Jan. 11: Mary J. Blige
The music icon introduced the world to her unique blend of R&B and soul with her 1992 debut album What's the 411? and went on to sell 100 million albums worldwide. But she's also a top-notch actress and songwriter: Blige received an Oscar nomination for her performance as a sharecropper's wife in 2017's Mudbound, and another for cowriting the film's theme song, “Mighty River” (she was the first person ever to be nominated for both awards). Up next? She'll play jazz singer Dinah Washington in the Aretha Franklin biopic Respect.
Feb. 1: Michael C. Hall
Earlier this year the Dexter star and his fans received the bloody good news that Showtime had decided to revive its crime drama for one last hurrah (it originally ran for nine seasons from 2006 to 2013). Hall, who plays the titular serial killer/police detective, and many viewers were upset that the original series finale was, as he put it, “pretty unsatisfying.” Here's hoping that this year's upcoming revival, set 10 years after Dexter fled Miami, brings better closure. If you're not a Dexter fan, you may know the actor for his Emmy-nominated role as David Fisher on HBO's acclaimed 2001-2005 series Six Feet Under.
March 10: Jon Hamm
He'll surely always be best known as Mad Men's Don Draper, the dapper 1960s adman who conquers Madison Avenue while trying, and often failing, to battle his inner demons. But coming up, you can catch him as a small-time crook in the 1950s crime thriller No Sudden Move; as a vice admiral in Top Gun: Maverick; and in Confess, Fletch, as the undercover journalist made famous by Chevy Chase in the original comedy (1985's Fletch). How did he celebrate his milestone birthday? With his girlfriend, Anna Osceola, and her family. Hamm told a radio interview that the intimate gathering was “the best birthday I've ever had."
March 31: Ewan McGregor
The Scottish actor found stardom portraying a heroin addict in the harrowing 1996 caper Trainspotting, then took on the role of a lifetime as the young Obi-Wan Kenobi in the Star Wars prequel trilogy (1999-2005). McGregor will return to the role of the Jedi master in an Obi-Wan-centered series for Disney+. He has also just become a dad, for the fifth time; his first son, with girlfriend Mary Elizabeth Winstead, was born on June 26.
April 12: Shannen Doherty
Her first major film was 1988's dark high school comedy Heathers, costarring Winona Ryder (also turning 50 this year). That propelled her to her signature role as Brenda Walsh in Beverly Hills, 90210 and, in 1998, to the hit TV series Charmed. Doherty has been candid about her ongoing battle with breast cancer, which she announced had returned in February 2020. She has also said she's not one for Botox or facelifts, posting on Instagram recently that she wished there were more “women who embraced their face and all the experience it showed."
May 14: Sofia Coppola
One of the stars of a new generation of filmmakers, Coppola definitely had a leg up in the business, thanks to dad Francis Ford Coppola. She made her big-screen debut as a baby in her father's famed The Godfather in 1972, and 18 years later played Mary Corleone in The Godfather III. She made her own directing debut in the 1999 coming-of-age drama The Virgin Suicides, followed by her best-known feature, 2003's Lost in Translation, starring Bill Murray. Up next: She'll adapt the Edith Wharton novel The Custom of the Country for Apple TV.