‘The Sopranos’ Actor Max Casella Looked So Young In His Twenties Police Accused Him of Stealing Cars

Celebrities always take on roles in Hollywood that are younger or older than their actual age. Otherwise, it would be almost impossible to find the perfect actors for certain roles. This is the case for Max Casella, who was known in the ’90s for taking on teenage roles, despite being in his twenties. 

In fact, Casella looked so young that fans weren’t the only ones duped into thinking he was a kid. He has also unintentionally fooled police officers into pulling him over under the impression he stole the car.

Max Casella smiling in front of a black background
Max Casella | Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Max Casella has had a successful acting career

Casella is most recently known for his appearances on Blacklist and HBO’s Boardwalk Empire, where he plays age-appropriate roles. However, in the ’90s, he was widely recognized for his roles as Vinnie on Doogie Howser, M.D., and Benny Fazio on The Sopranos, although he has been in over 50 films. He often took on teenage roles due to his young appearance, becoming almost a staple of his for a little while. 

Vinnie on Doogie Howser, M.D. is a prime example of this, as Casella played the 16-year-old BFF of Doogie Howser when he was 21 years old. According to Mental Floss, despite his pubescent looks throughout the series, Casella was as old as 25 by the end of it. 

The Sopranos star told HuffPost the reason he was able to get out of the show without being labeled a ‘child star’ is because he “was not a child and not a star [of the show].”

He has always appeared very young, allowing him to play Vinnie in ‘Doogie Howser, M.D.’

Casella didn’t only look young in his breakout role as Vinnie in Doogie Howser, M.D. In fact, he was often sought out by directors and producers for looking so young while being overage. Believe it or not, it’s a popular practice to cast actors way older than the show’s character because there are fewer limitations to deal with, like child labor laws that restrict hours they can work, school, and more.

As it turns out, there was more to Casella’s young appearance than many realized. He wasn’t just a twenty-something-year-old actor with a ‘baby face,’ but rather an actor with a condition that stunted his growth.

According to IMDb, Casella looked so much younger than he actually was because he had “pituitary dwarfism, a hormonal condition that inhibits growth, and that in fact accounted for his eligibility for many of the roles he landed as a ‘child actor’ when in his twenties.” They also say he’s in the process of writing a TV series about the topic. 

Casella was pulled over more than once for ‘stealing his dad’s car’


‘The Sopranos’: Max Casella Felt ‘Like an Impostor’ When He Began Playing Benny Fazio

We’ve all heard of people having a baby face and getting carded for not looking old enough to drink, but have you ever heard of a man in his twenties getting pulled over for looking like a child who stole his dad’s car? How about twice? It’s almost unheard of!

Yet, according to Orlando Sentinel, that’s exactly what happened to Casella when the police “thought that he took dad’s car out for a spin.” Despite his talent for playing (and looking) the part of a teenager, Casella admitted, “I don’t mind playing younger parts, but I would like a little more from Hollywood. They have this thing, though, whenever they need a young-looking Italian kid, they call someone like me.”

It’s unimaginable how those police officers must’ve felt when they pulled Max Casella over for driving while being a kid. Chances are they got a good laugh out of it. And, hey, maybe an autograph too!