The Most Famous Actor From Every US State

film reviews | movies | features | BRWC The Most Famous Actor From Every US State

By Kelsey Warner.

You don’t necessarily have to be born in Tinseltown to make it as a star. While it certainly helps to be born in the epicenter of the entertainment industry, the path to Hollywood is not always a direct one. Today’s stars have varied roots across the country, such as a cattle ranch in Wyoming or New York City’s theaters.

Each state has produced at least one star it is proud to call its own. Some states, like California or New York, were the birthplace for a whole pack of actors. In order to definitively determine the most famous actor or actress, the data scientists at PrettyFamous queried its celebrity database for the top Hollywood celebrities from each state and the District of Columbia.

To calculate a celebrity’s “Actor Score,” we took a weighted average of the following:

  • Number of awards they have been nominated for
  • Total number of IMDb reviews for films and television shows they had roles in
  • Recent interest, as determined by Wikipedia page views (specifically, from Feb. 20, 2016 through March 20, 2016)

These factors determined a score on a 1-100 scale, with 100 denoting the highest level of acting fame. In this list, some actors with surging interest will outrank more familiar names, due to the methodology’s emphasis on recent buzz. We broke tie scores with the raw number of recent Wikipedia page views.

Alabama: Channing Tatum

Actor Score: 86.3
Birthplace: Cullman, Alabama

Channing Tatum started out as a model and dancer before making it big in “Step Up.” He played the title role in “Magic Mike,” as a male stripper.

Alaska: Annie Parisse

Actor Score: 25.3
Birthplace: Anchorage, Alaska

Annie Parisse broke into the industry through her role in the soap opera “As the World Turns.” Although she is an Alaska native, she was raised in Seattle, Washington.

Arizona: Emma Stone

Actor Score: 90.0
Birthplace: Scottsdale, Arizona

Emma Stone, a versatile actress, is known for her roles in “Easy A” and “Birdman.” As a teenager, Stone moved to Los Angeles to pursue acting.

Arkansas: Billy Bob Thornton

Actor Score: 83.6
Birthplace: Hot Springs, Arkansas

Billy Bob Thornton won an Oscar for “Sling Blade”(1996), which he wrote, directed and starred in.

California: Leonardo DiCaprio

Actor Score: 100.0
Birthplace: Los Angeles, California

Leonardo DiCaprio, a Los Angeles native, has made his mark in Hollywood with decades of highly acclaimed roles. He won his first (and perhaps long overdue) Oscar in 2016 for his role in “The Revenant.” Leo had some tight competition for the spot as the most famous actor: namely, Tom Hanks and Clint Eastwood.

Colorado: Tim Allen

Actor Score: 85.3
Birthplace: Denver, Colorado

Tim Allen was born in Colorado but moved to Michigan as a teenager. Although known for his role in “Home Improvement,” Allen started out as a stand-up comic.

Connecticut: Seth MacFarlane

Actor Score: 91.0
Birthplace: Kent, Connecticut

Seth MacFarlane, the mind behind “Family Guy,” took on acting in “A Million Ways to Die in the West” and voice-acting in “Ted.”

Delaware: Elisabeth Shue

Actor Score: 69.0
Birthplace: Wilmington, Delaware

Elisabeth Shue, known for her parts in “The Karate Kid” and “Leaving Las Vegas,” started acting in television commercials while a student at Wellesley College.

Florida: William H. Macy

Actor Score: 93.6
Birthplace: Miami, Florida

William H. Macy, born in Miami, is known for his roles in “Shameless” and “Fargo.”

Georgia: Julia Roberts

Actor Score: 95.0
Birthplace: Smyrna, Georgia

Julia Roberts, although born in Smyrna, Georgia, later moved to New York after graduating from high school. Roberts won an Oscar in 2001 for her role in “Erin Brockovich.”

Hawaii: Nicole Kidman

Actor Score: 91.0
Birthplace: Honolulu, Hawaii

Although considered an Australian actress, Nicole Kidman was actually born in Hawaii to Aussie parents. This accomplished actress starred in four different films in 2015 alone.

Idaho: Aaron Paul

Actor Score: 85.0
Birthplace: Emmett, Idaho

Aaron Paul is known for his part as Jesse in “Breaking Bad.” He was nominated for five Emmys for this role and won three of them.

Illinois: Robin Williams

Actor Score: 97.6
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois

Robin Williams, born in Chicago and raised in Detroit, has been a household name since his breakthrough television roles in the late 1970s. Williams is remembered for many roles in films, such as in “Good Will Hunting” and “Dead Poets Society.”

Indiana: Jenna Fischer

Actor Score: 71.3
Birthplace: Fort Wayne, Indiana

Jenna Fischer worked as an office temp worker and found small acting roles in Los Angeles until she had her big breakthrough role as Pam Beesly in “The Office.”

Iowa: Cloris Leachman

Actor Score: 81.6
Birthplace: Des Moines, Iowa

Cloris Leachman has spent decades acting in a variety of shows, films and plays. She is known for her part in “The Mary Tyler Moore Show” and also as Ida, the chain-smoking grandmother in “Malcolm in the Middle.”

Kansas: Dennis Hopper

Actor Score: 79.3
Birthplace: Dodge City, Kansas

Dennis Hopper found mainstream success in “Rebel Without a Cause,” acting alongside James Dean. He died in 2010.

Kentucky: Johnny Depp

Actor Score: 98.6
Birthplace: Owensboro, Kentucky

Johnny Depp, a fourth-generation Kentuckian, moved to Florida when he was seven. His first role was in “The Nightmare on Elm Street” in 1984. Depp tied for the spot of Kentucky’s most famous actor with George Clooney. The tie was broken by Depp’s Wikipedia popularity.

Louisiana: Ellen DeGeneres

Actor Score: 93.3
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana

Ellen DeGeneres, originally a stand-up comic, has won multiple Emmys for her long-running talk show “The Ellen DeGeneres Show.” Although not traditionally known for her acting, she qualifies for this list through her work as the voice behind the fish Dory in “Finding Nemo.”

Maine: Anna Kendrick

Actor Score: 88.6
Birthplace: Portland, Maine

Anna Kendrick, born in Portland, Maine, would travel to New York for theater auditions as a young girl. She is now known for her starring role as Beca in the Pitch Perfect films.

Maryland: Julie Bowen

Actor Score: 80.0
Birthplace: Baltimore, Maryland

Julie Bowen has made a name for herself in the shows “Boston Legal,” “Weeds” and “Modern Family.”

Massachusetts: Matt Damon

Actor Score: 99.3
Birthplace: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Matt Damon had his Hollywood breakthrough in 1997 as Will Hunting in “Good Will Hunting.” He recently starred in “The Martian.”

Michigan: J.K. Simmons

Actor Score: 92.6
Birthplace: Detroit, Michigan

J.K. Simmons stared his career as a music composer and working in musicals. He now has decades worth of acting credits. He won an Oscar and Golden Globe for his performance in “Whiplash” (2014).

Minnesota: Jessica Lange

Actor Score: 89.0
Birthplace: Cloquet, Minnesota

Jessica Lange grew up in a small town in Minnesota but has proven herself as a formidable talent on the stage and screen. Although she has snagged multiple Oscars and Golden Globe awards, many know her for her roles in “American Horror Story.”

Mississippi: Oprah Winfrey

Actor Score: 90.0
Birthplace: Kosciusko, Mississippi

Oprah Winfrey, born in Kosciusko, Mississippi, is the queen of daytime talk shows with “The Oprah Winfrey Show.” Although she is mainly known for her talk show work, she played the part of Sofia in the 1985 film “The Color Purple.” Winfrey said that this film changed her life and inspired her own show.

Missouri: John Goodman

Actor Score: 96.6
Birthplace: Affton, Missouri

John Goodman was a central part of ’90s television as the husband on “Roseanne.” He recently gave a critically-acclaimed performance as Howard in “10 Cloverfield Lane.”

Montana: David Lynch

Actor Score: 80.6
Birthplace: Missoula, Montana

David Lynch is the creator of “Twin Peaks,” which he also acted in.

Nebraska: Marlon Brando

Actor Score: 92.3
Birthplace: Omaha, Nebraska

Marlon Brando became an acting legend with memorable roles in “A Streetcar Named Desire,” “The Godfather” and “Apocalypse Now.” Although he was born in Nebraska, Brando was also raised in Illinois and attended a military academy in Minnesota.

Nevada: Jena Malone

Actor Score: 70.0
Birthplace: Sparks, Nevada

Jena Malone was born in Nevada but moved to Los Angeles with her mother to pursue acting. She is known for her roles in “Donnie Darko,” “Into the Wild” and “Saved!”

New Hampshire: Sarah Silverman

Actor Score: 79.0
Birthplace: Bedford, New Hampshire

Sarah Silverman, at the age of 22, started writing for and performing on “Saturday Night Live.” She wrote and starred in her own Comedy Central series “The Sarah Silverman Show.”

New Jersey: Kevin Spacey

Actor Score: 99.3
Birthplace: South Orange, New Jersey

Kevin Spacey, born in New Jersey but raised in the Los Angeles area, has been acting since the 1980s. He plays Frank Underwood in the Netflix series “House of Cards.”

New Mexico: Neil Patrick Harris

Actor Score: 91.0
Birthplace: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Neil Patrick Harris, the son of lawyers, had his start as a child actor in the 1988 film “Clara’s Heart.” He has since established himself as an adult actor on the stage and in the popular series “How I Met Your Mother.”

New York: Robert De Niro

Actor Score: 99.0
Birthplace: New York City, New York

Robert De Niro has had an extensive acting career, having starred in over 100 films and receiving two Oscars. New York had tough competition for the spot of the most famous actor, with Tom Cruise trailing closely behind De Niro.

North Carolina: Julianne Moore

Actor Score: 94.3
Birthplace: Fayetteville, North Carolina

Julianne Moore, born in Fort Bragg, North Carolina, was on the soap opera “As the World Turns.” She has since had memorable roles in “Still Alice,” “Boogie Nights” and “The Big Lebowski.”

North Dakota: Josh Duhamel

Actor Score: 72.0
Birthplace: Minot, North Dakota

Josh Duhamel moved to San Francisco after college and found work as a model. He achieved acting success in the television series “Las Vegas” and soap opera “All My Children.”

Ohio: Halle Berry

Actor Score: 92.6
Birthplace: Cleveland, Ohio

Halle Berry, once a pageant queen and model, is now known for roles in “Jungle Fever,” “X-Men” and “Catwoman.” Berry tied with Martin Sheen for this coveted Ohio spot but won in the tiebreaker.

Oklahoma: Brad Pitt

Actor Score: 99.3
Birthplace: Shawnee, Oklahoma

Brad Pitt has made his mark as a Hollywood heartthrob through roles in films like “Fight Club,” “Snatch,” “12 Monkeys,” “Inglourious Basterds” and the Ocean’s Eleven franchise. He was born in Oklahoma, spent time in Missouri and moved to Los Angeles to pursue an acting career.

Oregon: Ty Burrell

Actor Score: 77.3
Birthplace: Grants Pass, Oregon

Although born in Oregon, Ty Burrell moved to New York City in order to pursue an acting career. He is known for roles in “Black Hawk Down,” “Dawn of the Dead” and the sitcom “Modern Family.”

Pennsylvania: Will Smith

Actor Score: 97.3
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Will Smith started off with a rap career that led to his becoming “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.” He has since become one of Hollywood’s leading men with parts in “Independence Day,” “Men in Black,” “I Am Legend” and “The Pursuit of Happyness.”

Rhode Island: Mena Suvari

Actor Score: 60.0
Birthplace: Newport, Rhode Island

Mena Suvari, who started her career as a model, acted in films such as “American Pie” and “American Beauty.”

South Carolina: Chris Rock

Actor Score: 95.6
Birthplace: Andrews, South Carolina

Although Chris Rock often reflects on his Brooklyn upbringing, he was actually born in Andrews, South Carolina. He achieved mainstream success in 1990 when he became part of the “Saturday Night Live” cast.

South Dakota: January Jones

Actor Score: 74.3
Birthplace: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

January Jones, at the age of 18, moved to New York City in order to pursue a modeling career. She landed a variety of acting gigs with perhaps her most significant as Betty Draper in AMC’s “Mad Men.”

Tennessee: Morgan Freeman

Actor Score: 98.0
Birthplace: Memphis, Tennessee

Morgan Freeman has played memorable roles in “Invictus,” “The Shawshank Redemption” and “Million Dollar Baby,” which earned him an Oscar.

Texas: Robin Wright

Actor Score: 95.0
Birthplace: Dallas, Texas

Robin Wright, born in Texas and raised in San Diego, is most recently known for her role as Claire Underwood in “House of Cards.”

Utah: James Woods

Actor Score: 85.3
Birthplace: Vernal, Utah

James Woods was born in Utah but attended high school in Rhode Island. He dropped out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to pursue a career in acting. He is known for his acting roles in “Casino” and HBO’s “Too Big to Fail.”

Vermont: Orson Bean

Actor Score: 32.6
Birthplace: Burlington, Vermont

Orson Bean started off doing stand-up comedy in the 1960s. He has made a variety of television appearances and is known for his 1999 acting role in the film “Being John Malkovich.”

Virginia: Sandra Bullock

Actor Score: 94.6
Birthplace: Arlington, Virginia

Sandra Bullock’s 1994 role as Annie in “Speed” put her on the radar in Hollywood. She has since gone on to star in many films including “Miss Congeniality,” “Crash,” “Gravity” and “The Proposal.”

Washington: Rainn Wilson

Actor Score: 77.0
Birthplace: Seattle, Washington

Although raised in Seattle, Rainn Wilson spent his teens in Illinois. After graduate school, Wilson acted in stage productions and eventually landed roles in television series and films. He made his mark playing Dwight Schrute on the television series “The Office.”

Washington, D.C: Taraji P. Henson.

Actor Score: 85.6
Birthplace: Washington, District of Columbia

Taraji P. Henson, known for “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” “Hustle & Flow” and “Empire,” didn’t receive her big break until the age of 26 in the television series “Smart Guy.”

West Virginia: John Corbett

Actor Score: 73.6
Birthplace: Wheeling, West Virginia

John Corbett discovered his passion for acting after moving to California. He is known for his roles in “My Big Fat Greek Wedding” and “Sex and the City.”

Wisconsin: Mark Ruffalo

Actor Score: 94.0
Birthplace: Kenosha, Wisconsin

The film “A Streetcar Named Desire” inspired Mark Ruffalo to pursue an acting career. After attending high school in Virginia, Ruffalo studied acting in Los Angeles. He is known for his roles in “The Kids Are Alright,” “The Avengers” and “Spotlight.”

Wyoming: Jim Beaver

Actor Score: 27.7
Birthplace: Laramie, Wyoming

Jim Beaver is known for his roles in “Deadwood” and “Justified.” He has also worked as a film historian.

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