Sometimes it's not the size of the place you come from, but the size of your dreams that determines your success in life.

That's certainly the case for a number of well-known faces, including a handful of famous folks who got their start in tiny South Dakota and Minnesota towns.

24/7 Wall St has compiled a list of The Most Famous Celebrities From Small Towns, which is a who's who of living men and women who left behind very humble beginnings to reach the heights of their chosen fields. (NOTE: The list was put together prior to Matthew Perry's death on October 28, 2023)

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Local Legends: How Small-Town Roots Led To Celebrity Stardom

Cheryl Ladd
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Cheryl Ladd - Huron, South Dakota (population: 14,263 - 2020 Census)

Cheryl Jean Stoppelmoor was born July 12, 1951.

After graduating from Huron High School, she left South Dakota to tour with the band The Music Shop, eventually settling in Los Angeles in 1970.

That year, she landed in the made-for-TV band Josie and the Pussycats, who had their own show and released an album.

Cheryl got her big break in 1977 when she replaced Farrah Fawcett in season two of Charlie's Angels. She appeared as Kris Munroe in 87 episodes before the series ended in 1981.

During that time, she also hosted a pair of her own TV specials and released four albums.

The last time we saw her on camera was during season 31 of Dancing With The Stars, when she was eliminated in week three.

Jessica Lange
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Jessica Lange - Cloquet, Minnesota (population: 12,568  - 2020 Census)

Jessica Phyllis Lange was born April 20, 1949.

She lived in a dozen Minnesota towns growing up and eventually studied art and photography at the University of Minnesota.

Her first on-screen acting credit came as Dawn in the 1976 film King Kong.

She is a six-time Academy Award nominee and a two-time Oscar winner for Best Supporting Actress (1983) in Tootsie and Best Actress (1995) in Blue Sky.

Between 2011 and 2018, she appeared in five different seasons of the TV series American Horror Story.

Her next role is scheduled for Broadway in 2024 in the show Mother Play.

Chris Pratt
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Chris Pratt - Virginia, Minnesota (population: 8,423  - 2020 Census)

Christopher Michael Pratt was born June 21, 1979.

His family moved to Lake Stevens, Washington when he was seven. After graduating from high school he dropped out of community college and eventually ended up homeless in Maui. While waiting tables there he was discovered by actress and director Rae Dawn Chong who cast him in her film Cursed Part 3 (2000).

That led to his first TV role as Harold Brighton 'Bright' Abbott on the series Everwood, where he stayed for four seasons. After the show was canceled, he played Winchester 'Ché' Cook in nine episodes of The O.C., before landing the role of Andy Dwyer on Parks and Recreation. Despite originally being cast for just season one, he eventually appeared in 126 episodes.

He has since gone on to star as Peter Quill (Star-Lord) in six different films in the Avengers/Guardians of the Galaxy franchise.

Jessica Biel
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Jessica Biel - Ely, Minnesota (population: 3,268  - 2020 Census)

Jessica Claire Biel was born March 3, 1982.

She moved quite a bit while growing up, living in Texas, Connecticut, and Illinois, before her family settled in Boulder, Colorado.

Singing and modeling were her first interests before she landed her first acting role in the 1994 film It's a Digital World.

Two years later, she played Mary Camden in the TV series 7th Heaven, eventually appearing in 136 episodes over nine seasons.

In 2018 she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for her role as Cora Tannetti in the TV series The Sinner.

Since 2012, she was been married to singer-songwriter Justin Timberlake.

Brock Lesnar
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Brock Lesnar - Webster, South Dakota (population: 1,772  - 2020 Census)

Brock Edward Lesnar was born July 12, 1977.

After growing up on his parents' dairy farm, he joined the Army National Guard when he was 17. After he was discharged he returned home to Webster and began a successful high school wrestling career, finishing third in the state and in college capturing national championships while at Bismarck State and later at the University of Minnesota.

He began his professional wrestling career in 2000 in the World Wrestling Federation, where he stayed for the next four years, later returning for another eight-year run from 2012 to 2020. He is a seven-time WWF champion.

In 2004, he signed a contract to play in the NFL with the Minnesota Vikings. He was cut after two pre-season games.

Between 2007 and 2016 he also appeared in nine mixed martial arts bouts, recording five victories.

In 2011, he co-wrote his autobiography, Death Clutch: My Story of Determination, Domination.

He has also appeared in three different films:  True Giants (2014)Foxcatcher (2014), and Countdown (2016).

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