The Wendy’s Commercial You Didn’t Realize Starred Hayden Panettiere
Born in 1989 (according to IMDb), Hayden Panettiere became an actress early. By the age of 5, she was starring in “One Life to Live.” But like many actors trying to break into the business, she started her career in commercials. In a 2017 interview on “Late Night with Stephen Colbert,” she pointed out that she had done about 50 ads. She was already a seasoned veteran at age 6, when she told interviewer Maury Povich that of all the commercials she’d been in, the one for Triaminic children’s medication was the toughest because she had to pretend to be a sad, sick child.
Even after her career started taking off, she didn’t fully stop doing commercials, even though her resume had expanded to include more recognizable productions like “Ally McBeal,” “Malcolm in the Middle,” and “A Bug’s Life.” In 2007, she did an ad for Neutrogena that the Cut thought in 2020 was “eerily ahead of its time.” In 2013, she became “the face of cotton” as part of Cotton Incorporated’s The Fabric Of Our Lives campaign (per FarmProgress).
In 2016, she joined the ranks of famous Carl’s Jr. “commercial girls,” which include Paris Hilton, Kim Kardashian, Jenny McCarthy, Heidi Klum, Padma Lakshmi, and others (via Page Six). Panettiere’s daughter was born in 2014 (via Us), so she did this sexy ad post-partum, while publicly struggling with post-partum depression (via USA Today). But her childhood Wendy’s ad maintained a special place in her credits.