Many of the most beloved actors of all time have received major opportunities before they reached the age of 30. Johnny Depp made girls swoon as Officer Thomas “Tom” Hanson on 21 Jump Street at the age of 24, Will Smith’s career got a massive boost with the title role of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air at the age of 22, and Leonardo DiCaprio became a big deal with his performance in Titanic when he was 23. We take a look at 12 under-30 actors that have become major players in Hollywood in recent years with their acclaimed roles.
12) Bella Thorne
At the age of 19, Bella Thorne has already given memorable performances in Big Love, Shake It Up, and Dirty Sexy Money. Aside from acting, the Pembroke Pines, Florida native has released two EPs (2012’s Made In Japan and 2014’s Jersey) and created the Autumn Falls book series.
11) Elizabeth Olsen
As the youngest sister of Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, Elizabeth Olsen is making her own path as a actress with acclaimed performances in Martha Marcy May Marlene, I Saw the Light, and Silent House. Marvel fans know her best as Scarlet Witch in box office blockbusters Avengers: Age of Ultron and Captain America: Civil War.
10) Julianne Hough
During her time as a dancer on Dancing with the Stars, Julianne Hough took home the trophy on two separate occasions. When she’s not showing off her dance moves, Hough is displaying her love for country music with the charting singles “That Song in My Head” and “My Hallelujah Song.”
9) Maisie Williams
Maisie Williams has gained many award nominations for her portrayal of Arya Stark on the hit HBO show Game of Thrones, including a 2016 Emmy nomination for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series. She recently appeared in several episodes of the BBC series Doctor Who and the Netflix original film iBoy.
8) Zoe Kravitz
Zoe Kravitz is best known for playing Angel Salvadore in X-Men: First Class and Christina in the Divergent film series. When Kravitz isn’t busy acting, she’s singing in the electropop band Lolawolf, who have toured in North America and Australia with Miley Cyrus, Twin Shadow, and Lily Allen.
7) Dakota Johnson
At the age of 10, Dakota Johnson had her big screen debut alongside her mother Melanie Griffith in the 1999 film Crazy In Alabama. 15 years later, she landed her most recognizable role to date as Anastasia Steele in the 50 Shades film series. In 2016, she gained a People’s Choice Award for her performance.
6) Margot Robbie
Before comic book fans got to know her as Harley Quinn in the 2016 film Suicide Squad, actress Margot Robbie got her start on the long-running Australian soap opera Neighbours. She is set to portray figure skater Tonya Harding in the film I, Tonya, and she’ll reprise her Harley Quinn role for Gotham City Sirens. She will be a producer for both flicks.
5) Tom Holland
A few weeks after his 19th birthday, Tom Holland got the biggest role of his career so far when he was cast to play Spider-Man in Captain America: Civil War and Spider-Man: Homecoming. Before getting into film, the English actor honed his skills with the title role of Billy Elliot the Musical.
4) Emma Stone
Emma Stone has gained praise for her award-winning performances in Easy A, Birdman, and La La Land. At the age of 28, the Scottsdale, Arizona native has become one of Hollywood’s highest paid actresses and is considered a fashion icon for the current generation. Stone also got to host Saturday Night Live three times.
3) Elle Fanning
When she was only three years old, Elle Fanning got her big break performing alongside Sean Penn in the 2001 film I Am Sam. The actress, who turns 19 this year, gained high praise for her work as Alice Dainard in the 2011 film Super 8. She is set to portray writer Mary Shelley in the film A Storm in the Stars.
2) Asa Butterfield
When he was cast in the title role of Hugo, English actor Asa Butterfield didn’t know that his career would skyrocket to major heights. His performance in the film earned him numerous nominations and a win at the Young Hollywood Awards for Breakthrough Performance – Male. In 2016, he starred in the dark fantasy film Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children.
1) Victoria Justice
Nickelodeon star Victoria Justice is a double threat in both acting and music worlds. The Hollywood star toured the country with Big Time Rush and Miranda Cosgrove in support of the three Victorious soundtracks. Justice is set to release her debut studio album in the near future. In 2016, she was a part of The Rocky Horror Picture Show: Let’s Do the Time Warp Again on Fox.
Will these stars continue to have success throughout their established careers? As long as they keep at it, you can bet they’ll still manage to get some major roles further down the road. When these stars finally get older, we’ll look towards a new batch of young stars looking to make a name for themselves in Hollywood. Just like some people on this list, they might branch out into other fields such as singing and writing. Whoever decides to rise to the occasion, the whole world will be sure to enjoy watching them grow as artists and people.