Will 'Furry Vengeance' Make Brendan Fraser the Top Family Film Star?

Furry Vengeance, which hits theaters April 30, is Brendan Fraser's seventh starring role in a live action family film, a list that includes George of the Jungle (1997) Dudley-Do-Right (1999), Blast from the Past (1999), Looney Tunes: Back in Action (2003), Journey to the Center of the Earth (2008), and Inkheart (2008). I'm ignoring his three films featuring Pauly Shore (and Fraser probably prefers you do the same).

But with Vengeance ahead and reported sequels to both Journey and Inkheart on the way, does this mean Brendan Fraser is the new go-to guy in family movies?

Before you crown him with that title, keep in mind that Eddie Murphy also has seven live action family films under his belt -- most recently Imagine That (2009). But unlike Fraser, Murphy's list includes two sequels. Meanwhile, Tim Allen is just behind Fraser and Murphy with six family films, including two Santa sequels.

Dwayne Johnson is coming up fast, having already starred in three family films, most recently The Tooth Fairy (2010). Johnson is also set to co-star in an upcoming live-action version of The Adventures of Jonny Quest.

Unlike Murphy, Allen, and even Johnson, Brendan Fraser hasn't yet stereotyped himself into a cinematic hole. With a diverse mix of films, including 2010's Extraordinary Measures, he still carries the dramatic credit he earned when I first met him on the big screen as the breakout star of School Ties in 1992. 

My kids generally don't know one movie star from another, but I prefer watching family films that star real actors -- like Brendan Fraser -- who are still on the A-list when it comes to adult fare. It gives the film more gravitas, and helps me feel like I'm not just attending the equivalent a children's birthday party, where some adult clown is gamely blowing balloon animals, but probably thinking more about getting paid when he's done.

So congratulations and keep doing what you're doing, Brendan. May upcoming projects contain more do-rights than duds.

VIDEO: Preview Brendan Fraser in Furry Vengeance

Who do you consider the contemporary king of kid movies: Brendan, Eddie, Tim, Dwayne or someone else? Chime in below!

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