Top 10 Actors Who Made The Most Movies in A Single Year

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Top 10 Actors Who Made The Most Movies in A Single Year

VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild WRITTEN BY: Nathan Sharp
These actors are prolific! For this list, we'll be looking at various actors who appeared in many different movies throughout a specific year. Our countdown includes Nicolas Cage, Tom Hanks, John Wayne, and more!
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Top 10 Actors Who Made an Insane Amount of Movies in One Year


Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Actors Who Made an Insane Amount of Movies in One Year.

For this list, we’ll be looking at various actors who appeared in many different movies throughout a specific year.

Which year’s output do you think is the best? Let us know in the comments below!

#10: Jude Law

This London actor broke into the mainstream in the early 2000s, and by 2004 he was a bonafide superstar. In that year alone, Law starred in six different movies. Not only that, but all six movies were released within four months of each other. September saw the release of “Sky Captain the World of Tomorrow,” and the wide release of “I Heart Huckabees” came the next month. November saw his starring role in the “Alfie” remake, and three movies were released in December - “Closer,” “The Aviator,” and “A Series of Unfortunate Events,” in which he provided the voice of Lemony Snicket. And all this was following his Academy and BAFTA-nominated performance in 2003’s “Cold Mountain.” Forget cold - this actor was on fire.

#9: Tom Hanks

No one becomes Tom Hanks by sitting around and twiddling their thumbs. This Hollywood legend has an incredible work ethic, and both 2004 and 2016 saw him starring in four different movies. The former includes popular films like “The Terminal” and “The Polar Express,” but also the lesser-known Coen brothers movie “The Ladykillers.” 2004 also saw the release of “Connie and Carla,” a comedy that Hanks helped produce. 2016 was a big year for Hanks, as it included both “Sully” and “Inferno,” which contained Hanks’s third appearance as Robert Langdon. He also appeared in a documentary called “California Typewriter” and helped produce “My Big Fat Greek Wedding 2” through his production company Playtone.

#8: Kristen Stewart

Since breaking onto the scene with “Twilight,” Kristen Stewart has made herself a household name. There have been many years that saw Stewart in four movies, including 2008, 2012, and 2016. But it was actually 2007 - one year before “Twilight” - that saw Stewart in five different movies. One of these was a short film called “Cutlass,” which was written and directed by Kate Hudson. The others include the supernatural horror film “The Messengers” and the dramas “In the Land of Women” and “The Cake Eaters.” Perhaps her biggest movie of the year was “Into the Wild.” She played Tracy, a teenager who takes a liking to Christopher McCandless in the desert squatter community of Slab City.

#7: Ben Kingsley

This English actor was extraordinarily busy in the early 2010s. Between 2013 and 2014 alone, Kingsley starred in fourteen different movies. That includes six in 2013 and eight in 2014. The latter year includes a little bit of everything, proving the versatile range of this incredible actor. There’s a short MCU film called “All Hail the King,” which saw Kingsley reprising his role as Trevor Slattery. There are dramas like “War Story.” There’s a Gothic film called “Stonehearst Asylum.” There are a few blockbusters like “Exodus: Gods and Kings” and “Night at the Museum: Secret of the Tomb.” And finally, there’s the animated film “The Boxtrolls,” for which Kingsley won the Annie Award for Outstanding Voice Acting.

#6: Nicolas Cage

This actor is a two-time Academy Award nominee and one-time winner. He is also the king of trashy straight-to-video B-movies. You never know what you’re going to get with him. Cage fans were in movie heaven in the latter third of the 2010s. Between 2018 and 2019, Cage starred in fourteen movies. Of those fourteen, nine were direct-to-video, one was the documentary “Love, Antosha,” and two were voice roles for animated films. Perhaps the biggest movies of this time are the well-reviewed Lovecraft adaptation “Color Out of Space,” the stylish revenge thriller “Mandy,” and the animated films “Teen Titans Go! To the Movies” and “Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse.” Cage loves to work, there’s no denying that.


#5: Willem Dafoe

The world has been experiencing a lot of Willem Dafoe as of late. Many years have seen him appearing in seven films, including 2009, 2013, and 2019. But in 2017, Dafoe appeared in six movies and two documentaries called “Do Donkeys Act?” and “Mountain,” making it his most prolific year on record. Within 2017 was a voice role in Netflix’s “Death Note” and the role of Gerhard in “Murder on the Orient Express.” He also appeared as Vulko in “Justice League,” although his role only appears in the 2021 Snyder Cut. Finally, it also saw Dafoe’s Oscar-nominated performance as motel manager Bobby Hicks in the critically acclaimed “The Florida Project.”


#4: Samuel L. Jackson

We’re convinced that Samuel L. Jackson is not human. The man just doesn’t stop working, and he’s managed to remain a household name and enormous box office draw for decades. According to IMDb, Jackson is credited in almost 200 TV shows and movies, and nine of those were in 2019. Granted, one was a Quentin Tarantino documentary and two were small cameos in “Endgame” and “The Rise of Skywalker.” But it still counts! In fact, Jackson played Nick Fury in three of those nine movies, which also includes “Far From Home” and “Captain Marvel.” The other big movies of the year were “Shaft” and “Glass,” in which Jackson reprised his titular role from the 2000 thriller “Unbreakable.”

#3: Liam Neeson

This actor was on top of the world in 2014. Neeson appeared in nine movies throughout the year, which includes narrating the documentaries “Love Thy Nature” and “Road.” He certainly does have a voice fit for narrating. Three of those nine movies were animated, including “The Nut Job,” “The Lego Movie,” and “The Prophet.” Neeson also showed off his famous action chops in the blockbusters “Taken 3” and “Non-Stop,” both of which combined to gross over $500 million. He also starred in the neo-noir thriller “A Walk Among the Tombstones” and tried his hand at comedy by starring as Clinch Leatherwood in Seth MacFarlane’s “A Million Ways to Die in the West.”

#2: John Wayne

As busy as these actors were, it’s hard to compete with John Wayne’s output in the 1930s. Between 1930 and 1939, Wayne appeared in 71 movies for a startling average of seven movies per year. Twelve of those movies were released in 1933. One was a comedy called “His Private Secretary.” A few were dramas, including “Baby Face” and “College Coach.” There were also a few adventure movies, including a modern adaptation of “The Three Musketeers” that took place in North Africa. But most were the type of schlocky, low-budget Westerns that Wayne was known for at the time. Wayne wasn’t yet the megastar he would eventually become, but he certainly had the work ethic.

#1: Christopher Lee

Once upon a time, Christopher Lee was an enormous horror movie star, known primarily for his tenure as Dracula in various Hammer Horror movies. 1970 was a huge year for Lee, as he starred in nine different movies. And while John Wayne technically starred in a higher number of films, Lee’s were of significantly better quality. He played Dracula in four of these nine movies, including “Count Dracula” and the Hammer films “Taste the Blood of Dracula” and “Scars of Dracula.” He also did some Shakespeare, starring as Artemidorus in the epic “Julius Caesar.” Finally, he appeared as Mycroft Holmes in the Billy Wilder parody “The Private Life of Sherlock Holmes.” It’s easily one of the most high-profile years in movie history.
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