Crime Movies – Actors You Don’t Expect to Play the ‘Bad’ Guy

Most people would never expect to see certain actors playing the villain in a crime movie. In fact, some of these stars are known for their good-guy roles in other films. However, when it comes to crime flicks, they can really bring on the evil! Here is a list of some unexpected actors who have played bad guys in crime movies.

Heath LedgerMovie poster of The Dark Knight

First on the list is the iconic Joker who starred in one of the best Batman movies: The Dark Knight Rises. Heath Ledger is known for his leading and supporting roles in his previous movies, and he’s idolized by millions of fans around the world because of this. However, when it came time to play Batman’s arch-nemesis, Ledger didn’t disappoint at all! The Dark Knight Rises is still considered one of the best superhero movies ever made today, with many critics praising its director Christopher Nolan as well as star Christian Bale (who also plays Bruce Wayne, aka Batman). Ledger did an exceptional job of playing Joker and setting high standards for future actors who would play the role later on.

Tom HanksThe Ladykiller movie poster

A lot of us know Tom Hanks for his inspirational and comedic films. He was popularized as Forrest Gump, Viktor Narvoski, Sully, as well as Woody from the Toy Story movie series. All of these leading roles made Tom Hanks the reputable actor that he is today. But little do we know that Hanks also played the villain in one movie called “The Ladykillers” in 2004. In this movie, Hanks played Professor Goldthwait Higginson Dorr, who leads a group of criminals in a heist. While the role wasn’t as big as his other leading roles, it was still something different for Tom Hanks to try out, and fans were definitely surprised by his performance.

Denzel Washington

Movie poster of Training Day

When it comes to action films, one of the most respectable and talented Hollywood actors that comes to mind is Denzel Washington. Denzel starred in various films, wherein he usually plays the hero. However, this selfless and heroic casting came to an end in 2002, wherein was Detective Alonzo Harris in the movie Training Day. In this crime flick, Denzel plays a crooked LAPD officer who is ruthless and will do whatever it takes to get the job done – even if that means killing people. This performance led Washington to win an Oscar for Best Actor, and he definitely deserved it!

Nicolas CageMovie poster of The Rock

Known for his over-the-top acting and passionate roles, Nicolas Cage is definitely a unique actor in Hollywood. While he’s starred in various genres of movies, we all know that Cage can really get into character when it comes to playing the bad guy. One such movie is “The Rock,” which was released in 1996. In this action flick, Cage plays an FBI chemical weapons specialist named Stanley Goodspeed, who is forced to team up with a convict (played by Sean Connery) in order to stop a group of rogue marines from launching a chemical weapon on San Francisco. Cage did an amazing job at playing the villain and showed us all that he’s not just some pretty face in Hollywood.

Leonardo DiCaprioDjango Unchained movie poster

Who would have thought that one of Hollywood’s most prominent leading actors would play the bad guy in one of his films? Leonardo DiCaprio is notable for his leading roles in Titanic, Inception, and The Revenant. However, in the movie Django Unchained (2012), DiCaprio played Calvin Candie – a ruthless plantation owner who enjoys seeing people fight to the death for his amusement. This role was definitely different from all of his other leading roles, and it was great to see him experiment with something new.

Robin WilliamsOne Hour Photo movie poster

If you are a fan of comedies, fantasies, and films to watch with the whole family, Robin Williams is sure to come to mind. He starred in Jumanji, Flubber, Jack, and many other family movies. Interestingly, Robin’s exceptional acting skills are not only for leading roles; he also played the villain in the movie One Hour Photo. In this psychological thriller, Williams plays a disturbed photo technician who develops an unhealthy obsession with one of his customers. This role was definitely dark and sinister when compared to most of Robin’s other roles, and it showed us that he is not just a funny guy – he can also play some pretty intense characters.

Steve CarellMovie poster of Foxcatcher

Just like Robin Williams, Steve Carell is famous for his comedy films such as The 40-Year-Old Virgin, Anchorman, and The Office. However, in the movie Foxcatcher, Carell played John Du Pont – a multimillionaire who sponsors an Olympic wrestling team. While Du Pont is initially seen as a generous and helpful individual, it’s later revealed that he has some dark secrets which he keeps hidden. This role wasn’t as big as some of Carell’s other films, but it showed us that this comedian could also play a sinister character when needed.

Johnny DeppMovie poster of Fantastic Beasts

If you’re a fan of Johnny Depp, you’ll probably be familiar with his films. He is known to play a lot of leading and supporting roles, including Captain Jack Sparrow, Mad Hatter, Willy Wonka, Frank Tupelo, and many more. In addition, Johnny Depp manages to excel in his character, making him a fan favorite. Interestingly, Johnny Depp is also known to play the bad guy in some of his films. One such film is “Fantastic Beasts,” in which he plays Gellert Grindelwald – a dark wizard who is considered to be one of the most dangerous and powerful wizards in history. This role was definitely different from all of his other roles, and it showed us that Depp is not just a pretty face.

Final Thoughts

Different actors are known for playing the good guy, but they can also be excellent at portraying a villain. Nicolas Cage, Leonardo DiCaprio, Robin Williams, Steve Carell, and Johnny Depp have all proven that they’re not just pretty faces in Hollywood – they can play some really sinister characters with ease. So the next time you’re planning to watch a movie, you can try watching these films to see some of your favorite actors playing the bad guy.