Greek Hollywood Actors, Directorsby DinoTheGreek | created - 16 Oct 2015 | updated - 6 months ago | Public
A list of actors and directors of Greek descent that worked in Hollywood movies or American tv shows.
1. Elia Kazan
Director | On the Waterfront
Known for his creative stage direction, Elia Kazan was born Elias Kazantzoglou on September 7, 1909 in Constantinople, Ottoman Empire (now Istanbul, Turkey). Noted for drawing out the best dramatic performances from his actors, he directed 21 actors to Oscar nominations, resulting in nine wins. He ...
Director | Nebraska
Director, producer and screenwriter Alexander Payne was born in Omaha, Nebraska. His parents, Peggy (Constantine) and George Payne, ran a Greek restaurant. His father is of Greek and German ancestry, and his mother is of Greek descent; the family name was originally Papadopoulos. He has two older ...
Actress | Moonstruck
Long a vital, respected lady of the classic and contemporary stage this grand lady did not become a household name and sought-after film actress until age 56 when she turned in a glorious, Oscar-winning perf as Cher's sardonic mother in the romantic comedy Moonstruck (1987). Since then movie (and ...
Actress | For Whom the Bell Tolls
Katina Paxinou was born in 1900, in Piraeus, Greece. She first appeared on stage in 1928, in an Athens production of Henry Bataille's "La femme nue". In the early 1930's she was one of the founding members of the National Theatre of Greece (previously named Royal Theatre) and performed several ...
Actor | Love Streams
John Cassavetes was a Greek-American actor, film director, and screenwriter. He is considered a pioneer of American independent film, as he often financed his own films.
Cassavetes was born in New York City in 1929, to Nicholas John Cassavetes and his wife Katherine Demetre (1906-1983). Nicholas was...
Actor | West Side Story
George Chakiris made his film debut at the age of 12 singing in the chorus of Song of Love (1947). Following his graduation from high school, he supported his night-time dancing, singing and dramatic lessons with a daytime job clerking in a Los Angeles department store. Later he started his acting/...
Writer | Almost Famous
Certainly idiosyncratic as a writer, Cameron Crowe has created a series of scripts that, while liked by the critics, were considered offbeat and difficult to market.
Cameron Bruce Crowe was born in Palm Springs, California, to Alice Marie Crowe (née George), a teacher and activist, and James A. ...
10. Hugh Jackman
Actor | Les Misérables
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 ...
11. Telly Savalas
Actor | Kojak
Of Greek descent on both sides, the son of immigrants, Savalas was a soldier during World War II, although most of his enlistment records were destroyed in a fire at the National Personnel Records Center in St. Louis, Missouri, in 1973. He later studied psychology at Columbia University under the ...
12. Melina Mercouri
Actress | Pote tin Kyriaki
Melina Mercouri was born in Athens, Greece on October 18, 1920. An early woman activist, she was elected to the Greek Parliament in 1977. Later Miss Mercouri was to become the first woman to hold a Senior cabinet post "Minister of Culture" in the Greek government. In 1971 she wrote her ...
13. Yorgos Lanthimos
Director | The Lobster
Yorgos Lanthimos was born in Athens, Greece. He studied directing for Film and Television at the Stavrakos Film School in Athens. He has directed a number of dance videos in collaboration with Greek choreographers, in addition to TV commercials, music videos, short films and theater plays. Kinetta,...
14. Chris Sarandon
Actor | Fright Night
The handsome, versatile, worldly-looking Chris Sarandon has played everything from vampires to Jesus Christ in magnetic performances that have not only been controversial but hard to miss. He was born and raised in Beckley, West Virginia. His mother, Cliffie (Cardullias), was born in Norfolk, ...
15. Nia Vardalos
Actress | My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Nia Vardalos was born on September 24, 1962 in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada as Antonia Eugenia Vardalos. She is an actress and writer, known for My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002), My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2 (2016) and My Big Fat Greek Life (2003). She was previously married to Ian Gomez.
16. Jennifer Aniston
Actress | Friends
Jennifer Aniston was born in Sherman Oaks, California, to actors John Aniston and Nancy Dow. Her father is Greek, and her mother was of English, Irish, Scottish, and Italian descent. Jennifer spent a year of her childhood living in Greece with her family. Her family then relocated to New York City ...
17. Betty White
Actress | The Proposal
Betty White was born in Oak Park, Illinois, to Christine Tess (Cachikis), a homemaker, and Horace Logan White, a lighting company executive for the Crouse-Hinds Electric Company. She is of Danish, Greek, English, and Welsh descent.
Although best known as the devious Sue Ann Nivens on the classic ...
18. Tina Fey
Writer | 30 Rock
Elizabeth Stamatina Fey was born in 1970 in Upper Darby, Pennsylvania, just west of Philadelphia, to Xenobia "Jeanne" (Xenakes), a brokerage employee, and Donald Henry Fey, who wrote grant proposals for universities. Her mother is Greek, born in Piraeus, while her father had German, Northern Irish,...
Actor | The Hangover
Zach Galifianakis was born in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, to Mary Frances (Cashion), who owned a community arts center, and Harry Galifianakis, a heating oil vendor. His father is of Greek descent and his mother is of mostly English and Scottish ancestry. Zach moved to New York City after failing ...
20. Michael Chiklis
Actor | The Shield
Michael Chiklis has been working professionally as an actor since he was thirteen. He started in the theater and after receiving his BFA in acting from Boston University's College Of Fine Arts, Michael moved to New York City where he continued acting on the stage until he got his big break playing ...
Actress | Sharp Objects
Elizabeth Ann Perkins was born on November 18, 1960, in the borough of Queens, New York, and was raised in Vermont. Her mother, Jo Williams, was a concert pianist and drug treatment counselor, and her father, James Perkins, was a businessman, farmer, and writer. She is of Greek and English descent....
22. Elias Koteas
Actor | The Thin Red Line
Elias Koteas was born on March 11, 1961, in Montreal, Canada. Both his parents are of Greek descent. Elias attended Vanier College in Montreal before leaving to attend the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York City in 1981, of which he is a graduate. He also attended the Actors Studio in ...
23. Mena Suvari
Actress | American Beauty
Mena Alexandra Süvari was born in Newport, Rhode Island to Candice (Thompson), a nurse, and Ando Süvari, a psychiatrist. Her father was Estonian and her mother is of Greek, Norwegian, and German descent. Mena was raised in a Rhode Island home that was built in 1870 and had early aspirations of ...
24. Billy Zane
Actor | Titanic
William George Zane, better known as Billy Zane, was born on February 24, 1966 in Chicago, Illinois, to Thalia (Colovos) and William Zane, both of Greek ancestry. His parents were amateur actors and managed a medical technical school. Billy has an older sister, actress and singer Lisa Zane. Billy ...
26. Theo James
Actor | Divergent
Theo James was born on December 16, 1984 in Oxford, Oxfordshire, England, United Kingdom as Theodore Peter James Kinnaird Taptiklis. He is an actor, known for his role as Tobias "Four" Eaton in the films Divergent (2014), Insurgent (2015) and Allegiant (2016). He is also known for his roles as ...
27. Marilu Henner
Actress | L.A. Story
Marilu Henner was born on April 6, 1952 in Chicago, Illinois, USA as Mary Lucy Denise Pudlowski. She is known for her work on L.A. Story (1991), Taxi (1978) and Johnny Dangerously (1984). She has been married to Michael Brown since December 21, 2006. She was previously married to Robert Lieberman ...
28. Lauren Lapkus
Actress | Jurassic World
Lauren Lapkus was born on September 6, 1985 in Chicago, Illinois, USA. She is known for her work on Jurassic World (2015), Crashing (2017) and Orange Is the New Black (2013). She has been married to Mike Castle since October 5, 2018. She was previously married to Chris Alvarado.
29. Nick Cassavetes
Actor | Face/Off
Nick Cassavetes was born in New York City, the son of actress Gena Rowlands and Greek-American actor and film director John Cassavetes. As a child, he appeared in two of his father's films: Husbands (1970) and A Woman Under the Influence (1974). After spending so much of his youth surrounded by the...
30. Valeria Golino
Actress | Rain Man
The second child of an Italian germanist and a Greek painter, Valeria Golino grew up in Naples until her parents parted. After three years in Athens with her mother and another three in Naples with her father, she began to work as a model. She left high school after her first movie and didn't study...
31. John Stamos
Actor | Full House
John Phillip Stamos was born in Cypress, California, to Loretta (Phillips), a model, and William Stamos, a restaurateur. His father was of Greek descent, with the family surname originally being "Stamotopoulos". John has two younger sisters, Janeen and Alaina, both school teachers. His first ...
35. Lea Michele
Actress | Glee
Lea Michele Sarfati was born in the Bronx, New York to parents Edith Thomasina (Porcelli), a nurse, and Mark David Sarfati, a delicatessen owner-turned-real estate agent. Her mother is of Italian descent (from Rome and Naples), and her father is of Sephardi Jewish ancestry (from Turkey and Greece)....
37. Kym Karath
Actress | The Sound of Music
Kym Karath began her acting career at the age of 3, appearing in Spencer's Mountain (1963) with Henry Fonda and Maureen O'Hara, The Thrill of It All (1963) with Doris Day and James Garner, and Good Neighbor Sam (1964) with Jack Lemmon, before winning the role of "Gretl", the youngest Von Trapp ...
39. Rita Wilson
Actress | Jingle All the Way
Rita Wilson was born on October 26, 1956 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Margarita Ibrahimoff. She is an actress and producer, known for Jingle All the Way (1996), Sleepless in Seattle (1993) and Runaway Bride (1999). She has been married to Tom Hanks since April 30, 1988. They have two children.
40. Ralph Macchio
Actor | The Karate Kid
Ralph George Macchio was born on November 4, 1961 in Huntington, Long Island, New York. He started out in various TV commercials in the late 1970s before appearing in the puerile comedy movie Up the Academy (1980), then a regular role in 1980 on the television series Eight Is Enough (1977) followed...
41. Ariel Winter
Actress | Sofia the First
Ariel Winter is one of Hollywood's most promising young talents with notable roles both in both television and film. Ariel stars on ABC's critically acclaimed and Emmy® winning hit series, "Modern Family (2009)." Winter plays 'Alex Dunphy,' the brainy middle child in the Dunphy family, opposite Ty ...
Actress | CSI: NY
Melina Eleni Kanakaredes was born in Akron, Ohio, to Connie (Temo), who owned a candy company, and Harry Kanakaredes, an insurance salesman. She is of Greek descent. Her love of musical theater, especially the work of Gwen Verdon and Chita Rivera, inspired her as a child. She began performing ...
Actor | My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Award-winning Greek-American actor Michael Constantine (born 22 May 1927) is best known for his portrayal of the Windex bottle-toting family patriarch "Gus Portokalos" in the sleeper hit My Big Fat Greek Wedding (2002). Before his appearance in that movie and the subsequent TV series based on it, ...
44. Marina Sirtis
Actress | Star Trek: First Contact
Marina Sirtis was born in London, England, to Greek parents, Despina (Yianniri), a tailor's assistant, and John Sirtis. Her parents did not want her to become an actress. As soon as Marina completed high school, she secretly applied to the Guildhall School of Music and Drama. After her graduation, ...
45. Michael Papajohn
Actor | Jurassic World
A native of Birmingham, Alabama, Michael graduated from Vestavia Hills High School in 1983.
The Texas Rangers drafted him in 1985, but he chose instead to attend Louisiana State University on a baseball scholarship. He was the starting center-fielder on the first LSU team to go to the College World ...
Actor | The Rat Patrol
Solidly built, boyishly handsome American leading-man, Christopher George was the son of Greek immigrants. Weaned on stories of the legendary Greek heroes, George and his brother Nick (later a prominent fashion photographer) both quit high school to join the Marines. Completing his education after ...
47. Dave Bautista
Actor | Guardians of the Galaxy
David Michael Bautista, Jr. was born on January 18, 1969 in Washington, D.C., to Donna Raye (Mullins) and David Michael Bautista, a hairdresser. His father is Filipino, and his mother has Greek ancestry.
When WCW officials told him he'd never make it in sports entertainment, Bautista pushed himself ...
48. George Coulouris
Actor | Citizen Kane
The son of a Greek immigrant father (merchant) and an English mother, George Coulouris was educated at England's Manchester Grammar School. As an actor he was quite adept at playing villains, particularly wealthy businessmen, but he was just as suitable at playing nobler roles. A member of Orson ...
49. George Maharis
Actor | Route 66
Tall, dark and handsome, not to mention a charismatic rebel of 60s Hollywood, actor George Maharis (real Greek family name is Mahairas) was born in 1928 in Astoria, New York as one of seven children. His immigrant father was a restaurateur. George expressed an early interest in singing and ...
50. John Aniston
Actor | Days of Our Lives
John Aniston was born on July 24, 1933 in Crete, Greece as Yannis Anastassakis. He is an actor, known for Days of Our Lives (1965), Search for Tomorrow (1951) and Journeyman (2007). He has been married to Sherry Rooney since June 14, 1984. They have one child. He was previously married to Nancy Dow.
Actress | The Sopranos
Jamie-Lynn Sigler has been acting and singing since the age of 7. She got her start in New York regional theater, and has since starred in over two dozen theatrical productions including "Annie," "The Wizard of Oz," "The Sound of Music," "The Wiz," and "Gypsy." In the summer of 2001, she starred in...
53. Zoe Kazan
Actress | Ruby Sparks
Zoe Swicord Kazan was born in Los Angeles, California, to screenwriters Nicholas Kazan and Robin Swicord. She is the granddaughter of director Elia Kazan. She is of Greek (from her paternal grandfather), English, and German descent.
Kazan received her BA in Theater from Yale University. In the fall ...
54. Spyros Fokas
Actor | The Jewel of the Nile
Spiros Focas is one of Greece's most respected and well-known actors. He was discovered by legendary Italian director Luchino Visconti and cast in a lead role in the classic Rocco and His Brothers (1960). He went on to star in many Greek and Italian films throughout the 1960s and '70s, working with...
Actor | The Three Stooges
Chris grew up splitting his time between Greece and Canada. At age 9, he started doing TV commercials and professional theater. He left home at 18 to perform in a series of US national tours after which, he landed on Broadway. Chris now splits his time between New York and Los Angeles acting in TV ...
56. Sofia Milos
Actress | CSI: Miami
Sofia Milos has over 237 hours of television on the air, as well as on film. She starred opposite David Caruso on the international hit show CSI: Miami as, Yelina Salas, sister-in-law and impossible love of Horatio Caine, from season 1 to season 8 (2003-2010).
Starred as Homeland Security Agent ...
57. Thaao Penghlis
Actor | Days of Our Lives
Thaao Penghlis was born and raised in Sydney, Australia to Greek parents. After high school, he moved to New York City, where he began studying with the great acting coach, Milton Katselas. There, Thaao made his stage debut in the critically-acclaimed play, "Jockeys".
He has appeared in several ...
59. Gia Carides
Actress | My Big Fat Greek Wedding
Gia Carides has been working as an actress since age 12 in film and in theatre. She has been nominated twice for her work, in Strictly Ballroom (1992) (Best Actress in a Supporting Role AFI Awards) and Brilliant Lies (1996) (Best Actress in a Leading Role AFI Awards). She has appeared in as many ...
60. Emmanuelle Béart
Actress | 8 femmes
Emmanuelle Béart was born August 14, 1963, in Gassin, France. She lived with her mother, brothers, and sister on a farm not far from Saint-Tropez in Provence (southern France), because her father, singer and poet Guy Béart, did not want his children to be affected by the glamour world of Paris. ...
Actress | La vie d'Adèle
Adèle Exarchopoulos is a French actress with partially Greek roots (her grandfather was Greek). She was born in Paris, France. Her mother, Marina (Niquet), is a nurse, and her father, Didier Exarchopoulos, is a guitarist. At the age of 9 she started acting and watching movies. As she said on the ...
62. George Eads
Actor | CSI: Crime Scene Investigation
A charismatic performer who spent years on television looking for his big break, actor George Eads finally became a television star portraying forensic investigator Nick Stokes on the hit procedural "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation" (CBS, 2000- ). Prior to that role, Eads eked out a living with ...
63. Maria Menounos
Actress | Fantastic Four
Maria Menounos was born on June 8, 1978 in Medford, Massachusetts, USA as Maria Constaninos Menounos. She is a producer and writer, known for Fantastic Four (2005), Entourage (2015) and One Tree Hill (2003). She has been married to Keven Undergaro since December 31, 2017.
64. Tracy Spiridakos
Actress | Rise of the Planet of the Apes
Born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, Tracy spent part of her childhood in her parents' homeland, Greece, before the Spiridakos family returned to Canada to open a Greek restaurant. She worked there until moving to Vancouver, British Columbia, a center of Canadian film and television production, to ...
66. Costas Mandylor
Actor | Virtuosity
Costas Mandylor was born on September 3, 1965 in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia as Costas Theodosopoulos. He is an actor, known for Virtuosity (1995), Saw VI (2009) and Saw V (2008). He has been married to Victoria Ramos since October 10, 2013. He was previously married to Talisa Soto.
67. Adoni Maropis
Actor | 24
Adoni has been blessed with the opportunity to play many diverse and memorable acting roles, such as: the lead villain, Fayed, in Season 6 of the Fox critically acclaimed hit series 24 (2001) with Kiefer Sutherland, the flamboyant evil sorcerer, Quan Chi, in the TV show Mortal Kombat: Conquest (...
Actress | Raising Cain
Gabrielle Carteris was born on January 2, 1961 in Scottsdale, Arizona, USA as Gabrielle Anne Carteris. She is an actress and producer, known for Raising Cain (1992), Minority Report (2002) and The Event (2010). She has been married to Charles Isaacs since May 3, 1992. They have two children.
69. Athena Karkanis
Actress | Saw IV
Canadian actress Athena Karkanis began her professional career in acting in 1996 with several episodes of Stickin' Around (1996). Since that time, Athena has an extensive career in film, television and voice acting. Her credits include the Canadian teen drama The Best Years (2007), The Border (2008)...
70. Haley Pullos
Actress | General Hospital
Haley Pullos was born in Palo Alto, California, U.S.. She made her acting debut as a child in the movie Carney Tales. Her next role came five years later in the films 'Til Death and Moonlight. In 2008, she made her television debut in an episode of Ghost Whisperer. She went on to have guest ...
71. Andreas Katsulas
Actor | Babylon 5
Born in St. Louis, Missouri, Andreas from a working-class Greek-American family. Attracted from early childhood to being on stage when at 4 his mother took him to see a community theater performance, he took theatre as an extra-curricular activity in high school. He then majored in it at St. Louis ...
Actor | The Big Heat
The possessor of one of stage, screen, radio and audio cassette's most distinguished vocal instruments, actor Alexander Scourby received his training via Shakespearean roles in the 1930s and perfected his trade on dramatic radio serials in the 1940's. The noted actor/narrator was born in Brooklyn, ...
74. Elena Kampouris
Actress | Sacred Lies
Elena Kampouris stars as Minnow Bly in the new Facebook Watch series Sacred Lies produced by Blumhouse TV. Facebook's inaugural scripted 10 episode series from the executive produced by the people behind Jessica Jones, True Blood and Breaking Bad. She was most recently seen making her Broadway and ...
76. Lindsay Hartley
Actress | Passions
Lindsay Hartley is an American actress and singer.
She was born Lindsay Nicole Korman in Palm Springs, California, and is of Russian Jewish, as well as Greek and Italian, descent. Singing since age eleven, Hartley was a national pre-teen talent winner of the Young Miss America Beauty Pageant. At the...
77. Sofia Shinas
Actress | The Crow
Since starring opposite the late Brandon Lee in The Crow (1994), the Greek Canadian goddess may be most recognized by moviegoers worldwide for her performance in the iconic sleeper hit. To her Canadian fans, the actress, director and producer is most recognized for her soft voice, unassuming and ...
78. Peter Mamakos
Actor | The Ten Commandments
Peter Mamakos was born on December 14, 1918 in Somerville, Massachusetts, USA. He was an actor and writer, known for The Ten Commandments (1956), Batman (1966) and Adventures of Superman (1952). He died on April 27, 2008 in Paso Robles, California, USA.
79. John Considine
Actor | MacGyver
John Considine was born on January 2, 1935 in Los Angeles, California, USA as John William Considine III. He is an actor and writer, known for MacGyver (1985), A Wedding (1978) and Combat! (1962). He has been married to Astrid Lee Peterson since December 24, 1984. He was previously married to Jette...
81. Dimitra Arliss
Actress | The Sting
Dimitra Arliss' acting career began at the Goodman Theatre in Chicago, she first caught audience's eyes appearing in Arthur Kopit's Broadway play "Indians", she played a Native American character who spoke with an Italian accent. While she continued acting on stage, she began to appear in several ...
82. Alex Karras
Actor | Blazing Saddles
Alex Karras was born on July 15, 1935 in Gary, Indiana, USA as Alexander George Karras. He was an actor and producer, known for Blazing Saddles (1974), Victor Victoria (1982) and Porky's (1981). He was married to Susan Clark and Ivalyn Joan Jurgensen. He died on October 10, 2012 in Los Angeles, ...
85. Paula Cale
Actress | Providence
Paula Cale was born on June 2, 1970 in Great Falls, Virginia, USA as Paula Korologos. She is an actress, known for Providence (1999), Cake (2014) and Electra (1990). She has been married to Michael Lisbe since July 29, 2006. She was previously married to Bennett Cale.
86. Ryan Pinkston
Self | Punk'd
Ryan Pinkston was born on February 8, 1988 in Silver Spring, Maryland to parents Linda and Mark. He studied karate from age 4 and by 9 had earned his second degree in Wushu and first degree in Tae Kwon Do. He holds World Titles in the United States, France, Canada, and Central America, including ...
87. Tim Considine
Actor | My Three Sons
Tim Considine was born on December 31, 1940 in Los Angeles, California, USA as Timothy Daniel Considine. He is an actor and writer, known for My Three Sons (1960), Patton (1970) and The Adventures of Spin and Marty (1955). He has been married to Willette Hunt since July 21, 1979. They have one ...
88. David Mazouz
Actor | Gotham
David (pronounced "Dah-veed") Albert Mazouz, aged 18, as of February 19, 2019, began his acting career in commercials. At eight years old, he landed his first film, Coming & Going (2011), directed by Edoardo Ponti. Shortly thereafter, he was cast in the cable movie Amish Grace (2010). He then ...
90. Brioni Farrell
Actress | Star Trek
Brioni Farrell was born on February 12, 1940 in Athens, Greece as Xenia Gratsos. She was an actress and executive, known for Star Trek (1966), General Hospital (1963) and Fantasy Island (1977). She was married to Eugene Robert Glazer. She died on August 8, 2018 in California, USA.
Actor | Split
Sebastian Arcelus was born on November 5, 1976 in New York City, New York, USA as Sebastian Carlos Arcelus. He is an actor and producer, known for Split (2016), House of Cards (2013) and Madam Secretary (2014). He has been married to Stephanie J. Block since October 25, 2007. They have one child.
95. Hannah Simone
Actress | New Girl
Hannah Simone stars on FOX's hit series, New Girl (2011), opposite Zooey Deschanel. Simone hosted HGTV Canada's popular design show, "Space for Living", before moving onto Canada's largest music channel, "MuchMusic". After MuchMusic, Simone moved to Los Angeles, where she hosted two seasons of WCG ...
96. Tony Ganios
Actor | Porky's
Brooklyn born Tony Ganios was literally forced into the film business at the tender age of 18 when his even larger and more powerful uncle Pete made him cut short a powerlifting workout at the Sheridan Square Gym in Manhattan to audition for director Philip Kaufman. As a result, Tony made his film ...
97. Emma Lahana
Actress | Power Rangers DinoThunder
Emma Kate Lahana was born in Auckland, New Zealand on 27 June 1984. She became involved in the arts at a very young age doing ballet and broadened her dancing to jazz, tap and modern styles. She also learnt to play the violin but once in high school became involved in drama as well as singing. It ...
99. Tchéky Karyo
Actor | Nikita
Born in Istanbul, Turkey, Tcheky Karyo grew up in Paris. He studied drama at the Cyrano Theatre and became a member of the Daniel Sorano Company, where he played numerous classical roles. He next joined the National Theatre of Strasbourg, where he starred in contemporary theatre as well as in such ...