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Steven R McQueen; Hardly Magazine

There’s no doubt that when Steven R. McQueen decided to become an actor, he had some big shoes to fill. He is after all the grandson of legendary screen icon Steve McQueen (his namesake), a man revered as one of the biggest stars of the 1960s. Known as the “King of Cool” to an entire generation — and the personal idol of modern day actors including Brad Pitt — Steve McQueen is remembered for his starring role in iconic films such as The Great Escape, Bullitt, and Papillon.

Yet as an actor, the young Steven has never relied on his family legacy, preferring to pave his own path to stardom. He began his career back in 2005 with guest roles in TV shows such as Everwood and CSI: Miami. But it was in 2009, when he landed the part of Jeremy Gilbert on The Vampire Diaries, that his career really began to build momentum.

On the surface, the initial success of The Vampire Diaries can be linked to the Twilight phenomena, but despite some slight plot similarities, the show (based on the books by L.J. Smith, notably released years before the Twilight saga) has proven to be uniquely its own and so much more than just another love triangle involving vampires. The proof is in its fan base, a huge sprawling thing, with a diverse audience, including my 80-year-old grandmother who loves the show!

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