Sydney Sweeney’s First Big Role Was Playing Amber Heard

Syndey Sweeney played a younger version of Amber Heard in The Ward.

By Sckylar Gibby-Brown | Updated

amber heard sydney sweeney
Amber Heard in The Ward

Long before she was wowing us with her Emmy-nominated performances as Cassie Howard in Euphoria or Olivia Mossbacher in The White Lotus, Sydney Sweeney appeared in her first film as a younger version of Amber Heard. At the age of 13, Sweeney appeared in the 2010 horror/mystery/thriller The Ward as the young version of Heard’s character, Kristen. 

Sydney Sweeney is Hollywood’s new “it girl” and is in high demand after appearing in two critically acclaimed projects. Coming up, Sweeney will be appearing in the MCU’s Madame Web, the horror movie Immaculate, a thriller called Echo Valley, and an untitled Sony Pictures project. The Everything Sucks! actress first became interested in acting after she auditioned for an independent project filming in her area, and she felt inspired to create a five-year business plan to convince her parents to let her pursue a career in film, eventually landing her first movie with Amber Heard.

Before The Ward, Sydney Sweeney appeared in a comedy sci-fi horror movie about zombies called ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction before landing small parts on major television series like Heroes and Criminal Minds. When she got the part as young Amber Heard in The Ward, it was her fifth acting project overall and her biggest role to date. 

The Ward was written by writing partners and brothers Michael and Shawn Rasmussen, who are also known for writing other horror films, including Crawl, The Inhabitants, and Dark Feed. The film was directed by John Carpenter, who also has an impressive horror resume having directed The Village of the Damned and Ghosts of Mars, among many others in the genre. The Ward sees Mamie Gummer and Danielle Panabaker join Amber Heard and Sydney Sweeney in the cast.

The Ward is a horror, thriller, and mystery wrapped up into one crazy package. It follows Kristen (Amber Heard), a deranged woman who is taken to a mental hospital after burning down a farmhouse. At the mental ward, Kristen meets a group of other women who are being attacked by the ghost of a patient named Alice. Kristen attempts to help the women escape as they are killed off one by one before the twist ending at the end reveals that Kristen is all of the women in the ward, including Alice, and that she has Disassociative Identity Disorder developed after experiencing the trauma she faced at age 11.

Sydney Sweeney portrayed Kristen for the younger Kristen scenes. 

Overall, The Ward received negative reviews, though none are directly pointed at Amber Heard or Sydney Sweeney. For the most part, critics expected better from director John Carpenter, as he is a genre veteran, and The Ward was filled with uninspiring jump scares and didn’t bring anything new to the table. On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, The Ward received 33 percent approval from critics and an even lower score of 26 percent approval from audience members. 

After performing in The Ward, Sydney Sweeney continued to rack up her acting credits, performing in movies like The Opium Eater and Stolen From Suburbia, as well as television shows like Grey’s Anatomy and Pretty Little Liars before catching her big break in 2018 on the Netflix show, Everything Sucks!