The name Chris is very common in the United States (and the world) these days. In fact, it peaked at just over 60,000 American babies named Christopher or some variant in the mid-80s. Four, in particular, have risen to a level of Hollywood stardom and oddly their careers seem to match each other’s at least at first glance. If you need a refresher on how this works, check out the Cruise vs Hanks iteration of this process.
Here goes…(score in parenthesis does not include that year’s winner)
Year by Year
Evans: The Newcomers
Evans managed to debut first, the other Chris’ were all doing television or short-release work at the turn of the millennium. No one is going to remember The Newcomers, but it holds the distinction of being Evans’ debut, and virtually nothing else.
Evans: Not Another Teen Movie
Once again, Evans gets a freebie as the other 3 toiled in tryout lines and rejected TV commercials. At least people thought Not Another Teen Movie was funny, a few people anyway.
A made for TV movie, a television episode or two; our Chris’ managed to not make it into any features this year.
Pratt: The Extreme Team
Chris Pratt makes his debut, as the others continue to get bit work off the main stage. The “X-Team” also features Bai Ling who you may remember from Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow. No? Yeah, me neither.
Pine: The Princess Diaries 2: Royal Engagement
Evans: The Perfect Score; Cellular
Pine finally debuts as one-third of a love triangle in a niche sequel. Evans lands 2 versions of his typical early-career role as a barely 20 goof-ball with a touch of action-star chops. Gotta give it to Evans as 2 ok movies beat 1 ok movie.
Pratt: Strangers with Candy
Evans: Fierce People; Fantastic Four; London
Almost got a “full-Chris” in 2005. Pine is the lead (and Antagonist) in a low-budget but admittedly intriguing adaptation of Hitchcock’s I Confess. Pratt gets a bit part in the comedy series prequel featuring Amy Sedaris pretending to be 15 years younger than she is (I will never watch Strangers with Candy, even with promised reward).
Evans gets the blockbuster role in the quite poor Superhero film (a theme we’ll revisit) but also joins a stellar cast in the limited release social-drama Fierce People (never heard of this before research but looks fascinating) and another iteration of early-career Chris Evans, doofus college Freshman-aged loser. The blockbuster Fantastic Four (despite its poor execution) wins him the year easily.
Pine: Just My Luck; Blind Dating; Smokin’ Aces
Pine must’ve been noticed in Confession because he lands 2 romance flicks starring alongside Lohan in one and Anjali Jay in the other. He also stars alongside Jeremy Piven, Ryan Reynolds, and Ray Liotta in the crime-world-meets-Vegas-magician film Smokin’ Aces.
In case you’re wondering, Hemsworth is on year 3 of a recurring role in an Australian TV show, Chris Pratt is a recurring character on 2 American TV shows and Evans took the year off.
Pratt: Walk the Talk
Evans: TMNT; Sunshine; Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer; The Nanny Diaries; Battle for Terra
Pine gets a role in a Cary Elwes film which looks to be one of the reasons you don’t hear a lot from Cary Elwes these days. Evans voices a Turtle and a spaceman, reprises his Fantastic Four role (although this movie was truly horrendous), and is cast as “Harvard Hottie” in the chick-comedy The Nanny Diaries. Volume wins out in a battle of mediocrities.
Pine: Bottle Shock
Pratt: Wieners; Wanted
Evans: Street Kings; The Loss of a Teardrop Diamond
Pine stars with Alan Rickman in a surprisingly good historical drama about the beginning of Napa Valley. Evans plays a cop in David Ayer’s 2nd feature (one I need to see) and is the “project boyfriend” of Bryce Dallas Howard’s character in Teardrop.
Pratt is the hilarious coworker in Wanted (weird movie) and makes an appearance in the ridiculous buddy comedy featuring the Oscar-Meyer Weinermobile.
Street Kings gives this year to Evans, but for once I actually felt like I was choosing one good over another (Pine was really solid in Bottle Shock).
Pine: Star Trek; Carriers
Pratt: Bride Wars; Deep in the Valley; Jennifer’s Body
Hemsworth: Star Trek; A Perfect Getaway
Hemsworth finally debuts and we have a Full Chris! He gets a small part in a murder thriller and executes a wonderful, albeit short scene at the beginning of another Chris’ career-defining film.
That Chris is Pine, and his turn as James Kirk is excellent. Other than rebooting one of the most beloved Sci-Fi series of all-time, Pine also stars in a virus horror/thriller.
Evans stars in a weird superpower/mutant film which incidentally stands as his first true lead part. Pratt does an over-sexed horror flick, an over-sexed comedy, and a chick-comedy…not his (or anyone’s) best year – although Parks and Rec launched as well so his TV life was about to get better.
In our first Full Chris – advantage Pine.
Pine: Small Town Saturday Night; Quantum Quest: A Cassini Space Odyssey; Unstoppable
Evans: The Losers; Scott Pilgrim vs. the World
Hemsworth gets a big part in a low-budget Australian action flick starring across from Sean Bean. Pine lends his voice to a sci-fi cartoon, stars in a romance, and works alongside Denzel in a pretty good Tony Scott-directed train flick. Evans parodies himself as one of the “boss” boyfriends in Scott Pilgrim (I happen to really enjoy this film) and plays the epitome of early-Evans in The Losers, the comic book action-squad film which is underappreciated while not exactly too serious.
While Unstoppable is probably slightly better than the other options in the lists – both The Losers and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World are good and Evans is good in both. Chris Evans takes ’10.
Pratt: Moneyball; Take Me Home Tonight; 10 Years; What’s Your Number?
Evans: Puncture; Captain America: The First Avenger; What’s Your Number?
While Moneyball is easily the best movie any Chris was in this year – Pratt’s role was limited and his other films were a low-budget coming of age drama and a side-part in a Chris Evans rom-com so not his year.
Evans did the rom-com, tried his hand at the conflicted lawyer bit (I might watch this sometime), and launched the role of his career-to-date: Steve Rogers.
Not to be outdone, Hemsworth launched his career role: Thor. So which was better – Thor or Cap? I tend to like Thor as a character much better than Captain America however as far as the films were, Captain America was less annoying and had a slightly better villain (shout out to Hugo Weaving). So Evans takes yet another year.
Pine: Celeste & Jesse Forever; This Means War; People Like Us; Rise of the Guardians
Pratt: The Five-Year Engagement; Zero Dark Thirty
Evans: The Avengers; The Iceman
Hemsworth: The Avengers; The Cabin in the Woods; Snow White and the Huntsmen; Heroes & Demons; Red Dawn
The Chris is fully operational now. Hemsworth and Evans make their second appearances as the superheroes we know and love (for the most part). Evans also takes a turn in a Michael Shannon biopic-thriller which looks extremely cool.
Pratt plays maybe his most typical role alongside Jason Segal in a rom-com and then gets much more serious in the Oscar-winning Zero Dark Thirty although his role is limited.
Pine does the voice lead in a rather confusing children’s flick and is one of the many romantic interests in the Samberg/Jones rom-com. He also plays opposite of Tom Hardy in a surprisingly funny chick-comedy and stars in a drama that looks sappier than a maple tree.
Hemsworth gets lots of work, reprising Thor, playing the Huntsmen in the edgy action-type retelling of Snow White, is the lead in a poorly received citizen-soldier film, is in a short-film compilation which was also poorly received, and stars in the critically acclaimed and fantastic Joss Whedon mock-horror film.
A ton going on this year, but Hemsworth’s total package with The Cabin in the Woods, The Avengers, and the minor success of Snow White and the Huntsmen overrules Pratt’s lesser role in ZDT and Pine’s comedic roles.
Pine: Star Trek: Into Darkness
Pratt: Movie 43; Her; Delivery Man
Evans: Snowpiercer; Thor: The Dark World [uncredited]
Hemsworth: Star Trek: Into Darkness; Rush; Thor: The Dark World
Our 3rd Full Chris – the Chris is gaining steam. Evans had a fleeting cameo in Thor 2 which is one of, if not the, worst of the Avengers saga. However, Snowpiercer is pure awesome with his lead exuding tough, wild, and ferocious. A must-see for any sci-fi or Chris Evans fan.
Pratt got a scene in the skit-driven Movie 43, played a delightful albeit small part in the Oscar-nominated Her, and starred opposite Vince Vaughn in one of his many sub-par comedies.
Pine reprised Kirk and although the movie wasn’t quite as good as the first, it was still really really good and he still perfectly played the magnetic and reckless space captain.
Hemsworth had the busiest year again, reprising his Star Trek role as well, and starring in Thor 2 which as we’ve noted, absolutely sucked. He also starred in Ron Howard’s Rush, the Formula 1 racing film which I have not seen but it has been very well received.
Another very busy year. I’ve got to say it’s between Pine and Evans and Snowpiercer‘s originality barely edges out Pine’s Star Trek 2. The advantage goes to Evans.
Pine: Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit; Stretch [uncredited]; Horrible Bosses 2; Into the Woods
Pratt: The Lego Movie; Guardians of the Galaxy
Evans: Captain America: The Winter Soldier; Before We Go; Playing It Cool
Evans gives us Cap 2, which isn’t terrible honestly, makes a painful directorial debut (Metacritic has it at 31), and stars in a rom-com which is actually considered to be even worse.
Pine makes an uncredited cameo in a low-budget crime/comedy, is one of the love interests in multiple-Oscar nominated Into the Woods, adds a really hilarious element to the offbeat comedy Horrible Bosses 2, and stars in Branagh’s “meh” rendition of Jack Ryan. Not a shabby year at all for Mr. Pine.
However, with possibly the greatest year of anyone named Chris in the history of the Universe – Pratt stars in the AWESOME The Lego Movie and in the *best* Marvel film Guardians of the Galaxy. Pratt hands down.
Pine: Z for Zachariah
Pratt: Jurassic World; Jem and the Holograms
Evans: Avengers: Age of Ultron; Ant-Man [uncredited]
Hemsworth: Blackhat; Avengers: Age of Ultron; Vacation; In the Heart of the Sea
Pine starred in a dystopian love triangle that synoptically looks atrocious, but did fairly well.
Pratt rebooted our favorite Dinosaurs and despite high hopes was merely ‘ok’ nothing too special.
Evans and Hemsworth were in the Avengers sequel which was also merely ‘ok’ and really is a microcosm of all the problems with the MCU. Hemsworth takes the year because his non-Marvel work was solid and diverse.
Pine: The Finest Hours; Hell or High Water; Star Trek: Beyond
Pratt: The Magnificent Seven; Passengers
Evans: Captain America: Civil War
Hemsworth: The Huntsman: Winter’s War; Ghostbusters; Doctor Strange [uncredited]
Another full Chris though not quite as busy as previous years. Evans provided the title character in Cap 3 which was supposed to be the greatest superhero movie yet and ended up as an “ok” film which had a great Spider-Man cameo.
Pratt did his best Steve McQueen impression but I’m afraid the new Magnificent Seven falls well short of the greatness of the original. He also starred opposite J-Law in a fairly original sci-fi that suffered from some poor writing and worse marketing.
Hemsworth reprised his Huntsman in one of the most unnecessary sequels ever made, had a fun end-credits scene cameo in Doctor Strange, and provided some man to all the woman in the Ghostbusters fem-make.
Pine comes back as Kirk in Star Trek 3 which was exciting but pretty “meh” otherwise, stars in a Boston-centric disaster drama, and in the multi-Oscar nominated David Mackenzie western. Hell or High Water has a solid claim on the top spot in Pine’s filmography to date.
While Hemsworth and Pratt had a couple of box office hits each, Pine’s work was very strong.
Pine: Wonder Woman
Pratt: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
Evans: Gifted; Spider-Man: Homecoming
Hemsworth: Thor: Ragnarok
Another full Chris but even less total activity. Hemsworth completed the Thor trilogy with easily the best of the saga, hilarious film.
Pratt reprised Star-Lord in a significantly less effective Guardians sequel. Evans appeared briefly in Tom Holland’s Spider-Man and also starred in a father-daughter drama with some critical approval.
Pine was Wonder Woman’s love interest and manages to be pretty cool in a movie which is pretty cool – not great – but pretty cool. Lot’s of shrugs and “I guess it’s alright” this year, so I lean towards the surprisingly great Ragnarok as the winner.
2017 goes to Hemsworth although in reality, it’s Taika who won it for him.
Pine: A Wrinkle in Time; Outlaw King; Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse
Pratt: Avengers: Infinity War; Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom
Evans: Avengers: Infinity War
Hemsworth: 12 Strong; Avengers: Infinity War; Bad Times at the El Royale
Almost had a full Chris IN THE SAME MOVIE – an official petition to work Pine into the Avengers can start with me, just for the full Chris of course.
Avengers 3 far outstripped my expectations and any of the previous Avengers films’ by a large margin. All 3 Chris’ played their parts well with perhaps a slight edge to Hemsworth because of his ballin’ entrance to the battle of Wakanda.
Pratt also gave us Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom which was similar to the first in its lack of specialness. Hemsworth starred in a modern war film I need to see and an ensemble crime/comedy which promised a lot and delivered on most.
Pine lent his voice to the animated alt-Spider-Man, was “Dad” in the horrible Madeleine L’Engle adaptation (I mean terrible, why would you do that to such a great story??), and was fantastic in the Netflix-released Braveheart “sequel.”
Without having seen 12 Strong it’s hard for me to give it to Hemsworth over Pine because Outlaw King was so good. So at this point, it’ll be Pine with the understanding that it could change.
Pratt: The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part; The Kid; Avengers: Endgame
Evans: Captain Marvel [Uncredited]; Avengers: Endgame; The Red Sea Diving Resort; Knives Out
Hemsworth: Avengers: Endgame; Men in Black: International; Jay and Silent Bob Reboot
Pine hasn’t appeared in anything in a while but the others have been busy. The 3 Marvel Chris’ reprised their roles in the extremely entertaining Avenger’s conclusion so those cancel each other out.
Evans made a second appearance with a brief cameo in Captain Marvel. His other two roles however were very good, first the Netflix original as “Captain Israel” and then with some of the best sweaters to ever grace the screen in the Oscar-nominated Knives Out.
Hemsworth rebooted Men in Black and boy did it fall flat and he also had an appearance as himself in the other reboot. Pratt parodied himself with a pair of characters in the Lego sequel and also starred in the Vincent D’Onofrio directed western that wasn’t particularly well-received.
Evans’ non-Marvel work carries the year.
Pine: Wonder Woman 1984
In the COVID-stunted 2020, 3 of 4 Chris’ managed to get something released with the benefit of streaming platforms. Pratt’s Pixar tale was good but not great while Hemsworth’s military action-thriller was fun but not all that smart. Pine got the big box office Christmas slot but early returns aren’t super positive. A real toss-up but I doubt there will be an Onward sequel and Extraction was as “Netflix-produced” as they come, so it defaults to Pine.
Pine: All the Old Knives; Violence of Action; Newsflash; Don’t Worry, Darling; Star Trek 4, Dungeons & Dragons
Pratt: Jurassic World: Dominion; Cowboy Ninja Viking; The Tomorrow War; Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, Thor: Love & Thunder
Evans: Don’t Look Up; The Gray Man; Lightyear; Bermuda; Little Shop of Horrors
Hemsworth: Spiderhead; Furiosa; Extraction 2; Thor: Love and Thunder; Hulk Hogan Biopic
Lots left to see in all 4 of the Chris’ careers. Most anticipated for me are Guardians 3, Star Trek 4 (if it ever happens), and The Tomorrow War.
So, in the year-to-year breakdown, the early ubiquity of Chris Evans ended up gaining a lead he didn’t relent. When matched up against the other Chris’ he still managed to take 8 years against just 2 freebies.
While none of the 3 have anything resembling complete careers, each has played a variety of roles over the past 20 years. None of them have any Oscar nominations or Golden Globe awards as of yet. However, Pine has a Primetime Emmy nomination for some voice acting in SuperMansion. Evans, Pine, and Pratt have all received nominations from the Academy of Science Fiction & Fantasy with Pratt winning for Guardians 1. Hemsworth was nominated for a Rising Star BAFTA. In short – no big awards yet for The Chris.
Each of them has an “epitome” or usual role which has popped up throughout their careers. Evans, as I mentioned before, is the goofball kid. He is silly, has “boyish” charm (whatever that is), and often serves to exasperate his co-stars. The ultimate version of this I’ve seen is in The Losers during the Elevator Scene. Captain America was a significant variation from this role (at least post-muscularization) but honestly isn’t that compelling and is often cheesy and over-done – tough guy Chris Evans is much better in Snowpiercer or Red Sea Diving Resort.
Peak Pine, in my opinion, can be found in the rom-com This Means War. He’s overconfident yet resourceful, he’s an action hero who gets by on smarts before physical acumen, and he’s hilarious yet cool – intense but with a quiet strength… His ability to inject comedy into his serious roles and action into his comedic roles is considerably more polished than the other Chris’. If I were a betting man, I’d take Pine against The Chris as the favorite to get an Academy Award nomination first (Outlaw King even had a little award buzz).
Chris Pratt has become a bonafide blockbuster star but really spent most of his career to date as the comedic foil. I’d post a link of one of his many hilarious moments in Parks and Rec but this is restricted to film careers, so I’ll just say Andy Dwyer is one of the funnier TV characters I’ve had the pleasure of watching. He can do dumb with the best of them but is really at his best as the smartest guy in the room, a la Peter Quill. His range has yet to be explored (or doesn’t exist) although Passengers shows somewhat more developed chops than his usual fare which introduced another facet to Pratt’s acting talents. Hopefully he’ll get more opportunities to prove his range.
Thor was born to play Chris Hemsworth…or the other way around. If anything from the saga known as the MCU survives I hope it’s Thor’s entrance in Infinity War. Apart from Thor and the two Star Trek super-cameos, he only has 12 real roles. So obviously he seems quite one dimensional so far. To be fair, of the MCU heroes, he’s probably my favorite but that may again be more about Taika Waititi then about Hemsworth’s acting. Bad Times at the El Royale and Extraction show he does have some potential.
For now, I’d rank them thus: Pine-Evans-Pratt-Hemsworth
all ticket stats from the-numbers.com while personal worth from wealthygorilla.com
Chris Pine is valued at approximately $30 million. Pratt at $40 million. Evans clocks in at $70 million while Chris Hemsworth a whopping $131 million. Hemsworth has the advantage of a considerably lucrative modeling career alongside his acting pursuits.
Evans has accumulated an adjusted gross sales of $4.8b over 35 qualifying movies which come to $146mm per film. 6 of his 25 films have not managed to get to the million-dollar mark. Avengers: Endgame is tops with a Domestic gross of $858mm. In his 24 roles categorized as lead/lead ensemble, he made $172mm each. Definitely a high-ticket career so far.
Hemsworth has made $4.2b over 25 movies an average of $194mm. Only 1 of his 19 features didn’t reach a million (Ca$h pulled in 46K but it wasn’t that terrible). He also has Avengers: Endgame at the top of his list. 23 of his 25 credits are considered lead/lead ensemble so his average isn’t much different at $197mm. A slight advantage over Evans.
Pratt slides in between them with a total of $4.3b over 26 movies, an average of $182mm per film. Endgame is also his most significant success. Only three of his 26 have fallen short of the million-dollar mark so far. Only 15 of his films are considered lead/ensemble which causes his average to jump up to $303mm per role.
Pine comes in below the others with $2b over 28 films which average out to $85mm per. This is because nine of his 28 haven’t reached the million-dollar mark. Wonder Woman is at the top with $412mm. He is at a slight disadvantage owing to the fact that one of his best movies (Outlaw King) was a Netflix release and therefore doesn’t get calculated in box office receipts. Half of his films are leading roles and those 15 average out to $112mm per.
While Evans has the largest stack of tickets and Hemsworth has the largest stack of cash – Pratt’s success with two franchises – Jurassic World and Guardians/Marvel – dwarf the other 3 Chris’ in the average per role. I give Hemsworth the advantage over Evans because of two reasons: 1) The nearly twice as much net worth and 2) His 1 “failure” to Evans’ 6.
Ranking – Pratt-Hemsworth-Evans-Pine
Possibly the most subjective and abstract category – the real question here is if put on the same film, who’s billed first?
With 3/4 of The Chris, this isn’t abstract at all. 2018’s Avengers: Infinity War starred all 3 as key, franchise-leading characters. A really unprecedented ensemble cast leaning on the events and characters of 16 prior movies. While my gut expected Chris Evans, as Captain America, to be the first billed Chris – every search I have performed has placed Chris Hemsworth in 2nd place (to Downey Jr), Evans 4th, and Pratt way down at 28th. I find it hard to believe Hemsworth would out-bill Pine in a similar situation. Obviously, in the Star Trek films, Kirk out-bills everybody, but in a more neutral situation such as Infinity War, I’d still expect Pine to have the advantage.
Billing isn’t necessarily everything – we’ve already noted that Pratt sells tickets at a higher rate than the other Chris’. But a look at other ensembles may clear things up. Pine is on top in the Star Trek films over stars such as Cumberbatch, Elba, Saldana, and Pegg. Which isn’t exactly an explosive group but has some clout. Pratt in Guardians rates above Saldana and Bautista but only over Cooper and Diesel due to their parts being voice contributions I’d wager.
Pratt also lists above Will Ferrell in The Lego Movie which is surprising given their similarly important roles. Hemsworth has first billing in the Thor films of course but in The Avengers and Age of Ultron it’s Evans, not Hemsworth, who’s listed behind Downey Jr at the top of the cast. Evans also leads the casts of the Captain America movies, even Civil War, which is sometimes called Avengers 1.5 due to its inclusion of so many of the other MCU stars.
I’m afraid it’s not as clear as I’d like it to be from the data – but I believe given that the parts are generally equal, the Chris’ would be billed like this:
Due to this process being a continually evolving idea – I tried to fairly balance scoring the 4 different actors and awarded 4 points for 1st place in a category down to 1 point for 4th place. The final scores then are as follows:
Pine – 12
Evans – 11
Hemsworth – 9
Pratt – 8
That’s where I expected it to end up, perhaps with Pratt over Hemsworth but I don’t necessarily see a glaring inconsistency in the data. As far as career trends, the MCU Chris’ all seem poised to make a lot of noise post-Marvel and although Pine has been quiet he has several interesting titles in the works. Let me know what you think – it’s a free country so you’re allowed to be as wrong as you want.