The movie stars who saved our summer

155450__vv_lThis could have been a pretty disastrous moviegoing summer, but if you saw any of the following 10 performers in the multiplex this summer, they made your time worth what you spent on tickets and popcorn. None of them is a name you would have expected to steal moviegoing thunder from the likes of Tom Cruise, Will Ferrell, or Russell Crowe, but that’s what they did. Here are the 10 MVPs of the recent movie season, as rounded up in the forthcoming issue of EW.

In no particular order, they are:

-Terrence Howard, for his starmaking role as pimp-turned-rapper DJay in Hustle & Flow, as well as his supporting roles in Four Brothers and Crash
-Matt Dillon, who pulled off the trickiest role in Crash and a comic villain part in Herbie: Fully Loaded
-Cillian Murphy, extra-creepy in Batman Begins and Red Eye
-Angelina Jolie, who rescued herself from box office poison status in Mr. & Mrs. Smith
-Vince Vaughn (above), who took his aggressive motormouth act to new comic heights in Smith and Wedding Crashers
-Dakota Fanning, who stole War of the Worlds from Cruise and Steven Spielberg
-indie queen Amy Adams (Junebug)
-Miranda July (Me and You and Everyone We Know)
-Star Wars: Episode III emperor Ian McDiarmid
-MVP Hall of Famer Paul Giamatti (Cinderella Man)

Are there any summer movie MVPs you think we left off the list?

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  • Julia

    What about Christian Bale, an extremely talented actor who proved he could also be a bankable leading man in Batman Begins?

  • jcoop

    that’s a fine list. i would include the entire cast of entourage…they’ve certainly made my summer sizzle.

  • Mixteca

    My vote goes to Jessica Alba.

  • Lisa Carvin

    What…No mention of handsome, young Canadian actor Hayden Christiansen, who portrayed the tragic fall of heroic Anakin Skywalker into the cold-hearted, nefarious Darth Vader so poignantly in *Star Wars: Episode III*?

  • Media Grrl

    How could you forget the Marching Penguins? They kicked Michael Bay’s ass. A fake Bay editorial in the Onion says it all – http://www.theonion.com/opinion/index.php?issue=4133

  • Brandon

    Ewan MacGregor. Okay, so “The Island” didn’t do so great at the box office, but I thought it was a good movie and Ewan is a great actor. His scenes with himself in that movie and his work in “Star Wars: Episode III” should put him on the MVP list for sure!

  • Brandon

    Oops! McGregor, not MacGregor.

  • Laura

    I second the Christian Bale nomination. And I would also nominate the entire cast of Sky High (especially Bruce Campbell), who were all wonderful in a really fun, clever movie that is doing better at the Box Office than movies with more “glamorous” stars like Stealth and The Island. Quality counts.

  • Danielle

    Has everyone forgotten that this is a summer MOVIE list? Yes, that means you, the person that voted for the cast of entourage (although that show is HOT). As for Jessica Alba, she is certainly not homely, but as far as talent…was she really in any movie this summer that is going to leave any sort of impression other than ‘ohhh, look at those special effects.’ I’m glad Christian Bale is getting his due (although not on this particular list). Cillian Murphy is an amazing young actor and Amy Adams is really great too. Ewan McGregor is one of my favorites, but he hardly lit up my summer (a few misses, but nothing to ruin his career-thank god). And let’s all ignore the scary star wars fan. Hayden Christiansen was much better in shattered glass 2 years ago than any of the stars wars movies. March of the Penguins might be a good choice, it’s definately done better business than many hollywood blockbusters but i prefer to keep my list strictly human. All in all, i think this list is pretty god. It’s void of Hilary Duff and Ashton Kutcher, could we really ask for more?

  • Danielle

    I meant pretty good…lol

  • Stef

    Rachel McAdams! She’s adorable and is quickly becoming a star.

  • john

    lisa kudrow (happy endings and the comeback (even though the latter is tv))

  • Roxanne

    Tim Robbins in gth4e basement scene in War of the Worlds, Brad Pitt’s underwear in Mr. & Mrs. Smith, the Penguins (hey, why keep it to just humans?), and the remarkable cast of CRASH.

  • Cliff

    Bill Murray and Jeffrey Wright in Broken Flowers.

  • Eugene

    How can you single out Brad Pitt. Prasing only Angelina Jolie for the success of “Mr. and Mrs. Smith” is laughable. She may still be box office poison if the movie were called “Mrs. Smith.” Give some respect where it’s due.

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