25 Celebrities You Know the Face of But Not Their Names
There are household celebrity names — those that everyone and their grandma can name — and then there are those who, despite their top-tier acting and impressive resumes, we can never remember the name of without running to Google.
Think you know every Hollywood actor? Well, we’ve rounded up a handful of celebrities who you’ll definitely recognize and probably be able to name some movies they starred in — but chances are you won’t be able to think of their name.
From Academy Award-winning actors and actresses to lesser-known stars who turned TV movies into cult classics, for one reason or another, the names of these recognizable faces just didn’t manage to stick.
Date of birth: Feb. 24, 1966
What you know him from: “Titanic,” “Back to the Future,” “Back to the Future II”
Bottom Line: Billy Zane
Billy Zane might be in some of the top-grossing films of all time — but for one reason or another the Hollywood star never did become a household name.
The talented actor continues to star in smaller scale productions and commercials and has even taken up other creative pursuits — including abstract expressionist painting.
Date of birth: July 20, 1975
What you know her from: “13 Going on 30,” “27 Dresses,” “Arrested Development”
Bottom Line: Judy Greer
Judy Greer has spent her career starring alongside huge Hollywood names, like Jennifer Garner and Katherine Heigl.
And although many of her characters (especially Lucy in “13 Going on 30”) have been well-loved and well-received, her name has just never stuck.
Date of birth: May 4, 1947
What you know him from: “Eat Pray Love,” “Step Brothers,” “The Shape of Water”
Bottom Line: Richard Jenkins
Richard Jenkins often plays the gentle and wise older male friend and has built his career in supporting roles.
Although his talent has been lighting up the big screen since his acting debut in the 1970s, it’s hard to recall his name at the drop of a dime.
Barry Shabaka Henley
Date of birth: Sept. 15, 1954
What you know him from: “The Terminal,” “Miami Vice,” “Collateral”
Bottom Line: Barry Shabaka Henley
You probably recognize Barry Shabaka Henley from his supporting roles in big-ticket films like “The Terminal” or “Miami Vice.”
However, he built his career as a recurring role in various TV shows, and as such, his face is much more memorable than his name.
Date of birth: Sept. 30, 1971
What you know her from: “Friends with Benefits,” “Keeping the Faith,” “Fear the Walking Dead”
Bottom Line: Jenna Elfman
Golden Globe-winning actress Jenna Elfman has worked alongside household names, including Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis.
That said, her bread and butter consists mainly of television roles — remember “Dharma and Greg?” — and might explain why her face is easy to recognize but not so much her name.
Date of birth: Feb. 28, 1978
What you know him from: “500 Days of Summer,” “Super Troopers,” “Body of Proof”
Bottom Line: Geoffrey Arend
Best known for his role as Ethan Gross on the drama series “Body of Proof” or for his supporting role as McKenzie in “500 Days of Summer,” Geoffrey Arend and his mop of curly hair are instantly recognizable even though we always forget his name.
Date of birth: July 23, 1973
What you know her from: “Step Brothers,” “How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days,” “Mrs. Fletcher”
Bottom Line: Kathryn Hahn
Kathryn Hahn built a fair part of her career playing the supportive, slightly emotional friend in myriad cult-classic comedies — but most recently began working on “Wanda Vision.”
Her lovable demeanor has made her a favorite among “chick flick,” fans but her name remains relatively unknown.
Date of birth: Dec. 17, 1974
What you know him from: “Lost in Translation,” “Friends,” “Ted”
Bottom Line: Giovanni Ribisi
Maybe you know him as Phoebe’s naive but lovable little brother on “Friends,” or perhaps you recognize him as Scarlett Johansson’s somewhat gauche husband in “Lost in Translation.”
Either way, the easily recognizable Hollywood actor has been in some serious cult classics — but it’s still impossible to remember his name.
John Michael Higgins
Date of birth: Feb. 12, 1963
What you know them from: “Pitch Perfect,” “Fred Claus,” “America Says”
Bottom Line: John Michael Higgins
American actor and comedian John Michael Higgins might be best known for his roles in “Pitch Perfect” and “Fred Claus,” but the award-winning actor’s career spans much further.
It includes gigs as the game show host on “America Says” as well as guest appearances on “Bob’s Burgers.”
Date of birth: Aug. 28, 1961
What you know her from: “Legally Blonde,” “A Cinderella Story,” “2 Broke Girls”
Bottom Line: Jennifer Coolidge
Honestly, we’ll never forget Jennifer Coolidge’s “Legally Blonde” words of advice to “bend and snap.” And her evil-stepmother portrayal in “A Cinderella Story” was incredible.
She really makes any film or television show worth watching, but for one reason or another, her shrill voice and flawless character acting is much more memorable than her name.
Date of birth: December 22, 1936
What you know him from: “Princess Diaries,” “Pretty Woman,” “Runaway Bride”
Bottom Line: Hector Elizondo
Those of us who grew up in the early 2000s instantly recognize Hector Elizondo for his lovable portrayal of Joe in “Princess Diaries” — but that’s just it.
He might be recognizable, but to many of us, he’ll always be Joe, the sweet assistant who helped Anne Hathaway become Princess of Genovia.
Date of birth: Nov. 10, 1982
What you know her from: “Princess Diaries,” “Scream,” “Hostel’
Bottom Line: Heather Matarazzo
Best known for her role as Lilly Moscovitz, best friend to Anne Hathaway’s character in “Princess Diaries,” Heather Matarazzo was well-loved in the early 2000s for her spunky demeanor and providing comic relief.
Although she’s much less active than she once was, Matarazzo continues to appear in regular television episodes and smaller-scale films.
Date of birth: Sept. 25, 1977
What you know her from: “Argo,” “Girl Interrupted,” ‘She’s All That”
Bottom Line: Clea DuVall
You look at Clea DuVall, and you instantly think you know her from somewhere, right? Although it’s hard to pinpoint exactly which films you know her from, her face is instantly recognizable — which is largely due to the sheer number of films, but particularly of television series, she’s been in.
We’re talking everything from “CSI”to “The Handmaid’s Tale.”
Date of birth: May 24, 1949
What you know him from: “Harry Potter,” “Bridget Jones,” “Moulin Rouge”
Bottom Line: Jim Broadbent
Academy Award and Golden Globe Award-winning actor Jim Broadbent is much better known in the U.K. than he is in other countries.
He’s had supporting roles in several major British films, from “Harry Potter” to “Bridget Jones “and is well-loved for his friendly disposition and signature smile.
Date of birth: Feb. 15, 1971
What you know her from: “The Lizzie McGuire Movie,” “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”
Bottom Line: Alex Borstein
Anyone who watched Family Channel will recognize Alex Borstein as the slightly quirky Ms. Ungermeyer from “The Lizzie McGuire Movie.”
But these days she’s become much more recognizable for her supporting role as Susie Myerson in “The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel.”
Date of birth: July 18, 1951
What you know her from: “The Millers,” “Instant Family,” “Sneaky Pete”
Bottom Line: Margo Martindale
Margo Martindale is an award-winning character actress who has starred alongside huge names in Hollywood.
Her lovable attitude has made her well-suited for a large variety of comedy films, providing both comedic relief and a sort of comforting demeanor.
Date of birth: Nov. 12, 1943
What you know him from: “Sex and the City,” “The Princess Bride,” “Clueless”
Bottom Line: Wallace Shawn
Wallace Shawn was extremely busy in the 1990s, having starred in dozens of blockbuster hits that continue to be well-loved today.
The reason you probably don’t remember his name? He carved a niche for himself in Disney Pixar films in the early 2000s and mainly works as a voice actor for children’s films these days.
Date of birth: Dec. 16, 1981
What you know her from: “Don't Trust the B**** in Apartment 23,” “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” “Jessica Jones”
Bottom Line: Krysten Ritter
Krysten Ritter got her start playing mainly supporting roles in a huge variety of “chick flick” movies and lower budget films.
But recently she has recently become best known for her starring role in Marvel’s hit television series, “Jessica Jones.”
Holly Marie Combs
Date of birth: Dec. 3, 1973
What you know her from: “Charmed,” “Pretty Little Liars,” “Love’s Complicated”
Bottom Line: Holly Marie Combs
Holly Marie Combs is instantly recognizable to anyone who binge-watched“Pretty Little Liars” or “Charmed.”
More recently, she has guest-starred on big-name shows like “Grey’s Anatomy,” but those three names are not easy to remember for most fans.
Date of birth: Jan. 9, 1955
What you know him from: “Spider-Man,” “Juno,” “Whiplash”
Bottom Line: J.K. Simmons
The amount of massive Hollywood films on J.K. Simmons’ resume is endless.
He has starred alongside everyone from Elliot Page and Jennifer Garner to Kirsten Dunst and James Franco, but his face and lovable demeanor is just much more memorable than his name.
Date of birth: July 20, 1964
What you know him from: “John Wick,” “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Law & Order: SVU”
Bottom Line: Dean Winters
Dean Winters’ acting abilities know no one specific genre or style — which is probably why he’s just so recognizable across the board.
The award-winning actor has been in everything from “John Wick” to “Sex and the City” and as such has become a household, well, face.
Date of birth: June 18, 1965
What you know her from: “Gone Girl,” “The Blindside,” “Deadwood”
Bottom Line: Kim Dickens
Kim Dickens got her start in the late ’90s, working in a variety of comedies and neo-noir films that didn’t really catch much attention.
But she worked her way up to major movies like “Gone Girl”and “The Blindside,” which is likely where you recognize her from.
Date of birth: Aug. 28, 1956
What you know him from: “Narcos,” “Anger Management,” “Journey 2”
Bottom Line: Luis Guzman
Puerto Rican actor Luis Guzman typically plays the lovable sidekick alongside the lead role — and has done so in a huge variety of films and TV shows.
His career spans more than 40 years and countless genres, making him highly recognizable across the field.
John Carroll Lynch
Date of birth: Aug. 1, 1963
What you know him from: Lucky, Zodiac, The Founder
Bottom Line: John Carroll Lynch
John Carroll Lynch made a career for himself due to his ability to kill any role — from lovable father figure to stern detective, and as such, he’s become quite well known across the field.
His most recent work includes starring in “The Trial of the Chicago 7,” which is sure to push him that much closer to becoming a household name.
Date of birth: Oct. 7, 1959
What you know them from: “Anchorman 2,” “Planes Trains & Automobiles,” “Spider-Man 2”
Bottom Line: Dylan Baker
American character actor Dylan Baker is instantly recognizable for his piercing blue eyes, which have earned him roles in a ton of big-ticket Hollywood films since he began acting in the late ’80s.
These days, he’s still acting — mainly as a recurring television actor, in shows like “Homeland”and “Hunters.”