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Top 10 TV Stars Who Fell Off The Map

VO: Matthew Wende WRITTEN BY: George Pacheco
They came, they saw...where'd they go? Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 T.V. Stars Who Fell Off the Map! For this list, we'll be ranking television stars that once enjoyed a fair amount of popularity before falling under the radar for one reason or another. We're not so much focusing on stars who no longer work, but rather those performers whose public profile has dropped significantly since their heyday. Have an idea you want to see made into a WatchMojo video? Check out our suggest page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest and submit your idea.
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They came, they saw...where'd they go? Welcome to WatchMojo.com, and today we're counting down our picks for the Top 10 T.V. Stars Who Fell Off the Map!

For this list, we'll be ranking television stars that once enjoyed a fair amount of popularity before falling under the radar for one reason or another. We're not so much focusing on stars who no longer work, but rather those performers whose public profile has dropped significantly since their heyday.

#10: Soleil Moon Frye

The actress was only 7 when she booked the part of the cute and clever Penelope Brewster, a little girl who finds parental guidance with her foster father Henry after her real folks abandon her. Despite being cancelled after its second season, “Punky Brewster”’s cult-favorite status led to its eventual revival for syndication and multiple spin-offs. It also launched Soleil Moon Frye into the public spotlight, allowing her to land guest starring roles in several TV shows. While the early 2000s saw Frye play Roxie King in “Sabrina, The Teenage Witch,” the actress has since made little-to-no on screen appearances. Instead, she’s preferred to lend her voice to multiple projects and venturing into directing, blogging and releasing books.

#9: Lauren Ambrose

Lauren Ambrose was a fresh faced youngster when she first gained fame appearing on the high profile HBO series "Six Feet Under." She’d also have roles in films such as "Can't Hardly Wait", and it seemed as if the talented actress was destined for mainstream crossover success. Strangely enough, she instead went under the radar after this early spotlight, deciding instead to focus on her first love: music. Ambrose went on to lead the jazzy ragtime band Lauren Ambrose and the Leisure Class, proving that it's not always about one's visibility as a performer, but rather how content one is with their work.

#8: Nicolette Sheridan

It isn't often that an actor can remain relevant throughout multiple decades, but Nicolette Sheridan managed to do exactly that with a career which shot off early on the popular 80s soap opera, "Knots Landing." Sheridan's gorgeous looks and captivating presence did the actress well in movie roles during the '90's, as well, before landing yet another big time role in the mid 2000s as Edie on ABC's "Desperate Housewives." But aside from her involvement in some Hallmark Channel Christmas movies, she's hasn't been anywhere near the radar in some time, with even her most recent projects buried under a thin coat of dust.

#7: Selma Blair

If you watched movies or TV in the new-millennium era, then it's highly likely that you caught a lot of Selma Blair. She was seen everywhere and in everything during that decade and beyond. After starting in The WB’s “Zoe” in 1999, she’d go on to appear on other TV shows like "Anger Management" as well as big screen roles in "Cruel Intentions" and "Legally Blonde." Blair did return to T.V. in 2016 - playing Kris Jenner on FX's first season of “American Crime Story” called “The People v O.J. Simpson” - but her mainstream media profile has been comparatively lower since her mid-noughties heyday.

#6: Lark Voorhies

What do you do after being a part of one of the most successful young adult comedies of all time? Lark Voorhies might have some answers. "Saved By the Bell" was something of a cultural phenomenon, and Voorhies' role as Lisa Turtle launched her to T.V. stardom. Roles on other hits followed, including “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” and "Family Matters", but Voorhies would never quite achieve the same level of success she enjoyed at Bayside High. In 2012, Voorhies' mother revealed that the actress was struggling with bi-polar disorder, which may or may not be the cause behind her lower profile.

#5: Jason Alexander

"Seinfeld" is inarguably one of the most popular and successful T.V. shows of all time, and this was thanks largely to the work put in by its core cast. Jerry Seinfeld and Julia Louis-Dreyfus continue to thrive in the media spotlight today, but the other half of the cast have seen less attention. For Michael Richards this could come down to his infamous 2006 outburst, so it's Jason Alexander’s disappearance from pop culture that’s more surprising. Alexander has worked in the years since his "Seinfeld" fame, but on a comparatively smaller scale. Could there be a "Summer of Jason" waiting somewhere in his near future?

#4: Heather Locklear

Call her a show-saver, or a good luck charm, but Heather Locklear was gold for television execs throughout the 1980s and '90s. She captured the attention of audiences early with roles on "Dynasty" and "T.J. Hooker," but it would be her casting on "Spin City" and even before then, "Melrose Place" that revitalized those shows and their appeal. The world just couldn't get enough Locklear, which makes it all the more strange that her star seems to have sunk in the new millennium. Sure, she's appeared on "Hot in Cleveland" and "Franklin & Bash," but we're still waiting for another big time, small screen smash.

#3: Lisa Bonet

Lisa Bonet was on nearly everyone's television during the 1980s as a cast member of both "The Cosby Show" and its spin off series, "A Different World." The actress' career path afterwards, however, was one mixed with small scale T.V. roles and scattered film appearances. Bonet was in a number of notable movies, including "High Fidelity" and the underrated horror movie "Angel Heart," but struggled to reach a public profile equal to that of her "Cosby" heyday. Still, Bonet's good looks and quirky personality has ensured her a cult status among her fans to this day.

#2: Shelley Long

Some television actors are content to work in TV, while others yearn for something more. Shelley Long was one such actress, and left the successful sitcom "Cheers" in 1987 to pursue a film career (as well as to take care of her toddler). Whereas her costar George Wendt balanced out film roles, such as those in the horror flick "House" with his work on "Cheers," Long sought to focus solely on the big screen, despite having already notching roles in cult hits "Night Shift" and "The Money Pit." This gamble produced memorable appearances in "Troop Beverly Hills" and "The Brady Bunch Movie," but little of notice or acclaim since.

Before we name our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions!

Chad Allen

Dennis Franz

#1: David Caruso

It's one of the most infamous cases of celebrity miscalculations. David Caruso was enjoying major success as a star on one of T.V.'s most popular shows, "N.Y.P.D. Blue." Caruso had worked up from minor roles, but was now a certified success, and as such felt he deserved a raise for season two. When that didn't happen, he walked, and attempted to kick start his film career with box office duds like "Jade" and "Kiss of Death". T.V. is occasionally a forgiving mistress, however, and audiences welcomed Caruso back when he joined the cast of "C.S.I.: Miami" in 2002, only to see him disappear again when it wrapped in 2012.



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