ByTom Cox, writer at
Staff writer for Moviepilot. Tweet me @thomascox500
Tom Cox

Sure they may be well on the road to success now, but where were the stars of today 40 years ago?

Everyone had to start somewhere, even lauded Oscar nominees.

These clips from their first on-screen steps offer priceless insights into their pre-fame careers. See if you can discern the seeds of greatness in their performances.

5. Bryan Cranston in 'Crisis Counselor' (1982)

Colgate smile: age 29 in teen magazine in '85
Colgate smile: age 29 in teen magazine in '85

The Breaking Bad star wasn't always playing morally heinous meth-cooking fathers.

Nominated this year for his performance as Hollywood scriptwriter Dalton in Trumbo, Cranston came from more modest beginnings.

His first national main role was broadcast 34 years ago in an episode called "Bisexual Marriage", of TV series Crisis Counselor. The drama was styled in a reality counselling format like The Jerry Springer Show.

Skip to 1:43 for Cranston of peanut-smooth face confessing his homosexual relations:

4. Matt Damon as Steamer in 'Mystic Pizza' (1988)

Coochie coo
Coochie coo

The young Damon has the velvet glow of a newborn pup in this cult rom-com about growing up and working life.

This year's The Martian sees Damon in the grip of the life-or-death struggle as an astronaut who is accidentally left behind for dead on Mars. A far cry from fretting about veg in Mystic Pizza.

The actor, now 45, also had an uncredited role in a crowd shot at Fenway Park in fantasy drama Field of Dreams (1989).

3. Leonardo DiCaprio in 'The Outsiders' (1990)

Remind anyone of Home Alone?
Remind anyone of Home Alone?

Around the same time as Damon was cutting his teeth on greens at dinner in Mystic Pizza, DiCaprio appeared in a show exec-produced by Francis Ford Coppola for the first (and his last episode) of The Outsiders.

In the same year, two other shows he was in were also broadcast: The Young Lassie and Santa Barbara.

Watch his audition, seven years before The Outsiders was broadcast, at the tender age of nine:

2. Michael Fassbender in 'Hearts and Bones' (2001)

Meet Hermann
Meet Hermann

The 38-year-old started his career relatively late, after a stop-start period bartending and working in a post office between auditions.

He appears in three episodes in this series about a group of friends who move from Coventry to London.

Watch some clips of his first on-screen role as Hermann in English drama Hearts and Bones here:

1. Eddie Redmayne in 'Doctors' (2003)

It wasn't until after previous careers off-road on the stage and catwalk that Redmayne acted in front of a camera.

As well as appearing in a super-cute children's show called Animal Ark, he performs in a single episode of Doctors titled "Crescendo" here:

Source: Backstage, Daily Mail


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