You hear the horror tales of endless auditions and rejections in the world of Hollywood from people who dream to become famous, whether it's by becoming a model, actor, or singer. It's undoubtedly a lot of hard work, with a touch of luck that plays a part, but with all things in life, some people get it a bit easier--and they get a whole lot more than just a touch of luck. Although not as common, it is more common than people may think to get "street casted"--which means an agent or director or somebody with some sway in the industry spots someone who has the look that they've been seeking or showcases some talent, and then that lucky person nabs the gig or audition that launches him or her into a whole new world.
You might not have realized this but some of the most talented stars have been cast this way, and if you want to know who... well, you're just going to have to keep on scrolling--and be amazed! How did so much fame and fortune come from catching one important person's eye on the streets? Well, if you really want to know, you might as well look good wherever you go, because who knows? That might be you! So stop wearing those sweatpants to the market!
15 Ellen Pompeo- How was Meredith Grey discovered?
Before becoming a household name through her long stay on hit Shonda Rhimes drama Grey's Anatomy, Ellen Pompeo was just a bartender at the SoHo Kitchen Bar & Grille in New York City in the 90's. There, a casting agent saw her and thought (rightfully so) that she'd be perfect for commercials! She landed a gig as a model for L'Oreal, then moved onto minor roles on television and film before really hitting it big with her own TV show, the highly successful Grey's Anatomy. There, she plays the lovable Meredith Grey, and so Ellen Pompeo went from being just a pretty bartender to a television doctor whose name and face can be recognized across the nation and even overseas. Don't lose hope if you're dreaming of becoming an actor and you're stuck bartending for now!
14 Pamela Anderson- Caught the attention of a whole stadium
Possibly one of the biggest sex symbols in the world, Pamela Anderson was first discovered in Canada during a football game. She popped up on the stadium screen and received a hugely positive response for her cute and pretty looks. She was cheered on and brought down to the field, and everyone fell in love. Because she garnered so much attention and she was actually wearing a Labatt T-shirt, she was hired by the beer company to be the new Blue Zone girl. After that, she nabbed advertisement after advertisement until she became the cover girl for Playboy--and this was not a one-time deal. From then on, she continued to rake in the love and attention for her beauty and glamor and sex appeal.
13 Natalie Portman-Enjoying a slice of pizza
This gorgeous, smart star was not even an ugly duckling before becoming the famous Black Swan! Known to have started acting at a relatively young age, the intelligent Natalie Portman caught attention for her looks while enjoying a slice of pizza in Long Island when she was only 11 years old--and not just any attention, attention from a representative of Revlon cosmetics! A makeup company wanted her to model for them! With her sharp features, bright eyes, and natural charisma, Natalie Portman already had the beauty and the air of a potential star at the young age of 11. It's no surprise that her looks matched with her talent and passion made her one of the top-tier Hollywood actors today.
12 Nick Jonas- Discovered at the young age of 6
Turns out the Jonas Brothers' success derived from third son Nick Jonas's talents! He was actually the one who was discovered, and at the super young age of six. Six! He had accompanied his mother to the barber salon so she could get her hair done. There, the young Nick Jonas showed off his impressive singing, catching the attention of someone else in the salon, who referred them to a show business manager. Nick Jonas then debuted at seven on Broadway and paved the way for the three Jonas Brothers as they made their band and became a nation-wide sensation with their catchy music and cute looks. Even now, he continues on with his successful singing career as a soloist.
11 Charlize Theron- Just a young teen
It comes as no surprise that this drop-dead gorgeous Atomic Blonde caught the eye of a talent agent--even in such circumstances... When she was just a teenager, she moved to Hollywood from South Africa and was quickly running out of money to sustain herself, so of course she was angry when the bank wouldn't cash her paycheck. Who wouldn't be frustrated? While screaming and begging out of sheer desperation at the bank teller, she caught the eye of a talent agent who happened to be at the bank at the same time. Afterwards, she debuted in her first film, which was called Children of the Corn III. Since then, she has steadily been growing her acting career and fame through hits like Mad Max and the newly released Atomic Blonde.
10 Channing Tatum- Remember this young face?
A lot of people may know now that the sexy Channing Tatum indeed was a stripper before hitting it big (his skills can be seen in his movie Magic Mike). His lucky break came when he moved to Miami and was scouted by a modeling agent--and why wouldn't he be hired on the spot? He had the chiseled abs, strong facial features, and overall sex appeal. He was soon seen in ads, then moved onto TV commercials and eventually movies, where he really became a household name (The Kingsman 2 is coming out soon with him in it, actually!). Even though he was not interested in acting initially, his career naturally blossomed and he went down that path to meet with great success.
9 Jennifer Lawrence- Spotted when she was just 12 years old
How nice would it be to go on vacation and then be spotted by a talent agent? That's what happened to Jennifer Lawrence when she was just twelve years old. She was specifically just relaxing around Union Square, when she was spotted. Since then, she started work as a model before moving onto a few television stints, including hit show Monk. She did mostly indie films before hitting it to the mainstream big-time with, of course, The Hunger Games franchise. People fell in love with her easygoing, quirky personality, and she's continued releasing hit after hit. That talent agent must have had some special radar for the immense talent brimming within Jennifer Lawrence! Unless he approached her just because she was cute, which would totally be legit.
8 Johnny Depp- Discovered by a Hollywood director
What?! Johnny Depp, you say?! That's right. Super talented, veteran actor Johnny Depp was found by Hollywood completely by accident. He was just being his cool self, you know. Lounging around, not really asking for much. Possibly brooding. Bam! Then he becomes one of the biggest top stars of Hollywood today. He was discovered because he was actually accompanying his friend, Jackie Earle Haley, to a movie audition, specifically Wes Craven's A Nightmare on Elm Street. Ironically, Haley did not get the part, but Depp was discovered by none other than Wes Craven himself. Depp was asked to audition, landed the role as Glen, and made his huge debut that started off his incredibly successful career in acting. Craven, you found a Hollywood gem!
7 Rosario Dawson- Discovered at the young age of 15
You may know this gorgeous star in Netflix's original Marvel shows, such as Daredevil and Iron Fist, where she plays a tough nurse who helps out our favorite superheroes. Rosario Dawson was literally chilling outside when she got discovered at the young age of 15. She was sitting on her front porch with friends when a screenwriter and photographer spotted her and asked her to audition for their indie film, Kids. She nailed the audition and landed the role of the promiscuous teenager, Ruby, in this controversial film. Since then, she's been steadily rising in fame and acclaim. It's not too surprising because she's a stunning star who exudes a charm and charisma that is just too hard to resist!
6 Ashton Kutcher- Discovered at a bar one night
Ashton Kutcher was actually studying engineering in Iowa in the 90's when his good looks and magnetic charm caught the attention of a talent agent at a bar one night. He was persuaded to enter a modeling competition in Iowa, which he won. After getting that taste of recognition and fame, he dropped out of college and moved to New York to continue pursing a career in modeling. He appeared in ads and then decided to move onto acting, which meant another big move, this time to Hollywood. He landed his very first audition for the successful That '70s Show and, well, the rest is history. Now he's a household name, often seen in TV shows and movies alike, still making hearts stop with that handsome face of his.
5 Sarah Michelle Gellar- Scouted at the youngest age in this entire list
Buffy the Vampire Slayer actually was scouted at the youngest age in this entire list. How is that possible, you may ask, what with Nick Jonas being discovered at the age of six? Well, she beat that by two years. She was discovered at the adorable age of four. She was simply eating at a restaurant in New York City when an agent fell in love with her, probably because she had adorable cheeks and huge blue eyes. She first appeared in some commercials, and then she blossomed into a beautiful young lady through Buffy the Vampire Slayer, testing the waters further with risque roles like Kathryn Merteuil in Cruel Intentions and family-favorite roles like Daphne in Scooby-Doo before settling down with co-star Freddie Prinze Jr. Cute face and intense charisma in one is Sarah Michelle Gellar.
4 David Boreanaz- Was it always easy for him?
Moving on, Buffy the Vampire Slayer also starred the handsome David Boreanaz, who was so popular he even got his spin-off series, Angel. From then on, he kept hitting success with other TV shows like Bones. And how did it all start? By a twist of fate! He actually was an aspiring actor, but was having a hard time landing gigs in Los Angeles when one day, he was out walking his dog when he was spotted and cast for the role of Angel in the hit series, Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It's really no surprise because he was all tall and handsome and perfect for playing a brooding vampire. Thank goodness he walked his dog that day or we'd be missing some David Boreanaz in some awesome TV shows!
3 Marilyn Monroe- Did she always want to be famous?
Believe it or not, one of the most iconic female stars in the world of Hollywood, Marilyn Monroe, was discovered purely by accident. Known to be basically two separate personas, the Norma Jean side of this glamorous star was photographed by a military photographer doing a piece on women working during the war. She, at the time, was employed at a munitions factory. She was such a natural in front of the camera and incredibly photogenic that she impressed the photographer and this sparked an incredible change in her life from factory slave to iconic movie star. Bye bye Norma Jean, hel-lo gorgeous, blonde, glamorous, confident, sexy Marilyn Monroe. Seriously, stars can be found anywhere! Even at a factory during the war time.
2 Eva Mendes- Basically she was always this hot
Another beautiful actress, Eva Mendes was likewise captured in photographs before hitting it big in Hollywood. She actually appeared randomly in a few photographs in her neighbor's portfolio, which was submitted to an agent. Not sure what happened to the neighbor, but Eva Mendes was then discovered! With Eva's classic, glamorous features, the agent immediately noticed her and contacted her to play a few small roles here and there. Sure, they might have been small at the time, but they gradually piled up to launch her into stardom. He has incredible taste because she is gorgeous and so charismatic, now isn't she? Now if people would accidentally include me in their photographs... or would I have to resort to photo-bombing at every possible chance I get?
1 Mel Gibson- Just trying to be a good friend
Another huge, well-known star, the charismatic and handsome Mel Gibson pulled a Johnny Depp before, well, Johnny Depp did. Mel Gibson was giving his friend a ride to an audition, and when he got there, he actually grabbed the attention of the director, George Miller, because he was all bruised and cut up from a recent bar fight. Quite badass, right? Because he looked all beat up, director George Miller wanted him as an extra in Mad Max. However, get this: when Mel Gibson appeared on set, his bruises were gone and there was no denying that he was an extremely handsome fella. Because he looked so good all cleaned up, he was actually given the lead role instead of playing the extra as originally planned! And that was a huge role for him! Crazy what life throws at you, isn't it?