Hollywood has long had, let’s just say, a fetish for strippers and so, time after time, it has cast actresses (and sometimes actors too) in this role involving complete body confidence in front of the camera, to say the least.
From movies like Showgirls and Striptease that may have been box office duds but have a cult following years later, the selling point for these movies were the hot actresses looking to play even hotter roles as strippers. And before you run to check these movies out, make sure you do so at home, because these actresses did stuff that’s 100% NSFW!
However, if you too are a fan of strip shows and dances, be it in movies or elsewhere, you have to thank Carol Doda for it. On June 19, 1964, Carol Doda was a club dancer for The Condor Club in San Francisco and was gifted a Rudi Gernreich “monokini,” a topless swimsuit by the club’s publicist, “Big” Davy Rosenberg. That night, instead of the usual Go-Go dance that Carol performed, she wore the monokini and gave the first topless performance at the club. Needless to say, the performance and Carol were a big hit and so the topless tradition of strip dances was born and proliferated like bunnies. Carol Doda remained a big hit, considering she artificially enhanced her breasts from a size 36 to size 44 and everybody began calling them “the new Twin Peaks of San Francisco” or the “twin 44s”!
Now that you know your history of striptease, here go some hot female celebs who have played stripper roles rather intensely, sometimes going the half Monty, if not the full!
15. Lindsay Lohan In I Know Who Killed Me
So the 2007 flick was a box office dud, and not many would remember this movie at all. In fact, some people compared it to Barb Wire and found the Lohan flick rather lacking, on all counts! Critics called it the worst film of the 2000s and panned it for being a “thriller, minus the thrills.”
And yet Lindsay Lohan’s sexy strip dance, for which she took pole dancing lessons beforehand, did win her private accolades, if not public ones. The movie centers around good girl and student Aubrey Fleming who is seemingly captured and tortured by your friendly neighborhood serial killer. She is found later, injured, but after being hospitalized, claims that she is an out of luck strip dancer named Dakota Moss.
Be it Aubrey or Dakota, Lindsey looks young in this movie and had a body to die for as she strips down to a sheer bra with pasties and a bikini bottom as she performs rather lacklusterly to a song that seems well-suited for a dark movie like this one.
14. Halle Berry In Frankie & Alice
Long before Monster’s Ball and her Oscar win, Halle Berry played a sexy but psychologically damaged go-go dancer in the movie Frankie & Alice. The movie itself failed to get any glowing reviews from critics and despite receiving accolades for her performance, Halle wasn’t able to carry the movie on her slim and naked shoulders.
Halle, or Frankie, is less of a stripper and more of a go-go dancer, which means the top and the bottoms of her outfits stay on, though the dances are as visually stimulating as men would hope them to be. Halle looks hot, with her curly mop and her 70s style gold outfits, complete with gold chains and earrings, and those gyrating moves. While her character is shown to have a dissociative identity, she has no problems keeping all those eyes on her, while moving to the beat in a gilded cage.
13. Pamela Anderson In Barb Wire
Technically, Barb Wire (and yes, that is the titular character that Pam is playing in the movie) is not a stripper – she owns a nightclub, and also doubles up as a mercenary and bounty hunter to make ends meet. That said, she does strip – dressed in leather (wet leather at that) with her ample chest all over the place!
While the movie itself has promise considering it was adapted from the classic cinematic hit Casablanca, Pamela Anderson failed to deliver her dialogue with any wit or timing, though the same cannot be said of her amply displayed assets. This movie goes on to prove, along with so many others, that watching a hot actress strip down to her basics is not enough to “tease” the audience into watching or liking the movie – the actress needs to know how to act, as do the other actors. Barb Wire failed to impress, though Pam might have pleased!
12. Rebecca Romijin In Femme Fatale
Perhaps best known for playing the male-to-female trans character Alexis Meade on Ugly Betty, Rebecca Romijin sizzled in Brian De Palma’s erotic thriller Femme Fatale. Yet again, Rebecca is not playing a stripper in the movie – in fact, she has a dual role of Laure, a thief, and Lily, a French woman.
There is a scene in the movie, though, where Rebecca decided to go all out and do a sexy striptease – and get into the character she does! In typical Brian De Palma style, you only get peekaboo images of her, as most of the striptease is done with only her back in the frame.
That said, Rebecca managed to ooze raw sexuality in the role and managed to act decently too. While the movie got mixed reviews, it grew into a cult film with a solid fan following. A young Antonio Banderas works as good eye candy for the ladies in this movie, making it an interesting watch.
11. Kristen Stewart In Welcome To The Rileys
It’s hard to imagine Kristen Stewart playing a foul-mouthed stripper who turns tricks for cash – but that’s what she plays in the movie Welcome To The Rileys. Mallory (Kristen’s character) claims to be 22 but looks about 16 in the movie. She lost her mother in a car crash, though she doesn’t remember it, and comes across wounded soul Doug Riley, who lost his 15-year-old daughter in a car crash. He is looking for an escape from his depressed, morbid wife, Lois (played by Melissa Leo) and offers to pay Mallory $100 a day if he could just stay at her place.
The dialogues are rough around the edges, but meant to be, and Kristen plays the role with a quiet desperation that gives credence to her acting. Obviously, her young body looks hot in the role and at times has almost a Catholic schoolgirl appeal. The movie is watchable for more than just Kristen’s strip show, though.
10. Natalie Portman In Closer
For years now, we’ve been seeing Natalie Portman in carefully cultivated roles that have barely any risqué elements in them (except maybe Black Swan), and proved that she’s a great actress beyond doubt, but in Closer, Natalie shines, with or without her clothes on.
She plays Alice, an American stripper out to make a new life for herself in London. There she encounters Dan (Jude Law), who’s a struggling British author, and they both embark on an affair. Some time later, Dan meets Anna (Julia Roberts) and falls for her. Anna is involved with Larry (Clive Owen). And in a script woven intricately with lies and love, they all end up having affairs with the other’s partner. Nutty, but beautiful.
Later, it is shown that Natalie’s name was never Alice to begin with. When she finally dumps Dan and is moving back to the States, her name is shown to be Jane Jones. Her strip dance in the movie is bold and while there is no excessive nudity, her grace shines through.
9. Jessica Alba In Sin City
Sin City is an America neo-noir film based on Frak Miller’s graphic novel. The always hot Jessica Alba nearly sets the screen on fire with her performance as an exotic dancer. In a skimpy cowgirl outfit, she gyrates to music while whipping a lasso over her head, or making love to the stage floor, or whipping a pistol around in a corset that could only be called sinful!
The outfits, the body, and the way she moves – Jessica Alba proves that she has it all. Shot with special visual effects, the movie itself was a treat to watch and Jessica projected a 19-year-old’s sexy innocence with poise. She revisits the role in Sin City 2: A Dame to Kill For and her dance moves show that she’s only gotten better with time, as does fine wine! However, while the first movie was a hit, the second was a commercial failure.
8. Elizabeth Berkley In Showgirls
Elizabeth Berkley first found fame playing good girl Jessie Spano in the TV series Saved by the Bell which ran from 1989 to 1993. Desperate to break out of this mold, she signed on to play stripper and exotic dancer Nomi Malone in the Paul Verhoeven box office dud, Showgirls.
Her dances, especially her topless dances, are a sight to behold, and while the movie did not do well upon its release in 1995, it is now regarded as a cult film and revered for more than just its nudity.
Nomi Malone is a young drifter who arrives in Vegas to make it big as an exotic dancer but starts stripping in a seedy establishment. She meets Cristal, a topless showgirl who works in a big casino but is only ridiculed by her. Nomi vows to make it big and the movie is basically a story of how she achieves her dreams – interspersed by plenty of seductive dances.
7. Jennifer Aniston In We’re the Millers
So Jennifer Aniston plays a cool and quirky stripper named Rose whose drug dealing neighbor Jason Sudeikis convinces her to pose as his wife, along with two other “kids” he hires so that they can go to Mexico as a pretend family, and pick up a shipment of drugs.
What most dudes get stuck on is how hot Jen manages to look as a stripper, be it in her trademark blonde hair or a platinum wig. Her body is awesomely toned and Jen manages to carry off this role superbly with her trademark droll and wit. Jennifer Aniston also tones down that hotness with her comic timing, and despite playing a rather risqué role, comes off as kinda wholesome, which is not an act everybody can pull off the way she does. Her gyrations, pelvic thrusts, and hip smacks somehow look natural and not vulgar at all – and tells the world that age be darned, Jen is still as hot as they come!
6. Salma Hayek In From Dusk Till Dawn
Salma Hayek is no stranger to stripper roles. She played one in 1999’s Dogma and then in the 2011 French movie Americano. That said, here we’ll be talking about her jaw-dropping role in the 1996 movie From Dusk Till Dawn. Of course, with a name like Santanico Pandemonium (really), it was only natural that she later turned out to be a vampire too, who first mesmerizes Quentin Tarantino with her dance and then changes him into a vampire with her bite!
This fun movie was written by Tarantino and also starred George Clooney and Harvey Keitel among others. Salma’s “python dance” has got to be one of the hottest moments in Hollywood history, as does her act of pouring wine down her leg and making Tarantino sip it from her foot. With a hot body like that and moves that should be outlawed, Salma Hayek has got to be the sexiest stripper in this list.
5. Jessica Biel In Powder Blue
Jessica Biel’s hotness is sort of legendary. Her role in Powder Blue, where she plays a stripper and mother to a young son who’s in a coma, didn’t go down that well with audiences who actually wanted to watch a movie with a good storyline and acting.
Her melodramatic mother performance has been dubbed “both ear-splittingly loud and tone deaf,” though her moves certainly got the audience talking. The movie was also notably Patrick Swayze’s last movie, where he plays the sleazy Velvet Larry, owner of the club where Jessica Biel’s character Rose-Johnny (don’t ask us why!) dances. Her dance is effortless, though the hot wax dripping on her naked body tends to get a little OTT. Hard not to be in awe by her performance simply because the girl is in phenomenal shape and could give every other stripping starlet a major confidence blow.
4. Jamie Lee Curtis In True Lies
Before True Lies and its rather iconic strip scene (that caught every viewer by surprise), Jamie Lee Curtis was the Hollywood Scream Queen, perhaps a legacy left to her by her Psycho star mother, Janet Leigh.
While plenty of other roles in movies like Trading Places and A Fish Called Wanda turned her image around, it was her strip show in the Arnold Schwarzenegger-starring True Lies that made all the dudes sit up and take notice. She plays Helen Tasker, wife to Harry Tasker, who’s shown to be a run-of-the-mill computer salesman but is actually an operative for a covert counter-terrorism agency. Helen is desperately seeking adventure and the strip scene is part of an elaborate scam set up by Harry to bring some excitement to his wife. The plan backfires and the duo are kidnapped by the villains, but in Hollywood, all’s well that ends well. In the end, she too is recruited as an agent.
3. Jennifer Beals In Flashdance
Flashdance opened in 1983 to rather dismal numbers but surprisingly went on to become the third highest grosser of that year – and credit will have to be given to Jennifer Beals, who is shown to be an aspiring dancer and steel mill worker during the day, but a burlesque performer at night.
Jennifer Beals is a powerhouse performer onstage, and while she strips and even drenches herself for ultimate audience appeal. Her dance moves are those of a dancer, rather than just another run-of-the-mill stripper.
This is the film that probably jumpstarted many a girl’s interest in dancing. Everyone wanted to be this girl who danced like a dream, had all eyes on her when she stripped, and had a movie magic romance!
2. Daryl Hannah In Dancing At The Blue Iguana
We all remember Daryl Hannah as the mermaid in Splash or the merciless killer Elle Driver in Kill Bill, but one of Daryl’s unforgettable roles was also that of Angel, a stripper, in the movie Dancing at the Blue Iguana. In the movie, Angel wants a child but her lifestyle does not allow it.
The movie basically delves into the real struggles of the women who work in strip clubs – how they are unable to find “real” boyfriends, how they are unable to live the lives they want, and how desperate they are to find love behind all the glitzy lights of the club. Along with a sensuously childlike Daryl, the film also stars Sandra Oh (from Grey’s Anatomy) as one of the strippers and adds to the general hot level of the movie. The movie itself did not fare particularly well at the box office and did not win any rave reviews either.
1. Demi Moore In Striptease
No actress has ever put as much heart, body, and soul into playing a stripper the way Demi Moore did when she played Erin in the 1994 box office dud Striptease. Of course, she was paid a staggering $12.5 million for the role, so we understand why she put so much into trying to be a believable stripper.
Erin is an ex-secretary who was fired from the FBI because of her criminal husband. She then lost custody of her daughter and to earn enough money to get her daughter back (played by her real daughter, Rumer Willis), she moonlights as a stripper. As a stripper, she attracts the attention of a corrupt politician who wants her and then there’s this whole twisty plot of her trying to get that politician arrested for the murders he committed and get her daughter back as well.
I doubt anybody who has ever watched this movie, or plans to watch it in the future, does it for the storyline. This movie is basically an ode to Demi’s beautiful body.