Celebrities Like Samuel L. Jackson & Steve Carrell Who Became Famous Later in Life!

The entertainment industry isn’t always a fast track to fame. Many celebs put in years of work before they become household names. Here are six celebrities who had break-out roles and achieved fame later in life!

Here’s a misconception! You don’t have to be young to achieve fame in Hollywood!

While some celebrities are born famous, others may take a while to blossom.

Did you know that many of our favorite, noble and fearless stars defied all odds and had “break out” roles later in life?

Bryan Cranston

“I did it for me!” Bryan Cranston was 44 years old when fame came knocking at his door! He is widely known for his cathartic role as Walter White in the American drama series Breaking Bad, but, before he was a kingpin cooking crystal meth, he made his debut on Seinfeld appearing as Tim Whatley, the dentist. However, it wasn’t until the 2000s, when he appeared on the sitcom Malcolm in the Middle, that he achieved stardom and recognition. From fixing teeth and being a drug lord to Emmy Award-Winning Actor, Cranston is a name we will not be forgetting anytime soon!


Leslie Jones

Powerhouse comedian Leslie Jones was always a member of the world of comedy. However, she didn’t get the recognition she deserved until joining the cast of Saturday Night Live in 2014 at the age of 47. Jones admitted that it was a hard job at her age, but that she learned a lot during her several years as a cast member. She starred in the sketch comedy show for five seasons, blowing away everyone with her hilarious characters and Weekend Update appearances. The comedian also appeared in the all-female cast of Ghostbusters pivoting into a new realm of comedy.


Morgan Freeman

One of the most influential figures in Hollywood did not rise to the spotlight until much later. Everyone knows the wise and wonderful Morgan Freeman as an Academy Award Winning Actor with an astonishing distant voice, but did you know it wasn’t until he was 52 years old that people began chattering about the A-Lister? It was the movie Driving Miss Daisy that pushed him to the Hollywood forefront. However, wouldn’t you know that Director Bruce Beresford thought Freeman was too young for the part of Hoke? Nevertheless, the success of the movie landed the infamous actor a Golden Globe. We’re glad we got to know this celebrity who is featured on 21 Savage’s latest album “Savage Mode II.”


Samuel L. Jackson

It is weird to think one of the highest-grossing actors of all time had a late start. Samuel L. Jackson comes as another shock as he rose to fame at the age of 43 years old. With the help of American film director, Spike Lee, Jackson made his cinematic debut. He appeared in four of Lee’s films but is greatly recognized for the role of Gator in the movie Jungle Fever. If it wasn’t for his role we might not have seen the world-renowned actor in Quentin Tarantino’s Academy Award-Winning Film, Pulp Fiction which is still a cultural phenomenon today! Just ask Jackson to recite his speech from the movie; he might just blow you away.


Lucille Ball

“Don’t ask questions. Just get a knife and a fork and a bottle of ketchup and follow me to the biggest barbecue in the whole world.”

A name you’ll never forget and always love! One of the greatest female comedic actors of all time is Lucille Ball. While Ball modeled and had several small features early in life, she made her debut and is best remembered for her classic tv comedy series, I Love Lucy, at the age of 40. The series, which is based on her own life, turned into a huge success with many spin-offs and movie adaptations. Ball received five Emmy Awards and even obtained two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame! We’d say her career was definitely the biggest barbeque in the world!


Steve Carell

The hilarious and brilliant American actor we all know and love didn’t make his big-screen debut until he was 42 years old. In 2005, Steve Carell broke out as a leading man starring in The 40-Year-Old Virgin which he co-wrote with Judd Apatow. Guess you could say the title is pretty fitting! That same year, The Office took the world by storm, propelling Carell not only to stardom but to Regional Manager at everyone’s favorite paper company, Dunder-Mifflin.“Goddamn, I love paper like I’m Michael Scott.” From riding his bicycle to work and being an avid salesman to becoming a SAG and Golden Globe Award-Winning Actor, we will never get enough of Carell!


About the Author

Courtney McGinley

Courtney McGinley is a student at Pennsylvania State University, majoring in Broadcast Journalism focusing on TV Reporting and minoring in Business.