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14 Australian Stars Who Got Their Big Break On "Home And Away"

From Summer Bay to glitzy fame.

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1. Chris Hemsworth

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Chris was introduced on Home and Away in 2004, playing Kim Hyde. He had his fair share of drama, including two Maury Povich-style "You're not the father!" situations and eventually took off to the "city" where all Home and Away characters go if they don't die.

Of course now Chris is one of Hollywood's biggest stars thanks to his success playing Thor and was also named the sexiest man alive for 2014. It was recently announced he'll be playing the secretary in the female led Ghostbusters adaption.

2. Isla Fisher

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Isla graced the Summer Bay shores in 1994 until 1997, playing the dynamic Shannon. She arrived with her "brother" Curtis, who we later discover isn't her brother after the pair are caught kissing. Shannon eventually leaves the sunny bay with her girlfriend Mandy.

These days Isla is very well known in Hollywood, starring in Scooby Doo, Confessions of a Shopaholic, Wedding Crashers and The Great Gatsby to name a few. She's also married to comedian Sacha Baron Cohen.

3. Ryan Kwanten

Channel Seven

Ryan Kwanten played the lovable ladies man Vinnie "VJ" Patterson, first appearing on screens in 1997. After settling down with Leah, Vinnie was sent to jail, charged with fraud. Later we find out Vinnie "died" in jail (sob) but it turns out he was in witness protection (of course!!) and later turns up at his son's third birthday dressed as a bear, where he leaves Leah a note telling her to move on. In 2010 we find out Vinnie has died in a farming accident. For real though.

Ryan moved onto the glitzy streets of Hollywood and won over a legion of fans starring as the rather stupid, but lovable Jason Stackhouse in True Blood. He's also had cameos in Law and Order: SVU and New Girl and is the voice of Blinky Bill in the upcoming movie due for release later this year.

4. Tammin Sursok

Channel Seven
ABC Family

Tammin became a household name in 2000, playing the feisty Dani Sutherland. She was at the centre of one of the most infamous Home and Away plots - after being sexually assaulted by Kane, she was later jailed for attempted murder after hitting him with her car. The Sutherland family is hit with another drama, when Dani's younger sister Kirsty goes on to date Kane. Dani eventually moves away to start a new life for herself.

Hollywood knows Tammin as Colleen Carlton in The Young and the Restless and Jenna Marshall in Pretty Little Liars. She also starred in Nickelodeon's musical film Spectacular!

5. Heath Ledger

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Heath played Scott Irwin on Home and Away in a guest stint, where he takes advantage of Sally Fletcher's feeling for him. See his earring? It proves he was a bad boy. Scott is expelled from Summer Bay High for stealing an exam paper.

Heath of course, became one of Australia's most famous exports after charming everyone in 10 Things I Hate About You. He appeared in other critically acclaimed movies such as A Knights Tale, Ned Kelly, Brokeback Mountain, Candy and The Dark Knight. Heath sadly passed away in 2008.

6. Melissa George

Channel Seven

Melissa George played Angel Brooks, one half of everyone's favourite '90s couple - Angel and Shane. The tragic love story saw the admission of a surprise baby, a paralysis and a wedding, only for Shane to die from septicemia while Angel is pregnant with his child. Because there's no such thing as a happy ending here.

Melissa George made her break in Hollywood, appearing in a handful of films, including David Lynch’s critically acclaimed Mullholland Drive. She later starred in In Treatment, receiving a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actress, before briefly joining the cast of Grey’s Anatomy. More recently she's appeared in The Good Wife and is currently filming movie Heartbreaker.

7. Julian McMahon

Channel Seven

Julian McMahon steamed up screens playing Ben Lucini from 1990-1991... just look at that love rug. He falls for Carly Morris, and while they have a tempestuous relationship, they eventually sort their shit out and move to Perth to live happily ever after with a bunch of cute babies.

Julian then moved to Hollywood to steam up some more screens - landing a role in hit show Charmed , before later going on to play Christian Troy in Nip/Tuck, which saw him nominated for a Golden Globe in 2005. McMahon played supervillain Doctor Doom in Fantastic Four in 2005, and reprised his role in 2007 for the sequel.

8. Isabel Lucas

Instagram: isabel_lucas_official

A beautiful, gentle hippie soul on the show and IRL, Isabel Lucas played the troubled Tasha who arrived mysteriously to the bay not speaking a word of English. After an erratic start Tasha settled down with the lovable Robbie. Tasha’s time saw her go on an emotional journey to connect with her past, many ups and downs with Robbie, a stint at a cult, a baby and later a move to the US.

Following in her character's footsteps, Isabel too migrated to the US, and became widely recognised after starring in Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. She’s also featured in movies Daybreakers, The Pacific and Immortals. More recently she starred opposite Nick Jonas and Dermot Mulroney in thriller Careful What You Wish For.

9. Simon Baker

Channel Seven
CBS Productions

Simon Baker had a brief stint at Summer Bay, playing James Healy, a photography teacher. He leaves town after being offered a better job. Probably a good thing really judging by some of the other storylines.

Best known for his roles in The Mentalist and The Guardian, Simon has gone on to have a successful career in Hollywood. In 2013, he was honoured with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

10. Dannii Minogue

Channel 7

Before she graced us with her pop tunes, Dannii appeared on Home and Away playing Emma Jackson, a teen punk and tomboy. Her storylines are basically structured around her running amok and creating chaos wherever she goes. After being expelled and then reinstated, Emma decides to take a job as an air hostess and moves to the Gold Coast.

Dannii's life is definitely more exciting in comparison. Launching a successful music career in Australia and the UK, she's kept busy appearing as a judge on Australia’s Got Talent, The X Factor UK and The X Factor Australia.

11. Naomi Watts

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Before she became one of Australia’s most critically acclaimed actresses, Naomi Watts had a guest role on Home and Away, playing Julie Gibson. In one short (but torturous) month Julie had her romance sabotaged, suffered the death of her father and was up and out of that bitch of a bay before any other bad things happened.

Watts found international fame with David Lynch's Mulholland Drive and had many other box office successes with The Ring, 21 Grams, King Kong, Diana and Birdman. Watts has received numerous Golden Globe and Academy Award nominations and won over 40 awards in other ceremonies.

12. Brenton Thwaites

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Brenton graced our screens in 2011, playing Stu Henderson, the newest member of the infamous "Riverboys." He strikes up a relationship with Sasha Bezmel, which quickly turns abusive. Alf finds Stu's body at the caravan park and Sasha later confesses to killing Stu in self-defense.

Moving on, Brenton has since appeared in notable movies such as Maleficent alongside Angelina Jolie and The Giver alongside Meryl Streep and Jeff Bridges. He's set to appear in the latest installment of Pirates of the Caribbean playing a British soldier.

13. Jordan Rodrigues

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Jordan Rodrigues played Jai Fernandez from 2008-2009. Jai was a survivor of the 2004 tsunami where he lost both his parents. He had an on-and-off relationship with Annie Campbell, but the two ended up leaving for Japan together to go on exchange.

After appearing on Dance Academy and Hawaii Five-0 , these days Jordan is being kept busy playing Mat in critically acclaimed US show The Fosters.

14. Luke Bracey

Channel Seven / Creative Commons

Luke Bracey played local bully Trey Palmer, first appearing early in 2009. He took an immediate dislike to Geoff Campbell and made racist taunts towards Jai. Trey grew growing closer to Nicole and they eventually dated, but he leaked a sex tape of the two. On a field trip for school, Trey revealed he's planted a bomb underneath the school bus. It blows up, and one member of the school is seriously injured which results in Trey being arrested for attempted murder.

After his dramatic time in Summer Bay, Luke slowly crept his way into the limelight, starring opposite Leighton Meester in Monte Carlo and later appearing in G.I. Joe: Retaliation and The Best of Me.