Smallville once held the record of the longest-running North American science-fiction show in television history (only surpassed by Supernatural). It premiered in 2001 and ran for 10 seasons on both The WB and The CW networks. The show was something of a “prequel” to the Superman story DC Comics had already informed us of, by focusing on his high school and young adult years. The first four seasons mainly focused on Clark Kent and his small group of friends in high school along with his home life. The later seasons followed the characters into more adult settings, showcasing his career at the Daily Planet and introducing other DC comic book characters, some joining in his fight against evil.
Fans and critics alike fell in love with the show, winning multiple awards throughout the show’s run. It even got the stamp of approval from former Superman star Christopher Reeve, who also made two guest appearances before his death in 2004. The music of the show was also adapted from John Williams’ classic musical score from the original Superman film series. Though the show ended in 2014, many of the actors went on to star in other popular television shows. CBR takes a look at where the cast is now.
15. KRISTIN KREUK (LANA LANG)
Kristin Kreuk was cast as “girl next door/Clark’s early love interest” Lana Lang in the first season of Smallville, and it took a while for her develop as a character on her own. Lana would leave the show as a regular in season seven and then return for Chloe’s wedding in season eight and briefly rekindle her relationship with Clark until she dons a kryptonite-absorbing power suit. She then leaves Smallville for good but vows to use her powers to protect human life as Clark has.
After her time on Smallville, Canadian actress Kreuk was still seen regularly on television. She landed a recurring role on the NBC spy comedy Chuck and would go on to land the female lead in The CW’s Beauty & the Beast reboot in 2012, which ran for four seasons. She can next be seen in the drama series Burden of Truth premiering in 2018.
14. ALLISON MACK (CHLOE SULLIVAN)
Allison Mack was cast to play Clark’s best friend Chloe Sullivan. Independent, intelligent and loyal, she even acted as a supporting member for Green Arrow and his team under the name “Watchtower.” Jimmy Olsen would later appear as Chloe’s first serious relationship, eventually leading to marriage but ending in divorce. In the show’s final seasons, she would find love again with Oliver Queen, whom she eventually marries and has a son with in the glimpse of the future we get in the series finale.
A former model turned actress, Mack landed her first major role in a guest stint on 7th Heaven. After her time on Smallville, Mack did some voice acting for various DC animated projects, including Power Girl in Superman/Batman: Public Enemies. Mack would later appear in a recurring capacity on the FX sitcom Wilfred and the Fox thriller The Following.
13. AARON ASHMORE (JIMMY OLSEN)
First mentioned in season four as the man Chloe lost her virginity to while interning at the Daily Planet, Aaron Ashmore makes his official appearance as Jimmy Olsen in the season six premiere. Jimmy is working as a photographer at the Daily Planet and also rekindles his relationship with Chloe. Their relationship led to an engagement and also a wedding in season eight. Unfortunately, Jimmy was killed by Doomsday in the season eight finale while trying to protect Chloe.
Following his departure from Smallville, Ashmore had a recurring role on USA’s In Plain Sight, as well as sci-fi shows Lost Girl and Warehouse 13. Most recently, he can be seen playing a lead role as an intergalactic bounty hunter in the space adventure drama Killjoys on Syfy.
12. LAURA VANDERVOORT (KARA/SUPERGIRL)
In season seven of Smallville, actress Laura Vandervoort was cast as Clark Kent’s Kryptonian cousin, Kara. Though initially not referred to directly as Supergirl, Kara possessed the same abilities of Clark. Throughout the season, she helps Clark defeat the villains Zor-El and Brainiac and befriends Lana Lang and Chloe Sullivan along the way. The character of Kara was written off the show in the season seven finale, but Vandervoort returned for a few episodes in seasons eight and ten.
With an already impressive resume under belt, Vandervoort went on to star in two other successful sci-fi television shows. She played Lisa in the V reboot for ABC in 2009 and then landed the lead role in the Syfy supernatural series, Bitten, which ran for three seasons. She can also be seen later this year in the Saw franchise series reboot, Jigsaw.
11. SAM JONES III (PETE ROSS)
Cast against the Superman mythology where Pete Ross is Caucasian, African American actor Sam Jones III landed the role of Clark Kent’s other high school best friend in season one. Pete is also the first person Clark voluntarily shares his secret with, which, ironically, was the main reason the character was written off the show at the end of season three. Citing the problems caused by keeping Clark’s secret as the reason he left, Pete would return for an episode in season seven to make amends with his old friend, this time having gained his own superhuman abilities.
After his time on Smallville, Jones went on to join the cast of NBC’s ER and the comedy series Blue Mountain State on Spike. He most recently can be seen in the 2016 comedy film, Blue Mountain State: The Rise of Thadland.
10. CASSIDY FREEMAN (TESS MERCER)
After the disappearance of Lex Luthor, and the departure of his portrayer, Michael Rosenbaum, Smallville needed a new antagonist tied to the Luthor name. Enter Tess Mercer, played by Cassidy Freeman, as the acting CEO of LuthorCorp and, as we eventually learn, Lex’s half-sister and Lionel Luthor’s daughter. While Tess started out with questionable motives when she first appeared in season eight, she later finds redemption for herself in helping Clark and his friends fight evil, even using her computer skills to fill-in for an absent Chloe in season 10.
Immediately landing a recurring role in season three of The Vampire Diaries after Smallville ended, Freeman hasn’t slowed down any. She joined the cast of the long-running Western crime drama Longmire in 2012 for five seasons. Freeman was most recently seen in a recurring role on the short-lived CBS courtroom drama, Doubt.
9. SAM WITWER (DAVIS BLOOME/DOOMSDAY)
Sam Witwer was cast as Metropolis General Hospital paramedic Davis Bloom in season eight. After helping an injured Chloe Sullivan following a bomb explosion, Davis becomes infatuated with her. We eventually learn that Davis has an uncontrollable dark side, in the form of the inter-dimensional killing machine, Doomsday. Determined to help her friend, Chloe works with Clark to separate the two identities, leaving Doomsday vulnerable to an attack by Clark. However, we learn that Davis was evil all along, as he kills Jimmy after hearing Chloe profess her love for her estranged husband in the season eight finale.
Following his time on Smallville, Witwer was cast in a lead role for the supernatural Syfy series Being Human as vampire-with-a-soul, Aidan. Being Human ran for four years and after that, Witwer launched a successful voice acting career in the animated series and video games of the Star Wars franchise.
8. ERICA DURANCE (LOIS LANE)
As the romance between Lana and Clark started to fizzle out, producers brought in actress Erica Durance to portray Lois Lane. Starting out in a recurring capacity, Lois comes to Smallville in search of her (presumed dead) cousin, Chloe Sullivan. Once Chloe is found alive, Lois joined the main cast until the series finale. Although this Lois and Clark started out with more of a brother/sister relationship which saw them butting heads, season eight finds Lois falling in love with Clark. By series end we see them become engaged, but never actually married.
Following her time on Smallville, Durance was cast as the lead character in the supernatural medical drama Saving Hope in 2012, which ran for five seasons. She would also become a producer and director on the show before the series ended. She can next be seen as Supergirl’s Kryptonian mother, Alura, in the upcoming season of Supergirl.
7. CALLUM BLUE (ZOD)
Englishman Callum Blue was cast as the villainous and power-hungry Zod for season nine. After being freed from a prison on another dimension, Zod and hundreds of other Kryptonians appear across the globe, however, none of them retain the powers of a Kryptonian. Zod eventually regains his powers, along with the others, and wages a war against Clark and his friends over the fate of the Earth in the season nine finale. After a knock-down-drag-out fight, Clark defeats Zod, sending him and the rest of the Kryptonians to another plane of existence.
Probably best known for his prior work on HBO’s short-lived dramedy Dead Like Me, after Blue’s departure from Smallville, he went on to have recurring roles in the TV shows The Sarah Jane Adventures and sci-fi series, Sanctuary. He most recently starred alongside Jennifer Beals and Matthew Modine in the TNT drama Proof in 2015.
6. JUSTIN HARTLEY (OLIVER QUEEN/GREEN ARROW)
Many fans may not know that Stephen Amell wasn’t the first actor to portray a live-action version of the Green Arrow, but Justin Hartley was. As a billionaire who left Star City to live in Metropolis, Oliver masquerades at night as the costume vigilante. Oliver Queen was a recurring character in the sixth and seventh season of Smallville, but became a series regular in season eight when he returns to Metropolis to help find a missing Clark, who has gone missing when the Fortress of Solitude is destroyed.
After Smallville ended, Hartley found plenty of work waiting for him. He was cast as a main character on the short-lived medical dramedy Emily Owens, M.D. and had recurring roles on both of ABC’s Revenge and Mistresses. He can currently be seen playing the adult version of one of the Pearson children on the hit NBC show This Is Us.
5. JOHN SCHNEIDER (JONATHAN KENT)
Veteran actor John Schneider was cast as Jonathan Kent, Clark Kent’s adoptive father in the very first season. Jonathan goes to extreme lengths in helping to protect his son’s secret, even making a deal with Clark’s Kryptonian father, Jor-El by gaving Jonathan the power to bring Clark home. During the process, Jonthan’s heart was strained while he took on all of Clark’s powers, an event that would come back when Jonathan suffers a fatal heart attack at the end of season five.
Following his time on Smallville, Schneider continued to work in series television as well as lending his voice to various animated projects. He had recurring roles on hit shows like Nip/Tuck, Desperate Housewives and Glee. He can currently be seen as the reckless patriarch of the Cryer family in Tyler Perry’s television series The Haves and Have Nots.
4. JOHN GLOVER (LIONEL LUTHOR)
Veteran actor John Glover was cast as Lex Luthor’s overbearing, manipulative father Lionel at the beginning of the series. He became a regular in season two until being written out of the show in season seven. Creators wanted to provide an antithesis to the parenting style of the Kents, although Lionel evolves from being one of Clark’s nemesis who develops multiple schemes to uncover Clark’s identity, to eventually becoming an ally who dies to protect Clark’s secret from Lex. In the final season, it is revealed that Tess Mercer is Lionel’s illegitimate daughter, conceived with Lex’s nanny.
With multiple villainous roles under his belt, the award-winning Glover landed film roles in the dramas Sanitarium and Reality. An openly gay man, Glover is also actively involved in the Alzheimer’s Association, inspired by his own father’s experience with the disease.
3. ANNETTE O’TOOLE (MARTHA KENT)
Playing opposite John Schneider’s Jonathan was Oscar-nominated actress Annette O’Toole as Martha Kent, Clark’s adoptive mother. Nurturing and often considered the moral compass of the show, Martha appeared in the first six seasons as a series regular but would return for a handful of additional episodes. Following the death of her husband, she assumes his state senate seat and eventually moves to Washington, D.C. for the job.
O’Toole is no stranger to the Superman mythology, as she previously played Lana Lang in 1983’s Superman III. After her time on Smallville, she rekindled her musical career, composing and performing music for movies such as A Mighty Wind and A World of Happiness. Her most recently television appearance was a recurring role in the first two seasons of AMC’s Halt and Catch Fire.
2. MICHAEL ROSENBAUM (LEX LUTHOR)
Created as Superman’s arch-nemesis in 1940, the role of Lex Luthor was played by actor Michael Rosenbaum for the first seven seasons of Smallville. Originally there to run a local LutherCorp plant, Lex is saved by Clark after his car runs off a bridge. This experience would trigger a number of events leading to the two men’s friendship and, ultimately, its implosion. While the character was written off of the show in season seven, his presence could be felt throughout the rest of the series.
Rosenbaum left the show to pursue a film career. He appeared in a couple of indie comedies and eventually found his way back to the superhero genre, providing the voice of Wally West/The Flash in the Justice League, Justice League Unlimited and Teen Titans animated series. He would return to live-action television with the lead role in the TV Land sitcom Impastor in 2015.
1. TOM WELLING (CLARK KENT)
Relative newcomer Tom Welling was cast as the famous Clark Kent. As the alien Son of Krypton who tries to find his purpose in life on Earth while using his powers help those in need, Clark would go on to be the defender of Smallville and Metropolis against all evil forces. Although he started out in a relationship with his high school sweetheart Lana Lang, Clark ultimately ended up with the love of his life, Lois Lane.
Another former model turned actor, Welling caught his big break in a recurring role on the CBS legal drama Judging Amy. Following his stint on Smallville, Welling took a brief break from acting, but appeared in the 2016 Nicholas Sparks movie The Choice. Active on the convention circuit as well, he can be seen next in a recurring role on the upcoming season three of Fox’s fantasy police procedural Lucifer.
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