One film left teen girls potting revenge schemes during the summer of 2006 — the comedy "John Tucker Must Die." The movie follows a trio of high school students who set out to break the heart of the titular basketball star after discovering he's been secretly dating all three of them. With the help of a younger wallflower, they scheme to publicly humiliate the manipulative playboy and ruin his reputation forever. With a cast full of major young names at the time including Jesse Metcalfe, Sophia Bush and Ashanti, it became a sleeper box office hit, grossing more than three times its $18 million budget and winning over a generation of young filmgoers. To celebrate the 15th anniversary of the movie's release on July 28, 2006, join Wonderwall.com as we look at what the cast has been doing since it came out all those years ago…
Jesse Metcalfe plays the title role of John Tucker, the most popular athlete at his high school who believes he can date all the girls he wants without any repercussions. That is, until he meets a group of ladies determined to take him down at any cost. The film was a big moment for Jesse, marking his first big screen turn following breakout lead roles on the early seasons of daytime soap opera "Passions" from 1999 to 2004 and the primetime dramedy "Desperate Housewives" from 2004 to 2007.
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Jesse Metcalfe reached immense heights in the mid-2000s with his string of hit projects, and while he hasn't amassed that same level of success in the years since, he has remained consistently busy. He racked up a number of indie film credits following the release of "John Tucker Must Die" including three movies in 2008: "Loaded," "Insanitarium" and "The Other End of the Line." In 2010, the California native made his return to television on the short-lived NBC drama series "Chase." However, following its cancellation, Jesse nabbed a lead role on the high-profile "Dallas" revival series, which ran for three seasons between 2012 and 2014. Since then, he's starred in a steady stream of indies like 2016's "God's Not Dead 2," 2018's "Escape Plan 2: Hades," 2020's "Hard Kill" and the "Dead Rising" films. In 2016, he was cast on the hit Hallmark Channel series "Chesapeake Shores" and has also led a series of films for the network. He even competed on the 29th season of "Dancing With the Stars" in 2020, finishing 12th. The next season of "Chesapeake Shores" premieres in August 2021 and will mark Jesse's final run on the show. He became engaged to Cara Santana in 2016, but the two called it quits in 2020.
Sophia Bush stars as Beth McIntyre, one of John's girlfriends who's plotting to take him down. Beth is an outspoken liberal activist who must work with women from other cliques to put a stop to his playboy ways. Prior to landing the part in "John Tucker Must Die," Sophia had made small appearances in "National Lampoon's Van Wilder," "Nip/Tuck" and "Sabrina, the Teenage Witch." In 2003, she got her big break as Brooke Davis on the hit WB teen drama series "One Tree Hill." While starring as the show's resident party-girl cheerleader, she also took part in films like the 2005 motocross actioner "Supercross" and the 2006 horror flick "Stay Alive" before landing the role of Beth.
After "John Tucker Must Die," Sophia Bush remained as a main player on "One Tree Hill" for the show's entire nine-season run, which wrapped in 2012. During that time, she also starred in films like "The Hitcher" in 2007, "The Narrows" in 2008, "Table for Three" in 2009 and "Chalet Girl" in 2011. Shortly after finishing "One Tree Hill," she got a lead role on the short-lived sitcom "Partners" before joining the cast of "Chicago P.D." in 2014 as Det. Erin Lindsay. She stayed on the procedural for four seasons, also appearing on NBC hits "Chicago Fire," "Chicago Med" and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" as the same character. However, the Southern California-born actress left the show in 2018, citing abusive behavior as the reason for her exit. She's since appeared in the movies "Marshall" and "The Incredibles 2." She more recently scored a recurring role on the Hulu teen series "Love, Victor," co-starred in the 2021 horror flick "False Positive" and in 2021 launched a "One Tree Hill" recap podcast called "Drama Queens" with two of her old co-stars. Sophia is also known for using her social media platforms to encourage people to participate in ongoing activism opportunities around the world and is one of the founding members of the Time's Up movement. She wed "One Tree Hill" co-star Chad Michael Murray in 2005 but they split after only five months of marriage. Since 2020, Sophia has been dating entrepreneur Grant Hughes.
Ashanti portrays head cheerleader Heather Montgomery, who's another member of the trio determined to make John Tucker pay for how he's treated them. Prior to doing the film, Ashanti was a renowned singer-songwriter who'd already scored three platinum albums (two of which debuted at No. 1). She won a Grammy Award and became the first female artist to occupy the top two positions on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart simultaneously with her 2002 hits "Foolish" and "What's Luv?" She made her feature film debut in the 2005 basketball drama "Coach Carter" opposite Samuel L. Jackson and played Dorothy in the made-for-television movie "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz" that same year.
Immediately following the release of "John Tucker Must Die," Ashanti landed a supporting part in the action-packed sequel "Resident Evil: Extinction" and released her fourth studio album, "The Declaration." In 2009, she headlined a live production of "The Wiz" in New York City and, after diminishing album sales, continued acting on television shows like "Army Wives" and "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," as well as in TV films such as "Christmas in the City" and "Murder." The New York native released "Braveheart" in 2014, her fifth Top Ten album. Since then, she's continued putting out songs, none of which have reached the heights of her earliest releases, and starred in indie films like 2015's "Stuck," 2016's "Mothers and Daughters" and 2019's "A Christmas Winter Song." Ashanti dated rapper Nelly for 11 years but the two ended things in 2014.
Brittany Snow portrays Kate Spencer, a new student at John Tucker's school who discovers his cheating and shares the information with all three of his girlfriends. The ladies then use the quiet teen as bait for their plans to take John down. Prior to this film, Brittany got her start on the daytime soap opera "Guiding Light" from 1998 to 2001 and enjoyed her breakthrough with the lead role on the NBC period drama "American Dreams" from 2002 to 2005. She'd also appeared in films like 2004's "The Manchurian Candidate" and 2005's "The Pacifier" before getting her first lead feature job as Kate.
Brittany Snow went on to deliver memorable turns on hit shows like "Gossip Girl," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit" and "Harry's Law" as well as in box office standouts such as "Hairspray" and "Prom Night." She also kept busy with the indie films "Finding Amanda," "The Vicious Kind" and "96 Minutes." In 2012, she received a massive break with a lead role as one of the Barden Bellas in the musical hit "Pitch Perfect" and later starred in both sequels, which grossed a combined total of $565 million worldwide. The second film is also the highest grossing musical comedy film of all time. The Florida-born star also worked opposite Ginz Rodriguez in the buzzed-about Netflix romantic comedy "Someone Great" in 2019. She was more recently seen as one of the leads on the short-lived FOX drama series "Almost Family" from 2019 to 2020 as well as in the 2020 indie comedy "Hooking Up." She'll next appear in the horror film "X." Brittany married realtor and former pro surfer Tyler Stanaland in 2020.
Arielle Kebbel plays Carrie Schaeffer, a chronic overachiever, one of the smartest people in school and the final member of the trio getting revenge on John Tucker for their secret love square. Arielle started her career with a recurring role on "Gilmore Girls" from 2002 to 2005 that she secured within her first week of moving to Los Angeles. She also had guest parts on shows like "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Law & Order: Special Victims Unit," "Entourage" and "Grounded for Life." On top of that, she'd appeared in the films "Soul Plane," "American Pie Presents: Band Camp" and "Be Cool."
2006 was a big year for Arielle Kebbel, who on top of "John Tucker Must Die" also starred in the teen comedy "Aquamarine" and the horror sequel "The Grudge 2." She then appeared in the horror films "The Uninvited" and "Freakdog" and scored roles on the WB dramas "Life Unexpected," "The Vampire Diaries" and "90210." The Florida native has worked steadily in the years since, appearing in hit films like "Think Like a Man" and "Fifty Shades Freed" and nabbing guest parts on television programs such as "Hawaii Five-0," "Unreal" and "The Grinder." She's also had larger roles on the shows "Ballers," "Midnight, Texas" and "Grand Hotel" and starred in a string of Hallmark Channel films like "A Bride for Christmas," "Sweet Surrender" and "A Brush With Love." Arielle more recently had a lead part on the short-lived NBC drama "Lincoln Rhyme: Hunt for the Bone Collector" in 2020 and will next appear in the 2021 teen romantic drama film "After We Fell."
Penn Badgley plays Scott Tucker, John's brother who's better known as "The Other Tucker." Scott befriends Kate and becomes frustrated with the change in her personality when he sees how pleased she is to get revenge on his sibling. The film ends with the pair reconciling and potentially becoming more than just friends. "John Tucker Must Die" marked Penn's first major film role though he'd already built up an extensive TV resume. He made his screen debut on an episode of "Will & Grace," which he then followed with main roles on the daytime soap opera "The Young and the Restless" and the short-lived WB teen shows "Do Over," "The Mountain" and "The Bedford Diaries."
One year after "John Tucker Must Die" hit theaters, Penn Badgley snagged a lead role on the hit CW teen drama "Gossip Girl" as Dan Humphrey, the middle-class black sheep of Manhattan's Upper East Side. He remained for its entire six-season run. While doing the series, he also starred in well-received films like 2009's "The Stepfather," 2010's "Easy A," 2011's "Margin Call" and 2012's "Greetings from Tim Buckley." After "Gossip Girl" — where he dated co-star Blake Lively for years — he took parts in indies like 2014's "Parts per Billion" and "Cymbeline" before turning his focus to music. He created the band MOTHXR and the indie rock group released their debut album, "Centerfold," in 2016. The Baltimore-born actor then returned to television with a recurring role on NBC's 2015 mini-series "The Slap." In 2018, he scored a big win with the lead role on the TV series "You," which has become a massive streaming hit for Netflix. A third season of the thriller is set for release in 2021. Penn was most recently seen opposite Billy Crystal and Tiffany Haddish in the comedy "Here Today," which was released in 2021. He married singer-actress and doula Domino Kirke in 2017. They welcomed their first child, a son, in 2020.
Jenny McCarthy co-stars as Lori Spencer, Kate's unlucky-in-love mother whose poor taste in men frequently causes them to move around. Their latest transition sends her daughter to the same school as John Tucker. Jenny was already a household name when she took on the role of Lori, having got her start as a Playboy model in the early '90s before scoring TV successes such as hosting the MTV dating show "Singled Out" from 1995 to 1997 and starring on her own NBC sitcom, "Jenny," from 1997 to 1998. She then parlayed her career into feature films, starring in movies like 1998's "BASEketball," 2000's "Scream 3," 2003's "Scary Movie 3" and 2005's "Dirty Love."
Jenny McCarthy has continued acting. She's starred in films like "Witless Protection" and "Wieners" as well as the TV movies "Santa Baby" and "Santa Baby 2." She also guest starred on shows such as "My Name Is Earl," "Two and a Half Men" and "Chuck." The Illinois native returned to hosting with appearances on ABC's "New Year's Rockin' Eve" special in 2010, a job she stuck with for a decade. She also hosted season 2 of "Love in the Wild" in 2012 and her own short-lived talk show for VH1 in 2013. After 17 guest appearances, she was announced as a new co-host on "The View" in 2013, replacing Elisabeth Hasselbeck. Unfortunately, Jenny only lasted one season on the hit morning show but launched her own radio talk show for SiriusXM the next year; it's still going. Since 2019, she's also been on the judging panel for the popular reality competition series "The Masked Singer." Jenny married actor-director John Mallory Asher in 1999; the pair have a son who was diagnosed with autism — the subject of three books she's since written. The couple divorced in 2005 and she famously dated Jim Carrey for a time. She married "Blue Bloods" star and New Kids On the Block singer Donnie Wahlberg in 2014.
Just months before charming audiences with his breakout role on TV's "Friday Night Lights," Taylor Kitsch made his screen debut with a small role in "John Tucker Must Die" as Kate's cute neighbor Justin, who develops some major feelings for her mom, Lori. Before he landed his first part, he was living in New York to study acting and became a nutritionist and personal trainer. Taylor soon received the opportunity to sign with modeling agency IMG and moved to Los Angeles, where he booked gigs with Diesel and Abercrombie & Fitch.
Taylor Kitsch was cast as one of the teen leads on the NBC football drama "Friday Night Lights" shortly after finishing "John Tucker Must Die." He received rave reviews for his work as Tim Riggins, a fullback/running back for the Dillon Panthers, until the show wrapped in 2011 after five seasons. While doing the series, he also starred in films like 2006's "Snakes on a Plane" and "The Covenant," 2009's " X-Men Origins: Wolverine" and 2010's "The Bang Bang Club." Upon wrapping his life as Tim, he was set for huge things with high-profile roles in the big-budget studio films "John Carter," "Battleship" and "Savages." All were released in 2012, but none of the films made a dent at the box office, though the Canadian star received warmer receptions for his supporting work in 2013's "Lone Survivor" and the 2014 TV movie "The Normal Heart." He then starred on season 2 of the HBO drama series "True Detective" as well as on the limited series "Waco" and "Shadowplay." Taylor also appeared in the action flicks "American Assassin," "Only The Brave" and "21 Bridges." He'll next star opposite Chris Pratt and Constance Wu on the upcoming Amazon Prime series "The Terminal List."