When Vanity Fair hit the newsstands on December 1st, they were met with a lot of excitement. The magazine is best known for its annual list of the most influential people in politics, entertainment, fashion, and more. Its readership is between 15 and 24-years-old, and the magazine focuses on pop culture, particularly movies and fashion. However, this year’s list is different from previous years’ lists because it focuses on the impact that Hollywood has had on today’s society. In addition to featuring some of the most influential people in Hollywood, the magazine also namesropped some of the biggest names in the industry.

The Inspiration Behind The List

The idea for this year’s list came from a conversation that Vanity Fair Editor in Chief Annie Karni had with actor Robert Pattinson. Pattinson has been in the public eye since he was a teenager, when he appeared in the teen drama series The O.C. He went on to star in the Twilight movies and recently wrapped up filming on The Long Road to Love. While he’s undoubtedly experienced a meteoric rise to fame, it’s important to note that he’s still considered quite the unknown quantity by some, especially in the UK. So, when Karni asked him for his opinion on the state of Hollywood, he readily agreed to contribute.

Karni told me that, in general, people weren’t sure how to feel about Hollywood these days. She said that people were afraid of the industry, and that many were also skeptical about its influence. In response, Pattinson suggested that they compile a list of influential people in the industry; people who had been there, done that, and could offer advice and guidance to those who were just breaking in. In the end, Pattinson’s suggestion evolved into the publication of a list that’s as diverse as the industry itself; which is not something that you usually see, especially in a magazine that’s aimed at such a youthful audience.

Who Is On The List?

This year’s list is a who’s who of the most influential people in Hollywood. As the magazine points out, Hollywood has never been more diverse, with prominent figures scattered across the fields of acting, screenwriting, directing, and producing.

With so many talented people working in the industry, it’s quite the feat being named to this list. But, as Karni says, this is simply because “the field is so big and there are so many prominent figures.” Regardless, she adds, “this year’s list does not claim to be comprehensive; it is merely a reflection of those who the editor believes have had a significant impact in this area over the past decade.”

The Names On The List

Some of the biggest names on the list include: Aaron Eckhart, Anjelica Huston, Ben Affleck, Bridget Fonda, Carey Mulligan, Carolee Schneid, and many more.

Eckhart, a former teen heartthrob, has acted in some of Warren Beatty’s most iconic films, including A Town Torn Apart and Heaven Can Wait. He’s since transitioned into a successful director, with such gems as The Surfer and The Cleaner standing out among his early works. He currently stars in the Fox series Empire.

Aaron Eckhart

The year 2019 will mark the 20th anniversary of Eckhart’s directorial debut Kids, which was released in 1999. To celebrate this milestone, his production company, Eckhart Productions, is planning a major retrospective of the director’s filmography. The retrospective will contain 35 of his feature films and will be launched in at least 20 international markets. In the UK, it will be shown at the Cambridge Film Festival in March next year.

Aside from being a prolific director, Aaron Eckhart is also active in the literary world. He’s published two books: an autobiography, which was released in 2018, and a collection of short stories, titled Filthy Rich, which was published last year. It was long-listed for the International Esquire Award and named one of Amazon’s Best Books of 2019.

Anjelica Huston

Anjelica Huston is one of the most in-demand actresses of our time. The British-American actress has appeared in big-budget films such as The Maltese Falcon, directed by John Huston, and last year’s Shrek, which was the highest-grossing film of all time, at the time it was released. In 2019, Huston will star in the crime drama High Wire, alongside Rosamund Pike, and she’s also set to star in a thriller titled Baggage Claim.

Hollywood has been a fertile ground for Huston’s career, with her recent work earning her a spot on this year’s list. She is represented by both the UTA and the Gersh Agency.

Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch is one of the most famous actors of our time. The British-American is best known for his role as Sherlock Holmes in the BBC’s television adaptation of the classic Sherlock Holmes. However, he’s since moved beyond his iconic detective and is now an established name in both film and television. In 2020, he will star alongside Richard Simmons in an adaptation of War and Peace. Other recent credits include the comedy Sherlock Gnomes and the upcoming thriller First-Year Onyeb.

It’s fair to say that Cumberbatch has had a meteoric rise to fame, with many considering him to be one of the greatest actors of our time. In 2020 alone, he will appear in at least four major films, Second-Hand Lions, The Death of Stalin, Darren Criss: Live From Berlin, and The Secret Battle. He’s also set to star in the big-budget Netflix series The House of Gucci, which will be released next year.

Ben Affleck

Ben Affleck is an Academy Award-winning screenwriter, director, and producer. He’s best known for his directing work, with such acclaimed films as Gone Baby Gone, The Town, and A Walk Among the Clouds standing out among his early work. Since then, he’s gone on to direct some incredible films, including Argo, which won the 2012 Academy Award for Best Pictures, The Way Back, and Gone Girl, which is still regarded as one of the greatest modern thrillers. In 2020, Affleck will star alongside Matt Damon in a film adaptation of Tom Sawyer. Affleck currently divides his time between Los Angeles and New York City.

Richard Simmons

Aside from actors and actresses, this year’s list also contains some distinguished music artists. The British-American rapper and record producer Richard Simmons is credited with establishing the careers of such famous artists as M.I.A, Grimes, and JAY-Z. But, aside from being a successful solo artist, Simmons is best known for co-founding the music group Whiplash and for his role as a mentor on the VH1 show Rock Supershow. Along with his friend Kidada Jee, Simmons founded the record label RSI Records in the 1980s.

It was initially established to release Simmons’ solo work, with the first album, Dance with Wolves, going on to sell more than 500,000 copies in the US. Since then, the label has released dozens of albums and a wide array of singles by some of the most prominent artists in the industry, including M.I.A., Grimes, and JAY-Z. Simmons has also directed and produced several music videos, including She Don’t Love You, the Grimes video for “Oblivion,” and The Story of O.J..