Sometimes when turning on the TV or opening up an entertainment magazine, it seems like all celebrities these days hit their peaks when they’re between 22 and 25. It’s hard to believe Jennifer Lawrence is only 27 considering she has an Oscar already and numerous nominations. But while it might seem like all stars are either former child stars or have famous parents to give them a leg-up, there are a surprising number of actors who started late with their careers, sometimes not pursuing the entertainment industry seriously until they were over 30.
For example, Danny Glover, star of massive hits like Lethal Weapon and The Color Purple, wasn’t some struggling theatre kid like so many other stars. Instead, he worked as a city administrator doing community planning. The job wasn’t exactly glamorous, but he was satisfied enough with it to keep it for several years. However, in 1979, he quit his job and decided to make a daring career move — to become an actor full time. Considering he was already 31 at the time, his friends and family probably thought he was crazy. After all, that’s the age people normally slow down and raise families. However, Danny said the transition wasn’t as hard as it appeared.
“I didn’t think it was a difficult transition,” he told Ability Magazine in 2002. “Acting is a platform that can become a conveyor for ideas. Art is a way of understanding, of confronting issues and confronting your own feelings—all within that realm of the capacity it represents. It may have been a leap of faith for me, given not only my learning disability but also the fact that I felt awkward… Whether it’s art, acting, or theater that I’ve devoted myself to I put more passion and more energy into it.”
Check out the gallery below to see more actors who didn’t seriously pursue their acting careers until they were 30 or older.