20 famous actors you might know by face but not by name
Some actors seem to be everywhere ... but you still don't know their names.
Clea DuVall has been in major projects since the '90s, but you might not recognize her name.
Toby Jones and Denis O'Hare have Emmy nominations, but you probably only recognize their faces.
You might recognize John Michael Higgins from films like "Pitch Perfect" or "Best In Show," or one of his many bit parts on TV shows.
John Michael Higgins has played small parts in dozens of TV shows including "Seinfeld," "Boston Legal," "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation," "Glee," "Community," "Switched At Birth," and "Drunk History."
He has also appeared in commercials for DirecTV and Old Navy.
Higgins most recently acted in the Netflix original film "The Curse of Bridge Hollow," and he continues to voice various characters on "Bob's Burgers."
Three-time Emmy winner Margo Martindale's acting career spans four decades, but you may know her more by face than by name.
Margo Martindale has appeared in "August: Osage County," "The Hollars," and "Mrs. America," and played smaller parts such as "Woman on Shuttle" in "Downsizing."
She has been nominated for six acting Emmys, and she has won three: for "Justified" in 2011 and "The Americans" in 2015 and 2016.
Her latest roles include Ranger Liz in "Cocaine Bear," Elizabeth in the Showtime series "Your Honor," and Mo in Netflix's "The Watcher."
Hector Elizondo is perhaps most recognizable from his role in "The Princess Diaries."
Hector Elizondo has played small roles in "Pretty Woman" and "Runaway Bride," though his standout performance was as the scene-stealing royal bodyguard Joe in both "Princess Diaries" films.
He most recently appeared in the television shows "B Positive" and "Last Man Standing."
Luis Guzmán recently appeared in episodes of "Wednesday" and "Poker Face."
Luis Guzmán's onscreen debut was in "Short Eyes" in 1977. Since then, he has held one-off roles in episodes of "Law & Order," "NYPD Blue," "Early Edition," "Frasier," and "Community."
He is best known for appearing in the 1997 film "Boogie Nights" and "Traffic" in 2000.
Elizabeth Reaser appeared in TV shows ranging from "The Haunting of Hill House" to "Grey's Anatomy."
Most people will recognize Elizabeth Reaser from her role as Shirley Crain in the Netflix hit "The Haunting of Hill House" in 2018, but the actress has a long list of credits that date back to the early 2000s.
Reaser appeared in "Grey's Anatomy" for 18 episodes, "Law & Order: Criminal Intent" for two episodes, and "The Good Wife" for seven episodes.
She also played the mother vampire, Esme Cullen, in the "Twilight" franchise, opposite Kristen Stewart.
More recently, Reaser played Kathleen Willey in "American Crime Story" and Olivia Winslow in "The Handmaid's Tale."
Denis O'Hare is a Primetime Emmy-nominated actor for his work in "American Horror Story," and has almost 30 years of acting under his belt.
Denis O'Hare's acting career spans nearly three decades, and he's racked up dozens of film and TV credits in this time. Some of his most notable roles include John Briggs in 2008's "Milk," Dr. Jonathan Steele in 2008's "Changeling," Duke Monahan in 2009's "Duplicity," and Dr. Sevard in 2013's "Dallas Buyers Club."
However, most recognize O'Hare from his work on FX's "American Horror Story," in which he has played multiple parts. He has been nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award twice for his work on the show.
More recently, O'Hare has appeared in "Big Little Lies," "This Is Us," and "The Nevers."
Heather Matarazzo is still best known for her part in "The Princess Diaries," but she's been in a slew of other things.
Most people will recognize Heather Matarazzo as the dorky friend opposite Anne Hathaway in the "Princess Diaries" movies from 2001 and 2004. But many don't know Matarazzo has appeared in a slew of TV shows and movies since her breakout role.
She took bit roles in 2004's cult classic "Saved!" 2007's "Hostel: Part II," 2011's "Mangus!" 2015's "Sisters," 2016's Girl Flu," and 2016's "Culling Hens."
Clea DuVall has been in movies and TV shows for decades.
Clea DuVall's big break came in 1998 when she was cast in "The Faculty" opposite Elijah Wood and Josh Hartnett. By 2000, she appeared in two more cult classics: "But I'm a Cheerleader" and "Girl, Interrupted."
Since then, DuVall appeared in several TV shows, including "Carnivàle," "Heroes," "American Horror Story," and "The Lizzie Borden Chronicles."
Recently, she has appeared in HBO's "Veep" and Hulu's "The Handmaid's Tale." In both of these shows, she plays a lesbian character — something DuVall has become known for.
Toby Jones is a Primetime Emmy-nominated actor for his portrayal of Alfred Hitchcock, and he has been in several blockbusters.
Toby Jones jumped into Hollywood in 2006, with his breakthrough portrayal of Truman Capote in "Infamous" opposite Sandra Bullock, Gwyneth Paltrow, and Sigourney Weaver. After that, Jones appeared as a supporting actor in several movies, including 2008's "Frost/Nixon," 2011's "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy," 2012's "The Hunger Games," and 2018's "Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom."
Jones also appeared in several TV shows, which include "Agent Carter" and "Doctor Who." In 2012, he was nominated for a Golden Globe and a Primetime Emmy for his portrayal of Alfred Hitchcock in HBO's "The Girl."
From "Step Brothers" to "Bad Moms," Kathryn Hahn has been in some of the biggest comedies of the last few years.
Although Kathryn Hahn started her acting career on crime drama "Crossing Jordan" in 2001, she has transitioned into a comedic actress. Hahn has acted in some of the most popular comedies of the last two decades, including 2003's "How to Lose a Guy in Ten Days," 2004's "Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy," 2008's "Step Brothers," 2013's "We're the Millers," and 2016's "Bad Moms."
Hahn has also appeared in the Amazon series "Transparent," for which she earned a Primetime Emmy nomination.
Beth Grant may be best known for her role in the "Mindy Project," but she appeared in many big movies before then.
Beth Grant's list of credits is lengthy. She has appeared in such popular films as "Donnie Darko," "Speed," "Rain Main," "Flight Liners," "Little Miss Sunshine," "No Country for Old Men," "Speed," and "The Artist."
Grant's career also expands to television, as she has appeared in "Jericho," "Pushing Daisies," and "Mockingbird Lane."
Her most visible role to date was the politically incorrect and crass Beverly in the "Mindy Project," which ended in 2017.
Giancarlo Esposito is most recognizable among "Breaking Bad" fans, but he's been in many other projects.
For those who do know Giancarlo Esposito, you probably recognize him from "Breaking Bad" and its spin-off show, "Better Call Saul," in which Esposito plays Gus Fring, a restaurant owner who secretly sells drugs.
Esposito is no stranger to television, though. He has appeared in "Dear White People" for 23 episodes, "Once Upon a Time" for 14 episodes, and "The Get Down" for 10 episodes.
Most recently, he played Adam Clayton Powell in "Godfather of Harlem."
Julie Gonzalo is most recognizable for her role in "Veronica Mars," but that's far from the only thing she's been in.
Julie Gonzalo started her acting career in the early 2000s, taking bit roles in TV shows and movies. She first appeared in 2003's "Freaky Friday" opposite Lindsay Lohan and went on to appear in 2004's "Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story" and 2004's "A Cinderella Story."
Her biggest role came in 2004 when she played Parker Lee in "Veronica Mars," a role she reprised in the show's 2019 reboot.
She played Pamela in TNT's "Dallas" from 2012 to 2014, and Andrea Rojas in "Supergirl" from 2019 to 2021.
Melanie Lynskey has played several side characters, including her recurring role in "Two and a Half Men," although she has been praised for her more prominent roles in recent years.
Melanie Lynskey has made a career out of playing side characters in a long list of movies and TV shows.
In the early 2000s, she appeared in films with big celebrities like "Ever After: A Cinderella Story" opposite Drew Barrymore, "Sweet Home Alabama" opposite Reese Witherspoon, and "Flags of Our Fathers" opposite Clint Eastwood.
She has also taken bit roles in "Away We Go" in 2009, "Up in the Air" in 2009," and "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" in 2012.
On TV, Lynskey acted in "Two and a Half Men" as Rose for 63 episodes, and on HBO's "Togetherness."
Most recently, she played Kathleen on the HBO series "The Last of Us," Shauna in "Yellowjackets," and Betty Gore in "Candy." She also appeared as Leonardo DiCaprio's wife in "Don't Look Up."
Remember Giovanni Ribisi from "Friends"? He's done a lot since then — and a lot before.
Most will remember Giovanni Ribisi from "Friends," when he played Phoebe's simple-minded brother. However, Ribisi had a television acting career before appearing in the hit sitcom. He played Jeff Billings on "The Wonder Years," Duffy Guthrie in "The New Leave It to Beaver," and Cory Kupkus in "My Two Dads."
After "Friends," Ribisi appeared in blockbusters like 2009's "Avatar," 2012's "Ted," and 2014's "Selma."
He starred in Bryan Cranston's "Sneaky Pete" as Marius from 2015 to 2019 and reprised his role as Parker Selfridge in "Avatar: The Way of Water" in 2022.
Meagan Good started as a child actor and went on to become the love interest in "Stomp the Yard."
Meagan Good was a child star in the late '90s, appearing in shows like "Touched by an Angel" in 1997, "The Parent 'Hood" in 1998, "Moesha" in 2000, and "The Steve Harvey Show" in 2000.
Good's career did not stop when she grew up, though. She continued to take on roles on television like "The Game" in 2011, "Californication" in 2012, and "Minority Report" in 2015.
Good also appeared in a number of movies like "Stomp the Yard" in 2007, "One Missed Call" in 2008, "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues" in 2013, and "Think Like a Man Too" in 2014.
Most recently, she's appeared in DC's "Shazam!" as Super Hero Darla and "Harlem."
Gary Cole has been acting since the early '80s, but is best-known for his parts in "The Brady Bunch Movie" and "Dodgeball."
Gary Cole began his career in television, lending his acting chops to projects like "Fatal Vision" in 1984, "American Playhouse" in 1984, and "First Steps" in 1985. His big break came in 1995, however, when he played Mike Brady in "The Brady Bunch Movie," and continued to play the part in the subsequent films.
In the 2000s, Cole began to shift towards more comedic roles, appearing in 2004's "Win a Date with Tad Hamilton!" and "Dodgeball: a True Underdog Story." In 2006, he acted in "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby" and in "Pineapple Express" in 2008.
Cole also has a lengthy list of television credits, which include "Arrested Development," "Desperate Housewives," "Entourage," "Archer," "The Good Wife," "The Good Fight," "Bob's Burgers," "Suits," and "Family Guy."
He wrapped up the final season of HBO's Emmy-winning show, "Veep," in which he played deadpan Kent Davison, in 2019, and currently plays Alden Parker in "NCIS."
Michael Ealy is most recognizable from "Barbershop," though he's been in many other films and shows.
Michael Ealy got his big break in 2002 when he was cast as convict Ricky Nash in "Barbershop," a role he reprised in "Barbershop 2." He has since appeared in several movies, including Tyler Perry's "For Colored Girls" in 2010, "Think Like a Man" in 2012, and "About Last Night" in 2014.
Ealy has also taken roles in several TV shows, including "Being Mary Jane," "The Following," "Californication," and "The Good Wife."
Most recently, Ealy has appeared in the Starz series "Power Book II: Ghost," "Reasonable Doubt," and "A Black Lady Sketch Show."
Despite appearing in several notable films, like "There's Something About Mary," Keith David is not instantly recognizable.
Although Keith David started as a Broadway actor, he quickly took on film roles that made him a recognizable face in the industry.
His film career began in 1982 with John Carpenter's "The Thing" and Oliver Stone's "Platoon" in 1986 as King. He continued to work with other big names like Clint Eastwood in "Bird" in 1988, in which he played a jazz player.
In the '90s, David's career flourished, appearing in "Clockers" and "Dead Presidents." In 1998, David played Cameron Diaz's hilarious stepfather in the cult classic "There's Something About Mary."
In 2004, he played Lt. Dixon in the Academy Award-winning movie "Crash." In the new millennium, David began his career in voice acting. Most recently, he has lent his voice to "The Proud Family: Louder and Prouder" and "Rick and Morty."
Despite a long list of movie and TV credits, like "Prison Break," William Fichtner isn't a household name.
William Fichtner is most recognizable for his roles as Sheriff Tom Underlay on ABC's "Invasion" in 2005 and as Alexander Mahone on Fox's "Prison Break" from 2006 to 2009.
Beyond TV, Fichtner has a long list of movie credits like 2004's "Crash," 2005's "Mr. & Mrs. Smith," 2007's "Blades of Glory," 2008's "The Dark Knight," and 2018's "The Neighbor."
Most recently, he played Leo Nicoletti in "The Company You Keep."
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