Register  |   Log In  |  
Sign up to our weekly newsletter    
Search   
Empire Magazine and iPad
Follow Me on Pinterest YouTube Tumblr
Empire
Trending On Empire
The 301 Greatest Movies Of All Time!
Empire's Guardians Of The Galaxy Cover
Does Star Wars Have A Brain Trust?
Nick Frost:
My Movie Life

The World's End star's pick of the flicks
Subscribe: 6 Issues For £15!
Subscribe today and save 37% off the cover price!

Feature
Top 10 Hidden Performances


What Do You Think?
To submit your thoughts on our Top 10 Hidden Performances, register or login now.

Your Comments
RE: Top 10 Hidden Performances
ELeCTrO
09:58, 28 March 2008
Report This Comment

Wanna more? check this: http://www.sinemaestro.com/index.php?option=com_content &task=view&id=181&Itemid=1 ... Read More
ELeCTrO

About me
8th Goonie
fuzzy
10:40, 02 November 2007
Report This Comment

"Hey, you guys!" Aren't you all forgetting someone - John Matuszak as 'Sloth' in the Goonies. ... Read More
fuzzy

About me
One was missing
holzlondon
16:13, 18 October 2007
Report This Comment

Brilliant choices, but I think that one in particular is missing: Lawrence Makoare for playing the following 3 roles in the Lord of the Rings Trilogy: Lurtz (Leader of the Uruk Hai in Fellowship) Gothmog (Ork General in Return of the King) Witchking of Agmar (Leader of the Nazgul) He should not have been overlooked. ... Read More
holzlondon

About me
The worst hidden performance
His Dudeness
21:17, 17 October 2007
Report This Comment

Wasn't expecting that, well funny! Will never watch Batman Forever again!! ... Read More
His Dudeness

About me
Other goodies...
jimoakley666
18:04, 17 October 2007
Report This Comment

such as Mickey Rourke as Marv in Sin City, Dave Prowse as Darth Vader (Its still an important character and performance) and Alan Cumming, Rebecca Romjin in X-Men2. Im sure theres shit-loads more but i can't remember. Ron Pearlman was bloody ace as Hellboy! I'd have put him much higher. ... Read More
jimoakley666

About me
4 More
smebley
02:17, 16 October 2007
Report This Comment

Mickey Rooney - Breakfast at Tiffany's (a deeply offensive racist part) Michael Caine - Sleuth (1972- but, ugh, what a horrible movie) Eddie Murphy - The Nutty Professor Marlene Dietrich - Witness for the Prosecution Piper Laurie - Twin Peaks Dave Prowse... who cares. Noone would recognize him as an actor. ... Read More
smebley

About me

gavoconnor
17:05, 15 October 2007
Report This Comment

the wayons bros in white chicks...................... ... Read More
gavoconnor

About me
What about Tim Curry in Legend?
miss_purple
10:10, 15 October 2007
Report This Comment

Surely Tim should be in the list, hes fabulous as the devil and only just recognizable by his voice. Take out Pacino and Landau and put in Curry and Sirkis. ... Read More
miss_purple

About me
I can't believe you missed Darth Vader.
Al Smith
01:20, 15 October 2007
Report This Comment

David Prowse's performance isn't brilliant. Often, such as when Vader places his hands on his hips and leans forward whilst barking at Leia on her ship, he looks downright camp. Even the voice is hidden. James Earl Jones' voice can be as booming and commanding as Lucas wants and the audience appreciates, but missing one of the most iconic characters in film history - and getting so close with Chewbacca in the same freakin' franchise - when Prowse is equally almost the definition of a hidden perf... Read More
Al Smith

About me
Nosferatu anyone? Not forgetting loads of others.......
J.L.Wroot
09:17, 14 October 2007
Report This Comment

Yes you've mentioned Willem Dafoe in Shadow of the Vampire - but how can you forget Max Schreck himself? This was before Lon Chaney above as well! I've seen many a horror film and nothing sent shivers down my spine more than Nosferatu. And this was while studying film at university after having laughed my head off at watching The Exorcist when I was 13 (as well as a lot of other supposedly 'scary' films). And on the subject of made-up performances forgotten here - Linda Blair at 12-years-old... Read More
J.L.Wroot

About me

eoclery
19:58, 12 October 2007
Report This Comment

Ok, Peter Mayhew is cool as Chewbacca, but come off it, he shouldn't be on this list. There's no way he's better than John Hurt in The Elephant Man. And, as someone else pointed out, where's Tim Curry in Legend. He's the best devil ever, and the only good thing about that film. ... Read More
eoclery

About me
RE: Hmmm ...
hanswurst
18:25, 12 October 2007
Report This Comment

I do not know wether Voldemort has some CG on him but if he hasn't Ralph Fiennes deserves a spot on this list! ... Read More
hanswurst

About me
Hmmm ...
Hellmistress
14:39, 12 October 2007
Report This Comment

Interesting that everyone is talking about Andy Serkis - who has two stints doing motion capture, not prosthetic makeup - an entirely different medium. READ THE COLUMN TO THE RIGHT, FOLKS!!!   But seriously, it's an interesting list, and I have no idea why John Hurt's astonishing performance as Joseph/John Merrick was ignored. Odd. ... Read More
Hellmistress

About me
Pacino and Landau above Hunter? Really?
Zer0
05:24, 12 October 2007
Report This Comment

Pacino and Landau above Hunter? Really? Pacino was playing a human being, and Landau shouldn't even be on the list. A fine performance, but buried? Hardly. And where was Joel Grey's Chiun from Remo Williams? I keep waitng for Joel Grey through the entire movie and didn't know I'd been watching him until the closing credits. Now THAT"S a hidden performance! Landau?!! Really? If you want to put someone without any really make up on this list it would have to be Hugh Laurie. He fool... Read More
Zer0

About me

smebley
22:29, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

How on earth did you forget Tim Curry in Legend? Granted noone has seen this bomb but he has a full body-builder prosthetic, red skin, hoofs and 4 foot long horns? Also, Charlize Theron's overpraised transformation in Monster. ... Read More
smebley

About me
Shadow of the Vampire
Cooplander
20:32, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

I'm pretty surprised that you missed this nuanced performance. Willem Dafoe is amazing and unrecognizable under layers of makeup as vampire Max Schreck. As well, except for a few exceptions most performances on this list did not garner an academy award nomination, which Dafoe was recognized with. Hopefully this is just a film that has escaped your viewing pleasure, in which case I hope you rectify that problem. ... Read More
Cooplander

About me

ggoblin
19:28, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

Eliminating Jeff Goldblum simply because the Brundlefly transformation was also physically gradual does a great disservice to his performance. His corresponding emotional transformation from man to monster was exactly what made his character so tragically poignant and memorable. A performance which I would say equals John Hurt emotionally transforming John Merrick from sideshow freak to an eloquent man of society. ... Read More
ggoblin

About me
Mask
trebla99
13:34, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

How about Eric Stoltz in Mask? ... Read More
trebla99

About me
RE:
swordsandsandals
11:58, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

Lets see how many more people say Andy Serkis before they care to realise that he is mentioned in the bit where the writer explains his choices, saying it was a CG performance. I'll add mine:   Where the $&%* is Andy Serkis? ... Read More
swordsandsandals

About me

The2ndRing
11:32, 11 October 2007
Report This Comment

Andy Serkis? ... Read More
The2ndRing

About me
Next Page

Owen Williams explains his choices...

This list is about actors actually wearing make-up and body prosthetics: transformative works of art requiring gruelling hours in the make-up chair and even more gruelling hours on set, suffocating and sweating beneath the studio lights. Full animatronic head masks, for our purposes here, do not cut the mustard. If you can lift it off between scenes, it's not a prosthetic make-up. If it's not glued to your face, you don't make the cut. So step aside Kevin Peter Hall in Predator and anyone who ever wore a creation from Jim Henson's Creature Shop.

Likewise, CGI-assisted motion-capture performances cut no ice with us. Leaping around in a leotard against a green screen creates its own challenges and makes for often impressive results, but that's for another list. Doug Jones, therefore, gets in for the Faun rather than the Silver Surfer, and Andy Serkis' knockout turns as Gollum and Kong are left by the roadside. And you must spend the whole film transformed: gradual metamorphoses (Goldblum in The Fly) and partial running-times (Fiennes in The English Patient) are not permitted.

Acting from beneath layers of latex is a particular talent. This list is a tribute to ten of the actors who suffered most impressively for their art, and to the make-up artists who tortured them for money.

What Do
You Think?

Did Owen get it completely wrong, miss an obvious choice or were his choices spot on? Tell us what you think by clicking here.

This top ten first appeared in Empire Magazine Issue 216.


Back | Print This Page | Email This Page | Back To Top

Get 6 issues of Empire for just £15!
Get the world's greatest movie magazine delivered straight to your door! Subscribe today!
Empire's Film Studies 101 Series
Everything you ever wanted to know about filmmaking but were afraid to ask...
The Empire iPad Edition
With exclusive extras, interactive features, trailers and much more! Download now
Home  |  News  |  Blogs  |  Reviews  |  Future Films  |  Features  |  Interviews  |  Images  |  Competitions  |  Forum  |  iPad  |  Podcast  |  Magazine Contact Us  |  Empire FAQ  |  Subscribe To Empire  |  Register
© Bauer Consumer Media Ltd  |  Legal Info  |  Privacy Policy  |  Bauer Entertainment Network
Bauer Consumer Media Ltd (company number 01176085 and registered address 1 Lincoln Court, Lincoln Road, Peterborough, England PE1 2RF)