It often feels like Hollywood works on a different time system — way famous movie stars can disappear from the big screen for large chunks of time, and we barely even notice their absence. When’s the last time you saw Daniel Craig? It’s been two years. For most, even longer, since few people saw Defiance. But, he’s got a big summer movie in 2011, and is currently filming The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, so it doesn’t really feel like he’s gone anywhere. Will Smith hasn’t been on the big screen in two years, either, since 2008’s Seven Pounds, but he still feels vaguely omnipresent.
The absence of some of the others on the list below actually was felt. Where’d Eric Bana go? Keanu Reeves’ only real exposure has been the Sad Keanu meme, and Sacha Baron Cohen — so huge after Borat — has kind of faded since Bruno. For a few years there, it felt like Kate Hudson was in a romantic comedy every other month, and with the exception of the little seen The Killer Inside Me, she all but disappeared in 2009. As did Jennifer Garner, with the exception of a small role in Valentine’s Day. Anyone know what happened to Dane Cook? Who cares, really. He’s all but vanished. As did the revolting Dan Fogler, who was everywhere in 2008. Where’d Alison Lohman go? I guess Drag Me to Hell didn’t do much for her career, sadly (and unlike most of the folks listed below, she has nothing in the works). You know, Brad Pitt only did voice work in 2010. It’s the first year since his career began that he hasn’t been on the big screen. And who could imagine a year without a Will Smith tentpole, must less two? It takes a month or two to film a movie, what the hell do movie stars do with the rest of their time?
It’s part of the time system in Hollywood, suppose. It works in cycles, until the cycles run out. Did Hugh Grant retire? Where’d he go? Has he joined Rene Russo in the limbo between a movie career and death? You know, until this month, Ryan Gosling hadn’t been around for three years — since 2007’s Lars and the Real Girl — but it never felt like he was gone for that long. Yet, it’s only been four years since Robert Downey, Jr. could be seen in The Shaggy Dog, and it feels like he’s been back forever. Remember Josh Lucas? One day, he’s the next big action star, and the next day, he’s got a receding hairline and he’s playing “the other guy” in a Katherine Heigl romantic comedy. Orlando Bloom? How fast did that guy fall? His career came to a crashing standstill during Ryan Gosling’s hiatus.Anyone else miss Jeff Daniels? Tim Robbins (absent for 2 years), Frances McDormand (2 years), Carrie Anne Moss? Poof, and she’s gone.
There’s no point to this post. It’s the end of the year, and I’m rambling/marveling at the way Hollywood celebrity works — how fast you can fall, how long you can leave without being missed, and how short Hollywood time feels. It’s weird if you stop and think about it. I wouldn’t recommend it.
Anyway, here are 15 Really Big Movie Stars Who Completely Disappeared in 2010. Most, I’m sure will return, and be as big as they ever were. Hugh Grant? Robin Williams? I’m not so sure about.
Sacha Baron Cohen