In celebration of St. Patrick's Day, we recognise some of the world's top Irish actors and the impact they've had on the Hollywood film industry. The list could go on forever of course, but these are just a few whose performances on the big screen have stuck with us.

Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone! Today (March 17th) is the day that the Irish celebrate the life of the Patron Saint of Ireland, usually by drinking Guinness and wearing silly hats with shamrocks on. It's not a holiday very well understood to people outside of Ireland and, indeed, even less so outside the UK. However, we've decided to weigh in on the festivities by honouring some of the world's favourite Irish people - namely, actors that have risen to Hollywood stardom.

Chris O'DowdChris O'Dowd found fame on 'The IT Crowd'

1. Chris O'Dowd - Born in Boyle, County Roscommon, O'Dowd rose to fame in the British comedy 'The IT Crowd', but since then he has appeared in a number of major blockbusters including Judd Apatow's 'This Is 40', the Oscar nominated 'Bridesmaids', 'Thor: The Dark World' and, lately, Tim Burton's 'Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children'. He also had a role in several episodes of Lena Dunham's 'Girls'.

Michael FassbenderMichael Fassbender was nominated for a Best Actor Oscar this year

2. Michael Fassbender - Actually half-Irish, half-German, Fassbender spent the majority of his childhood living in Ireland. Now he's a twice Oscar nominated superstar who has had critically acclaimed roles in the likes of Quention Tarantino's 'Inglourious Basterds', '300', 'Prometheus' and '12 Years a Slave'. His most recent roles include the titular characters of 'Steve Jobs' and 'Macbeth' ,and he'll reprise his role as the younger Magneto in 'X-Men: Apocalypse'.

More: Read our review of 'Macbeth'

Saoirse RonanSaoirse Ronan is now one of the most well-known Irish actresses

3. Saoirse Ronan - Another one who faced her second Oscar nomination this year, Ronan went back to her roots in her latest film 'Brooklyn', about an Irish girl who heads overseas to the land of opportunity. She was also in the 2007 period drama 'Atonement' alongside Keira Knightley and played deadly assassin Hanna in the 2011 thriller of the same name.

Colin FarrellColin Farrell now lives in Los Angeles

4. Colin Farrell - This Golden Globe winning star is set to appear in 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them' later this year, but he's had plenty of experience in Hollywood before now. He was raised in Dublin but Los Angeles certainly brought with it its challenges in the mental health department; certainly not where film is concerned though as he has had roles in such epics as 'Saving Mr. Banks', 'Seven Psychopaths', the 'Total Recall' remake and 'Horrible Bosses'.

Pierce BrosnanPierce Brosnan played James Bond before Daniel Craig

5. Pierce Brosnan - This Irishman was the James Bond of the 90s and continued to do some pretty awesome films long after that. He teamed up with Amanda Seyfried on 'Mamma Mia!', and he continued his reign of spy thrillers in such flicks as 'The November Man' and 'Survivor'.

Liam NeesonLiam Neeson is a Hollywood sensation with 'Schindler's List' and 'Taken'

6. Liam Neeson - There's a reason why Liam Neeson managed to make the line 'I will look for you, I will find you, and I will kill you' in 'Taken' incredibly threatening and not cheesy. It's because he's Irish. And he's one of the reasons Steven Spielberg's 'Schindler's List' is so epic too, and he made for an excellent addition to the cast of 'Entourage' and 'The Dark Knight Rises'.

Michael GambonMichael Gambon starred in 'Harry Potter'

7. Michael Gambon - Probably best known for his role as Dumbledore in most of the 'Harry Potter' films, this Dublin actor is one of the veterans. He was in the Oscar winning Tim Burton horror 'Sleepy Hollow' with Johnny Depp, 2004's 'Layer Cake' with the likes of Daniel Craig, Sienna Miller and Tom Hardy, 'The King's Speech' with Colin Firth and 'The Book of Eli' which starred Denzel Washington.

Cillian MurphyCillian Murphy is a Golden Globe nominated star

8. Cillian Murphy - Golden Globe nominated Murphy was born in Douglas and he's about as Irish as you can get. His striking features have gripped filmmakers internationally, landing him parts in '28 Days Later...', 'Girl with a Pearl Earring', 'Cold Mountain', 'Batman Begins' and 'Inception'. His latest role was in Ron Howard's Moby Dick inspired drama 'In the Heart of the Sea'.

Kenneth BranaghKenneth Branagh is also a successful film director

9. Kenneth Branagh - As much as Belfast-born Branagh is a talented actor with 'Valkyrie', 'Harry Potter' and 'Wild Wild West' listed among his credits, he is also an accomplished director nominated for an Oscar in 1990 for 'Henry V'. He's also been at the helm of 'Thor' and 'Cinderella'.

Sam NeillSam Neill is a veteran Irish star

10. Sam Neill - Another veteran, Sam Neill was born in County Tyrone, and raised there until he moved to New Zealand at 7-years-old. Extremely recognisable, he's best known for playing Dr. Alan Grant in 'Jurassic Park', and also appeared in 'The Piano', 'Event Horizon' and 'The Vow'.