Name: Jeffrey Dean Morgan
Born: 22 April 1966, Seattle, Washington, USA
Credits: Grey’s Anatomy / Watchmen / The Losers
Interest: Okay we all know Jeffrey Dean Morgan from the TV series Grey’s Anatomy. To be perfectly honest I can’t remember anything he did before that show. The whole Denny and Izzie storyline was one of the best of the series and I have to say Denny dying on that series was one of the best things that could have happened for JDM. He went through an amazing transformation to play an abusive ex-superhero in Zack Snyder’s superhero epic, Watchmen. He also starred in the much underrated The Losers.
Future projects: His future projects include the remake of Red Dawn, where he will play the Powers Boothe’s role. After that he will play a stalker to Hilary Swank in the thriller The Resident. Then he’ll play a bayou detective partnered with Sam Worthington in The Fields. The rumor is the script to The Fields is one of the best in Hollywood.
What he needs to succeed: Watchmen put JDM on the map but he needs to keep fighting to find those high profile roles. He needs to work with some visionary directors like a Sam Mendes or a Martin Scorsese. I think The Fields will be his first real movie and being paired with Sam Worthington definitely will bring him more high profile.
Name: Alex O’Loughlin
Born: 24 August 1976, Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Credits: The Back-up Plan / August Rush / The Holiday
Interest: Alex O’Loughlin placed # 6 on my list last year. I still Alex as an untapped resource on television. He has been pigeon-holed into his CBS contract. For me it was his turn as a vamp-detective in Moonlight that made me jump on Alex’s bandwagon. He then showed up as a maniac on TV’s Criminal Minds & in the bomb, Whiteout. Alex surprised me again in the romantic-comedy The Back-Up Plan where he is an unexpected dad opposite J.Lo. That movie was better that it should have been in my eyes and it had a lot to do with Alex.
Future projects: Next up, Alex returns to TV for the remake of Hawaii Five-O. All the signs point to this being the show that will finally get Alex out there. Every series he has been in thus far has cratered after one season. Hawaii looks very very different. Check out the clip below! Damn this show looks like fun!
What he needs to succeed: Hawaii Five-O has to sing and become a breakout hit of the new season. That will bring Alex more movie roles. Personally, I want to see Alex in a major adventure movie. I want him to deliver that charisma he has and save the world. He’s a leading man just waiting to strike.
Name: Chris Hemsworth
Born: 11 August 1983, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
Credits: Ca$h / Star Trek
Interest: Chris caught director Kenneth Branagh’s eye when he saw him in a little indie film called Cas$h starring Sean Bean. If you see the movie, I am not sure what Branagh saw that would want to make him cast Chris as Thor.
Chris isn’t big in the movie, his acting is very subdued and well, he’s a wimp in the movie. Geeks first noticed the young Australian as Kirk’s dad, who had to pilot the first Starship Enterprise to it’s doom so he could rescue his family in Star Trek.
Neither of these roles sold me on Chris being Thor. That changed.
Future projects: Like Patrick Swayze was the star of the original Red Dawn, Chris is the star of the remake. But thanks to the troubles with MGM, Red Dawn might come out after Chris carries the hammer of Thor into the Marvel Movie Universe (MMU).
The amount of bulking up Chris has done for Thor, his sure size, and ability to look like he can kick major ass makes Thor a must see already. I have a friend who says how can you get excited about a dude with long hair and carries a hammer.
What is he a mechanic or a biker? No, friend that would be Vincent D’Nofrio in Adventures in Babysitting. This Thor is the real deal! And after that Comic Con trailer I am stoked and impressed with Chris.
What he needs to succeed: Thor needs to be huge. (pardon the pun!) The MMU rides on his shoulders in May.
Name: Michael Fassbender
Born: 2 April 1977, Heidelberg, Germany
Credits: Band of Brothers / Hex / 300 / Fish Tank / Inglorious Basterds
Interest: I first noticed Michael Fassbender about 10 years ago when he was part of the ensemble cast of Band of Brothers. Then I saw him as Azazeal, England’s version of Angel the vampire in Hex. Then there were his supporting roles in 300 and Blood Creek. Michael’s greatest performance to date was in the little seen Hunger where he played an Irish republican hunger striker Bobby Sands. If you thought Christian Bale in The Machinist was creepy, you ain’t seen nothing yet. Sadly no awards came knocking for Michael, well except for Quentin Tarrantino who cast Michael in his Inglorious Basterds. That same year Michael would get critically acclaimed for the indie flick Fish Tank. Even with this impressive resume, no one knows who Michael is. That could change, very soon.
Future projects: Michael will return to grimy, men on their last nerve characters this fall with Neil Marshall’s grisly roman epid Centurion. Then he will dorn a top hat as he seduces the title character in Jane Eyre. After that he will put on his thinking cap as he will play famous psychologist Carl Jung in David Cronenberg’s A Dangerous Method. And on top of these impressive smaller features he’ll have to don a purple helmet as he becomes Magneto in the rejuvenated X-Men: First Class.
What she needs to succeed: Unlike many A-List actors, Michael has a lineup of movies that any actor would die for. If he stays the course he could become one of the greatest character actors working today. Would that be such a bad thing?
Name: Joseph Gordon Levitt
Born: 17 February 1981, Los Angeles, California, USA
Credits: The Lookout / 500 Days of Summer / GI Joe: Rise of Cobra / Inception
Interest: Okay we all know where JGL started. He was the youngest member of the classic 90s sitcom 3rd Rock from the Sun. But unlike lots of child actors, JGL stuck around after the party was done. (ie: whatever happened to those Home Improvement kids?) But for me JGL’s career goes back even further. Didja know he was one of the stars of the 1991 remake of Dark Shadows, or that he co-starred in a movie with Brad Pitt or that 3rd Rock was not his first sitcom? Matter of a fact if you go back far enough, JGL has been around over two decades. His first real jump to the big screen came with the rom-com 10 Things I Hate About You co-starring Heath Ledger. But after 3rd Rock wrapped, JGL dove into dark demanding projects. The first was 2001’s Manic which still effects me to this day. JGL plays a youth who suffers from a rage disorder and is sent to a mental institution. He followed that with other reckless youth picts like Mysterious Skin, Havoc and Brick. He followed Brick with the his critically heralded performance in The Lookout and well, hasn’t looked back. Stop Loss, Miracle at St Anna, Brothers Bloom and finally 500 Days of Summer. JGL is hitting them out of the park lately especially after the success of this summer’s Inception. His track record is so amazing I will forgive him for GI Joe. He was the worst part about that flick. And that is saying something.
Future projects: First up JGL will play a guy who fights off cancer in Live With It co-starring Anna Kendrick, then he will go action hero as a bike messenger being hunted by a dirty cop in Premium Rush co-starring Jamie Chung. That movie is written and directed by David Koepp. After that he will reteam with director Rian Johnson (Brick, Brothers Bloom) for Looper co-starring Bruce Willis. Oh, and I also better mention that JGL is rumored to be up for Christopher Nolan’s 3rd Batman as The Riddler.
What he needs to succeed: Hollywood is starting to open up to this new phenom. His plate isn’t that cluttered yet but once the wave from Inception finally kicks in JGL is going to be thrust forward. Personally I love where his career is going and I think he has an Oscar in him. What role, what movie? It is just not there yet. But he will have his time at the podium, just wait!