What 13 Stars, With the Longest Careers, Looked Like When They Were Young

2 years ago

In 2020, the estimated expected career duration for women was 33.2 years while for men it was 38 years. But, for some actors and actresses, 38 years doesn’t seem to be enough, and they decide to keep working for as long as they can stay relevant. And a few of them even kept their careers in bloom for more than 80 years.

We at Bright Side are grateful for these stars’ commitment, because if all of them retired young, who would then play the gorgeous grandmas and grandpas on screen.

1. Jeff Bridges

Jeff Bridges, also known as The Dude for his role in the movie The Big Lebowski was born in 1949 into a prominent acting family. His first screen debut was when he was only 1-year-old in the movie The Company She Keeps. In his youth, Bridges also occasionally appeared on his father’s shows Sea Hunt and The Lloyd Bridges Show.

Even though Jeff had been acting since he was a baby, he didn’t make his big break until 1971 in the movie The Last Picture Show for which he was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor.

To date, Jeff Bridges has starred in 93 movies and TV shows, and it doesn’t seem that he plans to retire anytime soon.

2. Angela Lansbury

Unlike many actors, Angela was lucky enough to have her big break in her first movie Gaslight which got her nominated for an Oscar. Lansbury didn’t seem to settle for a nomination only, so, the following year, in 1945, she won a Golden Globe for the movie The Picture of Dorian Gray.

But what really made her famous was the TV show Murder, She Wrote in 1984 — for which she received Emmy nominations every year the show was aired.

Angela is 96 years old now, and since 1944 she starred in 112 movies and TV shows.

3. Cloris Leachman

Cloris’s first credit role on-screen was in 1948 on the TV series The Ford Theatre Hour. Over the next few decades, Cloris Leachman had several successful roles, but she reached the height of her career in 1970 for her role as Phyllis Lindstrom on The Mary Tyler Moore Show.

Her successful moments didn’t stop there. 2 years later, Leachman won an Academy Award for best- supporting actress for her role as Ruth Popper in the movie The Last Picture Show.

Cloris’s 7-decade career ended when she sadly passed away in January 2021 at age 94. Over the years, this Oscar-winning actress starred in a whopping 287 movies and TV shows with Not to Forget being her last one, which was released in 2021.

4. June Lockhart

June was born in 1925 and her first professional debut was when she was only 8 years old in a Metropolitan Opera. However, her first screen appearance was a few years later in the movie A Christmas Carol.

Even at the age of 96, Lockhart still keeps her career going. To date, June has starred in 172 movies and TV shows and she is best known for her role as a TV mother on the CBS series Lassie.

5. Anthony Hopkins

Anthony Hopkins, also known as the infamous Hannibal Lecter for his role in the movie Silence of the Lambs, has been working as an actor for more than 60 years. His first screen appearance was in 1960 in the TV series A Matter of Degree and since then, he earned 6 nominations for Academy Awards and won 2 of them.

So far, in his 84 years of life, Anthony starred in more than 140 movies and TV shows and is working on a few new projects at the moment.

6. Betty White

The Golden Girls star, Betty White, entertained many generations for 82 years. Her TV career started in 1952 when she starred in her own show Life With Elizabeth, as the lead actress. Throughout the years, White appeared in more than 120 movies and TV shows and won 5 Primetime Emmys.

In 2013, Betty also earned the Guinness World Records title for longest TV career for a female entertainer. Sadly, she passed away on December 31, 2021, only a few weeks away from her 100th birthday.

7. Eva Marie Saint

In a career spanning 74 years, Eva Marie Saint has starred in 84 movies and TV shows and has won an Academy Award and a Primetime Emmy Award. Her first screen debut was in 1947 in the movie A Christmas Carol but she didn’t become recognizable until her role as Edie Doyle in the movie On the Waterfront in 1954.

Eva Marie is also known for starring in the movie North by Northwest, Superman Returns, Nothing in Common, and many others. Saint retired in 2018.

8. Max von Sydow

The Star Wars star Max von Sydow has been working as an actor for 70 years and has appeared in more than 160 movies and TV shows in multiple languages. His first screen appearance was in 1949 and he retired in 2018 at the age of 89.

In his long, fruitful career, Max earned 2 Oscar nominations for Best Actor in a Leading Role and for Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role.

9. Rita Moreno

The actress, dancer, and singer Rita Moreno, at the age of 90, can proudly look back at her 79-year-long career. She’s one of the few performers to become an EGOT — Rita has won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Grammy, and a Tony.

She appeared in the movie So Young, So Bad for the first time in 1950, and throughout her career, Moreno landed some pretty successful roles. She’s recognizable for her roles in the movies Popi, West Side Story, and the TV series One Day at a Time and Oz.

There are a lot more movies Rita is recognized for, but it would take forever to mention them all as she’s starred in more than 160 movies and TV shows so far.

10. Jackie Chan

Jackie Chan is one of the most popular action film actors of all time with a 60-year-long career. So far, Chan has starred in more than 140 films and TV series. He’s most recognizable for his unique identity, combining screwball comedy with his martial arts.

He started his acting career by appearing as a child actor at age 8, but years later he became a successful stuntman for Bruce Lee. The movie Snake in the Eagle’s Shadow was the one that rose Chan to fame in 1978 and, since then, he’s had many hit movies.

11. Barbara Perry

Barbara’s acting career was one of the longest in history, lasting for 84 years. She first appeared on screen in 1933 at age 12 in the movie Counsellor at Law. Perry retired in 2017 and passed away 2 years later at age 97. Throughout her acting career, Barbara appeared in more than 80 movies and TV shows.

12. George Hamilton

George’s first appearance was in 1958 in the mini TV series The Veil. So far, in his 70-year-long career as an actor, Hamilton won a Golden Globe, earned 2 additional Golden Globe nominations, and 2 more nominations for BAFTA Awards.

Throughout the years, Hamilton starred in more than 100 movies and TV shows and is still working on new projects.

13. Kurt Russell

Kurt Russell started as a child actor and his career dates back 60 years. His first on-screen appearance was on the TV show Dennis the Menace in 1962, but his first big role came a year later, where he played the title role in The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters.

In 1979, Russell had his big break when he played the role of Elvis Presley in the movie Elvis for which he earned an Emmy nomination. To date, Kurt starred in more than 100 movies and TV shows and landed many iconic roles.

Do you have a favorite among these stars? If you were an actor or actress, would you have preferred to retire young or work until your legs could no longer hold you?


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