15 Celebrities in Their 70s Who Still Amaze Us With Their Performances
Time spares no one, and it flies by without us even noticing it. It happens all the time. However, just like with everything, there is always an exception to this rule. The following celebrities have managed to retain both grace and style while continuing to win the hearts of audiences and critics with their brilliant performances. Thus, they have shown us that it is possible to have a long and prolific acting career despite the age restrictions that often exist within the entertainment industry.
Bright Side wants to show you the actors and actresses who have postponed their retirement date to continue to achieve great things in both film and television.
1. Anthony Hopkins
Anthony Hopkins played one of the most popular villains of all time and rose to international fame for the excellent performance he delivered as Hannibal Lecter, starting with Silence of the Lambs. However, his debut in the industry was with the film The Lion in Winter (1968). A few years later, in 2020, he starred in the film The Father, which gave him an Oscar, making him the oldest actor to receive this award, at the age of 83.
2. Meryl Streep
At 72, Meryl Streep has become one of the best actresses of our time and probably of Hollywood’s history as well. She has worked on numerous productions and has won both awards and nominations along the way. The performance she delivered for Kramer vs. Kramer gave her her first Oscar. One of her recent roles that captivated audiences across the globe was that of Miranda Priestly, in The Devil Wears Prada (2006). More recently, she starred in The Prom and Let Them All Talk both of which were released in 2020. She is also working on the film Don’t Look Up.
3. Glenn Close
Glenn Close began her acting career in the mid-’70s. She rose to stardom after she took part in the thriller Fatal Attraction (1987), alongside actor Michael Douglas. The 74-year-old actress has established herself as a Hollywood icon not only for her numerous performances but for her versatility as well, both of which have led her to win several awards and an abundance of recognition. Last year, she appeared in the feature film Hillbilly, a rural elegy.
4. Samuel L. Jackson
You might be surprised to learn that Samuel L. Jackson is 72, but it’s true. Not only that, but he has appeared in more than 100 films during his acting career. Among some of his best-known performances, you’ll find Jurassic Park (1993) and Tarantino’s Pulp Fiction (1994). He recently agreed to take part in the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Nick Fury in S.H.I.E.L.D. This year, you will see him appear in movies like The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard 2 and Spiral: From the Book of Saw.
5. Julie Andrews
The 85-year-old actress is best known for her roles as Mary Poppins in Mary Poppins (1964) and Maria Rainer from The Sound of Music (1965). However, she captivated the audience once again with her performance as Queen Clarisse Renaldi in The Princess Diaries. In 2017, she made her final screen appearance in the children’s educational series Julie’s Greenroom. Andrews continues to work in film and television as a voice actress for several animated movies. Most recently, she narrated for Lady Whistledown in Netflix’s series Bridgerton.
6. Al Pacino
There was no way we wouldn’t include veteran actor Al Pacino on our list. He became one of the most iconic movie stars of his generation thanks to his acting skills and versatility. During his long acting career, he’s won Oscar, Emmy, and Tony awards. This is known as the “triple crown of acting” by some. His most memorable performance was when he played Michael Corleone in The Godfather trilogy and it was also the role that launched him to fame. In 2021, at the age of 81, he became a Golden Globe nominee for his role in Hunters.
7. Maggie Smith
Maggie Smith has now been in the film, theater, and television industry for more than 60 years. This veteran of acting became popular among young moviegoers thanks to her role as Professor Minerva McGonagall in the Harry Potter saga. However, back in 1969, she appeared in the film The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, a role for which she was highly praised not just because of how well she played the character but because she was very good-looking too. Now that she’s 86 years old she’s looking better than ever, and she’s still very active. In fact, she’s back to work with the historical drama Downton Abbey.
8. Judi Dench
Judi Dench, 86, made her debut in the industry primarily with theater roles. She was such a brilliant actress that she then entered the world of film and television. Finally, she reached worldwide fame after she played M in the James Bond saga together with Pierce Brosnan. She also won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for playing Queen Elizabeth I in Passionate Shakespeare (1998). In 2020, she participated in Artemis Fowl, and an adaptation of Eoin Colfer’s book and in the film Six Minutes to Midnight. She then worked on the film Belfast, which will soon be released.
9. Morgan Freeman
This stage, film, and television actor has a long career and it’s far from being over. Now 84, Morgan Freeman has appeared in a very big number of productions, all very prestigious. He is known for his work in Lean on Me (1989), Million Dollar Baby (2005), and the 3 installments of the Batman saga directed by Christopher Nolan where he plays Lucius Fox: Batman Begins, Batman: The Dark Knight and Batman: The Dark Knight Rises. In 2019, he appeared in the film Angel Has Fallen. And he also took part along, with Samuel L. Jackson, in The Hitman’s Wife’s Bodyguard.
10. Ellen Burstyn
Ellen Burstyn was born in 1932 and originally, she was meant to be an actress on Broadway where she started her career back in 1957. However, fate had other plans for her. Her big break in Hollywood came when she was chosen to take part in The Last Picture Show (1971). Later, she won the Oscar for Alice Doesn’t Live Here Anymore. In 2020, she caught our attention and admiration again with her performance in Pieces of a Woman. And the good news is that this year, she will appear as the lead in the comedy Queen Bees.
11. Helen Mirren
There’s absolutely no reason to think that one of the most popular actresses in the industry, Helen Mirren, now 75 years old, has lost her charm. Not even the passage of time can make her stop chasing her dreams. She won all 4 major film awards (Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globe, and Screen Actors Guild Award) for the film The Queen (2006), where she portrays Queen Elizabeth II of England. Recently, she appeared in the miniseries Catherine the Great as another famous leading lady.
12. Ian McKellen
Just like Helen Mirren, British actor Ian McKellen is another titan of the industry. He is highly acclaimed by audiences for his role as Gandalf in The Lord of the Rings trilogy and its prequel trilogy as well, The Hobbit. He also appeared as the mutant Magneto in the X-Men saga, another character highly appreciated by Marvel fans. Before achieving fame, he played a leading role in Priest of Love (1981). And as if that wasn’t enough, in 2019 he actually starred alongside Helen Mirren in The Good Liar. At 82 years old, he still hasn’t stopped working — in 2021 he took part in the staging of Hamlet.
13. Alan Arkin
The American actor, musician, and director has built a solid career since his debut back in the 1950s. Hollywood has changed a lot since back then and finally in 1966, he earned an Oscar and a Golden Globe nomination for Best Actor for The Russians Are Coming, the Russians Are Coming. One of his most memorable performances was as the grandfather in Little Miss Sunshine. In 2022, he will work as a voice actor in the animated film Minions: The Rise of Gru.
14. Betty White
Betty White is known to be the actress with the longest career in television. This is not just hearsay, she’s been acting for 8 decades and she actually holds the official record provided by the Guinness Book of World Records in 2018. The American actress, comedian, former model, activist, and producer gained international recognition for her role in the TV sitcom The Golden Girls. She is also known for her role as Granny in The Proposal (2009) and her participation in the series Hot in Cleveland. In 2019, she voiced Bitey White, a toy tiger named after her, in the animated movie Toy Story 4.
15. Michael Caine
This prolific actor has appeared in more than 150 films, making him an icon in the entertainment industry. Some of his most memorable performances include the ones he delivered in films like Alfie (1966), Educating Rita (1983), and The Cider House Rules (1999). Younger generations know him for his roles as Alfred in the Batman saga directed by Christopher Nolan. One of his last roles was for another film directed by Christopher Nolan, Tenet.
Which of these celebrities is your favorite? Of your friends, acquaintances, or family members, who love their work enough to continue doing it after the age of 70?