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9 Most Famous Irish Actors In Hollywood

Do you know that there are many famous Irish actors that are known internationally?

It’s a fact that Ireland is a beautiful country with such magical landscape, amazing food and drinks, famous Irish hospitality, and even more famous Irish literature.

You simply won’t run out of good things to say about the Emerald Isle!

And to add to the list, Ireland is also home to a good number of performers who have made it big in the international scene.

Among these are famous actors who have made – and continue to make – their homeland proud.

9 Most Famous Irish Actors in Hollywood

Here’s a list of 9 most popular Irish actors in Hollywood.

1. Liam Neeson

liam neeson
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Liam Neeson

Liam Neeson’s first ambition was to be a teacher. But thanks to a pretty unforgettable event on his first day as a practice teacher, he was pushed to turn to drama.

Now with the teaching ambition gone, Neeson became a stage actor in Belfast and, later on, Broadway.

His rise to fame, however, took place in 1992, when American film director Steven Spielberg offered the Irish stage actor the role of Oskar Schindler in Schindler’s List

And the rest, they say, is history.

Liam Neeson would star in the massively successful action film Taken in 2008.

Born in Ballymena in the County Antrim of Northern Ireland on June 7th, 1952, Liam Neeson is one of the most popular Irish people. He has been nominated for several acting awards and was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II in 2000.

2. Pierce Brosnan

Pierce Brosnan is one of the famous Irish actors

Pierce Brosnan

Pierce Brosnan is best known in his role as James Bond in the Bond film series, starring in four films from mid-1990s until early 2000s. He also player the character in multiple video games.

Born in May 16, 1953 in Drogheda, County Louth, Ireland, Brosnan is not only a renowned actor; he is also a film producer, an environmental activist, and an Ambassador for UNICEF Ireland since 2001.

Brosnan was an artist before he became an actor.

After leaving school, he pursued a career in art and worked as an illustrator. Today he sells his paintings to raise money for charitable causes. 

3. Colin Farrell

Colin Farrell

Colin Farrell

One of Ireland’s biggest stars in Hollywood, Colin Farrell’s acting career is packed with unforgettable roles.

This includes a rookie hitman hired to shoot a priest during a confession from the movie In Bruges, a role which won him a Best Performance by an Actor trophy at the Golden Globe Awards.

Farrell has been further nominated and won some more acting awards for both film and television.

The Irish actor was born on 31 of May, 1976 in an affluent suburb called Castleknock some 8 km west of the center of the city of Dublin, Ireland. His father and uncle both played professional football.

Farrell became an official Ambassador of the Homeless World Cup in 2015. This social organization uses steet football to inspire homeless people and advocate the end of homelessness.

4. Michael Fassbender

Michael Fassbender

Michael Fassbender

Michael Fassbender was born to a German father and an Irish mother on April 2, 1977.

He was born in Heidelberg, then in West Germany, but moved to Killarney in County Kerry, Ireland, at age two.

His mother, a native of Larne, County Antrim, is said to be a great-grand-niece of Michael Collins, an Irish leader during the War of Independence. 

Nicknamed “Fassy,” the Irish-German actor is best known for his deep, calm voice mixed with emotionally intense performances and he played in some of the most critically acclaimed and commercially successful movies in Hollywood.

At home in a story from any period, he played Rochester in the film rendition of Jane Eyre, Jobs in the biopic Steve Jobs, as a Royal Marines lieutenant in Quentin Tarantino’s war epic, Inglourious Basterds and as Edwin Epps, a heartless slaveholder in the award-winning period-drama film 12 Years A Slave.

However, we know him best as the Marvel supervillain Magneto in the X-Men film series. 

5. Jamie Dornan

Jamie Dornan

Jamie Dornan

Born on May 1st, 1982 in Holywood, County Down, Northern Ireland, Jamie Dornan’s career started as a model in 2001, appearing in campaigns for Calvin Klein, Hugo Boss, and Dior Homme.

Dornan began acting five years later, winning the Irish Film and Television Award for Best Actor in Television and was nominated for BAFTA for Best Actor for his role in the 2013-2016 crime drama series The Fall.

His stardom, however, was achieved when he landed the role of Christian Grey in the movie adaptation of the bestselling books, the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy.

6. Daniel Day-Lewis

Daniel Day-Lewis

Daniel Day-Lewis

The Anglo-Irish poet laureate Cecil Day-Lewis’ youngest son, Sir Daniel Day-Lewis was born on April 29, 1957 in London, England, with dual British and Irish citizenship.

Day-Lewis acted in both film and theater. Some of his best known movies are The Last of the Mohicans, In the Name of the Father, and There Will Be Blood.

He has received a total of 212 nominations throughout his career, winning 139 of them – including 3 Oscars. 

Day-Lewis was knighted by the Duke of Cambridge in November of 2014. 

One of the few most selective actors in the film industry, he is very protective of his private life. He lives in Annamoe, County Wicklow, Ireland.

7. Kenneth Branagh

Kenneth Branagh

Kenneth Branagh

Actor, director, writer, and producer Kenneth Branagh attributes his “love of words” to his Irish heritage.

Born in Belfast, Northern Ireland, on December 10, 1960, his family moved to Reading, Berkshire, England, when he was nine.

Branagh is known for his movie adaptations of Shakespeare and as the first man to be nominated for five different categories at the Academy Awards. 

He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2012 for services to drama and to the community in Northern Ireland.

8. Jonathan Rhys Meyers

Jonathan Rhys Meyers

Jonathan Rhys Meyers

Born Jonathan Michael Francis O’Keeffe to a family of musicians in Dublin, Ireland, on July 27, 1977, Jonathan Rhys Meyers began acting in 1994. 

Rhys Meyer’s first breakthrough came when he received a Chopard Trophy at the Cannes Film Festival for starring in Woody Allen’s 2005 drama Match Point.

Two years later, he was nominated for the Golden Globe for Best Actor in a Television Drama for his role as Henry VIII in The Tudors.

He also played a role in Mission Impossible III as an IMF Agent and worked side by side with Tom Cruise. 

Rhys Meyers is also a model and has pursued a career in music, following in his family’s footsteps.

9. Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy

Cillian Murphy started out as a singer and pianist of several Irish rock bands in his early 20s.

His professional acting career began on the stage in September 1996, when he played the part of a volatile Cork teenager in Disco Pigs.

In 2002, he played the lead role in the horror film 28 Days Later, as Dr. Jonathan Crane aka Scarecrow in the 2005 Batman Begins, Robert Michael Fischer in Inception, a soldier in the war-epic Dunkirk and as Leonard Miller in the action-thriller film Anna

Born on May 25, 1976, Murphy is a native of Cork, Ireland. He lives in Dublin with his family and expresses no desire to move to Hollywood.

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