My Movie News

25 Actors I Would Pay to See

Posted on: February 25, 2009

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Given the current economical climate and the prevalence of piracy, paying for movies probably isn’t at the top of everyone’s expenditures.  I know I’ve been quite selective of the movies I watch these days. (Disclaimer: I do not endorse illegal downloading!) But if any of these actors were featured in the film (all else being equal), there would be a greater likelihood I’d watch it. So in keeping with the “Facebook 25…”  (in no particular order – except for the first one!) here are MY 25:

1. Christian Bale

Of course. As if I’m really gonna create such a list and not include my beloved CB! Personal problems aside, his acting chops are tops, which is why he’s at the top of my list. Claims his one personal regret is that he never enrolled in acting school. Really? Here’s a guy who was nominated for an Oscar at the age of 13 for his performance in Empire of the Sun. Surely he has enough ‘natural’ talent to carry him forth. One thing I would like to see him try perhaps, is comedy, since he’s so accustomed to serious characters. That’s a sight to behold – Christian cracking the comedic whip? I’m already giddy!

2. Michael Cera

michael-cera3Speaking of comedians, he’s one of my favorites. I wish I were friends with Michael. He’s the ultimate best guy friend, with his adorable self-consciousness, quick-wittedness, shy guy sensitivity and a most unexpected funny streak. He’s effortlessly talented,  cute and seems very genuine. I love him. I want to hug him. The only downside with Cera, is that he seems to play the same role in virtually every movie I’ve seen him in. Across the board, from Superbad to Juno to Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist, there’s really been little divergence between each character. As appealing as it is, I hope this won’t limit him for future roles.

3. Will Smith

On the streets he’s known as the Fresh Prince, but in Hollywood, he’s the King of the box office. Starring in one blockbuster after the next, Mr. Independence Day definitely deserves his reign. One of the most charming, versatile actors, Will can pretty much do it all. Rumour has it he’s in the running for People magazine’s sexiest man alive. I think he’s the best guy for it, and not because I think he’s THE sexiest man (people say he looks like my brother!) but his overall multi-layered appeal does make him a worthy candidate for the title. I just love Will Smith. Love him!

4. Cillian Murphy

cillian-murphy2I won’t lie. I haven’t seen many of his films and I first discovered him in Batman Begins. And that did it for me. Red Eye came next, and although less impressive, it was still worthwhile to see him in a starring role. You might imagine how happy I was to see his one-liner appearance in the Dark Knight. I’m just wondering why I haven’t seen him since. He has a distinct, attractively ambiguous look about him that would make him suitable for many different characters – hero, villain, boyfriend, even a dolled up trans-gender (as seen in Breakfast on Pluto), he seems totally unafraid to embrace the different aspects of acting, and his chameleon-esque capabilities are what continually add to his appeal. That, and those beautiful, spell-binding eyes.

5. Macaulay Culkin

I would certainly love to see Culkin make a big-screen come back. One of the best child actors of his generation, it’s a shame the personal problems overshadowed his fame.  He’s always struck me as an intelligent thespian, a cut above his child-actor peers. I still think he’s cool. And he was good friends with Michael Jackson!

6. Robert Downey Jr.

Oh RDJ, what can I say? He’s been around for a while but manages to stay so charmingly youthful. Granted, his career experienced a major rejuvenation thanks to Iron Man, but he’s had his share of critical acclaim in films like Charlie Chaplin and one of my personal favorites, Kiss Kiss Bang Bang, forming one half of the best on-screen duo ever (with Val Kilmer). I can’t wait to see him next in The Soloist with Jamie Foxx. I love hearing him talk.

7. Tom Welling

tom-welling1Right after Batman, Superman is my favorite super hero. I LOVE Tom Welling (aka Smallville’s Clark Kent). Easily one of the best looking men I’ve ever seen in my life. Now, I don’t usually like to apply unrealistic standards of perfection to people, but let’s be superficial for a second: Tom Welling is perfect. He’s the ultimate male specimen, if there were ever such a thing. I’m talking the alpha male-protector with the chiseled body and distinguished, masculine features. I’ll admit that I usually don’t go for these types, but if you’re going to embody the legendary man of steel…then well, Tom’s the real deal. Biggest casting mistake? Brandon Routh as Superman. Seriously folks, Superman is an action figure, not a barbie doll!

8. Ryan Gosling

He is, in my opinion, the better of our two famous  Canadian Ryans. (Ryan Reynolds?) He may have swept us away in the Notebook, but I was more fascinated by his portrayal of the socially-inept loner in Lars and the Real Girl. His depiction of a drug-addict school teacher in Half Nelson amassed widespread praise, as well as an Oscar nomination for best actor. I still can’t believe he was THAT guy from Breaker High.

9. Emile Hirsch

Emile HirschI have a weakness for brunettes (okay that was irrelevant). His overall demeanour is endearing and his looks are sublime, kind of reminds me of Leonardo Di Caprio, but mellower. He gave a riveting performance in Sean Penn’s “Into the Wild”, a true story based on Chris McCandless, a university graduate who forsakes the material world to find solace in Alaska. In Alpha Dog he took on the role of real life drug-dealer Jesse James. He most recently appeared in Milk (another Sean Penn association) as a gay rights activist. Next up? A vietnam vet in the movie Woodstock. There’s great potential here and he seems to already be setting himself apart from other pretty faces. Given the right material, Emile will surely emerge with something quite memorable.

10. Ethan Hawke

My favorite professor at McGill once invited Ethan Hawke as a special guest for a class session to discuss his novel Ash Wednesday.  Sadly, I was not enrolled in the course at that time. Legend has it Hawke was eloquent, humble and genuinely engaging. I immediately went on to rent Reality Bites to make up for the lost years. Haven’t seen him since “Before the Devil Knows You’re Dead” (which he was great in) but I look forward to seeing more from him in the near future.

11. Leonardo DiCaprio

It’s safe to say his heart-throb status has peaked, (Romeo and Juliet, Titanic) but his skills seem to be on a continual incline. I never quite boarded the crazy fanatic bandwagon, but I always admired him as an actor, even more so in his later years, especially in the Departed. I consider it his come-back film, an indication of his maturation and dedication to his craft. He’s an intensely talented actor, especially when you consider his earlier, less commercial successes (ie: What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, This Boy’s Life).

12. Jonah Hill

jonah-hill1I’m a big fan of the Judd Apatow crew, and one of the main reasons is Jonah Hill. He was superb in Superbad, and despite a smaller role he was even more memorable in Forgetting Sarah Marshall. I’m not a huge fan of over the top, slap-stick comedy, so I appreciate Jonah’s more subtle but distinguishable brand of humour. He’s the right mixture of crude and cute, and I really hope he doesn’t change (ie: I hope he doesn’t undergo the Jason Biggs weight-loss transformation and become boring). He’s featured next in another Apatow production, “Funny People” starring fellow alum Seth Rogen and Adam Sandler.

13. Katt Williams

If Katt Williams is in a film, I am definitely in. Though he’s usually relegated to peripheral roles he manages to somehow steal the show. Most memorable moment? Money Mike in Friday After Next. And though First Sunday was a total tanker, his minor role provided enough comic relief. Okay, maybe not enough, because I feel he never gets the screen time he deserves and that’s a shame because Kat is a true comedian.  Being one of my favorite stand up guys,  I feel that he can do no wrong.  With the exception of “Internet Dating” (which thankfully I did not pay to see) Katt is always a laugh and a half.

14. Keanu Reeves

keanu reevesOkay, so he’s not exceedingly talented. But there’s something about Keanu that keeps reeling me in. I can overlook the embarassingly robotic line recitals, the lack of emotion and the feeling that he doesn’t seem to really try…because despite all of that, it’s Keanu Reeves. If I were a Hollywood celeb, he’s the man I’d like to have on my arm at premieres and red carpet events. As corny as it sounds, he captivated me in the Lake House (yes, I actually liked this movie) and he’s been on my radar ever since. Maybe they should try casting him in a non-speaking role, where the only requirements would be to smile and stare longingly…at the camera. Yeah, that would be box office gold!

15. Johnny Depp

Here’s a classic actor who’s always full of surprises and rarely disappoints. Who doesn’t like Johnny Depp? He entertains, he intrigues, and sure is visually pleasing. Even though I’m not a huge Depp-devotee, I can’t deny him the Hollywood top dog distinction, at least when it comes to depicting eccentric characters. From the endearingly bizaare Edward Scissorhands, to the comically mischievious Jack Sparrow, Depp is a master of his craft. The question is, when will the Oscars recognize this and reward him accordingly?

16. Elijah Wood

elijah-woodElijah paid his dues way before donning the Hobbit suit. And boy, did I ever love that little hobbit. Now 28, Elijah was already garnering critical praise in his early teens. I don’t know why, but he’s another one I’d like to be friends with in real life…dude seems so nice! I’ll admit his cannabilistic turn in Sin City creeped me out, but that’s just a testament to his talent and his acting range. Although I hope he never does anything like that again. Fortunately for me, he totally made up for it by providing the voice of  Mumble, the main penguin in the Oscar-nominated animated Happy Feet – I mean how cute was that? But yeah, Mr. Wood’s got the goods and I think it’s only a matter of time ’til he goes for gold at the Academies.

17. Brad Pitt

I  was debating whether or not to include Brad in the list, because whenever I mention him, people automatically assume I’m doing so for his looks. No, that’s what Keanu Reeves is for. Brad is different. I imbue a certain amount of respect in the films he does, and he’s done some great work in the past. But Brad has become so ubiquitous, he’s no longer a novelty. He’s Brad Pitt. The quintessential GQ-cover-model-married-to-Angelina-Jolie Brad Pitt. Of course, this doesn’t mean his talents have no merit, for they surely do. He’s been nominated for several awards, most recently an Oscar for his work in The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, which reaffirmed my appreciation for two reasons: his impeccable acting; his eternal good-looks.

18. Denzel Washington

He is fierce. A major force in the film industry, his name alone commands attention and respect. And with multiple award-winning performances, he’s one of Hollywoods’ most renowned actors. This might sound lame, but one of my favorite Denzel films is “Remember the Titans”, even though his Oscar win was for Malcolm X, widely received as one of the best films of the 90’s. I don’t think there’s a cooler name than “Denzel”. I’ll probably name my kid Denzel as well.

19. John Cho

john choAn asian actor who’s not a martial arts master – I love it! I tend to fancy the funny guys and Mr. Cho’s got some serious jokes, most notably with his work in the Harold and Kumar series. Granted, his character was the more sensible of the two, but he’s been known to wild out in other roles, particularly for a small cameo in Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist. That was pretty awesome. Now I know what you’re thinking – how could I include John Cho and not Kal Penn, right? I know, I know…trust me, I debated over this for a while. I mean, they’re both cool and there is no Harold without Kumar, and no doubt Kal Penn is extremely funny as well. Twenty-five is an arbitrary number, but that’s the limit I’ve placed on myself. So, after thinking it through, I’ve settled on the one defining factor that places John Cho on this list: His character in American Pie was the first to use the term MILF. Yup!

20. Jack Black

I like comedians, I think that’s pretty evident by now. And Jack Black is a class act! I know he can be a little over the top sometimes, and even a bit annoying and some might even say over-rated. But he always makes me laugh. I think it’s his facial expressions, those goofy exaggerated smiles and eye-brow furls that are so trademark Jack. I also have to mention that Kung Fu Panda is one of my favorite animated movies of all time.

21. Benicio Del Toro

Ok, full disclosure, the only film of his I’ve seen is Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas. So why am I including him on this list? Other than to make myself look cooler, I hear he’s quite flawless in the movie Che (playing the revolutionary Che Guevara of course) – and I hope to see that very soon. There, a little honesty never hurt nobody!

22. Santiago Cabrera

santiago_cabrera1I loved him in Heroes. Isaac Mendez was my favorite character, even though his ability was among the least desirable (an artist whose heroin-induced paintings foretold the future) but he was so cool, with his Lower Manhattan loft and his artsy detachment. But because Isaac was so mercilessly killed off from the show with no sign of resurgence despite Hiro Nakamura’s time-travelling abilities, I wasn’t sure when Santiago would ever have any small screen presence again. Well, thanks to that little four-hour film called “Che”, he’s gracing the big screen, and I’m certainly cool with that. With his hot Chilean features, how could anyone deny this man a leading role, or even a supporting role. Heck, I’d watch him if he were just an extra.

23. Zachary Quinto

Well, since we’re on the subject of Heroes, I may as well throw in another alum. As much as he freaks me out, I like Sylar, because Zachary Quinto does such a great job of being so terrifying. I’ve never ever seen any Star Trek in my life, but seeing him play the young Spock gives me enough incentive to check out the movie.

24. James Franco

He’s hot, but not too hot. Seductive yet seemingly approachable. He can simultaneously be the guy next door and the man of your dreams. He can play a romantic Tristan or a rebel James Dean. But most importantly he can even be your stoner homie, replete with all the bromance sensitivity (as seen in the crappily amusing “Pineapple Express”). I first took notice of him in Spiderman, where the attraction was immediate. But it was his cameo in Knocked Up that made me see he was more than just another hot guy – he was actually funny. That’s a killer combo!

25. Heath Ledger

I know, having Heath Ledger on this list doesn’t make any sense…there’s no point.  But to put it cheesily: “Movie tickets: 10$…seeing Heath Ledger perform another cinematic feat: priceless”. What can I say? I was teary-eyed when he won for best supporting actor. It was well-deserved. I think Kevin Kline summed it up best at this year’s Oscars:

“Menacing, mercurial, droll and diabolical, Heath Ledger as The Joker in The Dark Knight kept us all on edge, anxious to see what act of appalling mischief he might commit next… With this … performance, as well as with a wide range of other roles to which he put his unique signature, Heath Ledger has left us an original and enduring legacy.”

heath-ledger-joker-copy1

So that does it, there’s my list. Anyone in particular I miss?

Thanks for reading!

10 Responses to "25 Actors I Would Pay to See"

[…] other day I wrote a post about 25 actors I would pay to see. Well, of those 25, there’s rumoured to be some exciting […]

I need to make a few additions: up-and-comer James McAvoy (Penelope, Atonement, Becoming Jane) , Clive Owen, and the talented Morgan Freeman.

Some nice talents there… I actually thought about listing those three as well, particularly Clive Owen! Thanks!

Cool list SINOUN!
If I were you i would do a female list.
If you did one, include Beyonce, Ali Larter, Hayden Panettiere, and Rachel McAdams. From the guys you did a good job listing them.
🙂

Mmmmm.. Elijah Wood… <333

thanks for the comments guys, but check out the new site! this one is pretty much obsolete now 😉

(www.mymovienews.net)

thanks!

Jonathan Rhys Meyers!

elwood,you special in my life,……..i love you!!!!you are the best!!!!!!!!!!!

omg we must be twins, I love about 90% of the actors on your list. Can you send this to my email?

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