Famous actors from California

Written by:
April 28, 2022
Rich Fury/VF20 / Contributor // Getty images

Famous actors from California

Admiring and envying the world's biggest stars is easy to do on Instagram. From A-list movie stars and major musicians to pro ball players and comedians who landed their own sitcoms, there's no shortage of evidence of just how good the good life is. They post pictures of themselves with other big shots on rooftop bars, at exclusive clubs, at backstage parties, and at restaurants where regular people can't get a reservation.

But the vast majority of these celebrities were born and raised outside of Hollywood, finding their way to the bright lights and big money of superstardom from obscure beginnings in regular small towns or cities across the country.

Stacker compiled a list of actors that were born in California from IMDb’s most popular list. For each actor, we included a movie poster image from a film he is known for (all movie poster images from OMDb). Keep reading to see which favorite actors are from your home state.

You may also like: Famous actresses from California

1 / 49
OMDb

Cole Hauser

- Born: Santa Barbara, California (3/22/1975)
- Known for:
--- Carter Verone in "2 Fast 2 Furious" (2003)
--- Benny in "Dazed and Confused" (1993)
--- Billy in "Good Will Hunting" (1997)

2 / 49
Larry Busacca // Getty Images

Andrew Garfield

- Born: Los Angeles, California (8/20/1983)
- Known for:
--- Desmond Doss in "Hacksaw Ridge" (2016)
--- Eduardo Saverin in "The Social Network" (2010)
--- Spider-Man in "The Amazing Spider-Man" (2012)

3 / 49
Tinseltown // Shutterstock

Dwayne Johnson

- Born: Hayward, California (5/2/1972)
- Known for:
--- Spencer in "Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle" (2017)
--- Hank in "Journey 2: The Mysterious Island" (2012)
--- Maui in "Moana" (2016)

4 / 49
Jesse Grant // Getty Images

Jeremy Renner

- Born: Modesto, California (1/7/1971)
- Known for:
--- Staff Sergeant William James in "The Hurt Locker" (2008)
--- Cory Lambert in "Wind River" (2017)
--- James Coughlin in "The Town" (2010)

5 / 49
AFP // Getty Images

Leonardo DiCaprio

- Born: Hollywood, Los Angeles, California (11/11/1974)
- Known for:
--- Cobb in "Inception" (2010)
--- Billy in "The Departed" (2006)
--- Jordan Belfort in "The Wolf of Wall Street" (2013)

You may also like: Most popular baby names for girls of the last decade in California

6 / 49
Rich Fury/VF20 / Contributor // Getty images

Adam Driver

- Born: San Diego, California (11/19/1983)
- Known for:
--- Kylo Ren in "Star Wars: Episode VII - The Force Awakens" (2015)
--- Paterson in "Paterson" (2016)
--- Kylo Ren in "Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi" (2017)

7 / 49
Vince Bucci/AFP // Getty Images

Tom Hanks

- Born: Concord, California (7/9/1956)
- Known for:
--- Producer in "Cast Away" (2000)
--- Josh in "Big" (1988)
--- Forrest Gump in "Forrest Gump" (1994)

8 / 49
OMDb

Tobey Maguire

- Born: Santa Monica, California (6/27/1975)
- Known for:
--- Capt. Sam Cahill in "Brothers" (2009)
--- Spider-Man in "Spider-Man" (2002)
--- James Leer in "Wonder Boys" (2000)

9 / 49
OMDb

Jake Gyllenhaal

- Born: Los Angeles, California (12/19/1980)
- Known for:
--- Louis Bloom in "Nightcrawler" (2014)
--- Jack Twist in "Brokeback Mountain" (2005)
--- Donnie Darko in "Donnie Darko" (2001)

10 / 49
Lumiere Pictures

Nicolas Cage

- Born: Long Beach, California (1/7/1964)
- Known for:
--- Castor Troy in "Face/Off" (1997)
--- Ben Sanderson in "Leaving Las Vegas" (1995)
--- Stanley Goodspeed in "The Rock" (1996)

You may also like: States where people in California are getting new jobs

11 / 49
Damon Duncan // flickr

Kevin Costner

- Born: Lynwood, California (1/18/1955)
- Known for:
--- The Postman in "The Postman" (1997)
--- Lieutenant Dunbar in "Dances with Wolves" (1990)
--- Robin of Locksley in "Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves" (1991)

12 / 49
OMDb

Michael Stuhlbarg

- Born: Long Beach, California (7/5/1968)
- Known for:
--- Larry Gopnik in "A Serious Man" (2009)
--- Mr. Perlman in "Call Me by Your Name" (2017)
--- Dr. Robert Hoffstetler in "The Shape of Water" (2017)

13 / 49
IMDB

Clint Eastwood

- Born: San Francisco, California (5/31/1930)
- Known for:
--- Frankie Dunn in "Million Dollar Baby" (2004)
--- Walt Kowalski in "Gran Torino" (2008)
--- Robert Kincaid in "The Bridges of Madison County" (1995)

14 / 49
Kevin Winter // Getty Images

Rami Malek

- Born: Los Angeles, California (5/12/1981)
- Known for:
--- Freddie Mercury in "Bohemian Rhapsody" (2018)
--- Elliot Alderson in "Mr. Robot" (2015-2019)
--- Louis Dega in "Papillon" (2017)

15 / 49
Eva Rinaldi // flickr

Will Ferrell

- Born: Irvine, California (7/16/1967)
- Known for:
--- Producer in "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby" (2006)
--- Producer in "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues" (2013)
--- Ron Burgundy in "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy" (2004)

You may also like: Highest-rated museums in California

16 / 49
OMDb

Darren Barnet

- Born: Los Angeles, California (4/27/1991)
- Known for:
--- Paxton Hall-Yoshida in "Never Have I Ever" (2020-2022)
--- Grant in "American Pie Presents: Girls' Rules" (2020)
--- Wilfred 'Freddy' Malick in "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D." (2020)

17 / 49
OMDb

Jonathan Majors

- Born: Lompoc, California (9/7/1989)
- Known for:
--- Atticus Freeman in "Lovecraft Country" (2020)
--- Montgomery Allen in "The Last Black Man in San Francisco" (2019)
--- Johnny 'Lil Man' Curry in "White Boy Rick" (2018)

18 / 49
OMDb

Ashley Zukerman

- Born: Santa Monica, California (12/30/1983)
- Known for:
--- Nick Goode in "Fear Street: Part One - 1994" (2021)
--- Charlie Isaacs in "Manhattan" (2014-2015)
--- Nate Sofrelli in "Succession" (2018-2021)

19 / 49
Boston Globe // Getty Images

Ben Affleck

- Born: Berkeley, California (8/15/1972)
- Known for:
--- Producer in "Argo" (2012)
--- Nick Dunne in "Gone Girl" (2014)
--- Doug MacRay in "The Town" (2010)

20 / 49
OMDb

Josh Brolin

- Born: Santa Monica, California (2/12/1968)
- Known for:
--- Thanos in "Avengers: Endgame" (2019)
--- Llewelyn Moss in "No Country for Old Men" (2007)
--- Thanos in "Avengers: Infinity War" (2018)

You may also like: Zip codes with the most expensive homes in California

21 / 49
OMDb

Mahershala Ali

- Born: Oakland, California (2/16/1974)
- Known for:
--- Remy Danton in "House of Cards" (2013-2016)
--- Cornell 'Cottonmouth' Stokes in "Luke Cage" (2016)
--- Tizzy in "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" (2008)

22 / 49
OMDb

Tony Goldwyn

- Born: Los Angeles, California (5/20/1960)
- Known for:
--- Carl Bruner in "Ghost" (1990)
--- Dean in "The Mechanic" (2011)
--- Colonel Bagley in "The Last Samurai" (2003)

23 / 49
Steve Granitz // Getty Images

James Franco

- Born: Palo Alto, California (4/19/1978)
- Known for:
--- Tommy in "The Disaster Artist" (2017)
--- Aron Ralston in "127 Hours" (2010)
--- Alien in "Spring Breakers" (2012)

24 / 49
OMDb

Beau Knapp

- Born: Los Angeles, California (4/17/1989)
- Known for:
--- Peter Jablonski in "Seven Seconds" (2018)
--- Knox in "Death Wish" (2018)
--- Jay in "Destroyer" (2018)

25 / 49
Gage Skidmore // Flickr

Chris Pine

- Born: Los Angeles, California (8/26/1980)
- Known for:
--- Kirk in "Star Trek" (2009)
--- Steve Trevor in "Wonder Woman" (2017)
--- Captain James T. Kirk in "Star Trek Beyond" (2016)

You may also like: Best colleges in California

26 / 49
OMDb

Jonah Hill

- Born: Los Angeles, California (12/20/1983)
- Known for:
--- Schmidt in "21 Jump Street" (2012)
--- Schmidt in "22 Jump Street" (2014)
--- Donnie Azoff in "The Wolf of Wall Street" (2013)

27 / 49
OMDb

Dean Stockwell

- Born: North Hollywood, Los Angeles, California (3/5/1936)
- Died: 11/7/2021
- Known for:
--- Admiral Al Calavicci in "Quantum Leap" (1989-1993)
--- Tony 'The Tiger' Russo in "Married to the Mob" (1988)
--- Walt Henderson in "Paris, Texas" (1984)

28 / 49
OMDb

LaKeith Stanfield

- Born: San Bernardino, California (8/12/1991)
- Known for:
--- Cassius Green in "Sorry to Bother You" (2018)
--- Lieutenant Elliott in "Knives Out" (2019)
--- Marcus in "Short Term 12" (2013)

29 / 49
Kevin Winter // Getty Images

Zac Efron

- Born: San Luis Obispo, California (10/18/1987)
- Known for:
--- Mike O'Donnell in "17 Again" (2009)
--- Troy Bolton in "High School Musical 3: Senior Year" (2008)
--- Phillip Carlyle in "The Greatest Showman" (2017)

30 / 49
OMDb

Val Kilmer

- Born: Los Angeles, California (12/31/1959)
- Known for:
--- Jim Morrison in "The Doors" (1991)
--- Simon Templar in "The Saint" (1997)
--- Gay Perry in "Kiss Kiss Bang Bang" (2005)

You may also like: See how much of its wind energy potential California uses

31 / 49
OMDb

Sam Rockwell

- Born: Daly City, California (11/5/1968)
- Known for:
--- Sam Bell in "Moon" (2009)
--- Dixon in "Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri" (2017)
--- Chuck Barris in "Confessions of a Dangerous Mind" (2002)

32 / 49
Jesse Grant // Getty Images

Sam Elliott

- Born: Sacramento, California (8/9/1944)
- Known for:
--- Bobby in "A Star Is Born" (2018)
--- Wade Garrett in "Road House" (1989)
--- Lee Hayden in "The Hero" (2017)

33 / 49
OMDb

Taylor Handley

- Born: Santa Barbara, California (6/1/1984)
- Known for:
--- Sonny in "Chasing Mavericks" (2012)
--- Dean in "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Beginning" (2006)
--- Deputy Dixon Lamb in "Vegas" (2012-2013)

34 / 49
OMDb

Colin Hanks

- Born: Sacramento, California (11/24/1977)
- Known for:
--- Preston in "King Kong" (2005)
--- Shaun Brumder in "Orange County" (2002)
--- Oliver in "The House Bunny" (2008)

35 / 49
OMDb

C. Thomas Howell

- Born: Los Angeles, California (12/7/1966)
- Known for:
--- Ponyboy Curtis in "The Outsiders" (1983)
--- Jim Halsey in "The Hitcher" (1986)
--- Tyler in "E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial" (1982)

You may also like: Most popular baby names for boys in California

36 / 49
OMDb

Mark-Paul Gosselaar

- Born: Panorama City, California (3/1/1974)
- Known for:
--- Peter Bash in "Franklin & Bash" (2011-2014)
--- Det. John Clark, Jr. in "NYPD Blue" (2001-2005)
--- Brad Wolgast in "The Passage" (2019)

37 / 49
Steve Granitz // Getty Images

Vin Diesel

- Born: Alameda County, California (7/18/1967)
- Known for:
--- Groot in "Guardians of the Galaxy" (2014)
--- Producer in "Furious 7" (2015)
--- Dominic Toretto in "The Fast and the Furious" (2001)

38 / 49
OMDb

Joseph Gordon-Levitt

- Born: Los Angeles, California (2/17/1981)
- Known for:
--- Arthur in "Inception" (2010)
--- Joe in "Looper" (2012)
--- Jon in "Don Jon" (2013)

39 / 49
OMDb

Clint Howard

- Born: Burbank, California (4/20/1959)
- Known for:
--- Ralakili in "Solo: A Star Wars Story" (2018)
--- Sy Liebergot - EECOM White in "Apollo 13" (1995)
--- Eaglebauer in "Rock 'n' Roll High School" (1979)

40 / 49
OMDb

Jack Black

- Born: Hermosa Beach, California (8/28/1969)
- Known for:
--- Dewey Finn in "School of Rock" (2003)
--- Barry Judd in "High Fidelity" (2000)
--- Nacho in "Nacho Libre" (2006)

You may also like: Most popular girl names in the 70s in California

41 / 49
Everett Collection // Shutterstock

Michael Richards

- Born: Culver City, California (7/24/1949)
- Known for:
--- Cosmo Kramer in "Seinfeld" (1989-1998)
--- Stanley Spadowski in "UHF" (1989)
--- Doug Beech in "Airheads" (1994)

42 / 49
OMDb

Rawson Marshall Thurber

- Born: San Francisco, California (2/9/1975)
- Known for:
--- Quiznos Guy in "Easy A" (2010)
--- Director in "Skyscraper" (2018)
--- Director in "Red Notice" (2021)

43 / 49
OMDb

Ryan Hurst

- Born: Santa Monica, California (6/19/1976)
- Known for:
--- Gerry Bertier in "Remember the Titans" (2000)
--- Lump Hudson in "The Ladykillers" (2004)
--- Sgt. Ernie Savage in "We Were Soldiers" (2002)

44 / 49
Alberto E. Rodriguez // Getty Images

Shia LaBeouf

- Born: Los Angeles, California (6/11/1986)
- Known for:
--- James in "Honey Boy" (2019)
--- Tyler in "The Peanut Butter Falcon" (2019)
--- Boyd 'Bible' Swan in "Fury" (2014)

45 / 49
OMDb

Armie Hammer

- Born: Los Angeles, California (8/28/1986)
- Known for:
--- Cameron Winklevoss in "The Social Network" (2010)
--- Oliver in "Call Me by Your Name" (2017)
--- John Reid (Lone Ranger) in "The Lone Ranger" (2013)

You may also like: Countries California exports the most goods to

46 / 49
Pinterest

Haley Joel Osment

- Born: Los Angeles, California (4/10/1988)
- Known for:
--- Cole Sear in "The Sixth Sense" (1999)
--- David in "A.I. Artificial Intelligence" (2001)
--- Trevor McKinney in "Pay It Forward" (2000)

47 / 49
Theo Wargo // Getty Images

Bryan Cranston

- Born: Hollywood, California (3/7/1956)
- Known for:
--- Walter White in "Breaking Bad" (2008-2013)
--- Hal in "Malcolm in the Middle" (2000-2006)
--- Jack O'Donnell in "Argo" (2012)

48 / 49
OMDb

Garret Dillahunt

- Born: Castro Valley, California (11/24/1964)
- Known for:
--- Armsby in "12 Years a Slave" (2013)
--- Francis Wolcott in "Deadwood" (2004-2005)
--- Wendell in "No Country for Old Men" (2007)

49 / 49
OMDb

Travis Van Winkle

- Born: Victorville, California (11/4/1982)
- Known for:
--- Trent in "Friday the 13th" (2009)
--- Trent in "Transformers" (2007)
--- Sonio in "Meet the Spartans" (2008)

Trending Now