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Top 10 best actors of the 2000s

Emily Roberts

Last updated: November 1, 2023

194 Reviews

The 2000s was an incredible decade for art and entertainment, with many talented actors showcasing their craft. From Tom Hanks to Denzel Washington, these are the ten best actors of the 2000s that left an everlasting impression on audiences. These performances were outstanding and all have become an iconic part of popular culture. Whether you’re an avid movie-goer, or just heading to the theater every few months, prepare to be impressed!

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1

Daniel Day-Lewis

87 Reviews

Daniel Day-Lewis is undoubtedly the king of method acting. His ability to completely transform into a character and his mesmerizing performances have become the stuff of legend. He's been widely regarded as one of the greatest stage and screen actors of our time, and he was rightly recognized as one of the best actors of the 2000s. With a career spanning four decades, Day-Lewis has earned numerous awards, including three ...

2

Heath Ledger

26 Reviews

Heath Ledger is a name that continues to be remembered throughout the world, even a decade after his death. He’s best known for his lingering performance as Joker in The Dark Knight, which has been acclaimed as one of the greatest performances ever seen on the silver screen. The late actor won an Academy Award among a million other awards for this movie.

Throughout his relatively ...

3

Denzel Washington

92 Reviews

There are few actors as renowned and respected as Denzel Washington. Having cemented his status as one of the leading men in Hollywood, Washington has achieved iconic status through his performances in some of the world's most iconic films. Known for his body of work both on the big screen and the small screen, Washington is widely celebrated for his contribution to cinema.

Since the turn of the century, Washington has gone from strength to strength as a cast member in commercially successful movies, fuss-free box office draws, ...

4

Russell Crowe

73 Reviews

Acadamy Award winner Russell Crowe is one of the best actors of the 2000s. Having starred in a number of Hollywood blockbusters, Crowe has become a household name with his excellent performances. He is known for his powerful portrayal of characters, captivating audiences with his dedicated acting skills.

Crowe is a consummate professional, whose on-screen intensity is a product of his perfectionism. He immerses ...

5

Johnny Depp

26 Reviews

The 2000s ushered in the era of Johny Depp. It is during this decade that he established himself as one of Hollywood's finest actors. He has a history of success in some of the decades most influential movies, such as Pirates of the Caribbean and Edward Scissorhands. The success of these films resulted in some well-deserved awards, including an Oscar nomination for Best Actor. But, his acting is not limited to only onscreen ...

6

Leonardo DiCaprio

77 Reviews

Leonardo DiCaprio is a renowned actor in the Golden Age of Hollywood. His career has spanned over three decades, with each stage bringing about awards, marginal success, and even greater fame.

DiCaprio first hit the silver screen in 1993 with his role as Dirk Diggler in the classic film, "Boogie Nights". His portrayal of a young drug-addicted actor earned him widespread critical acclaim, and was a sign of the great talent that was yet to come.

DiCaprio's most renowned work came in the early 2000s. From his lead role ...

7

Philip Seymour Hoffman (1967-2014) was an American actor, director, and producer who is widely considered to be one of the greatest actors of the 21st century. During his illustrious career, he was nominated for four Academy Awards, won three Tony Awards, and received numerous awards from film societies and organizations. His legacy continues to live on through countless films and performances throughout the decades.

Some of Hoffman’s most acclaimed career achievements include his Oscar-winning performance in Capote in 2005 and his iconic roles in The Master, Boogie Nights, ...

8

Tom Hanks

85 Reviews

Tom Hanks is considered the legacy of the 2000s when it comes to American contemporary actors. His impact on film culture, as well as his strong sense of humanity, stands out above many other actors. Hanks has such an impressive list of accomplishments by the end of the 2000s that he became a beloved Hollywood icon.

He has received countless awards, ...

9

Javier Bardem

43 Reviews

Javier Bardem has made major impressions on screen in roles that many might easily recall: a simple-minded goon in Before Night Falls (2000), an emotionally enigmatic Cuban poet in The Sea Inside (2004), an ill-tempered assassin in No Country for Old Men (2007) and a passionate agent in Vicky Cristina Barcelona (2008).

In the 2000s, Javier Bardem became one of the most renowned and sought after actors of his time. Some of the highest-grossing films of the 2000s featuring Bardem include No Country ...

10

Cate Blanchett

69 Reviews

Australian actor Cate Blanchett is one of the most iconic and dynamic of actors in recent times. With her unforgettable performances in films like Elizabeth, The Lord of the Rings, The Talented Mr. Ripley, and The Aviator, she has won unequivocal praise and awards from filmgoers and professionals alike for her outstanding talent. Throughout the 2000s, Blanchett has consistently delivered one stellar performance after another, making her one ...

Final Thought

The 2000s were a decade that saw some of the best performances from world-renowned actors. From Oscar® winners to critically-acclaimed performances, these Top 10 actors of the 2000s represent some of the finest in the craft. Whether they have stayed true to their roots or ventured out into new styles, these actors have truly embraced all that acting has to offer. From laughter to tears, the 2000s have been a stellar milestone decade of actor-driven performances. Congratulations to those who made it into this list of iconic actors for the 2000s.

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