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Josh Hartnett Was A Massive Star In The Early 2000s, So Why Haven't We Seen Him Since?

It seemed like Josh Hartnett was in every movie in the early 2000s, but now it's hard remember the last movie you saw him in.

Touchstone Pictures

Where did he go?

You probably remember him from the movie Pearl Harbor, where he played Captain Danny Walker, or Black Hawk Down as the character Eversmann. He has been in a lot of very successful movies, and was one of the biggest heartthrobs of the early 2000s.


Seriously, his IMDB page is just a big reminder of all the great things he's done.

One of his first big movies was The Virgin Suicides

American Zoetrope

Very shortly after he was in Pearl Harbor and Black Hawk Down which were both HUGE movies

Touchstone Pictures
Revolution Studios

Did he have some flops? Of course he did. 40 Days and 40 Nights wasn't great, neither was Blow Dry

Mirage Enterprises

But he came back with Sin City

Dimension Films

Followed by Lucky Number Slevin

Weinstein Company

And then The Black Dahlia

Universal Pictures

While his output really hasn't changed as much as you'd expect, the type of projects he is working on has definitely changed.

He still acts, just in smaller indie movies or TV shows like Penny Dreadful

Dessert Wolf Productions

Fans still wonder why he stopped making the Hollywood blockbusters that made him a star. It turns out it was for a pretty relatable reason.

But there's an actual reason why he made a major career change

Josh Hartnett's career reached a point where he was able to land any part he wanted to. The thing was, he didn't want any of them.

Dessert Wolf Productions

He was offered a bunch of superhero roles, but none of them appealed to him. He said "Spider-Man was something we talked about. Batman was another one. But I somehow knew those roles had potential to define me, and I didn't want that."

In 2006 he was offered Superman Returns and turned it down, causing him to have a lot of problems with his agents. "I didn't have those agents for much longer after that,” he said. “There was a lot of infighting between my manager and agents, trying to figure out who to put the blame on. It got to the point where none of us were able to work together.”

It was at that point that he started to notice that his life wasn't what he wanted it to be. "I was on the cover of every magazine. I couldn't really go anywhere. I didn't feel comfortable in my own skin. I was alone."

He made a big decision that changed his career, "I didn't trust anyone. So I went back to Minnesota and got back together with my old friends — ended up getting back together with my high-school girlfriend for a while — and I didn't do any filming for 18 months. I'm still finding my way through all that."

He still acts, but because he isn't picking such big roles he has a harder time landing parts. "I still get offered films and TV roles, luckily, but years ago, if I saw a role I wanted, there was a good chance I could grab it," he added. "When I see a role now, I've got to fight for it. It's not bad. It's actually more rewarding. Depressing when something doesn't go your way, but only for a minute."

Well, he's keeping busy that's for sure. He will be in Valley of the Gods, The Long Home and Highway, all of which are scheduled to come out soon. So just because he isn't on the cover of every magazine anymore doesn't mean he isn't still around!

Did you realize Josh Hartnett was still acting?