It’s difficult enough for a talented actor to bring a character to life on screen, but with the rising excitement surrounding upcoming biopics like Tom Holland’s rendition of Fred Astaire, it’s important to note that portraying a familiar face is even more difficult . In fact, many actors have accepted the challenge of playing other people in their profession.
Many of them have made it to award-winning levels, while some have taken on the role in largely comedic ways. Regardless of the intent surrounding the project, or whether it was based on a biopic of that actor, these artists beautifully captured an aspect of the real-life characters they were destined to become.
10 Honorable Mention: Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly – Laurel And Hardy (2018)
Laurel and Hardy were two creative geniuses who will forever be entrenched in the comedy industry. At work on the biopic Stan & Olli, Set to portray both their friendship and their rise to stardom, Steve Coogan and John C. Reilly were cast to fill the massive roles.
The pair bounced off each other effortlessly and embodied the kind of chemistry this comedy duo was so known for. While the script certainly helped tie the emotional threads, it was the charismatic and heartfelt performances of its stars that led to the actors earning BAFTA, Golden Globe and other such nominations.
9 Mike Moh – Bruce Lee (2019)
Tarantino’s hallmarks were everywhere Once upon a time in… Hollywood, including his quirky sense of humor. In a hilarious moment of this film, which seemed to depict the golden age of cinema, Mike Moh played a parody iteration of Bruce Lee.
In the sequence, this fictional Lee tried to pick a fight with Brad Pitt’s Cliff Booth. The performance was over the top and the payoff that Lee didn’t quite maintain his own end of martial arts duals made the scenario even more absurd. It is absolutely one of the highlights of the picture.
8th Jim Carrey Andy Kaufman (1999)
The late Andy Kaufman was a man of many talents. His comedic timing was perfect, he entered the music industry as a singer and he was a highly respected actor. His work speaks for itself, but it had to be a man of the highest caliber to take on such a monumental role.
Jim Carrey’s time is up man in the Moon was enough for audiences to consider it one of his finest films. Carrey morphed into the role and brought the actor many accolades, including a win at the Golden Globes. His infectious energy, his ability to deliver Kaufman’s jokes with such integrity, and his understanding of the man himself all contributed to a brilliant tribute to the entertainer.
7 Michelle Williams – Marilyn Monroe (2011)
Marilyn Monroe is a Hollywood icon. Her silhouette is recognized around the world and her filmography is packed with incredible credits that helped define the film industry. It is a tall order to somehow capture the grace and glamor of such a performer.
Michelle Williams took on the role and exceeded all expectations. She was a seamless fit for Monroe, and her performance became a nuanced character study of such a complex character. My week with Marilyn was rightly celebrated, thanks in large part to Williams, who earned an Oscar and BAFTA nominations for her efforts.
6 Renee Zellweger – Judy Garland (2019)
Judy Garland rose to fame thanks to her work on The Wizard of Oz. While the actress will forever be a vital part of the film industry, her talents reached beyond the studio, bringing the glitz and glamor of her performances to the stage. But Garland led a complicated life and demanded an honest account.
Renée Zellweger was the actress Garland really wanted to portray. The picture, judy is a beautiful piece of film that manages to really capture the ups and downs of such a celebrated career. Zellweger was brilliant and almost unrecognizable, captivating audiences so much in the role that she earned an Oscar!
5 Robert Downey Jr – Charlie Chaplin (1992)
Charlie Chaplin is probably the first star of cinema. His work in silent format was revolutionary. It’s difficult to find a filmmaker today who hasn’t been influenced in some way by his work. He was as much an entertainer as he was a brilliant showman, and someone capable of portraying every facet of humanity’s emotional range.
Robert Downey Jr. seemed like an unlikely choice to play Charlie Chaplin at the time, however Chaplin was such a love letter to the actor, and RDJ’s charm and charisma completely sold the transformation. An Oscar nomination and a BAFTA win greeted Robert Downey Jr. upon completion of the well-received project.
4 Angela Bassett – Tina Turner (1993)
Tina Turner is often referred to as the Queen of Rock n’ Roll, a true pillar of the music industry. It’s not just her voice that shows her talent, however, as Turner has also turned to acting, with roles in franchises such as Last action hero and Mad Max beyond Thunderdome.
Any actress who took on the role had to try to portray a stage star who had also tried her hand on screen. Angela Bassett slipped into the role and it’s arguably the best introduction to her filmography. What does love have to do with it? was an inspired piece of filmmaking, with Bassett rocking the stage with a great example of her work; one that earned her an Oscar nomination!
3 James Franco-Tommy Wiseau (2017)
Tommy Wiseau is a complete legend of the B-movie genre. He may have made one of the worst movies of all time, but it’s a cult classic because of its horrible acting, horrible script, and incredibly poor cinematography. Wiseau is the unpredictable genius behind it The space and he is quite the character in himself.
The Disaster Artist attempted to depict the action behind the scenes in the creation of such a strange production. James Franco played Wiseau himself and completely nailed the performance. He was almost indistinguishable when reproducing some of the most famous scenes The space. His Oscar nomination only proves the point further.
2 Cate Blanchett – Katharine Hepburn (2004)
Katharine Hepburn’s career spanned several decades as the golden age of Hollywood was brought to life with the actress’ electric performances. She had no limits and continues to be celebrated as the icon she truly was. Interestingly, she played a major role in a biopic about Howard Hughes.
the aviator starred Leonardo DiCaprio, but it’s Cate Blanchett as Hepburn that becomes so intriguing. She steals every scene and somehow captures the minute details of Katharine Hepburn that other cast members might have missed. Blanchett ultimately won an Oscar because of that focus and sheer talent.
1 Eddie Murphy-Rudy Ray Moore (2019)
Rudy Ray Moore’s comedy style was absolutely groundbreaking. However, he made a name for himself under a different title: Dolemite. With this character, his stand-up was taken to another level and he began producing incredible films that were both unconventional and genre-bending.
Eddie Murphy effortlessly brought this personality back to the big screen Dolemite is my name who saw Moore’s journey from stage to screen with all its hilarious missteps. It was a feat for Murphy, whose talents should never be questioned. Muphy’s comedic timing is perfect here, and his win at the American Film Awards, among many other nominations and wins, is a testament to his achievement.
NEXT: The 10 Best Gen Z Actors According to Reddit
Every Doctor Strange variant in the Multiverse of Madness, ranked
About the author