The Highest-Grossing Movie Stars Under 30
Hollywood is constantly minting new stars, but becoming a big-time movie star at a young age is tough. To amass billions at the box office is no easy feat for any actor, regardless of age, and to do so before one turns 30 is even more difficult. In general, slightly older people get more time on the silver screen: The average age of a lead actor is 42.8 for men and 36.7 for women, according to data compiled the film critic Stephen Follows. And only four of the 56 highest-grossing movie stars of all time are under 30 years old.
So sure, it’s tough, yet there are more than a handful of young actors who’ve made movies that have made hundreds of millions of dollars around the globe. And the ones whose movies have earned the most at the worldwide box office made this list. These are the top 20 movie stars under 30 years old with the highest-grossing movies in the world.
20. Dakota Johnson
Worldwide gross: $1.78 billion
Dakota Johnson’s role as Anastasia Steele in the “Fifty Shades” franchise secured her a spot on this list, with the trilogy amassing $1.3 billion in worldwide ticket sales. Johnson also starred in “Need for Speed,” which earned $203 million, and “Bad Times at the El Royale,” which was a huge box office flop (it only made $32 million, which is what it cost to make) although it garnered pretty positive reviews.
19. Taron Egerton
Worldwide gross: $1.8 billion
Taron Egerton is one of the fastest rising stars in Tinseltown. His first big roles were in “Kingsman: The Secret Service” and its sequel, which combined made $825 million worldwide. The animated feature film “Sing,” in which he had a role as Johnny, earned $634 million. He starred in the 2018 “Robin Hood” reboot, which bombed, but quickly gained critical acclaim as Elton John in “Rocketman,” which cleared over $173 million.
18. Hailee Steinfeld
Worldwide gross: $1.83 billion
Hailee Steinfeld is only 22, yet her first silver screen appearance was in the 2010 western “True Grit” where she co-starred alongside Jeff Bridges. Her highest-grossing film is “Bumblee,” which made $468 million, followed by “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse” wherein she voiced Gwen Stacy; that movie was a surprise hit and made $375.5 million worldwide. She will appear as Emily Dickinson in “Dickinson,” a series made for Apple’s upcoming streaming service.
17. Elizabeth Debicki
Worldwide gross: $1.97 billion
Elizabeth Debicki picked up a huge role in “Guardians of the Galaxy 2,” where she played the gold-colored alien Ayesha. Debicki also had roles in Baz Luhrmann’s “The Great Gatsby” and “Peter Rabbit,” which earned over $350 million each.
16. Margot Robbie
Worldwide gross: $2.21 billion
29-year-old Margot Robbie has already had a stellar career, with starring roles in films like “Peter Rabbit,” “The Wolf of Wall Street” and “The Legend of Tarzan.” But she possibly gained the most recognition for her portayal of Harley Quinn in “Suicide Squad,” which stole the show.
15. Ezra Miller
Worldwide gross: $2.3 billion
Ezra Miller’s career is at a faster-than-light velocity. The 26-year-old star as the Flash in the D.C. Extended Universe films, with “Justice League” bringing in $658 million worldwide. But “Justice League” isn’t his highest-grossing flick. The two “Fantastic Beasts” movies, in which Miller plays Credence Barebones, have grossed $1.46 billion. A standalone “The Flash” film is in the works, with “It” director Andy Muschietti at the helm.
14. Nicholas Hoult
Worldwide gross: $2.8 billion
Nicholas Hoult made his big on-screen debut in “About a Boy,” acting alongside Hugh Grant when Hoult was just 12 years old. He has since went on to make a slew of projects. He is Beast in the current “X-Men” franchise, which has grossed nearly $2 billion worldwide, and he had a memorable role as Nux in “Mad Max: Fury Road,” which grossed $378 million. Oh what a day! What a lovely day!
13. Dakota Fanning
Worldwide gross: $3.37 billion
Dakota Fanning is only 25 years old but she has already appeared in over two dozen films, with nine of them making more than $100 million. Her highest-grossing movies are “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2,” “The Twilight Saga: Eclipse,” “War of the Worlds” and “Ocean's 8.”
12. Liam Hemsworth
Worldwide gross: $3.39 billion
The younger Hemsworth’s movies might not make the $10-billion-plus that his brother’s do, but he’s no slouch. Hemsworth had a leading role in “Independence Day: Resurgence,” which made over $389 million. He also played a key supporting character in all four “Hunger Games” movies, which altogether grossed $2.96 billion.
11. Taylor Lautner
Worldwide gross: $3.56 billion
Taylor Lautner made bank with the “Twilight” series — about $41 million for the last two films — and then went on to some supporting roles in a few movies before switching over to the television shows “Scream Queens” and “Cuckoo.”
10. John Boyega
Worldwide gross: $3.73 billion
John Boyega only had roles in British television shows and a few small movies before Disney cast him as Finn in the new “Star Wars” films. “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and “Star Wars: The Last Jedi” have grossed over $3.3 billion worldwide, and Boyega picked up an additional $290 million in movie grosses from 2018’s “Pacific Rim Uprising.”
9. Daisy Ridley
Worldwide gross: $4.1 billion
Like Boyega, Daisy Ridley was a relatively unknown British actor before landing the leading role as Rey in the new “Star Wars” sequels. Two of her other films, “Peter Rabbit” and 2017’s “Murder on the Orient Express,” grossed $351 million and $353 million worldwide, respectively.
8. Josh Hutcherson
Worldwide gross: $4.33 billion
Eight out of Josh Hutcherson’s 18 films have made over $100 million, with the majority of grosses coming from “The Hunger Games” franchise in which he played Peeta Mellark. Hutcherson also had a supporting role in 2008’s “Journey to the Center of the Earth” and its 2012 sequel, which earned $242 million and $335 million.
7. Kristen Stewart
Worldwide gross: $4.36 billion
Over $3.3 billion of Kristen Stewart’s movie grosses come from the “Twilight” franchise, while the remaining $1 billion come from a dozen other movies. Namely, these include “Snow White and the Huntsman” and “Panic Room,” which earned $173 million and $149 million worldwide.
Like her co-stars, Stewart is estimated to have made about $41 million from the final two “Twilight” installment, or possibly more. Vulture estimated that along with a $25 million payday, the actors received 7.5 percent of the theatrical grosses for both “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn” movies. Vulture calculated (via some Hollywood accounting) the extra $16 million in bonuses using the take from “New Moon,” which made about $710 million worldwide. “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 1” made $712 million and “The Twilight Saga: Breaking Dawn Part 2” made $829 million worldwide.
6. Brie Larson
Worldwide gross: $4.94 billion
She has only made 11 feature films, but Brie Larson struck Marvel gold when she landed the role of Captain Marvel. In early 2019, “Captain Marvel” made $1.1 billion at the global box office, and her appearance in “Avengers: Endgame” added another $2.7 billion to her movie grosses. But unlike many other Marvel/Disney castings, Larson was a pretty well-known actress. She had roles in “Trainwreck,” “21 Jump Street” and “Kong: Skull Island,” while her leading role in the 2015 indie film “Room” showcased her acting prowess.
5. Jennifer Lawrence
Worldwide gross: $6.02 billion
Jennifer Lawerence has starred in 20 films, the majority of which have been critically acclaimed, like “Winter’s Bone,” or just insanely successful, like the “Hunger Games” and new “X-Men” franchises. There’s no stopping J-Law, and we wager that one day she will become the highest-grossing actress of all time.
4. Letitia Wright
Worldwide gross: $6.86 billion
Letitia Wright managed to bank nearly $7 billion in movie grosses thanks to the enormous success of “Blank Panther,” “Avengers: Infinity War” and “Avengers: Endgame,” where she played the Wakanda princess, Shuri. She also had a role as Reb in “Ready Player One,” which picked up $1.32 billion worldwide.
3. Tom Holland
Worldwide gross: $7.54 billion
Tom Holland’s life changed in 2016, when he was just 20 years old. That’s the year he became the newest Hollywood incarnation of Spider-Man, making his first on-screen appearance in “Captain America: Civil War.” Since then, he has appeared every year in a Marvel movie, up until “Avengers: Endgame” and then with “Spider-Man: Far From Home.”
2. Daniel Radcliffe
Worldwide gross: $8.37 billion
Daniel Radcliffe made more money than you can shake a wand at by playing the titular hero of the “Harry Potter” franchise. In fact, he’s made about $94 million, a sum that even Radcliffe hardly spends — as he told the Belfast Telegraph in 2016, he doesn’t “really do anything with my money." He has appeared in a handful of movies since the “Harry Potter” series ended, including “Trainwreck,” “Now You See Me 2” and “The Woman in Black.”
1. Emma Watson
Worldwide gross: $9.68 billion
Emma Watson made about $60 million for her role in as Hermoine Granger in the “Harry Potter” films, which altogether grossed over $7.7 billion worldwide. She also starred as Belle in the newest “Beauty and the Beast” film, which grossed $1.2 billion. She’ll appear as Meg March in “Little Women,” which will debut in late 2019.