Stardom comes in many different shapes and sizes, and the 2010 MTV Movie Awards pay tribute to all of them. There's Breakthrough success, the acclaim that comes from a star-making turn or performance in a film. There's Badass success — which certainly should speak for itself. And then there's the Global Superstar, that actor or performer whose success has transcended geographic borders, age groups and gender to become recognized all over the globe -- not only for their roles, but for themselves. Here's a look at this year's contenders:
From Edward Scissorhands to Ed Wood, from Jack Sparrow to the Mad Hatter -- after so many unforgettable characters, it's hard to imagine anyone doesn't know who Johnny Depp is. Although he's spent the majority of his career realizing oddball roles in movies of all sizes, he seems to have finally found a series of films that suit his larger-than-life characterizations, including (most recently) the particularly-mad Mad Hatter in longtime collaborator Tim Burton's highly-anticipated film version of "Alice in Wonderland." With "Dark Shadows," "The Lone Ranger" and of course another "Pirates" movie on the horizon, Depp's superstardom is in no danger of waning, and among the nominees, his is perhaps the longest-running.
Prior to 2008, Taylor Lautner was probably best known as the Sharkboy in Robert Rodriguez's family-friendly adventure "The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl." But '08's "Twilight" brought him an entirely new kind of recognition — a recognition that he knew well enough to protect when time came to reprise the role in "New Moon." Bulking up to proper hunk size, including a formidable set of abs, Lautner made himself more than a match for the looks and charm of Robert Pattinson's competitor for Bella's attention, Edward Cullen, and exploded across the globe as a star in his own right. Although he's just starting to capitalize on that success by appearing in other blockbusters like "Valentine's Day," Lautner is the kind of movie star whose visibility more than makes up for his longevity.
Even if he hadn't stepped into the shoes of Edward Cullen, the dreamy, translucent crush object for millions of teenage girls (and their moms) from the "Twilight" book and film series, Robert Pattinson would still be a star thanks to his turn as Cedric Diggory in two of the "Harry Potter" films. But about a second after he offered his first in a series of longing stares at Kristen Stewart's Bella in the first "Twilight" film, he became an international icon, and hasn't slowed down since that film was released in 2008. Additionally, he immersed himself in several non-"Twilight" roles in films like those in "Little Ashes" and "Remember Me," proving not only that he can open a movie on the strength of his fandom, but take a bite out of a variety of characters, whether or not they're vampires.
Radcliffe was only 12 when the first Harry Potter film was released in 2001 — and if you look back at him then, he was a tiny, adorable charmer in oversized glasses and a Hogwarts gown that practically swallowed him whole. But a decade later, Radcliffe has matured into not only the grown-up hero that Harry himself has become, but an adult star in his own right, offering remarkable performances on stage and screen that attract audiences of all shapes and sizes. As the first part of "The Deathly Hallows," an epic adaptation of the final book in Harry's saga, arrives in theaters in November of 2010 — you'll see an exclusive clip during the Movie Awards tonight — Radcliffe is poised to become one of the world's most recognizable performers.
After a couple of uncredited and low-key roles in films like "The Flintstones in Viva Rock Vegas," Kristen Stewart broke into the public consciousness as the daughter of Jodie Foster in David Fincher's terrific 2002 containment thriller "Panic Room." Flash to six years later, she creates her own panic rooms wherever she goes thanks to her unforgettable turn as Bella, the iconic wallflower-turned-vampire lover in Stephenie Meyer's Twilight book series. In the meantime, however, she's done an amazing job showing that she's more than the devoted girlfriend of a handsome bloodsucker, playing in acclaimed films like "The Runaways," "Into the Wild" and "Adventureland" as she proves that her recognition and success is well-deserved.
Don't miss the live red-carpet coverage, exclusive movie clips and fist-pumping action on MTV News' "Jersey Shore Blow-Out at the MTV Movie Awards," airing live from Los Angeles tonight at 8 p.m. ET/PT. Then stay tuned for the 2010 MTV Movie Awards at 9 p.m. ET/PT.