Dec 18 2008

10 Awesome Actors Whose Names You Probably Don’t Know But Should

Published by at 10:45 am under Lists,Movies

Unknown Actors

I’ll bet you don’t know his real name

Lots of times we’ll be watching a movie and inevitably there’s some guy in it who makes us think “man I love that guy, what’s his name again?”  You see them repeatedly in movie after movie and appreciate their work but can never get their name straight.

Most of these actors are character actors who don’t have leading roles.  And many times their names get left out of the limelight.  But for me?  These are probably the actors I appreciate the most.

So in case you were wondering, here are 10 awesome actors whose names you probably don’t know but should.

For more listings on these guys, obviously check out IMDB

JT Walsh

Unknown Actors

Unfortunately Walsh passed away a few years back but he’s well known for being one of the best character actors of his generation.   You might best know him from A Few Good Men where he played Markinson.  I loved him in Blue Chips as Happy and in Slingblade.

Bruce McGill

Unknown Actors

You all saw him in Animal House as D-Day.  How he did that thing with his throat is still a mystery to me.  In any event, McGill is a great actor who has a wide range.  I personally loved him in My Cousin Vinny as the Sheriff and in Time Cop.  Yeah I know it’s Time Cop but he was still awesome.

David Paymer 

Unknown Actors

I’ll always remember Paymer as the guy who only said “Hello” in the movie Crazy People.  P.S. That was a pretty funny flick.  But Paymer’s been around Hollywood for a very long time.  Most recently you might remember him in Ocean’s 13.  But the guy’s got over 30 films in his resume.

Michael Ironside

Unknown Actors

Jester’s Dead!  Yeehaw, Jester’s Dead.  That’s right guys.  Ironside played Jester in Top Gun.  “Fly’s by the seat of his pants.”  The rugged voiced actor is known for his “tough” roles.  I particulary enjoyed him in Total Recall and Karate Kid IV as the bad guy.  Classic!  Hahaha.

Clancy Brown

Unknown Actors

People never know this guy’s name.  I first saw him in the movie Bad Boys.  No not the Will Smith one.  This is from 1982 about kids in Juvenile Hall.  Brown had blond hair in this movie (which starred Sean Penn) and was amazing.  You might know him as the guard in Shawshank Redemption.  Nowadays he does tons of voice overs.  He’s great though.

Michael Paul Chan

Unknown Actors

Chan is mostly a TV actor and he’s finally got himself a consistent role in “The Closer.”  I’ll always remember him as Data’s dad in Goonies and as the guy who says “yeah commodore” in Maverick.  Plus I just love this guy.

Bob Gunton

Unknown Actors

Even I, who considers myself a movie buff, had to look up this guy’s name.  It’s the crazy warden from Shawshank Redemption.  I tell you, Gunton is really good at playing a prick.  I liked him as a bald cop in Demolition Man.

James Tolkan

Unknown Actors

“You’re mouth is righting checks your butt can’t cash.”  Enough said.

Mandy Patinkin

Unknown Actors

Remember Indigo Montoya from Princess Bride?  That would be Mandy Patinkin.  Mandy’s been around for a long long time, including a leading role in Yentl with Barbara Streisand.  He’s more of a TV and Broadway guy these days.   He’s very well respected but for some reason you just never know his name.

Luis Guzman

Unknown Actors

Guzman is one of my favorite actors out there.  He’s just hilarious.  I personally loved him in Boogie Nights and Traffic.  However, if you’ve seen Crocodile Dundee II, watch it again, if only to see Guzman at the beginning of his career.


Gary Cole

Unknown Actors

I think people kind of know who this guy is now but I figured I’d add him any way.  After all he was Lumbergh in Office Space.  Yeah..Yeah..if you could just…yeahhh.

More Unreal Posts

20 responses so far

20 Responses to “10 Awesome Actors Whose Names You Probably Don’t Know But Should”

  1. nicoon 18 Dec 2008 at 2:25 pm

    nice pic of lumberg doing his wife hah.

  2. Shellyon 18 Dec 2008 at 4:31 pm

    I sure wouldn’t put Mandy Patankin in this list. He’s won a bunch of Tony awards and starred in Chicago Hope and the FBI profiler show that’s still on. Weird thing about him, he starts out then drops out.
    But I think he’s great.

  3. Thomon 18 Dec 2008 at 6:38 pm

    don’t forget that Clancy Brown was the Antagonist in Carnivàle.

  4. Leviathanon 18 Dec 2008 at 7:15 pm

    Ironside was also in Scanners and Starship Troopers.

  5. B Rothon 18 Dec 2008 at 11:24 pm

    My love for Shawshank has lead me to know Clancy Brown and Bob Gunton. Don’t know if that is a good thing or a bad thing for me, but I will take it.

  6. Inigoon 14 Jan 2009 at 4:26 am

    It’s Inigo Montoya, not Indigo. And I had no idea that guy was still around.

  7. Jon 16 Jan 2009 at 7:52 pm

    Clancy Brown is also the Kurgan in Highlander.

  8. Gregon 22 Jan 2009 at 2:40 pm

    Clancy Brown (Kurgan)…
    “I have something to say… IT’S BETTER TO BURN OUT THAN TO FADE AWAY…”

    AWESOME movie quote.

  9. Gregon 22 Jan 2009 at 2:44 pm

    …more Clancy Brown…
    ‘Shoot to Kill’ was a good role for him as well

  10. Korinthianon 15 Feb 2009 at 9:47 am

    Walken would be on this list if it wasn’t for his Internet phenomenonity.

  11. Aerlisson 15 Feb 2009 at 7:26 pm

    Just a note; it’s Inigo Montoya, not Indigo…

    I have no idea what you referenced for Gary Cole but he was supremely awesome as Sheriff Lucas Buck in American Gothic.

  12. Tissiferon 18 Feb 2009 at 12:48 am

    I think Nestor Serrano deserves an honorable mention

  13. Chrison 18 Feb 2009 at 12:50 pm

    Yet more Clancy Brown…Mr Krabs on Spongebob Squarepants

  14. Ossiferon 06 May 2009 at 1:24 pm

    “You’re mouth is righting checks your butt can’t cash.” Enough said.

    Wow the spelling errors there are full of fail =p

  15. Jackon 01 Jun 2009 at 7:17 pm

    Samantha Shook did an awesome performance in empire of danger.

  16. culmidonon 24 Jun 2009 at 12:19 am

    Actually, the line from James Tolkan in “Top Gun” is “Your ego is writing checks your body can’t cash.”

  17. Spongebob Squarepantson 11 Jul 2009 at 3:46 am

    Like to watch Stargate Atlantis episodes and also Lost. I found your blog on google and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

  18. Elizaon 16 Feb 2010 at 7:05 pm

    I would have really liked it if you’d put the names UNDERNEATH the pictures, I’m dead good at “that guy” naming, I would’ve got almost all of them right. Spoilt my fun.

  19. Viggon 28 Apr 2011 at 2:25 am

    I had a thought about actors such as these ( sort of ) myself. When the Expendables came out I began imagining a satire movie called the Unsungables featuring all the action actors whose name you don’t know even though you have seen them so often.

    So far all I can think up off the top of my head are

    James Remar ( The Warriors, Judge Dredd, The Phantom, Mortal Kombat 2: Armageddon etc. )

    Tommy Flannagan ( Braveheart, Sin City, Gladiator, Smoking Aces )

    That’s all I can get of the top of my head. Actors who have escaped this roster.

    Ron Perlman

    Danny Trejo

  20. Chrison 22 Sep 2011 at 4:32 pm

    The first thing I ever saw David Paymer in was Carpool. Then I saw him in The Lesser Evil, which was a very good film that I thought could’ve easily been based on a Stephen King work (stylistically). Then he had a pretty prominent role in a TV series called Line of Fire in ’04 that was canceled in its first season. It’s so disappointing because I really admired his work.

    Funny thing though, I came to this site looking for Bruce McGill and he was second on the list. I was just telling my mother how he looks like a male version of Tyne Daly. (Look her up if you don’t know who that is).

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