These Actors And Actresses Were Supposed To Be Huge But They Never Made It To The A-List

Making it to superstardom in Hollywood is no easy feat. As an actor, you have to choose your roles wisely and make sure you don’t say anything out of context during interviews. Over the years, there have been many actors and actresses who were thought to be on the rise. Remember when Taylor Lautner was going to be the next big action star?

Some people are destined to become A-list celebrities, while others see their career fizzle out before it begins. Whatever the reason might be, these over-hyped actors and actresses just weren’t meant to be leading men or ladies. Keep reading to see who didn’t make the A-list.

Dakota Fanning

Dakota Fanning
Jacopo Raule/GC Images
Jacopo Raule/GC Images

Dakota Fanning has been a Hollywood staple since the age of seven, with her role as Lucy in I am Sam. The performance made her the youngest person in history to be nominated for a SAG award. From there, it seemed like every movie poster featured Fannig’s big blue eyes, from Uptown Girls to War of the Worlds.

The thing with becoming Hollywood royalty so young is that you have to mature your style. Fanning couldn’t be a little kid forever. The transition was difficult, and with a mediocre performance in The Runaways, longevity wasn’t looking good. It’s unfortunate because she was supposed to be huge.

Mischa Barton

Mischa Barton
Dani Abramowicz/FilmMagic
Dani Abramowicz/FilmMagic

The early 2000s were a great time for teenage soap operas. One of the bigger ones was the Fox TV series The OC. Mischa Barton played the iconic character of Marrisa Cooper, the girl next door with an attitude problem. As the show was renewed for a third season, Barton decided she wanted to leave, killing off Marissa in the season finale.

For Barton, leaving the show was the end of her career. She went from winning Teen Choice Awards and being Entertainment Weekly’s “It Girl” to joining the cast of The Hills. Most thought she was going to make a big splash in Hollywood, not become a reality TV sell-out.

Carrie-Anne Moss

Carrie-Anne Moss
John Lamparski/WireImage
John Lamparski/WireImage

During her time as Trinity in The Matrix franchise, Carrie-Anne Moss became a big deal in Hollywood. Before the series, Moss had said that she wasn’t getting much work. Now, she was an action star in a film that grossed $460 million worldwide! She was going to be huge.

Unfortunately, her time as Trinity went on to be her defining Hollywood moment. Now, Moss can be seen hopping around Netflix’s original Marvel series’. Her latest being her character Jeri in Jessica Jones. The good news is that Moss is heading back to the big screen to revive Trinity in The Matrix 4 that is set to release in 2021.

Chad Michael Murray

Chad Michael Murray
Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic
Jason LaVeris/FilmMagic

In 2003, Chad Michael Murray became one of the two Scott brothers on the hit TV series One Tree Hill. The popularity of the show segued into Murray having a career on the big screen, co-starring opposite Lindsay Lohan and Jamie Lee Curtis in Freaky Friday and Hilary Duff in A Cinderella Story. People thought he was going to be the next big Hollywood heartthrob.

It didn’t work out that way. Murray fell off the radar. Today he takes on supporting character roles on shows like Agent Carter and Riverdale. It looks like he couldn’t get away from the teen drama!

Kate Bosworth

Kate Bosworth
Andrew Toth/Getty Images
Andrew Toth/Getty Images

In 2002, Kate Bosworth broke into Hollywood with the movie Blue Crush. Although she had smaller roles prior to the film, such as Emma in Remember the Titans, Blue Crush made Bosworth a household name. Then, in 2006, she landed the role of reporter Lois Lane in the highly-anticipated film Superman Returns. The movie should have been her ticket to stardom.

The movie didn’t meet expectations, and Bosworth’s career hasn’t been the same since. Although she is still working in Hollywood, she hasn’t had the chance to star in any high-profile roles. Most recently, Bosworth has played the role of K.C. in the television series The I-Land.

Leelee Sobieski

Leelee Sobieski
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Leelee Sobieski was once an up-and-coming actress to look out for when new movies were being announced. She was even considered to be cast in the infamous role of Claudia in Interview with a Vampire. From there, she starred in a few films opposite prominent actors, such as The Glass House and Jungle 2 Jungle.

Over the years, Sobieski has fallen to the wayside, not being able to land good roles and rise higher on the Hollywood ladder. She was even nominated for a Razzie, not something a professional actress who was once nominated for a Gold Globe wants to accomplish.

Taylor Kitsch

Taylor Kitsch
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for Paramount Network
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic for Paramount Network

Taylor Kitsch was supposed to be the next big thing. After five seasons as Tim Riggins in Friday Night Lights, a show that garnered over eight million viewers and critical acclaim, one would think he was on his way to becoming a Hollywood A-lister. He was even cast as Gambit in X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Alas, whoever was trying to turn this actor into a star, fell flat. After being cast for lead roles in box office failures such as Battleship, he’s nothing more than an afterthought. Maybe he’ll gain some more traction in the coming years.

Kellan Lutz

Kellan Lutz
Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images
Julian Parker/UK Press via Getty Images

Kellen Lutz was on top of the Hollywood totem pole with his portrayal of Emmett Cullen in the Twilight franchise. From there, he was landing roles left and right, most notably as demi-gods and gods in Immortals and The Legend of Hercules. Considering his physique, the casting choice definitely makes sense!

Too bad for Lutz, a beautiful body isn’t the only thing you need to get the critics and moviegoers in your corner. His acting doesn’t leave much to admire, and because of it, he’s only been able to land low-profile gigs. Most recently, he’s played Kenny Crosby, a character that has a reoccurring role on FBI: Most Wanted.

Megan Fox

Megan Fox
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images
Steve Granitz/WireImage

Megan Fox was regular in the sitcom Hope & Faith, and then all of a sudden, she became a huge star, with her breakout role of Mikaela Banes in Transformers. The movie went on to gross $709 million in the box office and made Fox a hyped-up actress in Hollywood. She even won a few awards for her performance.

After the second installment of the franchise, Fox was cut from the cast. Apparently, comparing your director, who happens to be Michael Bay, to Hitler, isn’t a good career move. She’s been pseudo-blacklisted from Hollywood, only getting supporting roles in horrible films like Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

Alex Pettyfer

GettyImages-131787209
D Dipasupil/FilmMagic
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

In 2006, Alex Pettyfer broke through Hollywood with his performance in the film Stormbreaker. From there, the actor received numerous award nominations, including an Empire Award. He was even called upon to model for numerous Burberry campaigns.

After acting in films such as Beastly, I am Number Four, and Magic Mike, some believed Pettyfer was going to be the next Hollywood heartthrob. Unfortunately, during interviews, he sounded arrogant and ungrateful for the chance he’d been given. After that, no one wanted to work with him, and he’s become nothing more than an afterthought.

Minnie Driver

Minnie Driver
Michael Tran/FilmMagic
Michael Tran/FilmMagic

In 1997, Minnie Driver was Oscar-nominated for her role in Good Will Hunting. She then went on to gain attention for her role in the television series The Riches, a part for which she was nominated for an Emmy and Golden Globe. Driver was quickly becoming a top contender in Hollywood.

As she had been nominated as well as won various awards and accolades, one would think she would continue rising in Hollywood. That wasn’t the case, and she wasn’t able to live up to her prominent roles. Since her highly successful days, Driver has taken on roles in smaller TV series such as Speechless.

Rick Moranis

Rick Moranis
Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images
Jeff Kravitz/Getty Images

Rick Moranis is a famous comedic actor who is known for his fun characters in various ’80s films. Some of his bigger titles include Ghostbusters, Spaceballs, and the Honey, I Shrunk the Kids movies. He was going to be the next big comedic actor in Hollywood, right up there with Bill Murray.

Unfortunately, Moranis left the industry in 1997 after the tragic passing of his wife, to focus on being a present father for his two kids. He’s been on a long sabbatical from acting, but there is hope! On February 12, 2020, it was announced that Moranis was making his long-awaited return in another Honey, I Shrunk the Kids!

Emile Hirsch

Emile Hirsch
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

After his role in The Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, Emile Hirsch landed role after role. Two years after that release, he starred in the hit teen comedy Girl Next Door, the drama Lords of Dogtown, and crime film Alpha Dog. But his huge breakout role came in 2007 with his performance in the film Into the Wild, a part for which he received a SAG Award nomination for Best Actor.

Hirsch was supposed to e the next big thing to come out of Hollywood. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen. After his performance in the movie Speed Racer didn’t further his career, Hirsch began to settle for lower-profile roles.

Taylor Lautner

Taylor Lautner
Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Breeders’ Cup
Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Breeders’ Cup

Taylor Lautner became an overnight heartthrob after the movie Twilight: New Moon hit theaters. His portrayal of the misunderstood werewolf Jacob Black had young girls everywhere swooning. He gained a huge cult following for the part, and the fact that he was in extremely good shape but still had a boyish appeal didn’t hurt his image!

Because of his success in the Twilight series, Lautner was asked to participate in a few small parts in commercials and TV shows. He was a teen idol! Unfortunately, the action-film route Lautner wanted to take didn’t work. He hasn’t filmed anything since Cuckoo in 2018.

Eric Bana

Eric Bana
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Eric Bana was a household name after his performances in Black Hawk Down, Hulk, and Troy. People thought he was going to be one of Hollywood’s next big action stars. Bana instead showed his diverse skill set when he starred in The Time Traveler’s Wife and Funny People.

Too bad a few of those big-name films, such as Hulk, didn’t do much in terms of the box office. Unfortunately, because so many of his big blockbusters flopped, Bana has settled for more supporting roles. Not the best place to be for someone who has leading man looks.

Fairuza Balk

Fairuza Balk
Matt Carr/Getty Images
Matt Carr/Getty Images

Contrary to her gothic persona in many of her hit films, Fairuza Balk paved her way into Hollywood in her breakout role as Dorthy Gale in Return to Oz. From there, Balk starred in a few movies, including Foot Lodging, a role for which she won an Independent Spirit Award for Best Actress. But Balk is better known for her role as power-hungry witch Nancy in The Craft as well as her white-power character Stacy in American History X.

People thought that Balk’s career was going to skyrocket after the two films, with her portraying gothic characters. That wasn’t the case, and Balk has been taking low-profile work since.

Garrett Hedlund

Garrett Hedlund
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images
Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

Since he was 18 years old, Garrett Hedlund had dreams of making it big in Hollywood. His first film appearance was as the character Patroclus in Troy. Not a bad start to a career in film! From there, he had a successful role as Sam Flynn in Tron: Legacy. Unfortunately, he made a few grave errors that cost him some blockbuster hits.

It’s been reported that Hedlund was offered the role of Finnick in the blockbuster hit The Hunger Games, he declined the part. He was also offered the role of Christain Grey in Fifty Shades of Grey, another role he turned down. Not the best decisions.

Thora Birch

Thora Birch
Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images
Rodin Eckenroth/Getty Images

Thora Birch became an instant star, thanks to her performance in the movie Purple People Eater. A role for which she won a Young Artist Award for Best Young Actress Under Nine Years of Age. She kept her child star momentum going, landing roles in major blockbusters such as Hocus Pocus and Alaska.

Birch went on to receive a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actress in the film Ghost World as well as a BAFTA for Best Supporting Actress in American Beauty. That’s where her upward spiral ended and people began to forget her name. Her most notable performance since then has been her character Gamma in The Walking Dead.

Sam Worthington

Sam Worthington
David Buchan/Getty Images
David Buchan/Getty Images

After starring in one of the highest-grossing films of all time, one would think Sam Worthington’s career would skyrocket. People thought because he was cast in the film, he was going to be a big star. James Cameron knew what he was doing, after all, right?

Wrong. For Worthington, Avatar was the beginning and end of his good movie streak. Not to say he wasn’t cast in films, he was, they just weren’t good, and people stopped going to see his work. Thankfully, for Worthington’s career, James Cameron has decided to make a few more Avatar movies. His career might be saved yet!

Jai Courtney

Jai Courtney
Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images
Mark Sagliocco/Getty Images

Although his filmography isn’t the longest, Jai Courtney has been apart of some big films and television series. Most notably, he played the self-imprisoned gladiator Varro in the STARZ series Spartacus, as well as Eric, the Dauntless faction leader in the Divergent series. Most recently, fans might recognize him as the DC character Captain Boomerang. He should have been a huge action star!

And although he has some high-profile films and series under his belt, Courtney has never been a household name. Maybe fans of his Suicide Squad character will see Courtney’s Hollywood status change with the upcoming remake of the film.

Danny Masterson

Danny Masterson
Michael Bezjian/Getty
Michael Bezjian/Getty

During the early 90s, Danny Masterson decided to audition for a quirky role in a show called Teenage Wasteland. Well, he landed the part, and the show was renamed to That ’70s Show. His role as Steven Hyde shot his career through the roof, giving him the freedom to pursue other acting gigs.

After the show ended, he appeared in films such as Yes Man and even co-starred in the Netflix original series The Ranch opposite Ashton Kutcher. But even with those big titles on his resume, Masterson never became the next big comedic actor in Hollywood. Now, he’s no longer acting.

Hayden Christensen

Hayden Christensen
Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, Inc
Robin Platzer/FilmMagic

Hayden Christensen made a splash in Hollywood at a young age. He gained attention at 13 for his small part in In the Mouth of Madness, a role that landed him various gigs in the Goosebumps and Are You Afraid of the Dark? franchises. But nothing competes with his role as Anakin Skywalker in the Star Wars prequel films.

His performance won him an MTV Movie Award for Best Billain and the Cannes Film Festival Male Revelation Award. The role, however, was the downfall of what was looking to be a promising career. Christensen has had work since Revenge of the Sith, but his career has never been the same.

Josh Hutcherson

Josh Hutcherson
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Josh Hutcherson stole the hearts of young girls everywhere when he played the supporting role of Peeta in The Hunger Games. Audience members admired how far he’d come from being a child actor and thought he was going to make it far after the franchise wrapped up.

Hutcherson didn’t make it big in Hollywood after The Hunger Games finally came to an end. Instead, he’s found success on the small screen. From 2017-2019 Hutcherson played Josh Futturman in the Hulu original series Future Man. The show has since been renewed for a third and final season. Even though he’s not a film star like many hoped, at least he’s working.

Josh Lucas

Josh Lucas
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

After seeing Josh Lucas play Luke Perry in Sweet Home Alabama, people thought he was going to be the next Hollywood love interest in all rom-coms. Then, he went on to play the hero in the drama Poseidon. Lucas was showing his versatility and people couldn’t get enough.

Although Lucas is still working, his prominence in Hollywood never led him to superstardom. He hasn’t performed in anything of note recently, aside from the Ford v Ferrari. And even so, people went to see that because Christian Bale and Matt Damon were starring.

Kerri Green

Kerri Green
Trevor Owens/Getty Images
Trevor Owens/Getty Images

Kerri Green was one of the biggest child stars in the ’80s, starting with her performance of Andy in Steven Spielberg’s movie The Goonies. She went on to land various movies, including her critically acclaimed role as Maggie is David Seltzer’s Lucas. People thought she was going to be the next “it girl.”

She went on to make a few film and television appearances through the 90s and early 2000s, but she never got the same hype again. Green married and started a family, and while she still writes screenplays for Hollywood, she is very far out of the public eye.

Piper Perabo

Piper Perabo
Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival
Dia Dipasupil/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival

During her heyday, Piper Perabo seemed to be an emerging star in Hollywood. She starred alongside Tyra Banks in Coyote Ugly, Steve Martin in the Cheaper By the Dozen movies, and was even the lead character in her own show on USA, Covert Affairs. Most people thought Perabo was going straight to the top of the Hollywood elite.

In recent years, people have started to forget about Perabo. Even though she has consistent work, her projects are all low-profile. But for someone who was supposed to be the next big thing, she doesn’t seem to be taking it too badly!

Topher Grace

Topher Grace
Mike Pont/WireImage
Mike Pont/WireImage

Topher Grace is best known for his quirky character Eric Forman on the hit comedy That ’70s Show. From there, he guest-starred in a few major blockbusters, most notably as Pete Monash in Win a Date with Tad Hamilton and Eddie Brock in Spider-Man 3.

With diverse titles and styles, people thought Grace was going to be the next big actor. He was showing that he could be comedic as well as dramatic. But it didn’t seem to matter that he was versatile. Even with some major films under his belt like Interstellar and Predators, Grace was never able to climb up the Hollywood ladder to stardom.

Shiloh Fernandez

Shiloh Fernandez
Gary Gershoff/WireImage
Gary Gershoff/WireImage

Shiloh Fernandez made his Hollywood breakthrough in 2006, landing a role in an episode of Cold Case. From there, he continued to land little roles until 2007 when he snagged the part of Sean Henthorn in Jericho. Even though the show was canceled, Fernandez made an impression and was considered one of the up-and-coming new talents in Hollywood.

After Jericho ended he auditioned for the part of Edward Cullen in Twilight but lost out to Robert Pattinson, Fernandez is still awaiting his breakout role in the film. He hopes something will come soon to help launch his career. But as of right now, he’s an over-hyped actor who hasn’t been going much.

Jeanne Tripplehorn

Jeanne Tripplehorn
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Jeanne Tripplehorn came on the scene in 1992 as Dr. Beth Garner, a police psychologist in the film Basic Instinct. She was then nominated for an Emmy for her role as Jackie O in Grey Gardens. But Tripplehorn wasn’t just in Hollywood for the big screen; she became a woman to watch out for in television, including her part in the critically acclaimed CBS series Criminal Minds. She was going to be big!

The issue with Tripplehorn is that she’s appeared in many films and television series, yet no one can remember her name. She hasn’t been able to secure leading roles and therefore is usually lost in the background.

Lori Petty

Lori Petty
Gregg DeGuire/WireImage
Gregg DeGuire/WireImage

At the beginning of her career, Lori Petty was involved in a few television series. She was making a name for herself in Hollywood, especially when she landed the role of Tyler in Point Break opposite Keanu Reeves. Then she appeared in A League of The Own and people thought Petty was going to rise to stardom and be with some of her co-stars such as Tom Hanks.

It didn’t work out as planned. Petty is still active in the industry, but she hasn’t been able to snag any leading roles that would make her part of the A-list club. Recently, she’s been seen on Orange is the New Black.