Can you even imagine a Pulp Fiction movie without Samuel L. Jackson starring as Vincent Vega’s (John Travolta) partner-in-crime, Jules Winnfield? Who else would be able to deliver that Ezekiel 25:17 passage? Well, another award-winning actor was offered the role first, and turned it down. In a new interview Monday (November 21) with journalist Jemele Hill, Laurence Fishburne discussed the role.
In the interview, he was asked if there was a decision made in his acting career that he turned down and later regretted. Before Hill could finish asking her question, Fishburne interjected, “No,” and added, “I turned down Pulp Fiction. I do not regret that decision at all, you know why? Because it turned out to be the star-making role of Sam Jackson’s career. That’s the role that made Sam Jackson a star — and I contributed to that — I stayed out the way.” Hill joked, “I hope you remind him of that!” The two powerhouse actors apparently have never talked about it. But Fishburne maintained that he didn’t “regret any of those things.” He added, “It wasn’t for me.” Fishburne, 61, said there were things about Quentin Tarantino’s script that he “didn’t like.” But there were things in the script that “were fun.”
Fishburne also turned down 1993’s What’s Love Got To Do With It five times before agreeing to the role to play Ike Turner. But once he found out that Angela Bassett was starring as Tina, he thought, “Well, I have to do this now.” He was a fan of hers and he had worked with her on other projects like Boyz n the Hood (1991).
Pulp Fiction came out in 1994 and also starred Uma Thurman, Bruce Willis, Tim Roth, Christopher Walken, Harvey Keitel and Amanda Plummer. Samuel L. Jackson has starred in over 100 movies, but Pulp Fiction was the turning point in his acting career. Jackson had a minor role in 1988’s Coming To America as a “hold-up” man in their version of McDonald’s, while Pulp Fiction‘s opening scene is a hold-up in a restaurant that Jackson happens to be in (We love cinematic parallels). In 1990, Jackson played another minor role in the Martin Scorsese classic, Goodfellas as Stacks Edwards.
As we reported last year, Jackson ranked the top five movies he has starred in while appearing on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, which are all from the late ’90s. Pulp Fiction didn’t make the list, but the films he listed all came after that major breakthrough. His top five are: 1996’s The Long Kiss Goodnight and A Time To Kill, 1997’s Jackie Brown, 1998’s The Red Violin, and 1997’s ONE EIGHT SEVEN.
America’s 50 Favorite Actors Of All Time Ranked By Positive Opinion
Audiences know them from long-running TV series, big-time movie openings, and indelible stage performances. They’ve made viewers laugh, cry, and jump from their seats in fright. The best actors in the world have the power to move audiences in ways that few others can—which is why making a list of the absolute best is never an easy task.
Any list of the best needs to be backed up by numbers. So in order to compile a set of America’s 50 favorite actors of all time, Stacker analyzed data from YouGov, with polling conducted between November 2017 and October 2018. First, they measured the level of online activity related to a set of actors to determine which 50 should be included in a survey, with responses weighted to be nationally representative. Then, they ranked those 50 actors from low to high by a percentage of survey respondents with a positive opinion of said actors. Ties were broken by the actor with a lower percentage of negative opinion responses and a higher percentage of “have heard of” responses.
The result is a list of thespians, including Oscar winners, box office juggernauts, and some of the “sexiest men alive.”
Positive opinion: 64% Negative opinion: 11% Neutral opinion: 22% Have heard of: 97% Hollywood heartthrob Brad Pitt has built a name for himself among audiences worldwide. Outside of his starring roles in "Ocean’s 11” and "Fight Club,” as well as his tabloid-heavy relationships with Jennifer Aniston and Angelina Jolie, fans might be surprised to learn that Pitt is also a big-time movie producer. His Plan B production company spearheaded giant blockbuster hits such as "World War Z,” "Moneyball,” and "Eat, Pray, Love,” and has won best picture Oscars for "Moonlight” and "12 Years a Slave.”
Positive opinion: 64% Negative opinion: 9% Neutral opinion: 23% Have heard of: 96% Sylvester Stallone is one of the biggest action stars in Hollywood history. With blockbuster hits like "Rocky,” "First Blood,” "Demolition Man,” and "The Expendables,” Stallone has become a household name. But Stallone isn’t just a muscular celebrity. In addition to his explosive roles, he's also written more than two dozen of his movies and been nominated for three Academy Awards (including Best Writing for "Rocky”).
Positive opinion: 64% Negative opinion: 8% Neutral opinion: 17% Have heard of: 89% Danny Glover started acting in 1979, but international fame didn’t come until he starred opposite Mel Gibson in the blockbuster "Lethal Weapon” movies. Glover has continued working over the past four decades and has amassed nearly 200 actor credits over the course of his career. Outside of Hollywood, Glover is a political activist who lends his celebrity to causes regarding civil rights.
Positive opinion: 64% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 84% John Ritter had an illustrious TV and film career that spanned more than 30 years before his death in 2003. He was most well-known for his laugh-out-loud role on the hit TV series "Three’s Company,” but he also starred in films such as "Stay Tuned” and "Sling Blade.” Ritter is the son of the singing cowboy Tex Ritter; both father and son have stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame right next to one another.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 17% Have heard of: 86% Although he’s primarily known as a very serious actor (he won an Oscar for best supporting actor in "The Deer Hunter”), it’s Christopher’s Walken’s lighter side that has made him a fan favorite across generations. Whether it was his classic "More Cowbell” sketch on "Saturday Night Live” or his unforgettable segment in "Pulp Fiction,” Walken has proven time and time again to be one of the most versatile performers in the world.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 87% Australian actor Hugh Jackman burst into international stardom with his starring role as Wolverine in the blockbusting "X-Men” franchise. Since his ferocious performance, Jackman has gone on to star in comedies such as "Eddie the Eagle,” musicals like "The Greatest Showman,” and dramas such as "The Front Runner.” Jackman is also a frequent performer on Broadway in productions such as "A Steady Rain,” "The River,” and his self-titled, "Hugh Jackman: Back on Broadway.”
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 11% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 95% Matt Damon is one of the most versatile actors in Hollywood, as he has moved between between action, comedy, and drama roles. Damon has been nominated for an Oscar five times and won the Best Writing award for "Good Will Hunting.” Some of his most popular movies include "Rounders,” "The Bourne Identity” franchise, "The Departed,” and "The Martian.” In total, his films have grossed nearly $7 billion at the box office.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 20% Have heard of: 90% Esquire gave Tom Selleck the honor of one of the most famous mustaches in the world, but Selleck is just as well-known for his long TV and film career. He started acting in the late 1960s, but his breakout role was in the classic 1980s TV show "Magnum, P.I.” Since then, Selleck has gone on to star in movies like "3 Men and a Baby,” "In & Out,” and the "Jesse Stone” TV movie franchise, as well as TV hits such as "Las Vegas” and "Blue Bloods.” He has earned multiple Emmy and Golden Globe nominations for his work, and won each award once for "Magnum, P.I.”
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 10% Neutral opinion: 22% Have heard of: 96% Nicolas Cage has one of the most prolific careers, starring in more than 90 movies since the early 1980s. One of his most famous roles is for his award-winning turn in "Leaving Las Vegas,” for which he garnered an Oscar and Golden Globe for Best Actor. Casual fans of the quirky star might be surprised to learn that Cage is actually the nephew of famed director Francis Ford Coppola, which also makes him cousins to fellow celebs Sofia Coppola, Jason Schwartzman, and Roman Coppola.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 12% Neutral opinion: 18% Have heard of: 95% Before comedian Tim Allen got his breakout role as Tim Taylor on the hit show, "Home Improvement,” he had a little bit of legal trouble. Back in 1978, Allen was arrested for selling cocaine and spent nearly three years in prison. Fortunately for him, he found the stand-up comedy stage. That led to "Home Improvement,” in addition to a number of movie roles like "Toy Story 2,” "Galaxy Quest,” and the hit TV show "Last Man Standing.”
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 8% Neutral opinion: 20% Have heard of: 93% Mark Wahlberg first burst into the public eye as a rapper with the group Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch (also as the younger brother of New Kids on the Block star, Donnie Wahlberg). His famous underwear ads for Calvin Klein put the budding star’s image all over the world. Since baring (nearly) all, Wahlberg has gone on to have an enormous movie career with hit films such "Boogie Nights,” "Ted,” and "Lone Survivor.” Wahlberg was also the producer of the HBO show "Entourage,” based loosely on his life in Los Angeles.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 88% Sir Patrick Stewart was knighted in 2010 by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the dramatic arts. But his long and illustrious career started well before that in the 1960s, when he worked mostly in British TV shows and on stage for the Royal Shakespeare Company. In 1987, Stewart was cast as Captain Jean-Luc Picard in "Star Trek: The Next Generation.” Today, fans might be more familiar with his work as Professor Charles Xavier "aka Professor X” in the "X-Men” movie franchise.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 16% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 97% Uber-famous celebrity George Clooney might be most well-known for starring roles in "ER,” "Ocean’s 11,” and his Oscar-winning role in "Syriana.” But in recent years, he's focused on humanitarian work. Clooney has lent his celebrity to helping causes around the world, including the conflict in Darfur, the recognition of the Armenian Genocide, LGBTQ rights, and gun control.
Positive opinion: 65% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 21% Have heard of: 90% Even though he has never won any major awards, Kurt Russell has been a mainstay on the Hollywood movie scene since the 1970s. Fans of the gruff actor will remember him from iconic roles like "Escape from New York,” "Backdraft,” "Tombstone,” and "Miracle.” Russell has also been romantically linked to Goldie Hawn since 1983; their son Wyatt is now an actor as well.
Positive opinion: 66% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 20% Have heard of: 91% Hollywood heartthrob Matthew McConaughey got his big break (and catchphrase "Alright, alright, alright”) in the classic Richard Linklater movie, "Dazed and Confused.” After stealing the screen, McConaughey went on to a movie star career with hits like "A Time to Kill,” "EDtv,” "Interstellar,” and his Oscar-winning role in "Dallas Buyers Club.”
Positive opinion: 66% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 20% Have heard of: 90% Honors that Andy Griffith garnered over his more than 50-year career include a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a Grammy Award, and the Presidential Medal of Freedom. Griffith is best known for his eponymous "The Andy Griffith Show” that also spawned the career of legendary actor and film director Ron Howard.
Positive opinion: 66% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 90% John Goodman started acting in the 1980s with roles in "Revenge of the Nerds” and "Raising Arizona.” But he truly became a household name with his turn as Dan Conner on the hit series, "Roseanne,” for which he earned a Golden Globe award and multiple Emmy nominations. Since his TV days, Goodman is more widely recognized for starring parts in movies such as "The Babe,” "The Big Lebowski,” "Monsters, Inc.,” and "Argo.”
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 89% While most movie-watchers know Christopher Reeve for his role as "Superman,” fans of the screen legend might not know that he was a classically trained actor from Juilliard, where he also happened to befriend fellow student/actor Robin Williams. Reeve died at the age of 52 after spending years paralyzed from a horse riding accident.
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 90% Grizzled actor Tommy Lee Jones is probably best-known for his Oscar-winning role for Best Supporting Actor in "The Fugitive.” Jones’s life didn’t start on-screen, however. While attending Harvard College, Jones was roommates with Vice President Al Gore, while starring as an offensive guard on the school’s football team. Other classic Jones movies include, "Men in Black,” "No Country for Old Men,” and "Lincoln.”
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 93% Consistently considered as one of the greatest actors of all time, Al Pacino can back up the claim with eight Oscar nominations and one win, 17 Golden Globe nominations and four wins, three Emmy nominations and two wins, and three Tony award nominations and two wins. Pacino has starred in classic films such "The Godfather” franchise, "Scarface,” "Dog Day Afternoon,” and "Scent of a Woman.”
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 17% Have heard of: 87% Legendary actor Paul Newman graced the silver screen with his good looks and acting chops since 1953. Some of his most memorable performances include his roles in "The Hustler,” "Cool Hand Luke,” "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” and "The Color of Money,” the latter of which earned him a Best Actor Oscar award. Newman was also a well-known philanthropist, auto racing enthusiast, food products entrepreneur, and political activist.
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 14% Neutral opinion: 14% Have heard of: 95% Another actor consistently considered one of the best in the world, Robert De Niro is a two-time Oscar winner ("Raging Bull” and "The Godfather: Part II”) and recipient of countless other awards. Beyond his iconic roles in "Taxi Driver,” "The Deer Hunter,” "Midnight Run,” and "Goodfellas,” De Niro is also a well-known political activist who doesn’t hold his tongue in regards to President Donald Trump.
Positive opinion: 67% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 20% Have heard of: 93% Keanu Reeves is a household name whose movies have generated more than $4 billion in box office receipts around the world. Some of Reeves’ biggest movies include "The Matrix” franchise, "Speed,” "Point Break,” and the "John Wick” franchise. Reeves is more than just a movie star. He has been reportedly giving away millions of dollars to charity for years.
Positive opinion: 68% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 24% Have heard of: 96% Born Lee Jun-fan in 1940, Bruce Lee is one of the most iconic martial arts figures of all time. Although he had starred in many films in China before moving to the United States, he spent many years teaching martial arts before landing the role of Kato in "The Green Hornet” TV series. It was fame and fortune from there as Lee starred in multiple movies including "The Big Boss,” "The Way of the Dragon,” and "Enter the Dragon.” Lee died at the age of 32, but his film and martial arts legacies continue to this day: Time Magazine named him one of the most influential people of the 20th Century.
Positive opinion: 68% Negative opinion: 13% Neutral opinion: 17% Have heard of: 98% After starting early with a supporting part as a child actor on the TV show "Growing Pains,” Leonardo DiCaprio went on to become one of the greatest U.S. actors of all time. DiCaprio has accrued a long list of accolades for his starring roles in "Titanic,” "Catch Me If You Can,” "Blood Diamond,” and "The Revenant,” the latter of which won him the Academy Award for Best Actor. Beyond film, DiCaprio is also a well-known environmental activist and lends his celebrity to causes that combat climate change.
Positive opinion: 68% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 88% Liam Neeson was born in Northern Ireland in 1952 and has been a working actor since the late 1970s. While he found a varying degree of success, it wasn’t until Steven Spielberg cast him as Oskar Schindler in "Schindler’s List” that he shot to stardom. After "Schindler,” Neeson scored major roles in movies such as "Gangs of New York,” "Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace,” and the "Taken” franchise. Neeson is also an outspoken activist who has used his celebrity for a variety of issues like legalizing abortion in Ireland and gun control in the U.S.
Positive opinion: 68% Negative opinion: 7% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 94% Diminutive star Danny DeVito might only be 4-foot-10, but he’s a giant of cinema. DeVito has more than 130 acting credits to his name and some of the biggest roles came from "Taxi,” "Romancing the Stone,” "Ruthless People,” "Batman Returns,” and most recently, "It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” DeVito won both a Golden Globe and Emmy award for his role on "Taxi.”
Positive opinion: 69% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 93% Hollywood darling Dick Van Dyke has been in the acting game for more than 50 years and has garnered Emmy, Grammy, and Tony awards along the way. As a comedian, singer, actor, and dancer, Van Dyke is known for a litany of film and TV roles. Some of his best-known performances include "The Dick Van Dyke Show,” "Mary Poppins” (he also costarred in the 2018 version), and "Bye Bye Birdie.” Van Dyke won the PGF-USA’s Prince Rainier III Award in 2014 for demonstration of service to the community which includes years of work at the Midnight Mission in Los Angeles in addition to helping fund music and arts programs in schools.
Positive opinion: 69% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 17% Have heard of: 92% The first success Bill Murray found was at The Second City, an improvisational group in Chicago in the 1970s. That success led to starring on "Saturday Night Live” which then spawned one of the best (and funniest) film careers around. Murray has starred in some of the most indelible comedies, including "Caddyshack,” "Ghostbusters,” and "Groundhog Day.” It was his dramatic role in the 2003 "Lost in Translation” that garnered him a Golden Globe award and an Oscar nomination. In 2016, Murray received one of the greatest honors for a comedian when he was awarded the Mark Twain Prize for American Humor by the Kennedy Center.
Positive opinion: 69% Negative opinion: 8% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 96% Robert Downey Jr. has had a rollercoaster career that has gone from leading man to substance abuser back to leading man in one of Hollywood’s best redemption stories. Downey Jr. achieved fame in the 1980s with roles in "Weird Science,” "Less Than Zero,” and "Chances Are” before scoring the role of a lifetime with "Chaplin.” A series of arrests for drug-related crimes took over his life in the late 1990s before he began making a career comeback in the 2000s. Downey Jr. has since been on an incredible run of hit films that include the "Iron Man” and "Sherlock Holmes” franchises, garnering a number of Golden Globe awards.
Positive opinion: 69% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 15% Have heard of: 89% Born Jerome Silberman in 1933, Gene Wilder was a beloved actor, writer, director, and author. Wilder’s first big break came when he starred as Leo Bloom in the original film by Mel Brooks, "The Producers.” From there, his leading roles took off as he was cast by Brooks and others in a variety of movies such as "Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory,” "Blazing Saddles,” and "Young Frankenstein.” Later on, Wilder had a run of films alongside co-star Richard Pryor that included "Silver Streak,” "Stir Crazy,” and See No Evil, Hear No Evil.” After the death of his wife Gilda Radner, Wilder helped found the Gilda Radner Ovarian Cancer Detection Center to help with cancer research.
Positive opinion: 70% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 14% Have heard of: 87% Sir Anthony Hopkins has won just about every award that’s given out to actors including an Oscar, a Golden Globe, and a knighting by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the arts. The Welsh-born actor has been in the business since the 1960s, and one of his best-known roles was as Hannibal Lecter in "The Silence of the Lambs” (for which he won his Best Actor Oscar). Other unforgettable movies include "Nixon,” "Amistad,” and "Thor.”
Positive opinion: 70% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 93% People Magazine named Patrick Swayze the "Sexiest Man Alive” in 1991, but that was just one of the many accolades this Hollywood hunk received before his early death. Swayze was probably best-known for his iconic roles in "Dirty Dancing,” "Ghost,” and "Point Break,” which solidified him as one of Hollywood’s top leading men. In 2009, Swayze died at the age of 57 from pancreatic cancer.
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 9% Neutral opinion: 15% Have heard of: 95% Clint Eastwood isn’t just an Oscar-winning filmmaker, actor, writer, and director, he is also a composer and has written the scores for numerous films such as "Flags of our Fathers,” "Changeling,” and "J. Edgar.” As an actor, Eastwood’s tough guy appeal first dazzled audiences in Spaghetti Westerns in the 1960s and then with his "Dirty Harry” movies in the 1970s. His directing and producing turns garnered him more awards, winning Oscars for "Unforgiven” and "Million Dollar Baby.”
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 13% Have heard of: 87% James Earl Jones is a versatile actor whose baritone voice and acting chops have scooped up multiple accolades including an honorary Oscar, a Golden Globe, an Emmy award, and multiple Tony awards for his roles on the Broadway stage. Jones’s unforgettable voice will forever be associated with Darth Vader from the "Star Wars” franchise, as well as the voice of Mufasa in "The Lion King.” His on-screen presence has also dazzled audiences with performances in "The Great White Hope,” "Picket Fences,” and "Field of Dreams.”
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 93% No list of all-time greatest actors could be complete without the inclusion of Jack Nicholson. With a career that has spanned more than 60 years, Nicholson has hypnotized audiences with epic performances for the ages. He has been nominated for 12 Oscars and won three, and he was nominated for 17 Golden Globes and won seven. His most iconic roles were in "Chinatown,” "Easy Rider,” "One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” "Terms of Endearment,” and "A Few Good Men,” but really the list goes on and on. One of the actor’s true passions is sports: He can often be seen sitting courtside wearing sunglasses at Los Angeles Lakers home games.
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 8% Neutral opinion: 18% Have heard of: 98% Eddie Murphy’s career started on the stand-up stage, but the moment he made his debut on "Saturday Night Live” he became a star. Movies followed soon after with early hits like "Trading Places” and "Beverly Hills Cop,” only to be followed by equally successful "Coming to America.” Murphy’s worldwide box office receipts total almost $7 billion, thanks in part to his role in multiple franchises like "The Nutty Professor,” "Dr. Doolittle,” and the animated juggernaut, "Shrek.” On the awards front, Murphy was nominated for a Best Supporting Actor Oscar for his role in "Dreamgirls” and won the Golden Globe for the same film.
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 92% One of the most prolific stars in Hollywood history, Steve Martin’s career highlights include credits as a stand-up comedian, actor, writer, producer, and director. After uber-successful comedy tours around the country, Martin turned to the movies where he starred in classics like, "The Jerk,” "Roxanne,” "Parenthood,” and "Cheaper by the Dozen.” Martin is also a best-selling author, with a variety of fiction and non-fiction titles including "Born Standing Up: A Comic’s Life,” "Picasso at the Lapin Agile,” "Shopgirl: A Novella,” and others.
Positive opinion: 71% Negative opinion: 10% Neutral opinion: 14% Have heard of: 95% Samuel L. Jackson is one of the top earning Hollywood actors, as the movies he has starred in have grossed more than $13 billion. Jackson has more than 180 credits to his name, which include such hits as "Star Wars: Episodes I-III,” the "Iron Man” franchise, and the expanded Marvel Universe movies. Outside of the movies, Jackson was once a very active member of the Civil Rights movement in the '60s and '70s, and even served as an usher at Martin Luther King, Jr.’s funeral.
Positive opinion: 72% Negative opinion: 5% Neutral opinion: 19% Have heard of: 96% Born Chan Kong-sang in Hong Kong in 1954, martial arts superstar Jackie Chan has amassed more than 130 acting credits between the U.S., China, and around the world. Part of Chan’s fame comes from doing his own stunts, a skill he learned as a stuntman for Bruce Lee’s movies "Fist of Fury” and "Enter the Dragon.” Chan’s fame took off in America when he teamed up with Chris Tucker in the "Rush Hour” movies and then with Owen Wilson in the "Shanghai Noon” franchise. Outside of the movies, Chan is a UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador and has promoted a number of charitable causes.
Positive opinion: 73% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 95% Dwayne "The Rock” Johnson has his hand in movies, TV, books, a clothing line, and of course raising his kids. Johnson got his start as a professional football player-turned-wrestler (where he earned the moniker, "The Rock”). After achieving the heights of the WWE, Johnson turned to movies and television where he has amazed crowds with his gigantic muscles in "The Fast and Furious” series and his show "Ballers.” On the charity side, Johnson founded the Dwayne Johnson Rock Foundation to help terminally ill children.
Positive opinion: 73% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 14% Have heard of: 90% Sean Connery will forever be remembered as the original James Bond when he starred in the 1962 classic "Dr. No.” A slew of six Bond films continued after the original, as did international acclaim. The Scottish-born actor is known for more than just being a British spy, as he won an Oscar for his supporting role in "The Untouchables” and will always be remembered for classic parts in "The Hunt for Red October” and in "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade.” Beyond his screen roles, Connery was knighted in 2000 and also voted by People Magazine as the Sexiest Man Alive in 1999.
Positive opinion: 73% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 94% Canadian-born Michael J. Fox has been entertaining audiences since playing a conservative Republican teenager in the hit comedy series "Family Ties.” International stardom followed soon after when he wowed audiences in "Back to the Future,” "Teen Wolf,” and "Doc Hollywood.” Since being diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 1991, Fox has worked tirelessly through The Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research to help combat and find a cure for the disease. For his work on-screen, Fox has garnered four Golden Globe and five Emmy awards.
Positive opinion: 74% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 16% Have heard of: 95% Though many audiences know Bruce Willis as one of the greatest action stars of all time, his career started on a much mellower note. Willis’s first claim to fame came from the hit TV show, "Moonlighting,” for which he won an Emmy award for Outstanding Lead Actor. His action films piled on quickly after that, with mega-hits such as "Die Hard,” "The Fifth Element,” and "Armageddon.” Off-screen, Willis is a co-founder of Planet Hollywood and was once married to scream queen Demi Moore.
Positive opinion: 74% Negative opinion: 10% Neutral opinion: 14% Have heard of: 98% Will Smith is a versatile performer whose mega-stardom came from a huge hip-hop career, a hit TV show, and some of the biggest blockbuster movies of all time. Smith was originally known to the public as The Fresh Prince, the moniker he went by for his music career, which ultimately turned into the show "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” Big-time movies came quickly after with "Bad Boys,” "Independence Day,” "Men in Black,” and "Ali.” Over his long career, Smith has sold more than 9 million albums while his movies have grossed more than $7 billion at the box office.
Positive opinion: 77% Negative opinion: 8% Neutral opinion: 13% Have heard of: 98% Morgan Freeman has been entertaining audiences since the 1960s and shows no evidence of slowing down any time soon. Freeman has been nominated for multiple Academy Awards and won for his role in "Million Dollar Baby.” Over his long career, Freeman has amassed more than 120 acting credits and can be remembered for stunning performances in the likes of "Driving Miss Daisy,” "The Shawshank Redemption,” "Glory,” and "Unforgiven."
Positive opinion: 78% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 13% Have heard of: 94% Harrison Ford has played some of the most memorable movie characters of all time, including Han Solo in the "Star Wars” franchise, Indiana Jones in the "Indiana Jones” franchise, and Jack Ryan in the Tom Clancy spy movie franchise. Other epic flicks include "The Fugitive,” "Air Force One,” "Blade Runner,” and "Witness,” the last of which landed him an Oscar nomination. All told, Ford’s movies have grossed more than $8 billion at the box office, making him one of the most bankable stars of all time. Off-screen, Ford is a big environmental activist and lends his celebrity to organizations like Conservation International.
Positive opinion: 80% Negative opinion: 6% Neutral opinion: 11% Have heard of: 97% Not only has Tom Hanks won multiple Oscars, multiple Golden Globes, and multiple Emmy awards, he has also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom and the French Legion of Honor. On-screen, Hanks has delivered some of the most memorable performances in movie history while starring in gems like, "Big,” "Sleepless in Seattle,” "Philadelphia,” "Forrest Gump,” "Toy Story,” and many others.
Positive opinion: 81% Negative opinion: 3% Neutral opinion: 12% Have heard of: 96% Multiple Oscar-winner Denzel Washington is almost always mentioned in "greatest actor of all time” discussions. And for good reason. Washington has starred in endless award-winning movies like "Glory,” "Cry Freedom,” "Malcolm X,” "Philadelphia,” "Crimson Tide,” "Training Day,” and more. Not just a movie star, Washington is also known for his stage work where he won a Tony for 2010’s "Fences” and was nominated for another Tony in "The Iceman Cometh.”
Positive opinion: 83% Negative opinion: 4% Neutral opinion: 10% Have heard of: 97% The comedian, actor, and philanthropist Robin Williams was a master at making fans laugh and cry with his unforgettable performances on stage, in film, and on TV. Winner of Oscars, Emmys, Grammys, and Golden Globes, Williams was beloved for his roles in "Good Morning, Vietnam,” "Good Will Hunting,” "Dead Poets Society,” and "Mrs. Doubtfire.” Williams died in 2014 at the age of 63.