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Look Who Has a 50th Birthday in 2021

Winona Ryder, Snoop Dogg, Jon Hamm and other stars celebrating the big milestone

Luke Wilson Mary J Blige and Ricky Martin
Luke Wilson, Mary J Blige and Ricky Martin
Photo by Richard Rodriguez/Getty Images for Sony Pictures Classics/Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Amazon Studios/Photo by: Alexander Tamargo/Telemundo/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

Jan. 11: Mary J. Blige

Mary J Blige attends a ceremony for induction into the Apollo Walk of Fame
Shahar Azran/Getty Images

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

Michael C Hall
Michael C. Hall (L) and wife Morgan Macgregor
Getty Images

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.

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March 10: Jon Hamm

Jon Hamm
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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

Ewan McGregor
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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

Shannen Doherty
Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for Hallmark Channel

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

Sofia Coppola
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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.

June 5: Mark Wahlberg

Mark Wahlberg
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The rapper who once called himself Marky Mark overcame drug abuse, violent outbursts and legal woes to become a coveted actor, with memorable roles such as porn actor Dirk Diggler in 1997's Boogie Nights. His new pandemic-set HBO Max reality show Wahl Street revels in his mogul status, with an empire that includes burger and gym chains, lines of clothing and high-performance water. On his birthday Wahlberg honored his late mother, Alma, who died in April at age 78, on Instagram with an old photo of the pair hugging backstage at a New Kids on the Block performance.

Sept. 18: Jada Pinkett Smith

Jada Pinkett Smith speaks on stage during NATPE Miami 2020
Jason Koerner/Getty Images

This actress, the wife of actor Will Smith and mother of entertainers Jaden and Willow, is best known for her work in TV's A Different World as well as her roles in the 1996 heist film Set It Off and 2017's raucous comedy Girls Trip. She has also appeared in two of the three cyberpunk sci-fi action films in TheMatrix trilogy as Niobe, one of the rebels who is the captain and pilot of a hovercraft. Smith will reprise her role in a fourth chapter hitting theaters in December.

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Sept. 21: Luke Wilson

Luke Wilson
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The Texas-born actor recently shared his misgivings about his upcoming milestone birthday to People magazine. He admitted he is starting “to feel panicky about some stuff.” Wilson — slightly less famous than older brother Owen — says he steamrolled right through turning 30 and 40, but 50? Not so much. “I don't know if it's getting to me because I am sore when I wake up in the middle of the night, and I am forgetting the names of people I know.” His most recent film, 12 Mighty Orphans, is a fact-based, old-fashioned and inspirational sports story set during the Great Depression about a Texas team of scrawny orphans, with Wilson as their dedicated coach.

Oct. 2: Tiffany

Tiffany poses for a portrait backstage at the Whisky A Go Go
Harmony Gerber/Getty Images

The 1980s teen icon performed her pop songs at shopping malls — perfect exposure for promoting her second single and biggest hit, a cover of Tommy James & the Shondells’ “I Think We're Alone Now.” Tiffany, whose last name is Darwish, shared her feelings about her 2018 album, Pieces of Me, with Parade.com last year: “I'm more than a one-hit wonder, you know. ... I'm an intelligent woman and a businesswoman as well.” Among her projects are appearances in a Miracle Whip commercial and on Celebrity Wife Swap as well as acting in a few films, including a horror flick called Necrosis.

Oct. 13: Sacha Baron Cohen

Sacha Baron Cohen
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This actor is English, but most recent movie watchers likely have never heard his refined British accent. He replayed his (fake) Kazakhstani schtick as Borat Sagdiyev, a news reporter baffled by America, in last year's Borat Subsequent Moviefilm, the sequel to his 2006 mockumentary also starring the hapless Borat. And he offered a convincing, dry-humored performance as an American, Yippie protestor Abbie Hoffman, in The Trial of the Chicago 7. It was a role he has long sought, he said in an interview with Vanity Fair: “[Hoffman] is seen as a clown ... but over the course of the trial they realize that he may well be the smartest man in the room."

Oct. 20: Snoop Dogg

Snoop Dogg
Getty Images

Now a multiple-threat entertainment juggernaut, Snoop Dogg first made it big in 1993 with his Dr. Dre-produced hit record Doggystyle. At various points since then he has — among many other things — embraced reggae and gospel, directed porn films, been a mega mentor on The Voice, and became pals and business partners with Martha Stewart, together headlining the VH1 series Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party. He has said to People magazine that he thinks that as people get older they should “treat themselves like fine wine. They say fine wine, it gets better over time.” And he has actually released two wines under his own name in the past few years, Snoop Dog Red and Snoop Cali Rose, through the Australian brand 19 Crimes.

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Oct. 29: Winona Ryder

Winona Ryder
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Sure, the Brat Packers were considered the It crowd of 1980s film, but Winona is Gen X's top dog — starring in iconic flicks like Reality BitesHeathers and Edward Scissorhands. And she was the perfect pick for the cast of Stranger Things, set in the ‘80s; though now, of course, she plays a middle-aged mom. She had a famously rocky relationship with Johnny Depp (that unfortunate tattoo!), but has long since moved on. She has been dating fashion designer Scott Mackinlay Hahn for the last 10 years. Fun fact: She was born in Winona, Minnesota, and her birth name really is Winona (last name: Horowitz).

Nov. 25: Christina Applegate

Christina Applegate
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We knew her first as the ditzy promiscuous teen daughter Kelly Bundy on the Fox sitcom Married ... With Children. She has come a long way since then, from starring as a news anchorwoman opposite Will Ferrell in 2004's Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy to earning a Tony nomination for her lead part in the musical Sweet Charity on Broadway. A breast cancer survivor, Applegate's now filming the third and final season of Netflix's dark comedy Dead to Mewhere she has aced her role as widow Jen Harding, who discovers a shocking truth about her new bestie (Linda Cardellini).

Dec. 24: Ricky Martin

Ricky Martin
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The Puerto Rican “King of Latin Pop” got his start at the age of 12 in the all-boy band Menudo. He has gone on to sell over 70 million records worldwide and is still “Livin’ La Vida Loca": Martin has said, “When you take things too seriously, you get old. You have to be silly. Whenever people say, ‘Hey man, are you ever going to grow up?’ That's when you know you're doing things right."