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20+ Famous Actors We Had No Idea Were in Certain Movies Until We Saw the Credits

An unusual image and good makeup can create such amazing miracles, that sometimes we are not able to recognize our favorite actors even if we saw their names on the movie’s poster. Just look at Meryl Streep in the role of a man or Edward Norton who is hiding behind a mask for an entire film.

We at Bright Side watched numerous flicks over and over and always get surprised at how masterfully directors manage to conceal and hide even A-list celebrities from viewers.

  • Do you remember the girl with a golden face in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2? How about a golfer in The Great Gatsby? That’s Elizabeth Debicki who played the main role in Christopher Nolan’s new flick Tenet. The director outlined the actress’s skill to transform well, “Elizabeth’s one of these great actors who, when they’re brought to your attention, you realize you’ve seen them in a lot of things but you’ve not realized it’s the same person.”
  • Going back to Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 again — it’s worth mentioning the 1-second appearance of Miley Cyrus in the movie. The pop star voiced over Mainframe — the artificial intellect that ruled the entire planet.
  • No one doubts Meryl Streep’s talent, but the fact that she played 4 different roles in the Angels in America mini-series is something incredible. One of the most unrecognizable roles is the rabbi — where it’s impossible to recognize the actress.
  • Vincent D`Onofrio is also a true master of transformations. Being a true Hollywood handsome guy, he gained about 70 pounds to play a soldier in the Full Metal Jacket movie.
  • It’s even more difficult to recognize Vincent D`Onofrio in the Men in Black movie. He played the role of the farmer Edgar, who was possessed by an alien.
  • Christian Bale regularly does the same things as well. The photo below shows him in the movie Vice together with his co-star Amy Adams. “I had been eating ‘lots of pies’ to look like former VP Dick,” the actor said in one of his interviews.
  • Hardly anyone will be able to recognize Bryan Cranston, the main actor in the Breaking Bad series, in the role of a simple guy who had to substitute for Santa Claus. It’s one of the actor’s first main roles. The flick is called Twas the Night.
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt could be seen in the movie Star Wars: Episode VIII — The Last Jedi — he played an alien creature named Slowen-Lo and it’s hard to recognize him even by his voice, due to his special accent.
  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt also went unnoticed in one more flick called Knives Out and directed by Rian Johnson. The actor didn’t appear in the frame, but we could hear his voice at the very beginning when the sister of the main character is watching a movie where the actor says the phrase, “We have the nanny cam footage.”
  • The girl from social services with a slightly noticeable mustache and disheveled hair in the movie Precious is Mariah Carey.
  • In Ridley Scott’s drama Kingdom of Heaven, one of the main roles was played by Edward Norton, whose presence on the screen could hardly be recognized. All because the actor appeared wearing a mask that hid his face for the entire movie.
  • It’s hard to imagine that the captain of Titanic and Théoden from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King is the same person. Both roles were played by Bernard Hill.
  • Before becoming the Invisible Woman from Fantastic Four, Kate Mara appeared in one other Marvel project. The actress was noticed in a small scene in the second part of Iron Man 2 where she portrayed the marshal who gives a subpoena to Tony Stark.
  • One of the creators of The Avengers, Joe Russo, likes to act in his movies. He has played 4 different roles in different episodes of this series about superheroes and it’s actually quite hard to recognize him in some of them. Here is what he looked like in Captain America: The Winter Soldier.
  • Harry Dean Stanton, known from David Lynch’s and Martin Scorsese’s flicks, as well as The Green Mile and Alien movies, also showed up in The Avengers. Though it was only a 1-second comedic role, it was quite memorable.
  • It wasn’t for nothing that Harry Dean Stanton has been called “scene-stealing.” The actor always got supporting and episodic roles that attracted the viewers’ attention. He looks equally great as the main character in the Paris, Texas movie, as a death row inmate with a screw loose in The Green Mile, and as a man in a black hat in Seven Psychopaths.
  • We all know David Thewlis by his role as Remus Lupin in the Harry Potter franchise. However, it’s hard to recognize him in The Big Lebowski movie. He portrayed the friend of the main character played by Julianne Moore.
  • It’s also quite difficult to recognize Laurence Fishburne in the military drama Apocalypse Now.
  • Steve Carell can also hardly be noticed in the small role of a waiter in Curly Sue. By the way, that’s the first time the actor appeared in a film.
  • The one-eyed pirate named Ragetti in The Pirates of the Caribbean movie series and the seller of newspapers in Christopher Robin is the same person. Mackenzie Crook is the actor who played both of these roles.
  • The star of the series Da Vinci’s Demons and White Lines, Laura Haddock, often plays episodic roles in Marvel movies. For example, she was a fan with an autograph in Captain America: The First Avenger; and the mother of Star-Lord who appears in his memories in Guardians of the Galaxy.

What movie would you like to play an episodic role in?

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