The 60 Best Australian Actors/Actresses

Criteria to be included:
Must have been called an Aussie at some point in last few years. Must have grown up/lived in Australia at some point.
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Cate Blanchett
Cate Blanchett was born on May 14, 1969 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, to June (Gamble), an Australian teacher and property developer, and Robert DeWitt Blanchett, Jr., an American advertising executive, originally from Texas. She has an older brother and a younger sister. When she was ten years old...
“ The top actress to come out of Australia, and by far. She was nominated for Best Actress for Elizabeth and then won Best Supporting Actress for The Aviator, then won again in Blue Jasmine. Like Weaving she has a huge range and even played Bob Dylan in Im Not There. The sky is the limit ” - mishrust
Russell Crowe
Actor, Gladiator
Russell Ira Crowe was born in Wellington, New Zealand, to Jocelyn Yvonne (Wemyss) and John Alexander Crowe, both of whom catered movie sets. His maternal grandfather, Stanley Wemyss, was a cinematographer. Crowe's recent ancestry includes Welsh (where his paternal grandfather was born, in Wrexham), English...
“ This guy is really among the elite in Hollywood, his is one of the top actors right now, and has been for at least a decade. He was nominated 3 time for Best Actor at the Academy Awards, winning once for Gladiator. ” - mishrust
Geoffrey Rush
Geoffrey Roy Rush was born on July 6, 1951, in Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, to Merle (Bischof), a department store sales assistant, and Roy Baden Rush, an accountant for the Royal Australian Air Force. His mother was of German descent and his father had English, Irish, and Scottish ancestry. He was raised in Brisbane, Queensland, after his parents split up...
“ Geoffry Rush rose to fame after his terrific performance in Shine, where he won an Oscar. Since then he has appeared in many more great films and has earned 2 more Best Supporting Actor nominations the last for The Kings Speech. Like many aussies, he continues to appear in Australian productions ” - mishrust
Hugo Weaving
Actor, The Matrix
Hugo Wallace Weaving was born on April 4, 1960 in Nigeria, to English parents Anne (Lennard), a tour guide and teacher, and Wallace Weaving, a seismologist. Hugo has an older brother, Simon, and a younger sister, Anna, who both also live and work in Australia. During his early childhood, the Weaving family spent most of their time traveling between Nigeria...
“ Can play good and bad, small or big. Weaving is a wonderfully versatile actor who wowed audiences in The Matrix as Agent Smith. since then he's played V in V for Vendetta and Elrond in the Lord of the Rings trilogy. ” - mishrust
Hugh Jackman
Hugh Michael Jackman is an Australian actor, singer, multi-instrumentalist, dancer and producer. Jackman has won international recognition for his roles in major films, notably as superhero, period, and romance characters. He is best known for his long-running role as Wolverine in the X-Men film series...
“ Broadway star, former Oscar host and Hollywood leading man Hugh Jackman is without doubt one of the more recognisable faces in film today. Probably known best for his character: Wolverine. Rugged handsome looks have landed him in more than a few romantic films but he's good enough to play in stuff like The Prestige which id like to see more of. ” - mishrust
Eric Bana
Actor, Munich
Eric Bana was born Eric Banadinovic on August 9, 1968, in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. He is the younger of two brothers. His father, named Ivan Banadinovic, came from Zagreb, Croatia, and worked as a manager for Caterpillar Inc. His mother, named Eleanor Banadinovic, came from a German family and was a hairdresser...
“ Arguably the most versatile actor on this list, Bana has carved out a nice career for himself which took off after the critical acclaim of Chopper. He can play serious, comic, action star or villian and with still lots to prove i wouldn't be surprised if he won many awards in the future. ” - mishrust
Heath Ledger
When hunky, twenty-year-old heart-throb Heath Ledger first came to the attention of the public in 1999, it was all too easy to tag him as a "pretty boy" and an actor of little depth. He spent several years trying desperately to sway this image, but this was a double-edged sword. His work comprised nineteen films...
“ Who can forget that magnificent and chilling performance Ledger gave as The Joker in Christopher Nolans widely successful The Dark Knight, he even won a posthumous Oscar for it. But Heath Ledger gave us more than just that earning accolades in Brokeback Mountain and Monsters Ball, while numerous hollywood films made him a popular figure ” - mishrust
Toni Collette
Toni Collette is an Academy Award-nominated Australian actress, best known for her roles in The Sixth Sense and Little Miss Sunshine. Collette was born Toni Collett (she later added an "e") on November 1, 1972, in Blacktown, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia. She is the first of three children of Judith (Cook)...
“ Fantastic Actress with range, Toni Collette is sometimes so good that you start thinking she is who she acts on screen. After appearing in the 2000 remake of Shaft, Collette had been getting steady work in TV, Hollywood and down under too, collecting a few awards along the way ” - mishrust
Joel Edgerton
Actor, Warrior
Joel Edgerton was born on June 23, 1974 in Blacktown, New South Wales, Australia, to Marianne and Michael Edgerton, who is a solicitor and property developer. His brother is filmmaker Nash Edgerton. He went to Hills Grammar School in the Western Suburbs of Sydney, and after leaving, he attended Nepean Drama School in 1994...
“ One of the many rising stars in Hollywood from downunder. Edgerton has starred in many aussie movies but 2012 looks to be a breakout year for him after 2011's Warrior and Animal Kingdom ” - mishrust
Guy Pearce
Actor, Memento
Guy Edward Pearce was born 5 October, 1967 in Cambridgeshire, England, UK to Margaret Anne and Stuart Graham Pearce. His father was born in Auckland, New Zealand, to English and Scottish parents, while Guy's mother is English. Pearce and his family initially traveled to Australia for two years, after his father was offered the position of Chief test pilot for the Australian Government...
“ The man who starred in Time Machine, ahem, i mean Memento, LA Confidential and aussie darlings Priscilla: Queen of the Desert and Animal Kingdom. Pearce has recently found a niche playing supporting roles in Hollywood and like many others, regularly returning to his roots. As mentioned above he has appeared in some great films, but he shows up in plenty more films and always performs well ” - mishrust
David Wenham
Actor, 300
“ The talented and perhaps under-rated Wenham has slowly but surely been gaining momentum until recently. Id like to see him back in big films like 300 or raw gems like Gettin' Square ” - mishrust
Rose Byrne
Rose Byrne was born in Balmain, Sydney, Australia. She is the daughter of Jane, a primary school administrator, and Robin Byrne, a semi-retired statistician and market researcher. She landed her first role in a movie, Dallas Doll, when she was 15 years old. Since then, Rose has appeared in a variety of Australian televisions shows including Heartbreak High...
“ A rising star, Bryne has got some nice credits on her resume after some solid work in Sunshine, Get Him to the Greek and Bridesmaids. Keep an eye on this girl ” - mishrust
Ben Mendelsohn
Actor, Rogue One
Despite his prominence in Hollywood as a character actor known for playing villains and criminals, Ben Mendelsohn has been a leading man in Australia since starting acting as a teenager. Paul Benjamin Mendelsohn was born in Melbourne, Australia, to Carole Ann (Ferguson), a nurse, and Frederick Arthur Oscar Mendelsohn...
“ Yes its that guy, a small surprise to have him this low or even on the list, well check out his recent filmography and you see he's broken into hollywood. Vastly under-rated actor who stamped his ground in Animal Kingdom ” - mishrust
Naomi Watts
Actress, King Kong
Naomi Ellen Watts was born on September 28, 1968 in Shoreham, England, to Myfanwy Edwards "Miv" (Roberts), an antiques dealer and costume/set designer, and Peter Watts (Peter Anthony Watts), the road manager to Pink Floyd. Her maternal grandfather was Welsh. Her father died when Naomi was seven and she began to follow her mother and her brother around England...
“ Wonderful actress, who knows how good she can get? ” - mishrust
Nicole Kidman
Actress, Moulin Rouge!
Elegant blonde Nicole Kidman, known as one of Hollywood's top Australian imports, was actually born in Honolulu, Hawaii, while her Australian parents were there on educational visas. Kidman is the daughter of Janelle Ann (Glenny), a nursing instructor, and Antony David Kidman, a biochemist and clinical psychologist...
“ The last few years may have been slow for her, thats why she misses out on a top 10 spot, but with credits like Dead Calm, Eyes Wide Shut and The Hours, theres no doubt she is a superstar. Im tipping a mini comeback in the next couple of years ” - mishrust
“ Pipping many other great talents is a talent himself, Anthony LaPaglia. After moving to the US early in his career, he landed many supporting parts in Hollwood before he took some bigger roles in Australia such as Lantana and The Bank. In 2002 he got the role Jack Malone in Without a Trace that went on until 2009. I hope he keeps up his excellent support work in movies like The Salton Sea ” - mishrust
“ Friels is genuine thespian, just check out his resume ” - mishrust
“ 2015 is a very good year for him appearing in Everest, Child 44, Terminator Genisys and Knight of Cups. Bound for the top 12. ” - mishrust
Graham Kennedy
Graham Kennedy's last major appearance on Australian television was between April 1988 and December 1989, when he hosted "Graham Kennedy's News Hour" (in 1988 with Ken Sutcliffe) and "Coast to Coast" (in 1989 with John Mangos) for Australia's Channel Nine TV Network. While actually reading real stories...
“ The King ” - mishrust
Jack Thompson
Australian actor Jack Thompson was born John Hadley Payne on August 31, 1940 in Manly, New South Wales, a suburb of Sydney. Outside of Oz, he is best known for his appearances in The Chant of Jimmie Blacksmith, Breaker Morant, The Man from Snowy River, Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil and Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones. 'Breaker' Morant in which he played a military defense attorney defending three soldiers accused of murder during the Boer War...
“ One of the first of the Aussies to crack Hollywood, and still a massive talent ” - mishrust
Judy Davis
Actress, Barton Fink
Judy Davis was born April 23, 1955 in Perth, Western Australia. She was educated at Loreto Convent and the Western Institute of Technology, and graduated from the National Institute of Dramatic Art (NIDA) in 1977. She came to prominence as Sybylla Melvyn in the film adaptation of Miles Franklin's novel...
“ Once upon a time in the top 5 ” - mishrust
Rod Taylor
Suave and handsome Australian actor who came to Hollywood in the 1950s, and built himself up from a supporting actor into taking the lead in several well-remembered movies. Arguably his most fondly remembered role was that as George (Herbert George Wells), the inventor, in George Pal's spectacular The Time Machine...
“ Iconic Australian, he's been among some of the biggest ever names. Leading man in Alfred Hitchcock's The Birds and co-starring with John Wayne in The Train Robbers. Sadly passed away in early 2015 ” - mishrust
Bill Hunter
Bill Hunter was one of Australia's acting legends, having worked with almost every notable Australian director and actor of the last thirty years - evidence of his genuine popularity among the public and acting fraternity alike. He started out in Australian television in the '60s (a hotbed of well written and directed drama)...
“ Terrific actor ” - mishrust
“ Unknown outside of Australia, David Field is a quality actor. He has appeared in lots of TV but also in plenty of Australian movies like Two Hands with Bryan Brown and Heath Ledger. Also, Check out his upcoming flick; Mystery Road, with two others on this list. ” - mishrust
Chris Hemsworth
Actor, Thor
Chris Hemsworth was born in Melbourne, Australia, to Leonie (van Os), a teacher of English, and Craig Hemsworth, a social-services counselor. His brothers are actors Liam Hemsworth and Luke Hemsworth. He is of Dutch (from his immigrant maternal grandfather), Irish, English, Scottish, and German ancestry. His uncle, by marriage, was Rod Ansell, the bushman who inspired the film Crocodile Dundee...
“ Thor? No, it was Rush when he starred alongside Daniel Bruhl which has him on the list, could be higher and im sure he will never stop improving ” - mishrust
Vince Colosimo
Vince Colosimo has worked a lot in theatre, television and film since the early 1980s. He is widely known for his role in the hugely successful theatre production of The Wogboys, which toured nationally in the mid 1990s and was later adapted to a feature film in 2000. Colosimo's theatre work has also included productions of A Streetcar Named Desire...
“ He is in the top 30 for a reason, excellent actor ” - mishrust
“ Used to hold the No. 1 spot back in the 80s, but has since not been seen as often. Still a class act ” - mishrust
Abbie Cornish
Actress, Limitless
Abbie Cornish grew up on her parents' 170 acre farm in the Hunter Valley town of Lochinvar with her 3 brothers and younger sister. Abbie started modeling at age 13. Her first acting job was at age 15 on the Australian Broadcasting Commission series Children's Hospital playing a quadriplegic.
“ Dont get it twisted, the girl is the real deal ” - mishrust
Noah Taylor
Noah George Taylor, the elder of two boys, was born in 1969 in London, England, to Maggie (Miller), a journalist and book editor, and Paul Taylor, a copywriter and journalist. His family lived in both England and New Zealand before returning to his parents' native Australia in 1974. His parents divorced when he was a teenager and his father remarried--to theater publicist...
“ Born in England but you know it, he's Aussie through and through ” - mishrust
“ Just never stops, she is at the peak of her powers right now ” - mishrust
Brendan Cowell
Australian actor Brendan Cowell was raised in an artistic family, with both of his sisters involved in dance and music. From a young age, Brendan created his own shows to perform in the family living room after dinner. At age 8, he was cast in a commercial while awaiting one his sisters to come out of a rehearsal...
“ This guy started off with humble beginnings, but has since proven his worth. Another candidate for cracking the top 20 someday ” - mishrust
Errol Flynn
Errol Flynn (1909-1959) was an Australian-born film star who gained fame in Hollywood in the 1930s as the screen's premier swashbuckler. Tall, athletic and exceptionally handsome, Flynn personified the cavalier adventurer in a string of immensely popular films for Warner Brothers, most often co-starring...
“ Perhaps the first Aussie to break into Hollywood, with his energy and handsome looks, he was destined for stardom. ” - mishrust
Mia Wasikowska
Mia is an Australian actress, born and raised in the country's capital, Canberra. She is the daughter of photographers Marzena Wasikowska and John Reid. Her mother is Polish and her father is an Australian of British ancestry. She has an older sister, Jess, and a younger brother, Kai. At age eight, her family moved to Poland for a year...
“ One to look out for over the coming years, shes hot property in ” - mishrust
Claudia Karvan
Claudia Karvan is one of Australia's most recognized actresses, having achieved popular success and critical acclaim through her work in film and television. Having begun work at 14, Karvan has an extensive filmography. She first appeared in Gillian Armstrong's High Tide with Judy Davis, then in Phillip Noyce's Echoes of Paradise...
“ Very talented actress ” - mishrust
Lachy Hulme
Striking, intense actor from Australia. A leading man with both strong dramatic range and ample comic timing, Lachy Hulme broke into movies by writing Canadian action/drama Men with Guns, a bloody tale of friendship and revenge directed by Kari Skogland. Following numerous guest appearances on Australian television and many "fringe" theatre productions...
“ Very well may crack to top 20 one day...soon ” - mishrust
“ Sadly passed away in recent years, but worked right to the end. A treasured actor ” - mishrust
Sam Worthington
Actor, Avatar
Samuel Henry John Worthington was born August 2, 1976 in Surrey, England. His parents, Jeanne (Martyn) and Ronald Worthington, a power planet employee, moved the family to Australia when he was six months old, and raised him and his sister Lucinda in Warnbro, a suburb of Perth, Western Australia. Worthington...
“ Hailing from Western Australia, Worthington first appeared in Hollywood after Terminator Salvation. Not long after came the biggest movie of all time, Avatar, which he starred in. At the moment he is more of an action star but this guy will stick around long enough to try out his range ” - mishrust
“ I wish he was more active, but when he is on song, pure gold ” - mishrust
“ Unheralded but no doubt a class act ” - mishrust
Paul Hogan
Paul Hogan became a worldwide success with his irresistible comic performance in Crocodile Dundee, which he created and co-wrote. This earned him a Golden Globe Award for Best Actor as well as an Academy Award nomination (for Best Screenplay). The versatile actor got his start in Australian television in a recurring role as comic relief on A Current Affair...
“ You call that a knife? ” - mishrust
Chips Rafferty
Years before Jack Thompson arrived on the scene, Chips Rafferty was regarded by many as the personification of the stereotypically rugged, straightforward and laconic Aussie male. Tall and thin, though not particularly striking in appearance, Rafferty was a tailor-made star for the austere, modestly-budgeted dramas made 'down under' in the 1940's and 50's...
“ Typical aussie (like the name!) from back in the day ” - mishrust
Anthony Hayes
Anthony just completed a leading role in David Michod's War Machine with Brad Pitt. Before this the Dreamworks movie The Light Between Oceans directed by Derek Cianfrance and starring Michael Fassbender and Rachel Weisz. Anthony Hayes has forged a compelling and award winning career on film and television screens for over 25 years...
“ He's not done yet, probably will leapfrog some ahead on this list ” - mishrust
“ If you haven't seen The Castle yet, go watch it. NOW! But Caton has been around a long time, just click the link ” - mishrust
Simon Baker
Simon Baker was first recognized in 1992, when he received Australia's prestigious Logie award for Most Popular New Talent. Upon relocating to Los Angeles with his family, Baker was immediately cast in the Academy Award winning film L.A. Confidential.
“ Star of 'The Mentalist', id like to see him back on the big screen ” - mishrust
Jai Courtney
Actor, Divergent
Born March 15, 1986 in Sydney, Australia, Courtney and his sister were raised in Sydney's leafy northwest suburbs, attending Galston Public School where their mother, Karen, was a teacher. His father, Chris, was a civil servant with the state electricity company, implying that there were no show business influences in the family when Jai caught the acting bug as a 10-year-old...
“ Rising star, only a matter of time before he headlines a blockbuster ” - mishrust
Sigrid Thornton
An icon of the Australian screen, Sigrid Thornton has starred in many of the films now regarded as classics of the Australian cinema. They include George Miller's box office hit The Man From Snowy River (Fox Classics), The Lighthorsemen (RKO), directed by Simon Wincer, Slate Wyn And Me (Hemdale) and The Man From Snowy River 11 (Disney - Touchstone)...
“ Very seasoned and talented actress ” - mishrust
“ Was on the cusp of really breaking in to the A-list at Hollywood after appearances in Moulin Rouge, Mission Impossible 2 and Van Helsing. Perhaps there will be a return to the big screen soon ” - mishrust
John Howard
Actor, All Saints
Has a sister, Jan. Grew up in Warrawee, NSW Australia and went to Knox Grammar School. Dropped out of medicine and law at university. Graduated in 1978 from NIDA with Penny Cook, Robert Grubb. Played leading roles from 1981 to 2012 in various plays. Won a Critics Circle award in 1992 for "The Crucible" and "Mongrels"...
“ Television was his game, but recently was seen in the Mad Max: Fury Road ” - mishrust
“ Not only an actor, but has recently had credits for writing. Been around a long time ” - mishrust
Shane Jacobson
Actor, Kenny
Shane Jacobson an Australian actor, presenter and entertainer, having worked in radio, film, stage and television, and with some of the biggest names in the business for more than 25 years. Performing has always been an important part of Shane's life. It all began for him at the age of 10 in amateur theatre...
“ Lovable aussie, really want to see more of him ” - mishrust
Margot Robbie
Margot Robbie was born in Dalby, Queensland, Australia and raised on the Gold Coast, spending much of her time at the farm belonging to her grandparents. Her mother, Sarie Kessler, is a physiotherapist. Robbie attended and graduated from Somerset College. In her late teens, she moved to Melbourne to pursue an acting career...
“ What? You haven't heard of Margot Robbie? You must have been living under a rock. Perhaps Uluru even ” - mishrust
“ Very versatile, though best in comedy ” - mishrust
Wendy Hughes
Wendy Hughes was an accomplished actress who had won over 13 major awards. She had been called "one of the world's great actresses" with "the beauty and talent to become an international star". Hughes was born in Melbourne and studied at the National Institute of Dramatic Art. She has two children, Charlotte (17) and Jay (13).
Teresa Palmer
Actress, Warm Bodies
Actress and model Teresa Palmer has gathered some impressive film credits. She was born in Adelaide, South Australia, to Kevin Palmer, an investor, and Paula Sanders, a former missionary and nurse. She completed high school at Mercedes College in 2003, where she was a popular student who was well-known for her practical jokes...
“ After appearing in Animal Kingdom in a star studded Australian film, he has broken into hollywood headlining the sequel to 300, both films being surprise successes ” - mishrust
“ With comedic talents and a knack for writing, we are bound to see more of this guy ” - mishrust
Liam Hemsworth
Liam Hemsworth was born on January 13, 1990, in Melbourne, Australia, and is the younger brother of actors Chris Hemsworth and Luke Hemsworth. He is the son of Leonie (van Os), a teacher of English, and Craig Hemsworth, a social-services counselor. He is of Dutch (from his immigrant maternal grandfather)...
“ One to watch over the next few years ” - mishrust
John Noble
Artistic Director of Stage Company of South Australia 1977 - 87. Head of Drama, Brent St. School of Arts (Sydney) 1997-00. Directed over 80 plays, including 'Sons of Cain' on London's West End (1986). Freelance actor. Semi-regular in TV series 'All Saints'. Voice and acting teacher.