1. Cher in “Moonstruck”
Cher made a name for herself as a pop star in the 60s and the 70s, but in 1987 she showed that she could act as well. She won an Oscar for her portrayal of a middle-aged woman trying not to fall in love with the younger brother of her fiance.
2. Barbara Streisand in “The Way We Were”
Like Cher, Streisand first made a name for herself as a singer. Even before this 1973 film, she had proven she could act. But her performance in this star-crossed love story demonstrated that she could act without the aid of music.
3. Ice Cube in “Boyz n the Hood”
In 1991, Ice Cube — who was born O’Shea Jackson Jr. — showed that even rappers can act. It helped that the part was written for him and was about a character who was not much different from him.
4. Madonna in “A League of Their Own”
Madonna was one of the biggest pop stars in the world when she performed in this 1992 film. While she had been in some films prior to this, this movie would be the one that would demonstrate that she could act as well as she can sing.
5. Prince in “Purple Rain”
Prince was already a huge music star when he starred in this 1984 film loosely based on his life. But this movie, in which he acted for the first time in his life, showed that he had the charisma to be a superstar.
6. Jennifer Hudson in “Dreamgirls”
Many singers have catapulted to fame through TV competitions, but Jennifer Hudson did not even place in “American Idol.” Still, she won a role in this 2006 film, and she won an Oscar for it, too.
7. Dolly Parton in “9 to 5”
Country music sensation Dolly Parton had never acted before starring in this 1980 film about harassment in the workplace, where she wowed moviegoers and critics alike.
8. Mark Wahlberg in “Boogie Nights”
Like Ice Cube, Mark Wahlberg started his career as a rapper, back when he was known as Marky Mark. But in this 1997 film he rocketed to fame as an actor, playing an ill-fated porn star.
9. Björk in “Dancer in the Dark”
Björk was an international music sensation prior to starring in this 2000 film about a factory worker who is going blind. The role won her a Best Actress award at the Cannes Film Festival that year.
10. Eminem in “8 Mile”
Rapper Eminem — whose real name is Marshall Mathers — won the hearts of audiences everywhere for his performance in this 2002 film, which is largely based on his own life. Jump to top