Actors who quit movie franchises only to return

Prod DB © 20th Century Fox Film Corporation - Marvel Entertainment - Donners' Company - TSG Entertainment / DR LOGAN de James Mangold 2017 USA avec Hugh Jackman wolverine d'apres le personnage créé par Roy Thomas, Len Wein et John Romita Sr.
Hugh Jackman is returning as Wolverine after quitting the role in 2017. (Alamy)

Hollywood's franchise system can make A-list stars of jobbing actors. Just think about Chris Pratt who was catapulted to global fame as Star-Lord in Guardians of the Galaxy after years on the small screen in Parks and Recreation, or Bradley Cooper who became a household name off the back of the Hangover trilogy.

However, when actors outgrow their franchises, they often leave them behind for pastures new.

A week before the release of Fast X it has been leaked that one of its big stars who quit the series is making a dramatic return. And it's not the only time this has happened in Hollywood history.

In fact, it's as regular in Hollywood these days as a reboot.

Read more: Fast and Furious: All 10 movies ranked from worst to best

Below, we look at ten of the biggest returns in cinema.

Dwayne Johnson in Fast and Furious | 6 years away

Dwayne Johnson in Furious 7. (Universal)

As recently as a year ago, Vin Diesel and Dwayne Johnson were at each others throats after Diesel made a very public plea for Johnson to return to the series. Johnson called Diesel's comments "manipulation" and it looked like the Fast and Furious films would continue without the former wrestler.

Read more: The Rock and Vin Diesel's feud explainer

That was until Johnson's Luke Hobbs popped up like Nick Fury in the end credits for the forthcoming Fast X. We'll have to wait for film number 11 to find out exactly what Hobbs is up to.

Hugh Jackman as Wolverine | 7 years away

Hugh Jackman in 2017's Logan. (20th Century Fox/Alamy)

Hugh Jackman said a very vocal goodbye to Wolverine after 2017's Logan which killed off the character and ended his run in the X-Men films.

Read more: Everything we know about Deadpool 3

That was until Ryan Reynolds coaxed the Australian back out of retirement for one last run around the block with his mutton chops. Jackman will star in Deadpool 3 which will be set before the events of Logan.

Karen Allen in Indiana Jones | 27 years away

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull  Year : 2008 USA Director : Steven Spielberg Shia LaBeouf, Steven Spielberg, Ray Winstone, Karen Allen , Harrison Ford  Shooting picture
Shia LaBeouf, Steven Spielberg, Ray Winstone, Karen Allen, and Harrison Ford behind the scenes on 2008's Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. (Alamy)

Indiana Jones had many women over the first three films but his first love was Marion Ravenwood played by Karen Allen. The character was written out of the sequels as George Lucas wanted Indy to have a different love interest in each film but Steven Spielberg brought her back for Kingdom of the Crystal Skull with the film ending with the two of them married.

Read more: Karen Allen looks back on 40 years of Raiders of the Lost Ark

It is not yet known if Allen will make an appearance in Dial of Destiny.

Matt Damon as Jason Bourne | 9 years away

Jason Bourne (previously known as Bourne 5) is an upcoming American action spy thriller film directed by Paul Greengrass and written by Greengrass, Matt Damon and Christopher Rouse.  This photograph is for editorial use only and is the copyright of the film company and/or the photographer assigned by the film or production company and can only be reproduced by publications in conjunction with the promotion of the above Film. A Mandatory Credit to the film company is required. The Photographer should also be credited when known.
Matt Damon in 2016's Jason Bourne. (Alamy)

After The Bourne Ultimatum, Matt Damon looked to be done as the amnesiac spy as he went on record and stated the character's arc had ended with that film. Director Paul Greengrass departed with him and the studio continued the series with The Bourne Legacy which starred Jeremy Renner.

Damon and Greengrass eventually returned with Jason Bourne nearly a whole decade after Ultimatum. The film went down a treat with audiences, grossing double the tally of The Bourne Legacy.

Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween | 17 years and 16 years

Halloween Year : 2018 USA Director : David Gordon Green Jamie Lee Curtis
Jamie Lee Curtis in Halloween. (Alamy)

The most iconic scream queen of them all and now an Oscar winner. Curtis' career will largely be defined by her performance as Laurie Strode in the long-running Halloween franchise. Curtis has in fact returned to the series twice.

Read more: Jamie Lee Curtis bids tearful farewell to Laurie Strode

She starred in the first two films which had John Carpenter's involvement before bowing out for nearly 20 years until Halloween H20: 20 Years Later. Missing the Rob Zombie reboots, Curtis later signed up for David Gordon Green's sequel trilogy which concluded last year.

Vin Diesel in xXx | 15 years away

xXx: Return of Xander Cage (alternatively known as xXx: Reactivated and pronounced
Vin Diesel in 2017's xXx: Return of Xander Cage. (Alamy)

The early 2000s saw Vin Diesel spinning many plates with The Fast and the Furious, Riddick and XXX. After he was unable to film a XXX sequel due to other commitments, the series killed him off and replaced him with Ice Cube though that didn't stop Diesel from publicly expressing a desire to return as the extreme sports star turned secret agent.

Diesel was also absent from 2 Fast 2 Furious but he had to wait a lot longer to return to XXX with a victory lap sequel only happening 2017's xXx: The Return of Xander Cage.

Linda Hamilton in The Terminator | 28 years away

Linda Hamilton in Terminator: Dark Fate (Credit: Paramount)
Linda Hamilton in Terminator: Dark Fate (Paramount)

Even now, Linda Hamilton remains defined by her role as The Terminator. Initially a surprise hit in 1984, the film made superstars of her, Arnold Schwarzenegger and director James Cameron. While Arnie would appear in each film in some way shape or form (he was a CGI head in Terminator Salvation), Hamilton was absent from the series after the record breaking second film.

Read more: The most expensive movies ever made

Hamilton eventually returned in Terminator Dark Fate which reunited her and Schwarzenegger for the first time in 28 years. Shame the film was rubbish.

Hayden Panettiere in Scream | 12 years

Hayden Panettiere in Scream VI. (Paramount)

Scream is known for its large rotating ensemble that has included Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, Liev Schreiber and David Arquette with the fourth film expanding further with the notable addition of Hayden Panettiere's Kirby Reed.

Read more: The story of Scream so far

Thought dead at the end of the film, she was confirmed to be alive in the fifth and made a popular return in the recent sixth film which was also Panettiere's first film role in seven years.

Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart in X-Men | 7 years away

Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart in 2014's X-Men: Days of Future Past. (Alamy)

Professor X and Magneto come as a package and after the X-Men were rebooted in 2011, it was thought the batons had been passed on to James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender. But Days of Future Past saw the return of many X-Men stars from the original trilogy including Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry and Anna Paquin.

Read more: X2: The first out and proud superhero movie

But the biggest and most surprising announcement would be that Ian McKellan and Patrick Stewart would be playing Xavier and Magneto once again alongside their younger counterparts. Stewart later returned for a cameo in Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness but McKellan has not played Magneto since.

Cary Elwes in Saw | 6 years away

Prod DB © Evolution Entertainment / DR SAW (SAW) de James Wan 2004 USA avec Cary Elwes horreur, gore,
Cary Elwes in Saw. (Alamy)

The first of a number of low-budget high concept horror movies that made a fortune for studios, Saw was a huge success and made a popular icon out of its Jigsaw villain. The film also starred Cary Elwes as a doctor who sawed his own foot off to survive the serial killer's murderous game.

Read more: James Wan looks back at Saw 18 years on

Though he survived the movie, Elwes went missing from the series as he was suing the producers for breach of contract over his rights to a cut of the profits. The case was settled out of court and Elwes returned for the particularly gruesome Saw 3D.

Watch a trailer for Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny