Movie villains. We love to hate them and hate to love them. Let’s take a look into some of the actors who played these iconic bad guys (and girls) and see what they are up to now.
Ralph Fiennes (Then)
Ah yes, Lord Voldemort, one of the greatest movie villains of the last twenty years. Those who grew up either reading the Harry Potter books or watching the films know what a truly frightening antagonist he is. Ralph Fiennes did a terrific job playing the role of He Who Must Not Be Named and really captured the essence of this dark lord. Although it is a bit tricky to actually tell that it is Ralph Fiennes behind the snake-like mask, the resemblance is close enough to perfectly pull off the part. It is arguable that this is one of Fiennes’ biggest and best-acting roles to date.
Ralph Fiennes (Now)
Looking better with a beard, since his renown role as Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter franchise, it seems that Ralph Fiennes has taken a step back from his evil ways as an actor. With the exception of his small role as the character of Hades in The Wrath of the Titans, Fiennes has managed to stick to innocent roles for the most part. These include films such as Great Expectations, The Grand Budapest Hotel, and Hail, Caesar! Fiennes even had a voice role in The Lego Batman Movie. Currently in post-production, his newest film will be Holmes and Watson anticipated to be released in 2018.
Tobin Bell (Then)
Although Tobin Bell had a decent acting career throughout the ’80s and ’90s, his major breakthrough role was playing John Kramer, better known as “Jigsaw” in The Saw franchise. Nothing quite beats a terminally ill old man who takes it upon himself to make people appreciate their life by putting them through a series of horrific, self-mutilating tests. The Saw franchise, as well as the character of Jigsaw managed to pump out 8 Saw related movies until the series eventually burned out. But who knows, there’s probably more to come.
Tobin Bell (Now)
Since the recent major success of his role in Saw I-VII, it his clear Bell hasn’t had much time to age, yet only a smile seems to set him apart from his character Jigsaw. He notes that he wishes to continue growing his acting career, however, in a different direction from films such as Saw. Since then, he starred as Yo Ling in the Soap Opera Days of Our Lives in 2016. He also stars as the voice of Dr. Alchemy and Dr. Savitar on the third season of The Flash. Although these are both villains, they are certainly a step down from the malicious Jigsaw. However, apparently Bell just couldn’t get enough and confirmed that in October of 2017, the eighth installment of the Saw will be released titled Jigsaw.
Helena Bonham Carter (Then)
Among her many villainous roles, one of Helena Bonham Carter’s most unforgettable is her character of Mrs. Lovett in Tim Burton’s Sweeney Todd. This character is a culmination of all of the villains she has played rolled into one incredibly twisted character. Her sunken eyes, pale skin, and rats nest hairdo certainly has evil written all over it. Not to mention she’s in love with a madman and enjoys killing people and feeding them to her restaurant customers. Although this film is a musical, Helena is capable of making the character of Mrs. Lovett potentially one of the most evil musical stars to date.
Helena Bonham Carter (Now)
Since her role as the wicked Mrs. Lovett, it’s almost hard to picture her as a normal person. Now, she plays on and off villain characters in various films. Her most notable evil roles since Sweeney Todd are Belatrix Lestrange from the Harry Potter series and her role as the Red Queen in the Alice in Wonderland films. However, she has also been cast to play more serious roles such as her performance in The King’s Speech, and as Miss Havisham from a film adaptation of Great Expectations. An even more surprising part she recently had was that of the Fairy Godmother in a live-action Cinderella film. Rumor also has it that she is expected to be in a all-female spin off of the Oceans Trilogy, proving her to be quite the versatile actress.
Jason Isaacs (Then)
Jason Isaacs performance as the merciless Col. William Tavington in The Patriot certainly places him at the top of the list as one of the easiest bad guys to hate. There is not a single redeeming quality about his character. In fact, he makes you want to kill him yourself. Viewers loath him in the beginning of the film and by the end he makes your blood boil. Although the character’s actions in the film are nothing short of deplorable, it is Jason Isaacs’ acting that really takes this character above and beyond. Jason isaacs was born for this role and the film wouldn’t be nearly as memorable without him.
Jason Isaacs (Now)
It’s safe to say that without his colonial style long hair, Jason Isaacs looks much less formidable these days. However, Jason Isaacs was a late bloomer in the acting world and his performance in The Patriot was towards the beginning of his career. Since then, he has continued to be recognized for playing very sly, yet graceful villains such as his role as Lucius Malfoy in Harry Potter and Captain Hook in Peter Pan. Nevertheless, although these characters suit him and are what the audience identifies him with, he has been known to step outside of this typecast and take on heroic roles in films such as Black Hawk Down and Fury.
Kevin Spacey (Then)
Kevin Spacey’s role as John Doe in the disturbing psychological thriller Seven proved to the world that Spacey is quite the convincing psychopath. Although his character is only revealed towards the end of the film, he completely steals the show. He makes quite an entrance into the film, at the police station with an emotionless face, shaved head, and bitten off fingertips. Knowing what he has done previously in the film, it makes this scene all the more ominous. From there, his dialogue and mannerisms can be described as nothing less than sinister and is what makes most adults shy away from this film, solidifying Kevin Spacey as an excellent bad guy.
Kevin Spacey (Now)
Currently, Kevin Spacey’s major and most well-known project is his lead role in the Netflix series House of Cards. Starting in 2011, and continuing up until now, Spacey was nominated for the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Drama Series in 2013 and later won a Golden Globe award for The Best Actor in a Television Series Drama. Although his character of Frank Underwood is almost as sadistic and wretched as John Doe, it was necessary for his character to actually have hair and fingertips in this role.
Joe Pesci (Then)
In the classic gangster film Goodfellas, Joe Pesci plays the obnoxious, loudmouth, trigger-happy, gangster named Tommy Devito. Although Tommy is never truly described as the anti hero, he certainly constitutes as a bad guy. At the drop of a hat, he was known to beat, shoot, and stab men to death with no questions asked. He was such a wild card that even his friends had to watch their step around him to make sure he didn’t turn on them as well. Joe Pesci did a great job at drawing out the uncomfortable silences Tommy initiates, creating anxiety for what he will do next.
Joe Pesci (Now)
Not looking quite as jovial looking as he once did playing Tommy DeVito, it appears that Joe Pesci might have tired himself out. He has only been in six movies in the past 20 years with his last film being Love Ranch. He was then invited to play a role in Martin Scorsese’s now mobster film titled The Irishman, which he has not so politely declined on numerous occasions. Yet, in July 2017, Pesci finally agreed to sign onto the film along with Robert DeNiro, completing the holy trinity that gave us Raging Bull, Casino, and Goodfellas.
Martin Kove (Then)
In The Karate Kid, Martin Kove is known as John Kreese, the incredibly in-shape and violent Cobra Kai sensei with a serious ego problem. He enjoys beating up high school boys, pinning them against each other, and makes it his personal vendetta to see the young main character harmed. If that isn’t a bad guy, I don’t know what is. A 40-year old man telling his teenage student to “Sweep the leg” and break his opponents bone seems a little over the top, earning him the title of a classic movie bad guy of the 1980’s.
Martin Kove (Now)
Not to be too harsh, but it looks like all that anger against teenage boys and potential steroid usage finally caught up with Kove. Although he was never much of an actor, after his bout with The Karate Kid series, he stayed in the karate genre and continued to act in low-budget karate films and TV shows. He even scored a role in the film Rambo: First Blood Part II, in which he turned out to be a traitor in the end. He even appeared on the TV show Tosh.O dressed in his old John Kreese outfit from his glory days, really scraping the bottom of the barrel.
Javier Bardem (Then)
Javier Bardem plays the quiet, calculated, cattle gun wielding assassin named Anton Chigurh in No Country for Old Men. If Chigurh killing random people based on the flip of a coin doesn’t scare you, then his almost supernatural ability to find the protagonist wherever he is will. Bardem’s calm and collected attitude while playing the villain of Chigurh makes the film all that more ominous since you know what Chigurh is capable of. Bardem’s portrayal of Chigurh makes for a character that is not only a bad guy but a textbook psychopath. The character of Chigurh was even named No. 26 out of the 50 Most Vile Villains in Movie History by Entertainment Weekly.
Javier Bardem (Now)
Clearly, not acting as Anton Chigurh makes Bardem looks more approachable, at least a little. After the success of No Country for Old Men, he went on to win numerous independent and foreign film awards for other projects. He was even the first ever all Spanish-language Best Actor Oscar nominee in 2011. Bardem went back to his villainous ways and starred as the main enemy in the James Bond film Skyfall. In 2012, he received the 2,484th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and is now expected to play the antagonist in the 2017 film, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead men Tell No Tales.
R. Lee Ermey (Then)
The actions and expectations of E. Lee Ermey’s character Sergeant Hartman in Full Metal Jacket is an easy way to convince anybody out of joining the military. He’s offensive, in-your-face, and downright racist. It also doesn’t hurt that he was a drill master himself when he was in the military. In the film, his antics drive one of his trainees mad, leading him to gruesomely commit suicide. Even though Hartman may not be considered the antagonist of the movie, he can surely be recognized as a bad guy that does more harm to his company than good.
R. Lee Ermey (Now)
After the release and success of Full Metal Jacket, Ermey was nominated for a Golden Globe for Best Supporting Actor. This is mostly since he wrote the majority of his own script off the top off his head while shooting. Since then, he has been in over 60 films such as Mississippi Burning, Leaving Las Vegas, and On Deadly Ground. He has even used his voice in cartoons, typically as military generals or commanders such as the plastic green soldier leader in Toy Story. He has also hosted the documentary series Mail Call and Lock and Load.
Daniel Day-Lewis (Then)
In the movie Gangs of New York, Daniel Day-Lewis plays the part of the power-hungry and violent villain Bill “The Butcher” Cutting. A man who is respected only out of fear, he runs the run-down city of New York known as the Five Points after defeating the Irish in a bloody battle. He butchers people more than he butchers meat and makes sure he gets a cut out of any criminal activity occurring in the town. This was an exceptional performance by Day-Lewis who made The Butcher a really convincing and frightening character.
Daniel Day-Lewis (Now)
After a very long and successful career, Daniel Day-Lewis has recently announced that he will retire from acting after one last film expected to be released in December 2017. Day-Lewis is the only actor to have ever won three Best Actor Oscars for Lincoln, There Will Be Blood, and My Left Foot. He was also nominated for his performance in Gangs of New York and In the name of the Father. Day-Lewis has been regarded as one of the film’s most successful method actors who goes to great lengths to ensure total immersion into his character.