Catherine Laga’Aia Age How Old Is Catherine Laga’Aia?

On June 12, Disney announced that Catherine Laga’aia will play the titular role in the upcoming live-action Moana movie. This casting decision marks a significant milestone for the Sydney-born actress, who at 17 years old, is making her cinematic debut. With an estimated net worth of around $100,000, reflecting her early career in acting, Catherine is poised to become a household name. This article delves into her journey, family background, and her personal connection to the iconic character of Moana.

Who is Catherine Laga’aia?

Catherine Laga’aia is a rising star in the entertainment industry. Born and raised in Sydney, Australia, she is the second youngest of eight siblings in a talented family. Despite being a newcomer to professional acting, Catherine has shown remarkable promise. Her only prior professional role was in Australia’s “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart” in 2023, where she portrayed a young version of Frankie Adams’ character, Candy Blue. Appearing in three episodes, her performance caught the attention of casting directors and audiences alike, setting the stage for her breakthrough role as Moana.

How Was Catherine Laga’aia Cast as Moana?

Rumors about Catherine’s casting began circulating as early as February 16, 2024, with reports suggesting that Disney had chosen her for the role. Speculation grew when her father, Jay Laga’aia, hinted at her involvement in an unnamed “adventure” on his Instagram in early May. The official announcement by Disney in June confirmed the news, thrilling fans of the beloved animated character.

What is Catherine’s Family Background?

Catherine Laga’aia comes from a family deeply rooted in the entertainment industry. Her father, Jay Laga’aia, is a seasoned actor known for his role as Captain Typho in “Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones” and “Episode III: Revenge of the Sith.” Jay also hosted the children’s show “Jay’s Jungle” from 2015 to 2018. His extensive career in television and film has undoubtedly influenced Catherine’s path.

The Laga’aia family is not only talented in acting. Catherine’s older sister plays netball for the Queensland Firebirds, and two of her brothers have found success on stage—one touring with “Hamilton” and another playing Benny in a production of “Rent.” This artistic environment has provided Catherine with a strong foundation and inspiration for her own career.

What Makes Catherine’s Connection to Moana Special?

Catherine Laga’aia’s casting as Moana is significant on both a professional and personal level. In Disney’s press release, Catherine expressed her excitement about embracing the character, who is one of her favorites. She highlighted her pride in representing young girls who look like her, noting the importance of diversity and representation in media.

Catherine’s Polynesian heritage adds a deeper layer to her portrayal of Moana. Her family hails from places like Fa’aala, Palauli, in Savai‘i, and Leulumoega Tuai on the main island of ‘Upolu in Samoa. This personal connection to the Polynesian culture enriches her understanding and interpretation of Moana, making her an ideal choice for the role.

What Were Catherine’s Early Experiences in Acting?

Before landing the role of Moana, Catherine participated in school spectaculars and performances, showcasing her talent and passion for acting. These early experiences helped her hone her skills and gain confidence on stage. Her dad, Jay, often shared these moments on his Instagram, highlighting the family’s support and pride in her achievements.

How Did Her Role in “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart” Prepare Her?

Catherine’s role in “The Lost Flowers of Alice Hart” was her first professional acting experience. Playing a young version of Frankie Adams’ character, Candy Blue, she appeared in Episodes 3 (“Lantern Bush”), 5 (“Dessert Oak”), and 7 (“Sturt’s Desert Pea”) of the series. This role allowed her to demonstrate her acting abilities and versatility, paving the way for her casting in the high-profile role of Moana.

What Can We Expect from Catherine as Moana?

Fans of the original animated “Moana” can look forward to Catherine Laga’aia bringing her unique charm and authenticity to the live-action version. Her dedication to the role, combined with her cultural heritage, promises a portrayal that honors the spirit of Moana while adding a fresh perspective. Given her background and the support of her talented family, Catherine is well-prepared to take on this iconic character and make it her own.

Conclusion: A Promising Future for Catherine Laga’aia

Catherine Laga’aia’s journey from a school performer to the star of Disney’s live-action “Moana” is a testament to her talent and determination. At just 17 years old, with a burgeoning career and a supportive family background, she is poised for significant success in the entertainment industry. Her personal connection to Moana’s story and her enthusiasm for the role make her an exciting new face in Hollywood. As she steps into the spotlight, audiences around the world eagerly anticipate her portrayal of the beloved Polynesian heroine.


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