Know the Cast: ‘Licorice Pizza’

Licorice Pizza Cast - Every Performer and Character in the 2021 Movie

The Licorice Pizza cast features Alana Haim, Cooper Hoffman and Bradley Cooper. This info article includes details about Paul Thomas Anderson’s 2021 movie. The Licorice Pizza trailer released on September 27, 2021.

Licorice Pizza takes place in the San Fernando Valley during 1973. The coming-of-age story follows a teenage actor who develops a friendship with an older woman. The 2021 film marks the feature debut of Cooper Hoffman, the son of the late actor Philip Seymour Hoffman who collaborated with director Paul Thomas Anderson for movies such as Hard Eight, Boogie Nights, Magnolia, Punch-Drunk Love and The Master. Here’s every main performer and character in Licorice Pizza.

Licorice Pizza Cast: Alana Haim as Alana Kane

Licorice Pizza Cast - Alana Haim as Alana Kane

Character Profile: The main female protagonist. She’s a native of the San Fernando Valley who hangs out with a 15-year-old actor named Gary. Based on the Licorice Pizza trailer, Alana enjoys a privileged lifestyle but doesn’t know what to do with her life.

Haim’s Resume: A Member of the Sibling Pop Group Haim — Also, Val Gal in The Unauthorized Bash Brothers Experience (2019) and Cab Passenger in Rostam: From the Back of a Cab (2021)

Licorice Pizza Cast: Cooper Hoffman as Gary Valentine

Licorice Pizza Cast - Cooper Hoffman as Gary Valentine

Character Profile: The primary male protagonist. He’s an actor who describes himself as a “showman.” Gary develops a friendship with Alana in the Licorice Pizza trailer and appears to hide a big secret.

Hoffman’s Resume: Feature Debut in Licorice Pizza

Licorice Pizza Cast: Sean Penn as TBA

Licorice Pizza Cast - Sean Penn

Character Profile: A well-dressed man who is presumably Alana’s father. He drives a sports car in the Licorice Pizza trailer. Penn’s character appears to symbolize who Gary aspires to be in some form.

Penn’s Resume: Jeff Spicoli in Fast Times at Ridgemont High (1982), Matthew Poncelet in Dead Man Walking (1995), Jimmy Markum in Mystic River (2003), Harvey Milk in Milk (2008), John Vogel in Flag Day (2021)

Licorice Pizza Cast: Tom Waits as TBA

Licorice Pizza Cast - Tom Waits

Character Profile: A Los Angeles filmmaker. He directs a movie production in the Licorice Pizza trailer.

Waits’ Resume: An Iconic American Singer-Songwriter — Also, Zack in Down by Law (1986), Prospector in The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), Waller in The Old Man & the Gun (2018), Hermit Bob in The Dead Don’t Die (2019)

Licorice Pizza Cast: Bradley Cooper as Jon Peters

Licorice Pizza Cast - Bradley Cooper as Jon Peters

Character Profile: A Los Angeles producer based on the real-life figure. He explains to Gary that his girlfriend is Barbara Streisand. Jon smashes car windows in the Licorice Pizza trailer.

Cooper’s Resume: Pat in Silver Linings Playbook (2012), Chris Kyle in American Hustle (2013), Rocket in the MCU (2014-), Chris Kyle in American Sniper (2014), Jack in A Star Is Born (2018)

Licorice Pizza Cast: Benny Safdie as Joel Wachs

Licorice Pizza Cast - Benny Safdie as Joel Wachs

Character Profile: A Los Angeles politician. He appears briefly in the Licorice Pizza trailer.

Safdie’s Resume: Co-Director of Good Time (2017) and Uncut Gems (2019) — Also, Nick Nikas in Good Time, Eugene in Person to Person (2017), Chris in Pieces of a Woman (2020)

Licorice Pizza Cast: Maya Rudolph as TBA

Licorice Pizza Cast - Maya Rudolph

Character Profile: A woman who conveys a Mona Lisa smile in the Licorice Pizza trailer. She only appears in one brief shot.

Rudolph’s Resume: A Former Saturday Night Live Cast Member (2000-07) — Also, Verona in Away We Go (2009), Lillian in Bridesmaids (2011), Petunia Leeway in Inherent Vice (2014), Connie the Hormone Monstress in Big Mouth (2017-)


The Licorice Pizza cast also includes Ben Stiller (Meet the Parents, Zoolander) Emma Dumont (Aquarius, The Gifted), Emily Althaus (Orange Is the New Black, The Handmaid’s Tale), Skyler Gisondo (Vacation, The Starling), Mary Elizabeth Ellis (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Masterminds), Joseph Cross (Milk, Lincoln), Nate Mann (Ray Donovan, Masters of the Air) and Destry Allyn Spielberg (Mass Hysteria, I Know This Much Is True). This article will be updated as new details emerge. Licorice Pizza will premiere on November 26, 2021.

Q.V. Hough (@QVHough) is Vague Visages’ founding editor.