- "Gilmore Girls" premiered over 21 years ago and launched many of its leading cast members to fame.
- Stars Lauren Graham, Alexis Bledel, and Melissa McCarthy all went on to successful acting careers.
- Milo Ventimiglia and Jared Padalecki have both found success on hit TV shows.
Lauren Graham is still well-known for playing determined young mother Lorelai Gilmore.
Before starring on "Gilmore Girls," Lauren Graham had minor roles on several popular TV shows, including NBC's "Law and Order" and "Seinfeld." The actress also had larger roles on ABC's "Townies" and NBC's "Conrad Bloom."
While starring on the show, Graham appeared in films like "The Pacifier" (2005) and "Because I Said So" (2007).
Alexis Bledel played Lorelai "Rory" Gilmore, a bright and ambitious teenager with a strong relationship with her young mother.
Rory Gilmore was Alexis Bledel's first major acting role. Before the show, she'd only acted in an uncredited role in "Rushmore" (1998).
While starring on "Gilmore Girls," Bledel also appeared in movies such as "Tuck Everlasting" (2002) and "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" (2005).
Bledel has since won an Emmy for her recent acting work.
After "Gilmore Girls," Bledel went on to star in movies like "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2" (2007), "Post Grad" (2009), "Violet and Daisy" (2011), and "Crypto" (2019).
The actress has also starred on hit series, including Fox/Crackle's "Us and Them," Netflix's "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life," and Hulu's "The Handmaid's Tale."
Bledel's work on "The Handmaid's Tale" even earned her the 2017 Emmy for outstanding guest actress on a drama series.
She's currently set to reprise her iconic role as Lena in "Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 3."
Scott Patterson played Luke Danes, Star Hollow's grouchy diner owner.
Before playing Lorelai's eventual love interest, Luke, Scott Patterson had a professional baseball career.
He got his start acting in movies like "Little Big League" (1994) and "Three Wishes" (1995) and on NBC's "Seinfeld" and "Will and Grace."
During his years playing Luke, Patterson also worked on Cartoon Network's "Justice League Unlimited" and "Her Best Move."
Patterson has continued to act across a variety of genres.
Patterson has played several leading characters on shows and in movies since "Gilmore Girls" ended.
He went on to work on "Saw IV" (2007), "Saw V" (2008), and "Saw VI" (2009), as well as "Other People's Children" (2015), "Batman: Gotham by Gaslight" (2018), and "Con Man" (2018).
The actor has also continued to find success on TV shows like The CW's "Aliens in America," Fox's "90210," NBC's "The Event," and Netflix's "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
In 2021, Patterson started the "Gilmore Girls" rewatch podcast "I Am All In With Scott Patterson."
Kelly Bishop portrayed Lorelai's mother and Rory's grandmother, Emily Gilmore.
Before playing Emily Gilmore, Kelly Bishop had a successful background in theater, film, and television.
In Hollywood, she was well known for "Dirty Dancing" (1987), "Six Degrees of Separation" (1993), and "Wonder Boys" (2000). However, much of her success also came from her roles on stage in musicals like "On the Town" (1971), "A Chorus Line" (1975), and "Six Degrees of Separation" (1990).
She even won a Tony award in 1976 for playing Shelia in "A Chorus Line."
Bishop's acting career continued after "Gilmore Girls," and she returned to the stage.
After playing Emily Gilmore, Bishop reunited with "Gilmore Girls" showrunner Amy Sherman-Palladino to star on ABC Family's "Bunheads" and reprised her iconic role on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
The actress also continued her theater career, starring in the 2011 revival of "Anything Goes" alongside her future-"Bunheads" costar Sutton Foster.
Most recently, Bishop appeared in "The Salzburg Story" (2018) and "Art of Falling in Love" (2019).
The actress recently appeared on the fourth season of Amazon Prime's "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel."
Edward Herrmann played Richard Gilmore, Lorelai's father and Rory's grandfather.
Edward Herrmann acted in dozens of roles and narrated several documentary series such as PBS' "Nova" and "Liberty! The American Revolution" before his work on "Gilmore Girls."
Herrmann was well known for "The Great Gatsby" (1974), "Annie" (1982), "Richie Rich" (1994), and "Nixon" (1995).
During his run on "Gilmore Girls," he also worked on ABC's "The Practice," "The Aviator" (2004), and several documentaries.
Herrmann's acting career continued until his death in 2014.
After "Gilmore Girls," Herrmann continued to act in movies and on TV shows.
He appeared on popular shows like ABC's "Grey's Anatomy," NBC's "30 Rock," CBS' "How I Met Your Mother," and CBS' "The Good Wife." He also had a small voice role in "The Wolf of Wall Street" (2013).
In 2014, the actor died from brain cancer at the age of 71.
Before Melissa McCarthy played Sookie St. James, she had minor credits on other television shows.
Melissa McCarthy had just started working in the entertainment industry as a comedian and actress before she joined the cast as Sookie St. James.
While starring on "Gilmore Girls," she worked on movies like "The Kid" (2000), "Charlie's Angels" (2000), and "The Life of David Gale" (2003).
McCarthy has found big success in comedy since her time as Sookie.
After "Gilmore Girls," McCarthy continued working on television, starring on ABC's "Samantha Who?" and CBS' "Mike and Molly." She also returned to her role as Sookie on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
However, the comedic actress is better known for her work in films like "Bridesmaids" (2011), "Identity Thief" (2013), "The Heat" (2013), "Tammy" (2014), "Spy" (2015), "Ghostbusters" (2016), and "Life of the Party" (2018), and "Thunder Force" (2021) — many of which she also produced.
More recently, McCarthy has stepped into dramatic roles in "Can You Ever Forgive Me?" (2018), in "The Kitchen" (2019), and on Hulu's "Nine Perfect Strangers."
She's currently set to appear in "Thor: Love and Thunder" and the upcoming live-action remake of "The Little Mermaid."
Keiko Agena had only a handful of roles under her belt before starring as Rory's best friend, Lane Kim.
Before starring as Lane, Keiko Agena had only played a few minor roles in film and on television, including parts on Fox's "Beverly Hills 90210" and ABC/The WB's "Sister, Sister."
Agena has continued to act across a variety of mediums.
After "Gilmore Girls," Agena continued acting in various roles, including live-action and animated projects.
She voiced a character on Disney's "Kim Possible," appeared in "Transformers: Dark of the Moon" (2011), and had a small role on Showtime's "Shameless" before reprising her role as Lane on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
Agena also acted on Netflix's "13 Reasons Why," AMC's "Better Call Saul," Fox's "Prodigal Son," and Apple TV+'s "Central Park."
More recently she appeared in "The Never List" (2020).
Jared Padalecki played Rory's first boyfriend, Dean Forester.
Before playing Dean, Jared Padalecki only had a couple of acting credits.
While on "Gilmore Girls," he acted in movies such as "Cheaper by the Dozen" (2003) and "New York Minute" (2004).
Padalecki has since become famous for his long-running TV career.
After "Gilmore Girls," Padalecki landed one of the lead roles on The CW's "Supernatural," which ran for 15 years. The show finished airing its final season in November 2020.
Padalecki also continued acting in films like "House of Wax" (2005) and "Friday the 13th" (2009), and he returned as Dean on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
Most recently, he's been starring on The CW's "Walker."
Milo Ventimiglia portrayed Jess Mariano, Luke's nephew and one of Rory's boyfriends.
Before landing the role of Jess, Milo Ventimiglia had small roles on NBC's "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," ABC/The WB's "Sabrina the Teenage Witch," NBC's "Saved by the Bell: The New Class," and Fox's "Opposite Sex." He also appeared in "She's All That" (1999).
While playing Jess, he acted on NBC's "American Dreams."
Ventimiglia has continued to act on TV, and he's been nominated for several Emmy Awards.
Ventimiglia continued his successful acting career after playing Jess.
He's had starring roles on NBC's "Heroes," ABC's "The Whispers," "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life," and, most recently, NBC's "This Is Us," which has earned him three Emmy nominations.
He's also appeared in "That's My Boy" (2012), "Grown Ups 2" (2013), "Creed II" (2018), and "The Art of Dancing in the Rain" (2019).
Ventimiglia joined Bishop on season four of "The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel."
Matt Czuchry played Logan Huntzberger, Rory's love interest at Yale.
Matt Czuchry had less than a dozen acting roles under his belt before being cast as Logan Huntzberger.
Most notably, he'd appeared on other popular teen shows, such as Fox's "Freaks and Geeks" and The WB/The CW's "7th Heaven."
Czuchry has continued to act, occasionally alongside his "Gilmore Girls" costars.
Czuchry reprised his role as Logan on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life," but he also went on to other TV shows like NBC's "Friday Night Lights," CBS's "The Good Wife," and, most recently, Fox's "The Resident."
On "The Resident," Czuchry worked alongside Tanc Sade, who played Logan's best friend Finn on "Gilmore Girls."
Paris Geller, Rory's academic rival and eventual friend, was played by Liza Weil.
Liza Weil originally auditioned for the role of Rory, but Weil made such an impression on Sherman-Palladino that the showrunner wrote the part of Paris specifically for the actress.
Before acting on "Gilmore Girls," Weil had minor roles in a few movies and on TV shows.
Weil has continued her acting career in film and on TV.
After "Gilmore Girls," Weil guest-starred on major shows such as NBC's "Law and Order" and ABC's "Grey's Anatomy." She was also one of the returning characters on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
But her largest roles since playing Paris were as Amanda Tanner on ABC's "Scandal," Milly Stone on ABC Family's "Bunheads," and Bonnie Winterbottom on ABC's "How to Get Away With Murder."
Most recently, the actress appeared in "The Black Emperor of Broadway" (2020) and "Women Is Losers" (2021).
Sean Gunn played series-regular Kirk Gleason.
Sean Gunn is best known to "Gilmore Girls" fans as Kirk Gleason, a Stars Hollow resident who worked dozens of different jobs in town.
But before becoming a series regular, Gunn appeared on two other season-one episodes as Mick and "Swan Man."
Gunn had only acted in a small number of roles before "Gilmore Girls."
Gunn has continued acting and has recently worked on superhero movies with his brother, James.
Following "Gilmore Girls," Gunn has appeared on ABC's "October Road," Fox's "Glee," ABC Family's "Bunheads," and NBC's "Superstore." He also returned for the 2016 "Gilmore Girls" revival.
He's worked with his brother, director James Gunn, on "Guardians of the Galaxy" (2014), "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" (2017), "Avengers: Infinity War" (2018), and "Avengers: Endgame" (2019), and "The Suicide Squad" (2021).
The actor is also set to reprise his roles in "Thor: Love and Thunder" and "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3."
Liz Torres played Miss Patty, the gossipy dance teacher.
Liz Torres had previously worked on several television shows and movies before playing Miss Patty.
Most notably, she appeared on CBS' "All in the Family" and NBC's "The John Larroquette Show," which earned her two Emmy nominations.
After "Gilmore Girls," Torres continued acting on television, in film, and on the stage.
Following her role on "Gilmore Girls," Torres guest-starred on ABC's "Desperate Housewives," ABC's "Scandal," and Pop/Netflix's "One Day at a Time." Additionally, she returned for "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
The actress was also cast in the 2010 Off-Broadway play "It Must Be Him" and produced the 2012 original run of "Ghost the Musical."
Sally Struthers played Babette Dell, Lorelai's neighbor and friend.
Before she played Lorelai's cat-loving neighbor, Sally Struthers was already well-known for her television, film, and voice-acting performances.
She rose to fame on CBS' "All in the Family," and she continued to appear on hit shows such as CBS's "Murder, She Wrote," CBS' "Gloria," and ABC's "Nine to Five."
Before "Gilmore Girls," Struthers also voiced Pebbles Flintstone on CBS' "The Pebbles and Bamm-Bamm Show" and in "Fred Flintstone and Friends" (1977).
Outside of Hollywood, the actress played Miss Hannigan during part of the 1998 US Tour of "Annie" and Miss Lynch in the 1994 revival of "Grease."
Struthers has continued to find success as an actress.
Struthers' career after "Gilmore Girls" has included acting and voice work in the movies "The Relationtrip" (2017), "You and Me" (2018), and "Still Waiting in the Wings" (2018).
She also returned for the "Gilmore Girls" revival, and most recently, she appeared in "Christmas Harmony" (2018).
Struther has also continued her theater career in productions of "Steel Magnolias," "Legally Blonde," and "The Witches of Eastwick."
Yanic Truesdale played Michel Gerard, the irritable concierge at Lorelai's inn.
Yanic Truesdale had acted in a few different Canadian and American films before landing the role of Michel Gerard on "Gilmore Girls."
Truesdale has continued acting after the show, and he's also opened a fitness studio.
After playing Michel, Truesdale returned for "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
Most recently, he appeared in "My Salinger Year" (2020) and "Love by Accident" (2020) and on City TV's "The Wedding Planners" and France 2's "Les Mecs."
Outside of acting, Truesdale is the owner of the spin studio Spin Energie in Montreal, Canada.
Emily Kuroda portrayed Mrs. Kim, Lane's strict mother.
Before her role on "Gilmore Girls," Emily Kuroda had portrayed characters on several popular shows, such as NBC's "ER" and CBS's "The Young and the Restless."
Kuroda has since acted in TV movies and on other television shows.
Since "Gilmore Girls," Kuroda has appeared on several popular TV shows, like ABC's "Grey's Anatomy," CBS' "The Bold and the Beautiful," Fox's "The Resident," and ABC's "The Good Doctor."
She also reprised her role on "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life."
Additionally, the actress was in the TV movies "Scruples" (2012) and "Bloodline" (2013).
Todd Lowe played Lane's bandmate-turned-husband, Zack Van Gerbig.
Before playing Zack, Todd Lowe appeared as two different characters on CBS's "Walker, Texas Ranger" and had a small role in "The Princess Diaries" (2001).
Lowe is now best known for his work on TV.
After "Gilmore Girls," Lowe went on to play Terry Bellefleur on several seasons of HBO's "True Blood."
In addition to returning for "Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life," the actor has also appeared on CBS' "NCIS," ABC Family's "Bunheads," and USA's "Shooter."