Carroll was born and raised in Los Angeles. Her mother is a homemaker and her father is a contractor. She has three brothers: Ned, Jack and Dylan. She began modeling at the age of three. At the age of four, she was discovered by her theatrical agent 'Wendy' in a nail shop in Sherman Oaks. She began her career appearing in numerous commercials for companies such as Allstate, Chef Boyardee, Kmart, Mr. Clean, Subway, Super 8 Motels and Target Corporation.
Her first appearance in a film was in the 2006 horror film When a Stranger Calls. After minor roles in The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause and Resident Evil: Extinction, in 2008 she got her first major role co-starring in Swing Vote alongside Kevin Costner. In 2010 she appeared in the Jackie Chan film The Spy Next Door. That same year she also starred in the film adaptation of Wendelin Van Draanen's novel, Flipped, directed by Rob Reiner. Carroll's performance in the film garnered critical acclaim, and in 2011 and 2012 she appeared in numerous other movies such as Mr. Popper's Penguins, Machine Gun Preacher, and The Magic of Belle Isle.
Around age 15, Carroll began to be offered nude or promiscuous roles, all of which she turned down due to her personal beliefs. In 2014, also due to personal reasons, she turned down a larger role in the show Scandal, in which she had already appeared in two episodes. When she was 19, she nearly gave up being an actress altogether after a call from her agent, who stated that it was impossible to be a Hollywood actress without taking nude roles. Later, she related the following:
I said I'm going to call my agent and I'm going to quit. And literally, I don't know, the Holy Spirit, I guess, pulled me back down to my knees and I said "but God, if you still called me here and this is what you want from me, then you have to send me something and better yet, send me something that would edify you and that's how I'll know that I'm still called to be here."
The next day, she was offered a role in the Christian film God Bless the Broken Road. Since then, she has played roles in other faith-based films, including I Can Only Imagine and Pure Flix's Indivisible, both of which were released in 2018.
Subsequent to starring in the Erwin Brothers' I Can Only Imagine, Carroll became involved with their studio Kingdom Story Company, with the purpose of learning filmmaking. She, Jon Erwin, and Jon Gunn wrote the script of Kingdom's first production and Carroll's screenwriting debut, I Still Believe, which was released on March 2020.
|2006||When a Stranger Calls||Allison Mandrakis|
|2006||The Santa Clause 3: The Escape Clause||Cocoa|
|2007||Resident Evil: Extinction||White Queen|
|2008||Swing Vote||Molly Johnson|
|2009||Astro Boy||Widget (voice)|
|2010||The Spy Next Door||Farren|
|2011||Mr. Popper's Penguins||Janie Popper|
|2011||Machine Gun Preacher||Paige Childers|
|2012||The Magic of Belle Isle||Willow O'Neil|
|2012||Shit Italian Moms Say||Rosalie||Short film|
|2018||I Can Only Imagine||Shannon|
|2018||God Bless the Broken Road||Hannah|
|2018||Destined to Ride||Lily Davidson||also known as Pistachio|
|2020||I Still Believe||N/A||Writer; also co-producer|
|2003||Cold Case||Gwen Deamer (1983)||Episode: "Gleen"|
|2005||Hidden Howie: The Private Life of a Public Nuisance||Riley Mandell||Pilot|
|2005||Night Stalker||Julie Medlock||Episode: "Pilot"|
|2006||All of Us||Elisabeth||Episode: "Domo Arigato, Mr. Roberto"|
|2006||Passions||Young Kay||Episode: "#1.1711"|
|2007||Lost||Annie||Episode: "The Man Behind the Curtain"|
|2008||High School Musical: Get in the Picture||Gabriela Montez||ABC Realty series|
|2008||Grey's Anatomy||Ivy Soltanoff||Episode: "In the Midnight Hour"|
|2009||Lie to Me||Samantha Burch||Episode: "Do No Harm"|
|2009||Cold Case||Hillary Rhodes (1963)||Episode: "November 22"|
|2009||The Cleaner||Sarah||Episode: "The Things We Didn't Plan"|
|2009||NCIS||Angela Kelp||Episode: "Child's Play"|
|2010||Private Practice||Maggie||Episode: "Triangles"|
|2011; 2013||R.L. Stine's The Haunting Hour||Audrey Miller / Jillian||2 episodes|
|2013||Blink||Ari Trask||Television film|
|2014||Scandal||Karen Grant||2 episodes|
|2018||Criminal Minds||Ally McCready||1 episode|
- Michael Foust (March 28, 2019). "Actress Madeline Carroll turned down roles with nudity, promiscuity to honor God". Christian Post. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
- "Madeline Carroll Interview at About.com".
- "Exclusive Interview with The Spy Next Door's Madeline Carroll". Archived from the original on January 28, 2013. Retrieved January 20, 2013.
- Laurie, Greg (July 2, 2018), Madeline Carroll Interview: Icons of Faith Series, archived from the original on December 21, 2021, retrieved February 14, 2019
- Madeline Carroll | NRB 2018 Interview, March 8, 2018, retrieved February 14, 2019
- Gui, Ming. "2019 GOLDEN ANGEL AWARD". Chinese American Film Festival. Retrieved March 8, 2020.
- Michael Foust (March 28, 2019). "Actress Madeline Carroll Turned Down Nude Role, Fame and Fortune for Righteousness". Christian Headlines. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
- Jeannie Law (February 8, 2020). "Once struggling actress, filmmaker Madeline Carroll says God is 'faithful'". Christian Post. Retrieved February 8, 2020.
- "Madeline Carroll Talks Faith and Music in I Can Only Imagine". Crosswalk.com. Retrieved February 14, 2019.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Madeline Carroll.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to Madeline Carroll.|