We are huge fans of Meryl Streep and the incredible career that she has built over the years. We’re not the only fans of her either, there are celebrities out there that also get a little light-headed at the thought of meeting Streep. She has been inspiring up-and-coming actresses for decades now and there are plenty of reasons why. A lot of us grew up watching Streep on the silver screen and we can’t help but love her. Over the years she has received over 30 Golden Globe nominations and that’s nothing to sneeze at.
Meryl Streep has been in the industry for so long now that it’s hard to remember a time that she wasn’t famous. Her big break came after she appeared in Kramer vs. Kramer and earned herself an Oscar for best supporting actress in 1979. The world knew right away that she was going to be a big star. We did some exploring to dig up some old pictures of the star that are going to have all the fangirls squealing. Streep is a legend and these pictures are going to prove it. Check out these 20 retro pics of Meryl Streep every fangirl should see.
20 Before She Was Famous
Look how gorgeous she was at a young girl. She was such a babe! It’s no wonder that she was cast in a movie just months after graduating from drama school. That was the movie that set off her career. The picture was taken in New York City’s Theater District in 1978. Only a year later, she would win an Oscar. Kelly Clarkson once went gaga over Streep at the Golden Globes and got the courage to approach her. “Can I meet you? I am such a fan! I’ve adored you since I was like eight.”
19 She Was A Fresh-Faced Girl
She’s always had a very unusual look, but it’s done her well. We love her fresh-faced looks and she has an innocence about her in this photo. Clarkson isn’t the only celebrity that completely goes nuts when she sees Meryl Streep. Mariah Carey made an error at an awards show and accidentally took Streep’s seat. “Got caught mingling on the way to the loo during a commercial break. Took the first seat available, happens to be right next to Steven Spielberg,” she tweeted. “Cut to next commercial break, guess who comes back to her seat...me. Dear Meryl, please forgive me! You can take my seat any time!”
18 Proving She’s A Great Actress
This is a shot from the courtroom scene in the movie The Deer Hunter which was shot in the '70s. Recently, Streep starred in Big Little Lies and we got to see a scene where Reese Witherspoon threw ice cream at Streep’s character. We know Witherspoon’s character doesn’t mess around and fans of the show loved seeing Streep in the scene. “I am praying Reese pelts Meryl with that ice cream,” one fan tweeted. Witherspoon commented to the fan saying, “Oh Matt! No need to pray,” she responded. “I got her!”
17 Legends In The Making
There are a whole lot of legends in this photo and Meryl Streep looks thrilled about winning an Oscar. Streep has offered a lot of advice over the years and her speeches are often epic. During one speech she reminded us that an actor’s “only job is to enter the lives of people who are different than us and let you feel what that feels like.” She also shared with everyone what advice she once received from her late friend, Carrie Fisher: “Take your broken heart, make it into art.”
16 Always A Bridesmaid
A great look for her and like we said before she was a beauty. When she appeared in The Deer Hunter she played a bridesmaid named Linda. It hit theatres in 1978 and also starred Robert De Niro, John Cazale, and Chuck Aspegren. Viola Davis appeared with Streep in the movie Doubt and had this to say about her. “Her artistry reminds us of the impact of what it means to be an artist, which is to make us feel less alone. You make me proud to be an artist. You make me feel that what I have in me — my body, my face, my age — is enough.”
15 She Was Called An Ugly Duckling
We think Meryl Streep has always been stunning but not everyone thought that. The son of producer Dino De Laurentiis once asked Streep to audition for his father’s remake of King Kong. His son may have seen something in Streep, but Dino did not. Within earshot of Streep at the audition, he called her “che brutta,” which meant “how ugly”/ “what an ugly woman.” She understood Italian and shot back a comment to the producer. We can bet that the producer has since regretted the comment considering Streep’s success over the years.
14 New York City Girl
This is another picture that was taken in New York City in the '70s and we can see what a gem she was right from the beginning. She received the Presidential Medal of Freedom at the White House from former President Obama. “I love Meryl Streep,” he said the evening he presented her with the award. “Her husband knows I love her. Michelle knows I love her. There’s nothing they can do about it.” Talk about a great honor for her and it’s certainly not the only award that she has won.
13 An Iconic Beauty
We have seen Meryl Streep singing in a few movies, most recently Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again. She loves to sing and it’s not just in the movies. One of her favorite things to do is to sing in the shower and we can probably all relate to that. “I think we all think we sound really good in the shower, where there's that nice reverb, and the water's drowning you out, and there is some liberation in the freedom of being totally alone and really going for it.”
12 A Young Meryl Streep
We can attest to the fact that she is an amazing actress and has a ton of accolades to her credit. But there are some things that she is not good at and she doesn’t have a problem admitting it. “I can't do a lot of things, like golf. I don't like golf. I mean, I really don't, because I tend to like things that I can do right away. If I can't do it right away, I don't like it.”
11 Just A Girl On The Subway
This picture was taken in the '80s as she was snapped taking a subway train in New York City. She looked casual and pretty and you would never know by this picture that she was about to be an enormous star in Hollywood. Over the years, she has portrayed a lot of real people. She played culinary icon Julia Child, former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, and American journalist Susan Orlean, as well as labor union activist Karen Silkwood. People obviously trust her to tell stories of pretty important people.
10 She Tried Darker Colors
We love her as a brunette just as much as we love her with her natural blonde locks. We haven’t seen her with short, dark hair in a while. She played alongside Robert Redford in Out of Africa where she used a foreign actress. It was one of her roles in the '80s and the film got seven Academy Awards. There are times that she has worked with her daughter Mamie Gummer like in the movie Ricki and the Flash. She was proud to work with her daughter and said, “She's a free talent. It doesn't have any cover-up – she's the real deal."
9 A Child-Like Smile
She looks so young in this picture that we can barely stand it. Well, at least we went through life and had a chance to see Meryl Streep in a scrunchie. You would think that someone that worked in the movie industry would be watching a lot of movies herself, but that’s just not the case. “I don't know why, I don't watch a lot of movies; I can barely keep up with the things my friends are in. There isn't enough time in life.”
8 The '80s Brought Big Hair
Anyone that lived through the '80s probably had a similar hairdo and we love that Meryl Streep is rocking out big hair in this photo. Lots of stars have had the honor of working with Streep over the years and Julia Roberts was one of them. The two worked together in the movie August: Osage County and Roberts had this to say about her costar, “When I was called about it as a movie and told that Meryl Streep was going to play Violet, I couldn’t sign up fast enough. That was really such a dream come true for me.”
7 Meryl Streep Is An Inspiration
What a gorgeous photo from the start and it’s certainly one of the reasons why people love her so much. When it comes to Julia Roberts, who is a pretty big star herself, she can’t say enough good things about Streep. “Well, she is the best there is. She is really phenomenal. To watch her up close doing that thing, that I, like everyone, have only sat in the dark and watched in awe of. Where does it come from? How does she think of this stuff? To get to watch that up close and to see her be a real-life person, actually working really hard to be that great, it was a privilege.”
6 The Glamor Girl
Not only does she look gorgeous in this photo, but Streep has a heart of gold. When it comes to her personal life, Streep loves to give back. She’s been married to her husband Don Gummer for a long time and the two started up the Silver Mountain Foundation for the Arts. The two have donated millions together towards educational programs and different charities. “Service is the only thing that's important about love. Everybody is worried about 'losing yourself' — all this narcissism. Duty. We can't stand that idea now either. But duty might be a suit of armor you put on to fight for your love.”
5 She Believes In Gender Equality
We have definitely come to that point in society where women are speaking up about their rights. The is an unequal pay scale when it comes to women in the workforce and Streep is one feminists who doesn’t mind speaking about it. She supports other women in Hollywood and in 2015, when Patricia Arquette won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress, she spoke about it in her speech. Streep was seen standing up in the audience and cheering for her.
4 A Legendary Actress
We just love this photo of her because we don’t get to see the seductress side of Streep anymore. Everyone wants to meet Meryl Streep and Tiffany Haddish was no different. When she saw Streep at the Oscars she went through all kinds of barriers to make sure that she could talk to the actress. “I’m looking forward to meeting Meryl Streep and asking her to be my mama,” she said ahead of time. We think it’s adorable how celebrities fangirl other celebrities.
3 Everyone Has A Crush On Her
We can’t believe that she was ever told that she was too ugly for a role. What were they thinking? She is stunning in this photo. Vanessa Hudgens once saw Streep backstage at the Ellen DeGeneres Show and had to go up to her. She told Ellen all about it. “She’s just so amazing,” Hudgens beamed. “She’s so beautiful. She just radiates light, and love and talent. She’s amazing!” As a joke, Ellen gave her a mug stating that it was the one that Streep used. “I’m never washing it!” Hudgens laughed.
2 Meryl Streep is A Total Babe
Not only is she beautiful and smart but she’s trying to impart her knowledge to her children as well. She once said in an interview that she hopes she’s doing a service to her children. “But I have a daughter who will be 16 in the year 2000. And I remember what I was like at 16 — how incredibly vast and exciting the choices were. My parents, I think, had a lot to do with making me feel that way. I just don’t know if I’ll be able to impart the same enthusiasm to my daughter — to all my kids — unless I really feel that I’ve done something to make the world better for them. So I’ve picked pesticides, and that’s my thing.”
1 She’s Not Interested In Directing
We have seen a lot of actors move on to directing movies as well, but Streep has no interest in that avenue. “I never, never have. I have thought about directing in the theater because it’s a smaller field. I have a pathological hatred of the telephone — I hate to have it on my ear — so I wouldn’t be good at producing. But directing in the theater — I’ve always thought that I would do that at some point.” We would much rather see her on the silver screen instead of behind the scenes anyway.