Entertainment | TV Shows/Movies

15 Mega-Stars That Started Out As Soap Actors

Every big name in Hollywood had to start small, and for many actors and actresses daytime soap operas were their first big jobs in show business.

Check out these 15 stars before they were famous:

1. Josh Duhamel

The Transformers star won an Emmy for playing Leo du Pres on All My Children between 1999 and 2002. His steamy relationship with Rebecca Budig's Greenlee was a fan favorite. Leo "died" after falling off a waterfall, but the actor returned to the show in 2011 for a farewell cameo.

2. Lindsey Lohan

With a modeling career that began at age three, Lohan already had lots of showbiz experience before playing the young Alli Fowler on Another World between 1996 and '97.

3. Eva Longoria

This Desperate Housewives actress is also well-known for her role as Isabelle Brana on The Young & the Restless, but she actually made her soap debut with a guest spot on General Hospital.

4. Marissa Tomei

Before making the jump to the big screen and winning an Oscar for My Cousin Vinny, Tomei played Marcy Thompson on As the World Turns between 1982 and '84, with strange plots that involved a sexual harassment suit and a royal marriage that made her Lady Marcy Cushing.

5. Christopher Reeve

The Man of Steel began his career as Ben Harper, who was secretly married to two different women on Love of Life. Very out of character for the Superman actor.

6. Demi Moore

The actress had a recurring role as Jackie Templeton on General Hospital between 1982 and '83, playing an investigative reporter who became tangled in the lives of Port Charles's residents before moving away.

7. Sarah Michelle Geller

Before she played Buffy the Vampire Slayer, this actress won a Daytime Emmy Award for her role as Kendall Hart on All My Children in the 1990s.

Keep reading to learn which big stars started out with guest roles on your favorite soaps...

8. Brad Pitt

Pitt in 'Dallas.'Allocine

His small role in Thelma & Louise made him famous, but before he was a movie star Brad had guest roles on a pair of soaps. He had a small role as Chris on Another World in 1987, then played Randy on Dallas.

9. Tommy Lee Jones

Before he made us laugh in the Men in Black series, Jones had a starring role on One Life to Live in the 1970s. He played Dr. Mark Toland, a man trapped in a loveless marriage who was eventually murdered while running from the police. Talk about drama!

10. Jensen Ackles

The Supernatural star was a child actor, and landed the recurring role of Eric Brady on Days before his career took off in the early 2000s. He referenced his past on an episode of Supernatural, where his character traveled through a magic portal and met himself as a soap opera star.

11. John Stamos

Fans know him as Uncle Jesse from Full House, where he was the frontman for Jesse and the Rippers. But Stamos must be a typecasting victim, because he played rocker Blackie Parrish on General Hospital, where he was the leader of the band Blackie and the Riff Raff.

12. Julianne Moore

While she's known as a serious Oscar contender today, Moore began her career as a soap queen on As the World Turns. She played twins Frannie and Sabrina Hughes, and later played their identical half-sister and cousin Sabrina.

Moore actually reprised her role on 2010 to say farewell to the show.

13. Meg Ryan

Ryan played the trust fund darling Betsy Stuart on As the World Turns in the 1980s, appearing in a string of weird plots including multiple pregnancies and a car crash before leaving the show for the movie business.

Ryan and her TV husband Steve Runyon.Cleveland.com

14. Alec Baldwin

He's returned to TV on 30 Rock and SNL, but Baldwin started his career playing Dr. Billy Aldrich on The Doctors in the early '80s. He left the show after his character's life force was stolen by an older woman who used it to make an anti-aging serum. Yikes!

15. David Hasselhoff

Before Baywatch and Night Rider made him the most watched man on TV, Hasselhoff played Dr. William "Snapper" Foster on Y&R throughout the late '70s and early '80s. He's even stopped by the set to reprise his role a few times over the years.

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