The current state of action stars in movies is pretty lackluster. The return of Stallone and Arnold has definitely revitalized the genre, but how long can the legends keep doing it? There has to be a new generation to take the reign from them and continue the tradition. Here are twenty men and women who have the best shot at becoming the next big action stars.
Name: Jeremy Renner
Notable Action Roles: The Avengers, The Bourne Legacy, Mission Impossible: Ghost Protocol
Why He Could Be Big: It seems that Renner is finally getting the recognition he deserves as a legitimate leading man. After years of smaller roles, Renner starred in "Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters," which was critically panned but was such a fun movie. He’s also rumored to take over the "Mission: Impossible" franchise once Cruise retires.
Name: Iko Uwais
Notable Action Roles: The Raid: Redemption
Why He Could Be Big: If you saw "The Raid" this should come as no surprise. It was arguably the best action movie of 2011 and, not only did Uwais star in it, he was also the action choreographer which means he knows what an action movie should be all about.
Name: Chloe Grace Moretz
Notable Action Roles: Kick Ass, Let Me In
Why She Could Be Big: If you saw how badass she was in "Kick Ass" take a moment to realize that she was 12 when that movie was made. If she has that much potential as a child, give her a few years and she could be the next Milla Jovovich.
Name: Keira Knightley
Notable Action Roles: Domino, Pirates of the Caribbean, King Arthur
Why She Could Be Big: It’s hard to tell if Knightley wants to be an action star or not. With "Domino," it was obvious that she had the chops to carry an action movie, but it hasn’t been the norm for her. Let’s hope we see more of this and less "Pride and Prejudice."
Name: Chris Hemsworth
Notable Action Roles: Thor, The Avengers, Star Trek Into Darkness
Why He Could Be Big: Sure he’s Thor, but being a superhero doesn’t necessarily mean you’re an action star (See: Mark Ruffalo). "Red Dawn" wasn’t necessarily good, but it was a remake of a classic action film that he carried quite well. Hopefully, this is just a sign of things to come for Hemsworth.
Name: Scott Adkins
Notable Action Roles: The Expendables 2, The Bourne Ultimatum
Why He Could Be Big: Adkins has been fantastic as a supporting role in some great action films, but it feels like he is on the brink of breaking out. Look for him next year in "Hercules 3D" for what should hopefully be a coming out party for him.
Name: Zachary Quinto
Notable Action Roles: Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness, 24
Why He Could Be Big: "Star Trek" has been an amazing opportunity to showcase what Quinto is capable of doing. He’s an incredible actor, so if he could bring that talent to an action role, he could be something special.
Name: Michael B. Jordan
Notable Action Roles: Chronicle, The Wire, Gears of War 3
Why He Could Be Big: If you saw the surprise hit "Chronicle," you’ve seen that he has what it takes to steal a scene. He’s charismatic and did a voice for Gears of War, the ultimate action role. Listen for him later this year as one of the voices in "Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox."
Name: Sam Worthington
Notable Action Roles: Clash of the Titans, Avatar, Terminator: Salvation
Why He Could Be Big: It’s not a matter of if he’ll be big, it’s just a matter of when. He’s been cranking out action films as well as the lead voice of the last two Call of Duty: Black Ops games. The next two years should be huge for him with "Avatar 2" and "Thunder Run" hitting theaters.
Name: Daniel Radcliffe
Notable Action Roles: Harry Potter
Why He Could Be Big: Now that the insanely popular "Harry Potter" franchise has come to a close, Radcliffe can do almost anything he wants. The last few Potter films were full of action, so let’s hope he leans more in that direction rather than films like "The Woman in Black."
Name: John Cena
Notable Action Roles: 12 Rounds, The Marine, WWE Wrestling
Why He Could Be Big: Unlike the smaller actors of today, Cena has the physique of the classic stars as well as a background in wrestling. We’ll see if he ventures back into film or remains in the WWE. Why not both?
Name: Gina Carano
Notable Action Roles: Haywire, Fast & Furious 6
Why She Could Be Big: The former MMA fighter and American Gladiator has everything it takes to be a legitimate action star, including the ability to actually beat the crap out of you if she wants. Look for her later this year in John Stockwell’s "In the Blood."
Name: Chris Pine
Notable Action Roles: Star Trek, Star Trek Into Darkness
Why He Could Be Big: Yet another action career that has the potential to explode thanks to "Star Trek." Pine has the best chance to be huge as he is set to star as "Jack Ryan" later this year in the Tom Clancy story by the same name.
Name: Dwayne Johnson
Notable Action Roles: Fast & Furious 6, GI Joe: Retalliation, Fast Five
Why He Could Be Big: Let’s face it, if anyone has the potential to be the next huge action star, it’s the artist formerly known as The Rock. His wrestling career became a launch pad for a monstrous movie career including next year’s "Hercules: The Thracian Wars" and "Fast & Furious 7."
Name: Jason Momoa
Notable Action Roles: Game of Thrones, Conan the Barbarian
Why He Could Be Big: While "Conan the Barbarian" didn’t light up the box office, it did give us a chance to see what Momoa was capable of doing. He’s an intimidating physical specimen and, with the right role, could be an action star for years to come.
Name: Andrew Garfield
Notable Action Roles: The Amazing Spider-Man
Why He Could Be Big: This may be the biggest stretch on the list. Garfield is far from Van Damme but if he continues to book roles like Spider-Man, who knows what his career could transform into quite soon.
Name: Channing Tatum
Notable Action Roles: White House Down, Haywire, GI Joe: The Rise of Cobra
Why He Could Be Big: Who would have thought the former exotic dancer and star of "Step Up" would have this kind of potential. If you think he’s just a pretty face, check out some of his roles in movies like "Fighting" and "Haywire." "White House Down" wasn't a hit, but it’s definitely a step in the right direction.
Name: Tom Hardy
Notable Action Roles: Warriors, Inception, The Dark Knight Rises
Why He Could Be Big: Hardy landed two huge Christopher Nolan movies with "Inception," as well as the highly coveted role as a Batman villain in "The Dark Knight Rises." Next year he has a slew of projects including taking over the role as Max in "Mad Max: Fury Road," so 2014 could be the year of Tom Hardy: Action Star.
Next: The 25 Most Badass Action Stars Ever
Name: Taylor Kitsch
Notable Action Roles: John Carter, Battleship, Savages
Why He Could Be Big: Kitsch has a tough road in front of him. While he’s done a fine job as an action lead, the projects he’s been involved in have bombed in spectacular fashion. He does have several films coming out next year, so let’s hope the future is brighter than the past for Kitsch.