The Top 10 Most Underrated Actors In Hollywood

Above: 10 of the most underrated actors in Hollywood
Above: 10 of the most underrated actors in Hollywood

We all know the Brad Pitts, the George Clooneys, the Leonardo Dicaprios, but there are tons of actors out there who don’t get nearly enough credit for the great work they do. These actors remain in the background, continually stacking up a great resume of work, but without the crazed tabloid coverage stalking their personal lives. They’re what you would call the “the actor’s actor”, the type of actors who are known for their work and not their celebrity status.

While it’s hard to account for every single great, underrated actor out there, these are ten of the most underrated:

Mark Ruffalo: He’s been a successful actor for many years now, but he’s never quite reached the level of A-list. Even though he’s Oscar-nominated, and has worked with some of the best actors and directors in the business, he’s just never quite made it to that leading man level. One of his most acclaimed roles was playing the slacker dad perfectly in The Kids are Alright, while his most commercial role up to date is probably his turn as “The Hulk” in The Avengers or starring opposite Leonardo DiCaprio in Shutter Island.

Paul Dano: For those of you who draw a mental blank when you hear his name, he played that gawky, nerdy, tall kid in The Girl Next Door that was as awkward as he was sexual deprived, and that mute, seemingly-psychopath from Little Miss Sunshine who looked like some sort of depressed punk rocker, as well as had a dual-role in There Will be Blood playing identical twins, Eli and Paul Sunday. In a very undetected way, Paul Dano has blossomed into one of Hollywood’s most interesting young actors. I mean how can you successfully square off with Daniel Day-Lewis and not become the next big thing? Well, Paul Dano did exactly that.

Michael Pena: He’s made a great career of playing strong supporting characters (often stereotypical Hispanic roles), but he’s never quite landed that starring role. After primarily doing smaller, independent films for the early part of his career, he finally started acting in bigger films when he wowed us with his emotional performance in 2004’s Crash. He also turned in a very powerful performance opposite Jake Gylenhaal in End of Watch. It’s only a matter of time before Michael Pena starts booking roles for reasons other than fitting the ethnic criteria required for the role.

John Hawkes: If you’re wondering who John Hawkes is, do you remember that skinny runt of a man in the Perfect Storm who started sleeping with that rather large woman right before taking off to sea with George Clooney? Yup, that’s this guy. He was also nominated for an Oscar for his supporting role opposite Jennifer Lawrence in Winter’s Bone in case you aren’t taking him seriously. He’s also been in movies such as American Gangster, Sessions and Lincoln. Not a bad little resume for a guy that looks like he could be a construction worker. You probably don’t know who he is because he manages to successfully disappear into the gritty roles he plays and couldn’t be found in a magazine if you tried.

Guy Pearce: Remember that time machine movie where the guy ended up in some sort of futuristic aboriginal cliff community? Well, that was Guy Pearce. Ever seen the Hurt Locker?  Well he got blown up in the first ten minutes, but Guy Pearce was in it. There were also other movies like Momento, Count of Monte Cristo, Factory Girl, The King’s Speech, and more recently, Iron Man 3 that you might have seen him in. Also, if you saw his turn as the slimy, sleazy, sinister Charlie Rakes in Lawless then you’ll understand why it’s probably only a matter of time before he gets the call to play a villain in a major Blockbuster.

Ralph Fiennes: He’s another one of those actors who enjoyed massive success early on in their career, but has since seen a lot of low points before his recent resurrection. I mean, how does an actor go from playing one of the most sinister characters onscreen in Schindler’s List or he-who-shall-not-be-named in Harry Potter, to end up trying to woo Jennifer Lopez in Made in Manhattan? Thankfully his career is back on the upswing with roles like M. Gustave in The Grand Budapest Hotel.

Ben Foster: He’s definitely one of the most unknown actors on this list. His performance in 3:10 To Yuma received critical acclaim, as well as a commercial role in X-Men: The Last Stand, and most recently, his roles in Kill Your Darlings and Lone Survivor. The thing about Ben Foster is that he’s managed to quietly build a very successful career in the industry, but you just don’t hear about him. That’s because he’s often over shadowed by bigger names that are the ones playing the lead.

Sam Rockwell: If you want to go way back into the Sam Rockwell archives you should start at The Green Mile, where he played one of the most disturbed prisoners on death row whom Tom Hanks had to watch over.The trend has continued throughout his career, as he’s often known for playing weird, dark and quirky characters. Although he’s never quite become mainstream, he’s still highly respected in the industry and is in a lot of big movies. His biggest roles up to date was probably when he played the lead in Moon, while his biggest of late are Seven Psychopaths in 2012 and The Way Way Back in 2013. Sam Rockwell has had and is continuing to have one of those dynamite “character actor” careers.

Don Cheadle: He has one of the most glittering resumes in Hollywood—-some of the highlights include: Boogie Nights, Traffic, Sword Fish, Crash, The Ocean’s series, The Iron Man series and Hotel Rwanda, where he received an Oscar-nomination for best actor. More recently, he won a Golden Globe for best actor in a comedy series for his role in the Showtime sitcom House Of Lies. He’s definitely one of the most famous actors on this list, but that doesn’t take away from the fact that he’s still underrated.

Gary Oldman: It’s very debatable if Gary Oldman is actually underrated. He’s one of the most respected actors of all time among his peers, and has one of the most accomplished resumes of any actor currently in the business. He’s the ultimate actor’s actor—the favourite of Tom Hardy, Brad Pitt and Ryan Gosling. Known for playing criminals or the primary antagonist, which might explain why he never gets the hero role (he’s just that good at playing the bad guy)

ALSO, check out: The 10 Most Overrated Actors In Hollywood.

Avatar

Jamie Rea

Jamie Rea is a writer and web-entrepreneur based in Toronto. He specializes in writing about dating, relationships, lifestyle, entertainment, and culture. On top of his own blog creations The Brolog and Thoughts4Men, he also also heads up the writing team for the web-based Toronto company, Park Bench, as well as contributes regularly to the Thought Catalog based out of New York. His work has been published in various places such as vancitybuzz.com and theurbandater.com. You can follow along with his blogs – www.thebrolog.com and www.thoughts4men.com to read his stuff on a weekly basis.

No Comments Yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>