Have you ever wondered how your favorite celebrities were first noticed? Most actors at one point in their career have appeared in some pretty bad movies. They usually do so early on in their acting careers and quite often it’s their first acting gig on the big screen. No matter how great of an actor they are, like everyone else on the planet, celebrities have to start somewhere, and like most young people, no matter what your profession is, they tend to take undesirable jobs in hopes of opening up doors to further their careers.
There are many factors involved in making a film, and often enough when a film is bad, the actors get a bad wrap for starring in them. However, there are so many contributing components involved that can add to the failure of a movie besides just poor acting. There is bad direction, bad plot, bad scripts, low budgets, and a list of other factors involved. Actually, sometimes in a poorly made movie, the only decent thing about it is the performances of certain actors. In fact, some of the actors on this list were noticed early on in their careers because of their incredible acting in overall bad movies and have since grown to become the leading actors in Hollywood today.
Here is our list of 10 amazing actors who have appeared in terrible horror movies:
10. Brad Pitt
Brad Pitt‘s first major starring movie role was in the 1989 teenage slasher flick, Cutting Class. The film is your typical ’80s high school horror movie, a killer is on the loose, murdering students and teachers, and like many ’80s horror movies, it’s more comical than scary. Now, 26 years after starring in Cutting Class, Pitt has established himself as one of the most famous Hollywood actors of our generation. Although he didn’t start out with mega hits, through the years he has been in a number of memorable films like Se7en, Fight Club, Troy and Ocean’s 11.
In 1982 Demi Moore starred in the god awful sci-fi horror movie Parasite, a pretty low budget B-movie and was about a scientist who designs a horrific parasite that unfortunately for him, becomes stuck to his stomach. He, along with his female friend Patricia Welles (Demi Moore), embarks on a quest in search of finding ways to destroy the deadly parasite. The actress has starred in over 50 films since her debut in this terrible film and has had roles in a number of notable movies like Ghost, A Few Good Men, The Juror, and G.I. Jane.
8. George Clooney
It seems as though George Clooney and his pal Brad Pitt have something in common besides co-starring in the Ocean’s 11, 12 and 13 movies. They’ve also both appeared in cheesy ’80s comedy slasher flicks, at the start of their acting careers. Clooney starred in the 1987 film Return to Horror High about a crazed serial killer on the loose who is hunting down a film crew that are busy shooting a movie in an abandoned school. Now, years later, Clooney is an Academy Award winning actor who has been in a number of blockbusters like Gravity, Up In the Air, Solaris and The Perfect Storm.
7. Matthew McConaughey
The 1994 half-sequel/remake of the original cult classic film was probably the worst movie of the Texas Chainsaw Massacre franchise. Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation had a surprisingly low budget and really only became somewhat popular after one of the stars of the film, Matthew McConaughey, had gained some notoriety in other films he starred in a few years later. Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation also starred a very young Rene Zellweger. Over the years, McConaughey has gone from starring in romantic comedies to remarkable Oscar worthy films like Dallas Buyers Club, Interstellar, Lincoln Lawyer and A Time To Kill.
6. Henry Fonda
Henry Fonda is one of the most memorable actors to ever grace the silver screen and he has starred in a number of brilliantly made movies and TV shows over the course of almost 60 years, including popular movies like The Grapes of Wrath, 12 Angry Men and Once Upon a Time in the West. Although Fonda passed away 33 years ago, his legacy still lives on through his eloquent acting and charm. However, he did unfortunately star in the 1977 low-budget killer sea monster film Tentacles, a movie about an over-sized, mutated octopus taking over the California shore. The only good thing about the film was his on-screen performance.
5. Ben Kingsley
It’s hard to imagine a talented, award winning actor like Sir Ben Kingsley ever acting in a movie as bad as the 2005 film BloodRayne, especially considering all of the amazing roles he has perfected throughout his acting career in movies like Gandhi, Schindler’s List, and Shutter Island, just to name a few. But he did in fact star in BloodRayne, which was about a half-vampire, half-human trying to get revenge on her father, the vampire king played by Kingsley. One positive thing about his role in BloodRayne was that he was nominated for an award, kind of. Kingsley won a Razzie Award for the Worst Supporting Actor in a film.
4. Leonardo DiCaprio
Before DiCaprio became the Oscar nominated, world famous star he is today, acting in credible films like J. Edgar, Blood Diamond and The Aviator, he started out like many other actors do – acting in low-budget films with the hopes of eventually getting noticed. In 1991 he had his first movie role in the cheesy horror film Critters 3, which was about small, somewhat cute alien monsters attacking L.A. Luckily enough, he was noticed and the rest is history. DiCaprio once commented on his early acting days saying, “I admit I’ve done a few lousy roles in the beginning of my career, like my role in Critters 3, but at that age, you’ll do anything for attention.”
3. Michael Caine
Two-time Oscar winning actor, Michael Caine has been acting for over 60 years and has been in 150-plus films, some good and some bad. But no matter what film he’s been in, Caine always tends to grace the big screen with finesse, even in the 1987 fourth installment of the Jaws franchise called Jaws: The Revenge. His acting was the only good thing about the film as it was full of inconsistencies and was quite honestly a waste of time to watch. Years later, Caine spoke about the film and said, “I have never seen it, but by all accounts it is terrible. However, I have seen the house that it built, and it is terrific.”
2. Viggo Mortensen
Mortensen hasn’t been in as many films as most of the actors on this list, but in the movies he has appeared in his acting is compelling and charming and seems to stand out above the rest. He’s probably best known for his role as Aragorn in Peter Jackson‘s, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, and Mortensen has since appeared in critically acclaimed movies like Eastern Promises and A History of Violence. However, in the beginning of his acting days, he did star in the awful 1990 horror flick Leatherface: Texas Chainsaw Massacre 3 as Tex, a crazy cannibal hillbilly.
1. Tom Hanks
Tom Hanks has proven himself an incredible actor in a number of memorable films like Forrest Gump, Cast Away, and Apollo 13, to name just a few brilliant examples. But like everybody, you have to start somewhere, and Hanks’ first role ever was in the 1980 slasher horror film He Knows You’re Alone. Hanks played a psychologist named Elliot, and his character was originally written to be killed off. But that soon changed when the directors saw how charismatic Hanks was, and as a result of his acting, his death seen was cut out.