10 Famous Actors Who Got Their Start On Soap Operas

Some of these might surprise you!

Brad Pitt, Demi Moore, Laurence Fishburne Featureflash Photo Agency / Tinseltown / Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock

Plenty of actors have interesting stories of how they managed to launch their careers.

Most actors had to start somewhere, especially since making it in Hollywood is no easy feat.

While some actors starred in commercials, or as extras in famous movies, there are some now-famous celebs who got their start acting in none other than soap operas.

For many of these actors it included small or even big roles on shows like 'Days of Our Lives,' 'General Hospital,' or 'The Young and the Restless.'


Take a trip down memory lane with these well-known celebrities who started off appearing in soap operas.

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1Brad Pitt

celebs who got their start on soap operas brad pitt DFree / Shutterstock

Before Brad Pitt was starring in blockbuster films like 'Fight Club' and 'Ocean's Eleven' Pitt had landed his first speaking role on 'Another World.'

According to IMDb, the 58-year-old actor was only on for two episodes and played a young basketball player named Chris in 1987.

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2Elizabeth Banks

celebs who got their start on soap operas elizabeth banks Tinseltown / Shutterstock

Elizabeth Banks appeared in only one episode of 'All My Children' back in 1999, according to TV Insider.

Banks played the role of a waitress named Roaslie whose character had to flirt with Josh Duhamel's character.

The episode premiered only two years before Banks would go on to star in the film 'Wet Hot American Summer.'

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3Kathy Bates

celebs who got their start on soap operas kathy bates Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock

Before Kathy Bates became an Emmy nominated actress, Bates landed her first role on 'The Doctors.'

Bates played the small role of Phyllis Gillette, and her two appearances in 1977 actually went uncredited because of how small the part was, according to Entertainment Weekly.

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4Shemar Moore

celebs who got their start on soap operas shemar moore Kathy Hutchins / Shutterstock

Before Shemar Moore secured his role in the popular TV show 'Criminal Minds' along with his role in 'S.W.A.T.,' Moore kicked off his career on 'The Young and the Restless.'

Moore played Malcolm Winters on the hit soap opera from 1994-2005, but then returned for a guest appearance in 2014, according to CBS.

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5Laurence Fishburne

celebs who got their start on soap operas laurence fishburne Everett Collection / Shutterstock

Before making a name for himself in hit movies like 'The Matrix' trilogy, 'Boyz n the Hood,' and 'John Wick,' Laurence Fishburne started acting in 'One Life to Live' as a teenager.

Fishburne played Josh Hall from 1973-1976, according to IMDb.

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6Julianne Moore

celebs who got their start on soap operas julianne moore DFree / Shutterstock

Before Julianne Moore was winning Oscars and Golden Globes, Moore got her start on the soap opera 'As the World Turns,' according to Entertainment Weekly.

Moore portrayed both Frannie and Sabrina Hughes on the show, playing Frannie from 1985-1988, and then played Frannie's identical half-sister and cousin Sabrina in 1986.

Moore even reprised her role as Frannie in 2010 by appearing on the show for one episode.

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7Demi Moore

celebs who got their start on soap operas demi moore DFree / Shutterstock

Demi Moore, before becoming a well-renowned actress, appearing in films like 'G.I. Jane' and acquired her first acting role in 'General Hospital.'

Moore played Jackie Templeton, an investigative reporter from New York City who is trying to track down her missing sister from 1982-1984, according to E! Online.

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8Kelly Ripa

celebs who got their start on soap operas kelly ripa Ron Adar / Shutterstock

The 'Live With Kelly and Ryan' host got her big break after appearing in 'All of my Children' from 1990-2002, according to People magazine.

Ripa played Hayley Vaughn, and it was on the set of the show where she met her real-life husband, Mark Consuelos, who also played her husband in the series.

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9Eva Longoria

celebs who got their start on soap operas eva longoria DFree / Shutterstock

Actress Eva Longoria kicked off her career after appearing on 'The Young and the Restless' from 2001-2003.

Longoria played Isabella Braña on the hit soap opera, according to People magazine.

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10Sarah Michelle Gellar

celebs who got their start on soap operas sarah michelle gellar DFree / Shutterstock

Before Gellar got her infamous role in 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer,' the actress secured her first gig in 'All My Children.'

According to Entertainment Weekly, Gellar played troubled teen Kendall Hart from 1993-1995.

Her role in the show even landed Gellar her first Daytime Emmy Award.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.