100 Actors Better Than Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise

by Jake McMillan


This started as a debate between my friend Adam and I. He claimed Mark Wahlberg is a very underrated actor, which I agreed with to a certain extent, but feel his range is limited – he’s good at either dim or tough guys. I then said Brad Pitt was similar, but then corrected myself as Brad is a good actor, but he wouldn’t make my top one hundred list of actors.

What about Tom Cruise? Adam asked. I like Tom Cruise, but again I wouldn’t put him in my top one hundred list of greatest actors. The challenge was then extended and accepted.

I set some rules for my list to make it an authentic challenge, that it had to be male actors who were still alive and they had to have a reasonable movie presence or career, not just TV or Theatre work.

So, here is my list, in no particular order of 100 actors better at acting than Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise:

Anthony Hopkins
Morgan Freeman
Russell Crowe
Christian Bale
Tom Hardy
Dustin Hoffman
Gene Hackman
Phillip Seymour Hoffman
Paul Giamatti
Kevin Spacey
Harrison Ford
George Clooney
William H Macy
Guy Pearce
James Gandofini
Michael Caine
Al Pacino
Robert De Niro

Joe Pesci
Harvey Keitel
Jon Voight
Michael Sheen
Alec Baldwin
Ryan Gosling
Viggo Mortensen
Adrien Brody
Patrick Stewart
Ian McKellan
Tom Hanks
Alan Arkin
Ed Harris
Jonathan Pryce
Christopher Plummer
Max von sydow
Kenneth Branagh

Benicio Del Toro
William Hurt
Ralph Fiennes
Daniel Day Lewis
Ben Kingsley
Clint Eastwood
Robert Duvall
Liam Neeson
Ewan McGregor
Ian McShane
Alfred Molina
Leonardo DiCaprio
Johnny Depp
Geoffrey Rush
Willem Dafoe
Brian Cox
Albert Finney
James Caan

Joaquin Phoenix
Bill Murray
Christopher Walken
Tom Wilkinson
Javier Bardem
Colin Firth
Jean Reno
Gary Oldman
Tim Roth
Sean Penn
Michael Gambon
Jeff Bridges
Robert Redford
Jack Nicholson
Denzel Washington
Tommy Lee Jones
John Malkovich

John Hurt
Donald Sutherland
James Woods
Gerard Depardieu
Forest Whitaker
Jeremy Irons
James Cromwell
Giovanni Ribisi
Steve Buscemi
Peter O’Toole
Sam Rockwell
Gabriel Byrne
Mickey Rourke
Laurence Fishburne
Rhys Ivans
Stellan Skarsgard
Brendan Gleeson
John Turturro
Samuel L Jackson
Danny Aiello
Vincent Cassel
Jaime Foxx
Will Smith
Michael Douglas
Mark Ruffalo
Tim Robbins
Ethan Hawke
Billy Bob Thornton
Frank Langella
Nick Nolte

Do you agree?

13 responses to “100 Actors Better Than Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise

  • David Walsh

    Unfortunately for him, Dennis Hopper died.

    • David Walsh

      As did Pete Postlethwaite.

      • jakemcmillan

        You are absolutely right David! My enthusiasm for this challenge overtook my diligence. Fortunately, I had actually put together a list of 130 names so have replaced Dennis and Pete (both of whom were marvellous actors) with Mickey Rourke and Frank Langella.

  • The Actor's Essential tools to Flow | Jose Miguel Vasquez

    […] 100 Actors Better Than Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise […]

  • Gaurav

    Pathetic list…where is Robert Downey Jr. and Tom Cruise….Not agreed with this list at all…huh

    • jakemcmillan

      Firstly, I wouldn’t put Tom Cruise in a list of actors better than Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise, well, because … do I really need to explain that?

      Secondly, I do like Robert Downey Jr and he was actually on my reserve list. As mentioned in a comment above I have a list of nearly 130 actors and Robert Downey Jr is on that the list of 30 that didn’t make the 100 in the post above.

      • Gaurav

        lol!!!!…i got it why Tom Cruise is not in that list..hahaha…but dear seriously don’t you really think that Robert Downey Jr. deserves a place in this list…beacuse man if we see from acting perspective then he is far far better then Tom and Bradd and if it is not possible to include him in this list then we can extend this list a lil bit or we can add a catagory…”Reserved actor yet struggling to get into this list”…;)

        Friend i know u have watched his Sherlock Holmes and Iron Man Series but just watch Chapplin also…then i am 110% Sure either you will include him in this list or you will add that catagory…hehehe

        But anyways the list prepared by you is good(actually after your comment only i read the whole list hehehe)…and the most deserving candidates are here(But i still miss Mr.Downey here)..

        Goog Work!!!!

  • Frankie

    I’d like to find out more? I’d care tto find out
    more details.

  • matt

    Woow did you just exclude them to get peoples attention!!! It to be posted on google well, well played… I agree with most of the actors although some rent mentioned such as Val Kilmer, Collin farrel, some that I have on the tip of my tongue…

  • JohnDAMION

    101. Ray Liotta
    102. Malcolm Mcdowell
    103. John Travolta
    104. Heath Ledger
    105. Harvey Keitel
    106. Barry Pepper
    107. Mark Ruffalo
    108. Jake Gyllenhaal

  • Michael

    I don’t think you’re giving Brad Pitt enough credit. His performances in Fight Club, Babel, The Tree of Life, The Assassination of Jesse James, and 12 Years a Slave (though I know that was after this was made) are enough for me to put him above a lot of these people.

  • Endrimaris

    I disagree. Tom Cruise is the best.

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