13 Hollywood Stars Who Shine Not Only With Their Fame but Also With Intelligence

2 weeks ago

Hollywood isn’t just about good looks and acting skills. Many of its stars are incredibly intelligent too. Some attended top universities, mastered multiple languages, delved into scientific fields, and even completed demanding thesis work. They’re not just talented on screen but also intellectually accomplished off-screen.

1. George Clooney

Invision / Invision / East News

Few may know this, but before becoming one of Hollywood’s most popular heartthrobs, George attended Northern Kentucky University from 1979 to 1981, majoring in broadcast journalism. Then he briefly went on to study television journalism at the University of Cincinnati. Although he didn’t finish his degree because he decided to pursue his dreams in California, the actor has shown just how ingenious he is as a director and screenwriter. He is also an advocate for human rights.

2. Sharon Stone

Sharon Stone is not just a talented actress known for her roles like Basic Instinct, she’s also incredibly intelligent. At just 15 years old, she earned a college scholarship to study creative writing and fine arts at Edinboro University. With an impressive IQ of 154, she easily falls within the top 1% of intelligence, though she’s never officially joined Mensa.

3. Tom Hiddleston

The actor who played iconic Marvel villain Loki graduated with honors in Classical Studies at Cambridge University. Not only is he charismatic, but he’s also a polyglot: he speaks French, Italian, Spanish, Latin and Ancient Greek. Knowing this, it is not surprising that he has applied his knowledge to work as an adaptor and scriptwriter for plays and films.

He is also a true bookworm and an admirer of classic writers such as Jorge Luis Borges, Edgar Allan Poe and Francisco de Quevedo.

4. Mayim Bialik

Mayim Bialik is special because she plays a smart neuroscientist on TV, and she’s actually a smart scientist in real life. She became famous again for playing Amy on The Big Bang Theory. Before joining the show, she finished studying and became an expert in Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder in teenagers. That’s why she seems so believable as a brainy character.

5. Matt Damon

Can you imagine doing a school assignment and ending up winning an Oscar for it? Although it seems crazy, while studying at the prestigious Harvard University, Matt Damon wrote the first version of a screenplay for one of his classes. Years later, he won the Oscar for best original screenplay for writing Good Will Hunting.

In 2013, he was even awarded the Harvard Medal of Arts, which is a recognition of excellence and artistic work by alumni.

6. Shakira

While Shakira’s lyrical prowess is widely acknowledged, her intellectual acumen is equally impressive. As a member of Mensa International, she boasts an IQ of 140 — well above the average of around 100. Shakira’s linguistic abilities further underscore her brilliance, as she fluently speaks 7 languages: Spanish, English, Portuguese, Italian, French, Catalan and Arabic. Her early fascination with her father’s typewriter, a unique Christmas gift at seven, sparked her journey into poetry, which eventually paved the way to her illustrious career in songwriting and fame.

7. Jake Gyllenhaal

Although different magazines have listed the actor as one of the most attractive men in show business, we must not forget that he is also very smart. Many years before being Spider-Man’s villain, Jake studied Oriental Religions and Philosophy at Columbia University. But 2 years later, he abandoned his studies to pursue a fruitful career in acting.

8. John Krasinski

The actor known for his performance in popular series such as The Office and Jack Ryan graduated as a playwright while studying English at Brown University. To earn his degree, he worked on a thesis called “Content Under Pressure,” which can still be found in the school’s digital bookstore. In addition, prior to his time in higher education, he spent time in Costa Rica as an English teacher.

9. Jodie Foster

Collin Xavier / Image Press Agency ABACA / Abaca / East News

Jodie Foster, known for her passion for foreign languages, spent her childhood attending a French-language prep school. Regarded as a “gifted child”, she displayed exceptional reading skills by the age of 3 and has since become proficient in numerous major European languages. Despite already being a prominent movie star, Foster graduated magna cum laude from Yale University in 1985. Unlike many child stars who experience a notorious decline, Foster’s path was marked by academic dedication rather than self-inflicted scandals.

10. David Duchovny


The talented actor is also an inveterate writer, and his love for literature came before his passion for acting. He studied English Literature at Princeton University and later pursued a graduate degree in the same subject at Yale University. In fact, he’s proved just how talented he is by publishing 4 novels. And there’s more: his poetry received an honorable mention in a university contest of the Academy of American Poets.

11. Edward Norton

Edward Norton’s acting ability has led him to be recognized with multiple nominations and awards. In 1991, he graduated from Yale University with a degree in History. Then went to Japan to work as a representative in his grandfather’s company, where he applied the Japanese language skills he acquired during his undergraduate studies.

12. Natalie Portman

Invision / Invision / East News

Natalie Portman, a globally admired film star, is equally revered for her academic achievements. Beyond her accolades including an Oscar, a BAFTA, and two Golden Globes, she holds a degree in Psychology from Harvard University and is fluent in Hebrew. During her time at Harvard, she contributed to a paper titled “Frontal lobe activation during object permanence: data from near-infrared spectroscopy” — a mouthful to pronounce, let alone write! Portman once famously expressed a preference for intelligence over stardom, yet she effortlessly excels in both realms.

13. Emma Watson

Best known for her portrayal of the remarkably intelligent witch Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter series, Emma Watson drew ample inspiration for her role. In 2011, she embarked on a parallel journey as a student, pursuing a degree in English Literature from Brown University while also studying briefly at Oxford. Watson’s eloquence is evident, particularly in her advocacy work with UN Women.

Celebrities can surprise us by being more than just pretty faces or outfit choice. They show us they’re smart, kind, and hardworking, setting a great example for everyone. They use their fame to do good things and inspire others to be their best selves.


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