1. Famous actors
2. Australian singers and bands
3. Sportsmen, supermodels, businessmen
Even though Australia has a low density and is far from Europe and the USA, this young country has managed to produce internationally known celebrities in every categories.
Indeed, many Australian actors like Paul Hogan, Russel Crowe or Nicole Kidman are regularly starring in Hollywood superproductions.
Musically, Australia also has famous bands such as AC/DC or the singer Kylie Minogue.
About sports, the Australians are a nation which is always well represented at the Olympic Games, especially in swimming when Ian Thorpe established astonishing records !
Finally, we will talk about Elle MacPherson (supermodel and businesswoman) and the press baron Rupert Murdoch.
1. Famous actors
a) Hugh Jackman
Hugh Jackman is an actor famous for his acting roles in films such as X-men, Wolverine, Paperback Hero and Australia, but also for his musical talent, for example in his role as Peter Allen in the Broadway Musical ‘The Boy from Oz’.
b) Nicole Kidman
Nicole Kidman is one of the Australian most famous actresses. She is also famous for her wedding with Tom Cruise and her more recent wedding with her current husband, the country and western singer, Keith Urban. Some of her most famous films include Moulin Rouge, Eyes Wide Shut, and more recently, Australia.
c) Paul Hogan
This australian actor has first been known thanks to the Winfield cigarette’s advertisements, which has been, since 20 years now, the most famous cigarette brand in Australia. He became internationally famous for playing Mick Dundee in the iconic Australian film, Crocodile Dundee, in 1986.
Then, he produced the two last movies of the trilogy “Crocodile Dundee II” in 1988 and “Crocodile Dundee in Los Angeles” in 2001.
d) Russel Crowe
Russell wasn’t born in Australia, but arrived there from New-Zealand when he was a kid. He is famous for performing in films such as Proof, Romper Stomper, The Insider and Gladiator. He is the co-owner of the rugby league team South Sydney Rabbitohs and is also notorious for having an occasionally aggressive personality.
e) Cate Blanchett
Catherine Blanchett is one of the most famous Australian actresses. She was born in Melbourne and graduated from the prestigious NIDA in 1992. She performed in Aviator, The Lord of the Rings, Indiana Jones, Elizabeth, Benjamin Button … and many others. She is one of the most awarded actress : she won the Best Actress Oscar in 2014 for Blue Jasmine – from Woody Allen.
She is also the co-director of Sydney Theatre Company.
2. Australian singers and bands
They are widely considered as the pioneers of heavy metal/hard rock, and few people know that this band is from Sydney in Australia. The band leaders are two brothers : Malcolm and Angus Young. Since 1980, the main singer is Brian Johnson.
Since their beginning in the 1970s, the AC/DC band has remained one of the most popular rock bands of all time, having many number one hits, including ‘Back in Black’, ‘Thunderstruck’, ‘Highway to Hell’, and ‘It’s a Long Way to the Top’.
Before its “Black Ice Tour” in Sydney and Melbourne in 2010, AC/DC had not performed in Australia since 2001.
b) Kylie Minogue
Even though she began her career as an actress in the famous Australian TV show, Neighbours, Kylie has risen to international pop-star. With Madonna, Kylie is the only english-speaking artist who remained numero 1 selling hits during 3 consecutive decades : 1980’s, 1990’s and 2000’s. Some of her famous hits include ‘I Should Be So Lucky’, ‘Spinning Around’, ‘Fever’ and ‘Can’t Get You Out of My Head’.
She is also famous for overcoming breast cancer at a relatively young age.
c) The easybeats
This band from the sixties is a feature of post-war Australian society, because all its members were from overseas: Scotland, England and Netherlands. Their song Friday on My Mind was an international hit but their other songs were not as successful as the first. They formed the band in 1964 and split in 1969.
The Easybeats’ guitarist is the brother of Angus and Malcolm Young from AC/DC.
Jet is an Australian rock band which released Get Born, its first album, in 2003. This album was a revelation and allowed Jet to perform the supporting act during the Australian tour of The Rolling Stones in 2003. In 2006 and 2009, the band confirmed by releasing two albums: Shine On and Shaka Rock.
In 2005, 2006 and 2007, they won the « Most Performed Australian Work Overseas » award from the Australasian Performing Right Association (APRA) for their song Are You Gonna Be My Girl.
e) Angus & Julia Stone
Angus & Julia Stone is a folk/blues duo (Brother and sister) from Sydney. Their first album A Book Like This was released in 2007 but they really met success in 2010 with their second album Down The Way.
With this album (number 1 in Australia), they won three ARIA awards in 2010: « Album of the Year », « Best Adult Alternative Album » and « Single of the Year » for their song Big Jet Plane. This international hit was also Number 1 at the Triple J Hottest 100.
f) Rolf Harris
Born in 1930 in Perth, he is a beloved Australian personality. His background is Australian and British. He is a musician and a singer, mastering the didgeridoo and the beatbox, and respected artist. He has even created his own instrument : the ‘wobble board’. His songs are humorous and light-hearted.
He collaborated with the Beatles in the 1960’s, whom covered his famous song “Tie Me Kangaroo Down, Sport” and the Wiggles in 2000.
g) The wiggles
The Wiggles are the most famous children’s singing group in Australia. They have become a world-wide phenomenon, spawning many new Wiggles groups all over the world, who sing for children in their local languages. The original group included Anthony Field, Murray Cook, Greg Page and Jeff Fatt, with Anthony retiring for health reasons in 2006. He was replaced by Sam Moran.
With their friends Captain Feathersword, Dorothy the Dinosaur, Henry the Octopus, and Wags the Dog, they have become part of most Australian families over the last 20 years.
3. Sportsmen, supermodels, businessmen
a) Steve Irwin
Steve Irwin (The Crocodile Hunter) is famous for his work with Australian reptiles, in particular, crocodiles, as well as many other animals all over the world. His TV show, The Crocodile Hunter, and his Australia Zoo (Queensland) made him a very unique Australian who truly appreciated what nature has to offer.
Sadly, in 2006, he passed away, killed, not by a crocodile as one could expect considering his work, but by a stingray who wounded him while he was filming off the coast of North Queensland. His family continues his tradition of respect for all animals, as well as his work at the Australia Zoo.
b) Skippy the kangaroo
She is one of the most famous kangaroos of all time. Skippy the Bush Kangaroo was an Australian TV show which aired all over the world, following the adventures of an eastern-grey kangaroo and her owner, a young boy, in an Australian national park. You can watch the trailer below.
c) Cathy Freeman
Cathy Freeman was the first female of Aboriginal origin who won a gold medal in an international sporting event, the 1990 Commonwealth Games. She is a fantastic female role model for many aspiring athletes, particularly within Australia.
d) Greg Norman
Greg Norman is a famous Australian golfer, better known as ‘The Great White Shark’ for his on-course prowess. He is also a highly respected businessman. His top professional career went from 1976 (he was only 19 at that time) to 2009. Among those 33 years, he remained world number 1 during 331 weeks.
e) Ian Thorpe
Ian Thorpe is an Australian Olympic swimmer who currently holds the biggest number of gold medals ever won by an Australian during the Olympics : 5 gold medals. At 14 years old, he became a world swimming champion, the world’s youngest swimmer to do so.
During his career, he has set many world records and made his mark in sporting history.
f) Craig Foster
Craig Foster is a former Australian soccer player. He played as a midfielder for Australian and English clubs from 1988 to 2003. He also earned 29 cups and scored 9 goals with the Australian national football team. Craig is currently chief football analyst and commentator for the TV channel SBS.
He also writes for The Sun Herald and the Sydney Morning Herald.
g) Elle Mcpherson
Elle Macpherson is a famous Australian supermodel, which has been known through her covers of Elle Magazine. ‘The Body”, as she is often nicknamed, has also experimented acting and is a businesswoman. She recently launched her own lingerie line «Elle Macpherson Intimates» and her beauty products brand “The Body”.
h) Rupert Murdoch
This businessman is a famous Australian media mogul who owns many high profile companies such as 20th Century Fox, Newscorp, and Harper Collins Publishers. His media empire has grown from a small local newspaper in Australia, to a multi million-dollar industry leader.
i) Adam Spencer
Adam Spencer is an Australian radio presenter and a comedian. He began on radio at Triple J and he is now presenting Breakfast on 702 ABC Sydney. Adam is also performing his own stand up comedy around Australia.