Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Top 20 Best Cameos In Horror History!

There's nothing quite like a good cameo to spice up a movie and horror movies have had some pretty damn good ones over the years. This list of the best of the best is very special because it's one that was put together by not just myself, but by several of my readers as well. I asked for reader submissions of the best horror cameos of all time on the Freddy In Space Facebook page a couple days ago and it was from those submissions that this list is mostly derived. So thank you so much to everyone who participated in that discussion. This list would not be possible without you guys.

Without further delay, here is the be all end all listing of the top 20 best horror movie cameos of all time!

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20. Patrick Ewing - The Exorcist 3

In a movie full of weird shit, including the camera quickly passing by Larry King in a restaurant, playing himself - what the fuck was that?! - basketball legend Patrick Ewing as the angel of death, wings and all, is without question the weirdest thing in the movie and bar none the strangest cameo of all time. I'd love to know the story behind this one...

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19. George Romero - The Silence of the Lambs

This is one of those blink and you miss it cameos and i'd bet that most people who have seen Silence of the Lambs didn't even catch it - I certaintly didn't until it was pointed out to me. When Lecter is locked in that barred cell in the middle of the room and he goes to hand Clarice her case files back, Romero pops up to grab her and pull her out of harms way, and gives Hannibal one hell of a hilarious look in the process. Next time you watch this one with some buddies, be sure to point it out to them!

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18. David Cronenberg - Jason X

The second that Cronenberg walks into frame at the beginning of Jason X a woman comes up to him and asks the question, "What are you doing here?", which is the same question most of us probably asked ourselves at that moment. It's a totally out of left field cameo that ends with the awesomeness of seeing one of the best directors of all time get brutally killed by Jason Voorhees - what more can ya ask for?

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17. Paul A. Partain, Marilyn Burns and John Dugan - Texas Chainsaw Massacre : The Next Generation

I don't think anyone can deny that this movie is pure crap, the stars included, but it does have one pretty cool moment at the end that calls back to the original Chainsaw. Renee Zellweger is at the hospital and as a man is talking to her, another man wheels a woman on a gurney past them. The man talking to Zellweger is John Dugan, 'Grandpa' from the original, the man pushing the gurney is Paul Partain, Franklin from the original, and the woman on the gurney is Marilyn Burns, Sally from the original. Adding even more to the moment, Dugan tells Zellweger, "You know, this isn't the first time something like this has happened." It's a really quick little moment but it's almost too much awesomness to handle nonetheless and it ends a really awful movie on a good note.

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16. Ruggero Deodato - Hostel : Part 2

Deodato is the director of one of Eli Roth's favorite films of all time ; Cannibal Holocaust. In Hostel : Part 2, he shows up as a cannibal, feasting on an Elite Hunting victim. Can you say badass?

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15. Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright - Land of the Dead

After seeing Shaun of the Dead, George Romero brought in its star and director to live out their dreams by playing the undead in his latest zombie flick, thus allowing us to get a glimpse at what Shaun would've ended up looking like had he been bitten.

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14. Fran Drescher, James Caan, Chris Kattan and Rebecca Gayheart - Santa's Slay

A jacked up pro wrestler, playing a demonic version of Santa Claus, bursts through a chimney and slaughters some of the most annoying actors of our time - now that's how you start a fuckin' movie!

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13. John Larroquette - The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

Larroquette did the haunting voiceover that kicked off the original Chainsaw and in a brilliant move, he was brought in to do the same in the remake. The moment I heard his voice I knew I was in for a good remake, one that was clearly made by people who knew what they were doing. Starting the movie off this way put me right back into the mindset of the original, and that's the smartest thing the filmmakers could've done.

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12. Robert Englund - Hatchet

When a movie opens with a big name genre actor getting ripped in two within minutes of him appearing on screen, you know you're in store for a pretty kickass balls to the wall flick. The only thing that would've made this cameo even more badass is if Englund and Kane Hodder shared the screen, if only for a brief moment.

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11. Takashi Miike - Hostel

"You could spend all your money in there". Something about Takashi Miike coming out of the Elite Hunting building, having just killed someone, just seems so damn fitting doesn't it? Coolest of all, Miike is credited as playing himself in the flick that Roth considers his own 'Miike movie'.

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10. Emma Bell - Hatchet 2

Hatchet 2 is absolutely full of little winks and nods to other genre films but the coolest of all is a call back to Adam Green's previous film, Frozen (of which the above screen grab is from). Bell, reprising her role from Frozen, is briefly shown on a TV screen at Reverend Zombie's shop talking on a news show about how she will never go skiing again. It's little touches like this that make me smile.

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9. Hulk Hogan - Gremlins 2

In his fourth wall breaking cameo as a pissed off theatre goer, wrestling legend Hulk Hogan cuts a serious promo like only The Hulkster can, even going so far as to poke fun at his moniker by calling the Gremlins "Gremsters". Needless to say, it's fucking awesome.

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8. Johnny Depp - Freddy's Dead : The Final Nightmare

As a total testament to how cool of a dude Johnny Depp is, he returns to the franchise that gave him his first role, as a 'this is your brain on drugs' egg demonstration dude on the television who Freddy smacks in the face with a frying pain, during one character's dream sequence. Keep in mind that this was after Depp's big success on 21 Jump Street. On an interesting note, Depp is credited under the name Oprah Noodlemantra.

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7. Janet Leigh - Halloween H20

Sharing the screen with her real life daughter, Jamie Lee Curtis, Psycho star Janet Leigh briefly pops up in this lackluster sequel, driving the very car that she drove in Psycho. As if that wasn't cool enough, a brief snippet of the famous Psycho theme song is heard as Leigh is walking back to her car towards the end of the scene.

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6. Eli Roth - 2001 Maniacs

Reprising his hilarious role as Justin AKA Grim from his directorial debut, Cabin Fever, Eli Roth briefly appears in buddy Tim Sullivan's debut in a scene that comes directly prior to the events of Cabin Fever (Roth tells a group of kids that he's headed into the woods, "cabins and shit"), even though it was made after that movie, and he's got Dr. Mambo by his side. If you ever wondered where Justin got the term 'faced' from, wonder no more!

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5. Alice Cooper - Freddy's Dead : The Final Nightmare

Who better to play Freddy's foster father than Alice Cooper?! Again, it just seems so right. A couple people on the Facebook put votes in for Cooper's cameo in Prince of Darkness, but I went with this one being that i've still yet to see that movie.

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4. Wes Craven - Scream

Showing that he's not above poking fun at himself and his most famous character, Wes Craven, channeling David Crosby, briefly pops up as a school janitor named Fred in Scream, wearing the famous red and green striped sweater as well as Freddy's trademark hat. This one always cracks me up.

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3. Freddy Krueger - Jason Goes To Hell

A terrible terrible movie ends on an incredibly awesome note when Freddy's glove reaches up from the ground and pulls Jason's mask down into the bowels of hell, a decade prior to the two characters finally doing battle on the big screen. The only fault in this one is that the evil laugh of Freddy is clearly not done by Robert Englund. Also keep an eye out for Evil Dead's Necronomicon in the not so Final Friday!

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2. Richard Dreyfuss - Piranha 3D

Opening up a movie with Richard Dreyfuss getting eaten by a shitload of piranha is cool enough. When you get him to reprise his role as Matt Hooper from Jaws, it becomes one of the greatest cameos of all time. I was giddy as a schoolgirl when I saw this scene play out in the theatre.

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1. Bill Murray - Zombieland

In what I consider the greatest cameo in cinema history, the super cool BM plays himself, disguised as a zombie in an effort to blend in with the majority of the population. It's one of the funniest scenes of all time and there's nothing quite like seeing a stoned Bill Murray do his best Peter Venkman alongside his Kingpin co-star Woody Harrelson, before being mistaken for a zombie and getting shot dead. Bill's only regret, while on his deathbed, shortly before letting out the longest release of 'death breath' ever heard? "Garfield maybe". It just doesn't get any better than this.

Honorable Mentions : Dario Argento as a creepy paramedic in Innocent Blood, Felissa Rose as the returning Angela Baker in Return To Sleepaway Camp, Jay and Silent Bob as themselves in Scream 3, Eli Roth as a wet t-shirt host in Piranha 3D, Stephen King as an asshole in Maximum Overdrive, Ozzy Osbourne as a anti rock music talk show guest in Trick or Treat, Tom Savini as Machete Zombie in Land of the Dead, Roseanne in Freddy's Dead : The Final Nightmare, and Ken Foree and Scott Reiniger in Dawn of the Dead (2004).

17 comments:

Bryce Wilson said...

Great list.

Who did the cameo at the end of Jennifer's Body again? I somehow missed that part.

Johnny said...

Shit, I totally forgot that one. Lance motherfuckin' Henriksen! If I remembered, that'd definitely be on the list. That put such a smile on my face when I saw it in the theatre.

The Vault Master said...

Totally agree with NUMBER ONE! Bill Murray's cameo in "Zombieland" was hysterical! Great list man!

stonerphonic said...

what a fuckin awesome list man. the Miike cameo in Roth's Hostel blew me away when my GF 1st pointed it out to me.

Wet dream come true. For Roth AND me!!!

MJ said...

Dammit, I forgot to suggest anyhting for this!

On a side note, Chris Isaak pops up in The Silence Of The Lambs, too as a SWAT officer. That really made me do adouble-take when i first noticed it.

gord said...

Great article.

Although not a horror film, Greg Nicotero's cameo in Inglourious Basterds was awesome as well.

I also love seeing him or Savini pop into their films for the most badass effect scene.

Emily said...

Grilled cheezus christ, how did I never know about that Romero cameo?

Jason said...

Great list! I want to see Piranha 3D just for that cameo, well and all the boobs. I loved Zelda Rubenstein's cameo in "Behind the Mask".

Wings said...

Awesome post, dude! Great list, and some I didn't know about! Love when filmmakers do little nods like this, just great stuff.

Daph said...

Oh I SO enjoyed reading your list/post. Thank you!! I can watch my Horror movies again and go, "How did I ever miss that!?!?"

Planet of Terror said...

Yes, I was just made aware of that Romero cameo as well. Holy beejesus! Granted he did have more hair on his heard :)

Amazing list. I thought Gene Simmons' cameo in Trick or Treat was pretty decent as well.

ZOMBIE HAYES said...

Awesome list! Thanks!!

the jaded viewer said...

I can't believe thats #33 Patrick Ewing..too awesome.

Liz said...

I love the facial expression of Romero in SOTL. I had no clue he was in there. I have to watch the movie and see it for myself soon. :D

AllHallowSteve said...

Wow GREAT post!
And you can count me as one of the people who has seen Silence of the Lambs a million times and just NOW (thanks to YOU) realized that that's George Romero hauling Clarice away.
Bravo sir!

Jonny Metro said...

Great post, as always, sir! I even chose it as one of the best of October. Here's a LINK, if you want to check it out.

--J/Metro

Johnny said...

Thanks so much Jonny! =)