 8 years old. The series ran from 1984 until 1988. She went on to guest star in episodes of The Wonder Years, Friends, and Saved by the Bell. She moved to New York City to attend The New School in 1996. She directed her first film, Wild Horses, in 1998.
The actress joined the cast of Sabrina the Teenage Witch in 2000 as Roxie, Sabrina’s roommate. She starred in the series until it ended in 2003. Soleil directed her second film, the documentary Sonny Boy, in 2004. She has voiced a number of characters in shows like Bratz, Planet Sheen, and The Proud Family. In addition to Punky Brewster, another one of Soleil’s latest projects is the documentary Kid 90. The film uses archival footage she shot in the 1990s. The movie will be released March 12, 2021, on Hulu.
Soleil married producer Jason Goldberg in 1998. They have four children together. She filed for divorce in 2020.
Cherie Johnson, 45, got her start in Hollywood playing Cherie, Punky’s best friend, in Punky Brewster. Cherie and Soleil grew up alongside each other, and now they’re back playing their classic characters. After the original show’s run ended in 1988, Cherie starred as Maxine Johnson in Family Matters from 1990 to 1998.
In addition to acting, she has also taken to writing and producing. She released her first book, Around the World Twice, in 2010. She has released 4 books so far. Cherie has also been an assistant editor at Fever Magazine. Cherie started her own podcast, Cherie’s World Podcast, in 2019. She has two children.
George Gaynes starred as Henry Warnimont, Punky’s foster dad in the original series. After Punky Brewster, the World War II vet and actor appeared in the TV series The Days and Nights of Molly Dodd, Chicago Hope, and Hearts Afire. He starred in the 1996 film adaptation of The Crucible. His final film role was in the 2003 film Just Married. George died in 2016 at the age of 98.
Susie Garrett played Cherie’s beloved grandmother, Betty Johnson. After Punky Brewster ended, Susie appeared in the TV series 227 in 1989. Her final film appearance was in the 1989 film Wicked Stepmother. Susie died in 2002 at the age of 72.
Eddie Deezen, 63, played Eddie Malvin in the first season of Punky Brewster. Since then, Eddie has had a notable voice career. He’s voiced the roles of Mandark in Dexter’s Laboratory, Ned in Kim Possible, Know-It-All Kid in The Polar Express, and more. He’s also provided his voice to many TV commercials, including Pop in a Rice Krispies commercial.
Casey Ellison, 44, played Allen Anderson in the first 3 seasons of Punky Brewster. He went on to guest star in episodes of Newhart, 21 Jump Street, and The Wonder Years. His last film credits were the 1991 TV movies Perfect Harmony and Christmas on Division Street.