Platt is reprising his role for the film, playing the titular Evan Hansen, a socially anxious teenage boy who's thrust into the spotlight after a lie he tells about the tragic death of a classmate spirals beyond his control.
Fans are excited to see the hit musical brought to the screen, but many are also pointing out that Platt, who is a 27-year-old playing a teenager, looks verrrry much like a 27-year-old playing a teenager.
In an interview with Vanity Fair published Tuesday, Platt and director Stephen Chbosky discussed the decision to cast him and begin production in September last year during the pandemic.
“His understanding of the character is so complete and so profound," said Chbosky. "I couldn’t imagine anybody else playing it. It’s his part. I felt very strongly about it. And to me it was never even a consideration.”
"[Before filming] I’d lost about 15 pounds and did a very specific diet, grew my hair out, and was shaving to make sure that I didn’t look like I had five o’clock shadow all the time, you know," revealed Platt. "I was just stripping myself into being a teenager for the last time. For what is hopefully the last time.”
Platt is certainly not the first adult to play a teenager onscreen, nor is he the first to look his age while doing it.
Teen shows, including Gossip Girl, The OC, 13 Reasons Why, Sex Education, Pretty Little Liars, and many others, have cast actors in their twenties for leading roles. Riverdale, whose "teen" stars are actually as old as 28, included a time jump in its most recent season that aged them up seven years, aiding in believability.
Adult-teens are also common in the musical theater movie genre, perhaps most famously in Grease, where Rizzo was played by a 33-year-old Stockard Channing.
Still, after the Dear Evan Hansen trailer dropped on Tuesday, people couldn't stop making some lighthearted jokes.
Just your average teenage boy who is not a grown man!!!!
It is, admittedly, pretty hard to get past.
Platt also appears to be sporting a curly hairdo (or wig?) in the film, which quite a few people have...........opinions on.
Dear Evan Hansen will be released in theaters on Sept. 24. Coincidentally, that is also the day Platt will turn 28.