Some ’90s stars still shine while others could not survive

Taylor Wolf | Social Media Editor

By Greta Gould | Reporter

The 90s brought about celebrities still popular today – those who have stood the test of time throughout the past 20 or so years. On the other hand, there are also celebrities who either crashed and burned after the 90s or slowly faded away as time went on.


The 90s were home to boy bands, rock bands, girl groups and so many more influential artists who helped mold music into a more modern sound. Groups such as Nirvana, Goo Goo Dolls, Counting Crows, TLC, Radiohead, The Cranberries, Backstreet Boys, Destiny’s Child, Foo Fighters, Spice Girls, Matchbox Twenty and NSYNC paved the way.

However, not all of these groups could last through the decades. The Spice Girls, NSYNC and Destiny’s Child have all disbanded. Some members of these groups have gone on to be successful on their own in various ways. Victoria Beckham, Posh Spice of the Spice Girls, went on to thrive in the fashion world. Justin Timberlake, lead singer of NSYNC, and Beyoncé, a member of Destiny’s Child, went on to be greatly successful as solo artists. Beyoncé has gone on to be nominated for 66 Grammy Awards and has won 23 during her time as an artist, and is the most-nominated female artist in Grammy history. Timberlake has been nominated for 39 and has won 10.

“Justin Timberlake has really evolved with his audience, and he’s kept everybody on their toes,” Waco senior Hannah Ellis said. “He’s been so innovative in the music industry and not afraid to try new things, and I think that really keeps people excited.”

Justin Timberlake is one of the most common household names from the 90s. Timberlake continues to evolve his music and influence the music industry today through his songs and live performances. Starting on “The Mickey Mouse Club,” Timberlake became a household name. He began his music career with the boy band NSYNC from 1995 to 2002, continued as a solo artist from 2002 to the present, and has also starred in major films like “In Time,” “Friends with Benefits” and “Bad Teacher.” He also married a fellow 90s star, Jessica Biel from “7th Heaven,” who also starred in films such as “It’s a Digital World,” “Ulee’s Gold,” and “I’ll Be Home for Christmas.”


Popular actors and actresses are constantly changing depending on the newest movie coming out, the most popular TV show of the time and who is winning awards. According to Insider, some of the most popular actresses and actors in the 90s were Will Smith, Jennifer Love Hewitt, Melissa Joan Hart, Kenan Thompson, Amanda Bynes, Lindsay Lohan, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Freddie Prinze Jr., Brandy Norwood, Mario Lopez and the Olsen twins.

Most of these stars are still in movies and TV shows today. Will Smith has starred in numerous blockbuster films since his time on “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” which aired from 1990 to 1996. After marrying Jada Pinkett-Smith in 1997, the couple raised two children who have grown up in the spotlight and followed in their acting footsteps, as well as started their own music careers. For example, Smith’s son, Jaden, has appeared in films such as “The Karate Kid” in 2010 and “After Earth” in 2013 and has also released three albums since 2014. Smith’s daughter, Willow, has released hit singles such as her hit song “Whip My Hair” in 2010.

“I feel like Will Smith is one of those actors who will be famous forever,” Lake Charles, La., senior Lizzy Portie said. “He has one of those personalities that people are drawn to.”

Unfortunately, not all of these stars took fame well. Amanda Bynes and Lindsay Lohan are known for having gone through the most public meltdowns. Being brought up in spotlight, both turned to drug usage, among other things, to cope with the stardom. According to, Bynes struggled with drug usage for most of her adult life and is still in and out of rehab “getting help and treatment from mental health professionals and addiction counselors for drug addiction and mental health issues.”

According to, Lindsay Lohan has been checked into rehab six times due to numerous situations, including drunk driving and driving under the influence of drugs. Since her rehab days, Lohan has begun to repair her reputation by doing sit-down interviews, such as with CNN, and starting her own TV show Lindsay Lohan Beach Club.

Recent TV shows have casted past 90s stars such as Luke Perry, who died on March 4, and Skeet Ulrich (“Riverdale”). Popular family shows “Full House” and “Boy Meets World,” have had spin-offs created, which bring those actors, such as Candace Cameron Bure, Jodie Sweetin and Andrea Barber back into the spotlight. Unfortunately, not all fans enjoy the spin-offs as much as the original shows.

“I really wasn’t a huge fan of ‘Fuller House,’” Portie said. “It felt like they were trying too hard to make it funny and weren’t doing a good job of targeting it to the audience that watched ‘Full House originally.’”

The Forgotten

According to “16 Forgotten ‘90s Celebs (& What They’re Up To Now)” on Refinery29, a number of artists and actors have since been forgotten and left in the 90s. Some of these include Jonathan Taylor Thomas from “Home Improvement,” Erik von Detten from “7th Heaven,” Rider Strong from “Boy Meets World,” Mike Vitar from “The Sandlot,” and singer Toni Braxton. Rider Strong starred in “Girl Meets World,” the “Boy Meets World” spin-off, although the show only lasted for three seasons.