There Will Never Be a “Next Julia Roberts”: Debunking Hollywood’s Favorite Fruitless Comparison

OK, we're calling it.

For about 25 years, charming actresses who've made a splash in a breakout role with their beauty-brains-talent trifecta have been hard-pressed to avoid the inevitable. It's practically a rite of Hollywood passage for up-and-comers—especially the redheads—and a way of signaling that this 21-to-30-year-old woman certainly seems to have "it."

Because she just may be…The Next Julia Roberts.

It's meant as a compliment, of course. But dangling that crown in front of an actress' face is also pretty unfair, considering Roberts has starred in some of the most beloved romantic comedies of all time, was for awhile the highest-paid actress in Hollywood, won an Oscar, lights up every screen with her smile and has enjoyed the kind of career longevity that most actors don't even bother to dream of, let alone come close to achieving. In fact, the A-list only has, like, six people on it now, and Roberts has never budged from the top spot since Pretty Woman made her one of the most talked-about stars in the world.

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