Canada is known for churning out some Hollywood heavy hitters. Justin Bieber, Mike Myers, Jim Carrey, Ryan Reynolds and Pamela Anderson are just a few of the notable Canadian-born entertainers that have achieved success in America. While Canada might be a training ground for burgeoning talent, entertainers ultimately travel to Hollywood to try to make it in the big leagues.
Pamela Anderson had her first feature in Playboy when she was still a Vancouver resident and later decided to pursue a modeling career in Los Angeles. Ryan Gosling reportedly traveled back and forth from Ontario to California with his mother after he landed his first acting role on Disney’s ‘Mickey Mouse Club’ as a child. Seth Rogen started his stand-up comedy career in his hometown, Vancouver, before landing his first acting gig on the American TV series ‘Freaks and Geeks’. Both Gosling and Rogen have gone on to build impressive movie careers in Hollywood.
After his recent run-in with the law, a petition was presented to The White House to deport pop star Justin Beiber back to his native country of Canada. The Washington Times reports it is the second-highest petition of all time. It seems his recent DUI arrest and alleged drug-fueled antics have quickly made him outstay his welcome. Meanwhile, popular Canadian rapper Drake received rave reviews for his recent SNL spoof of his former role on the Canadian TV show ‘Degrassi: The Next Generation’. Drake was born and raised in Ontario, where he began acting before pursuing a music career.
While it is common knowledge that Alanis Morissette, Justin Bieber, Neve Campbell and Mike Meyers are from Canada, some of your favorite “American” stars are less known for hailing from across the border. Whether they were born there or raised there, many of them still maintain Canadian citizenship today.
Here are 5 Hollywood stars that are actually Canadian:
Cree Summers – Saskatchewan, Canada
Cree Summers, rose to fame in her role as “Winifred ‘Freddie’ Brooks” on the popular ‘Cosby Show’ spin-off, ‘A Different World’. Her father is Canadian actor and musician Don Francks, and her mother is Plains Cree First Nation member, Lili Red Eagle. The self-described “Proud Canadian” grew up on a Plains Cree reserve in Saskatchewan and holds dual citizenship in America and Canada, reports TV.com.
Summers resides in Los Angeles with her family and currently makes a living as a voiceover actress. According to Behind The Voice Actors, her voiceover credits include ‘Clifford the Big Red Dog,’ ‘Sonic the Hedgehog’, ‘X-Men Legends’, ‘WordGirl’ and ‘Xiaolin Chronicles’. She landed her first voiceover job as a teen, playing “Penny” on ‘Inspector Gadget’ where she worked alongside her father.
Anna Paquin – Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
Academy Award winning actress, Anna Paquin, was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her family relocated to New Zealand where she shot her first film, ‘The Piano’, reports People magazine. After being signed to the William Morris Agency, Paquin moved to Los Angeles. The Oscar winner went on to star in ‘X-Men’, ‘Almost Famous’, ‘Amistad’, HBO’s ‘True Blood’ and ‘The Romantics’.
Paquin has dual citizenship in Canada and New Zealand. Though she has filmed in Canada, she considers New Zealand her home. In a 2007 interview at The Tribeca Film Festival, Paquin talked about living in America as a non-citizen stating: “I’m not very political. I’m also not American and I don’t get to vote so my feelings are not really relevant.”
Rick Fox – Toronto, Canada
Former L.A. Laker and actor, Rick Fox, was born in Toronto and later moved to the Bahamas with his family as a young boy. His mother is Italian Canadian and his father is Bahamian. After attending high school in New York, he played basketball for the University of North Carolina’s Tar Heels and was drafted into the NBA in 1991. Four years later, he appeared in his first movie ‘Blue Chips’.
Fox has appeared on television and in film, starring alongside ex-wife Vanessa Williams in ‘Ugly Betty’, appearing on HBO’s ‘Oz’ and ‘The Game’ on BET. In 2008, he scored a lead role in the Tyler Perry film ‘Meet The Browns’. Though Fox is a Canadian citizen, he stated he identifies as Bahamian during a ZNS Total Sports interview. Fox also admitted that he regrets playing for the Canadian national basketball team while in college, because it barred him from representing The Bahamas.
Kim Cattrall – Courtenay, British Columbia, Canada
Femme fatale Kim Cattrall is best known for her role as “Samantha Jones” on the HBO hit series ‘Sex and the City’. Cattrall was born in Liverpool, England and relocated with her family to Courtenay, British Columbia as an infant. She moved back and forth from Canada to England until she relocated to New York City after graduating from high school.
Cattrall made her film debut in ‘Rosebud’ and appeared in ‘Porky’s’, ‘Police Academy’, ‘Mannequin’ and ‘Star Trek VI: The Undiscovered Country’ before being cast in SATC. She is a British and Canadian citizen. Cattrall stated in a 2010 interview for Hotline magazine: “I love America, I love New York, but I will never give up who I am. I’m not an American.” According to The Hollywood Reporter she is currently filming the Canadian TV series ‘Sensitive Skin.’
Eric McCormack – Toronto, Canada
Funny man Eric McCormack was born and raised in Toronto. The Canadian actor is most known for his starring role as “Will Truman” on NBC’s ‘Will & Grace’. According to TV.com, McKormak began performing in high school and studied acting throughout college. He starred in a Canadian film, ‘The Boys from Syracuse’, before relocating to Los Angeles.
McKormak appeared on several television series and starred in the TV movie ‘Double, Double, Toil and Trouble’ alongside Mary Kate and Ashley Olson before landing his breakout sitcom role. The Emmy winner holds dual citizenship in America and Canada. In 2012, he told Parade Magazine that he believes his Canadian heritage has “informed his sense of humor and approach to comedy”. He currently divides his time between L.A. and Vancouver, where he and his wife own homes.