For members of a certain generation, movies and television from the 1990s were essential to their adolescence. Flicks like Clueless changed the way they talked and dressed, while TV shows like Buffy the Vampire Slayer were must-see every week. Many of these same films and shows remain popular, and some have even developed cult followings. As a result, the stars of these nostalgic gems are well-known to people of all ages.
Some actors during the 1990s were, without a doubt, "It" girls. They seemed to be in everything, crossing between genres on big and small screens. We found some facts about our favorite '90s "It" girls that are, in the parlance of that great decade, "Da Bomb." They left us buggin'. Vote up the ones that do the same for you.
- Photo: Married...with Children / Fox
During the mid-1990s, choreographer Robin Antin and actor Christina Applegate - AKA Kelly Bundy from Married... with Children - lived together in Las Vegas, NV. When Antin came up with the idea to form a burlesque group, she and Applegate invited dancer-friends to Applegate's home studio in her garage.
According to Antin, "in the beginning, it was supposed to be an homage to the old musicals," but wardrobe challenges resulted in a show that featured onstage undressing. When the group first performed at The Viper Room in 1995, co-owner Johnny Depp reportedly "just flipped out," Antin said. "I remember where he was standing, smoking, looking all hot."
- Photo: Introducing Dorothy Dandridge / HBO21,395 VOTES
- Photo: 10 Things I Hate About You / Buena Vista Pictures
Julia Stiles, who appeared in 10 Things I Hate About You in 1999, went on to star in several movies in the Bourne franchise. Stiles told NPR that when she was at a screening part for one of the Bourne films:
Somebody summoned me into a different room and said, "Prince wants to meet you." And I was like, "The prince of what?"
It was the musician Prince, and after meeting him, she got tickets to the concert he was playing the next night. During the event, Stiles and her sister were pulled on the stage and, before she knew it, he had her step up to the microphone. Stiles talked about what happened next:
The song was not one of his songs... it was "Play That Funky White Boy"... I pulled it together and as they got into the chorus, I managed to belt out a little bit and figure out whatever I was doing and I just sort of went for it.
- Photo: Beetlejuice / Warner Bros.
Born in Minnesota, Winona Ryder spent much of her youth on a commune in California. Ryder, her parents, and six other families lived on what the actor described as "380 acres of redwoods. It was beautiful."
Her time at the commune made fitting in hard for the Beetlejuice and Little Women actress. Ryder recalled being an "outsider" at school because she had no frame of reference for television shows and other things her classmates were interested in.
Despite an unconventional upbringing, Ryder (whose first name comes from the town where she was born), said she had a loving childhood:
We didn’t have a lot of money... But the love compensation was amazing. My dad would make little things exciting, like bringing home Rolos [candy].
- Photo: Fear / Universal Pictures
Reese Witherspoon, who starred in '90s movies like Fear, Cruel Intentions, and Election, said she has "always tended to be outspoken with my opinions... whether they were appropriate or not." Her affinity for pushing boundaries started when she was young.
When Witherspoon was in the third grade, she was suspended for selling hair accessories. She reportedly bought barrettes, painted them, and then sold them to her classmates. In 2021, she mentioned it on Instagram:
If you told my third-grade self, the one who started her first business customizing hair barrettes out of her desk, that one day she would be on the cover of Time Magazine as a businesswoman, She would have said, “That’s So Rad!” *or something very 80s like that.
Witherspoon was suspended again when she was in high school after telling her English instructor their work wasn't difficult enough.
- Photo: Drop Dead Gorgeous / New Line Cinema6910 VOTES
During the 1990s, Kirsten Dunst appeared in Interview With a Vampire alongside Tom Cruise and Brad Pitt, headed up the cast of the cult-classic Drop Dead Gorgeous, and spent time in the ER with George Clooney. The actor continues to appear in movies and on television as a self-defined "real international lady."
In 2011 she obtained citizenship in Germany. Dunst's German heritage qualified her to become a citizen, something she pursued so she could "film in Europe without a problem." For Dunst, "it would be the greatest joy for me to act in a German film."