Jan 20 2012

Five Movies where One Actor has Five or More Roles

Published by at 8:00 am under Lists,Movies

A while back our man Madison (who is no longer writing for us) wrote a piece on actors who played more than one role in a movie.   In the history of cinema this has been done many times.   Not all the time, but some of the time we’ll see one actor portray two different characters.   Most times it’s in a humorous fashion.

Even less we’ll see someone play a role 3 times in one film.   Four times is rare and five times?  Well that hasn’t happened all the much in the history of film.

But here are five movies in which you see the same actor in five or more parts.    The parts are all listed below each picture….

Thanks to Listal for the help here

The Play House -Buster Keaton

1. Audience
2. Mr. Brown
3. Stagehand,
4. Orchestra
5. Dance Troupe
..Every Member in the Audience
..All nine members of a minstrel

The Wizard of Oz – Frank Morgan


1. Professor Marvel,
2. The Gatekeeper,
3. The Carriage Driver,
4. The Guard
5. The Wizard of Oz

Kind Hearts and Coronets – Alec Guiness

1. Duke Etherel
2. The Banker
3. Reverend Lord Henry d’Ascoyne
4. General Lord Rufus D’Ascoyne
5. Admiral Horatio d’Ascoyne
6. Young Henry d’Ascoyne
7. Lady Agatha d’Ascoyne
8. Lord Ascoyne d’Ascoyne

Monty Python and the Holy Grail – John Cleese, Eric Idle, Michael Palin

1. Sir Lancelot the Brave
2. The Black Knight
3. Tim the Enchanter
4. Second Swallow-Savvy Guard
5. Peasant #3
6. Taunting French Guard

1. Sir Robin the Not-Quite-So-Brave-as-Sir Launcelot
2. Corpse Collector
3. Roger the Shrubber
4. Peasant #1
5. the First Swamp Castle Guard
6. Concorde
7. Brother Maynar

1. Sir Galahad the Pure
2. First Swallow-Savvy Guard
3. Dennis
4. Peasant #2
5. The King of Swamp Castle
6. Brother Maynard’s Brother
7. The Leader of The Knights who say NI!

*They also did multiple roles in Life of Brian and Meaning of Life

The Nutty Professor – Eddie Murphy


1. Professor Sherman Klump
2. Buddy Love
3. Lance Perkins
4. Cletus ‘Papa’ Klump
5. Anna Pearl ‘Mama’ Jensen Klump
6. Ida Mae ‘Granny’ Jensen
7. Ernie Klump, Sr.

Murphy also followed this up in The Klumps.

 





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17 responses so far

  • Mr Jim

    Interesting list! I never really realised until now how often the wizard was in the Wizard of Oz.

    I was wondering if you could help me in a little puzzler that’s been on my mind for a while now. Over the Christmas break I finally had chance to sit down and watch the new christmas carol with Jim Carrey playing Ebenezer Scrooge, and I was pleasantly surprised to find Jim Carrey also playing the ghosts of Christmas Past and Present.

    At that moment it reminded of something…I’m not quite sure what, either a tv show or a film from years past, heck maybe even a dream, where one actor acts out various voices/parts of his soul all interrogating the main character. Imagine the devil and angel on your shoulder routine but instead not just two opinions based on moral right and wrong, but instead manifestations of depression, rage, lust, contentment, envy, deceitfulness and possibly more all weighing in on your decisions and circling round you like vultures.

    It’s been really annoying because it seems pretty tangible in my head that it did actually happen. But the only things I can think of are Edward Norton (probably because of Fight Club and Primal Fear) and the other is an episode of Deep Space Nine where Jadzia is able to transfer the memories of the previous hosts of the trill symbiote to crew members so she can talk to them and learn more about herself. So I don’t really remember at all.

    Any ideas?

  • andrew

    Never thought I’d see Buster Keaton, Alec Guinness, and Eddie Murphy occupying the same list. One of these things is not like the others.

    Saw a movie called The Go-Getter the other day. It was decent indie flick, kinda quirky. Anyway, it had the internets favorite hetero man crush Nick Offerman playing 3 different parts, one of which was a burnout trumpet player with a bleached mohawk. Looked like a mashup of Ron Swanson and Flea.

  • http://anwtanecriticz.over-blog.fr/ Anwtane

    It’s a little less than five, but we could count the third Back to the future with Michael J Fox who plays his role, his future himself and his future son & daughter.
    And Mike Myers who plays 4 different characters in Austin Power 3.

  • Jim Lahey

    How the hell are you going to post a list with two movies that nobody on this site has ever heard of? I was looking for a list that the readers on your site would enjoy, not some obscure list you had to find just because there were only three moderately recent movies where this happened.

    The Playhouse is a 1921 movie. 1921! Don’t even pretend you have seen that movie. Find better lists to steal from other sites. Can’t you just link to the other site and let us read the original list like Paul does for Cracked articles? He doesn’t pretend he’s written an actual article, he let’s us know it’s from somewhere else.

  • Willie McCoy

    @ Mr Jim

    There was a sitcom in the late 80s or early 90s called Herman’s Head that had characters for each part of Herman’s personality but all of the roles were played by different actors.

  • WillisMcphillis

    I cant believe you left Peter Sellers in Dr. Strangelove (…or how I learned to stop worrying and love the bomb) off of this list. Peter sellers plays Grp. Cptn. Mandrake, President Muffley and Dr. Strangelove. I know its not quite as many roles, but this movies is still relevant today, and I personally think it is one of the funniest movies that will ever be made.

  • http://www.thenerdsignal.net Skott

    The Kids in the Hall movie, Brain Candy, needs to get added to this list. Bruce McCulloch plays seven roles, Scott Thompson plays eight and Mark McKinney plays nine. The other two Kids, Dave Foley and Kevin McDonald, only play four roles each so they wouldn’t count.

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0116768/

  • Wite Boy

    come on, COMING TO AMERICA!!

    people STILL dont know eddy played all but one of the guys from the barber shop

  • Jim Lahey

    @Wite Boy

    Who doesn’t know that? Arsenio Hall played one, and Eddie Murphy played all the others, it’s just a fact. You must know some dumb people if they didn’t know that.

  • Michael O.

    @Jim

    I have heard of, and in fact seen, Kind Hearts and Coronets. Since it’s a great film, I was very happy to see it here. Maybe instead of complaining that you were forced to see something outside your experience, you should watch it instead?

  • 03firefly

    Omg, this list includes a movie from the 20s?! How terrible! How is anyone supposed to know about movies released more than 15 years ago?! It’s in black and white for goodness sakes! What do you think you’re doing, including old and forgotten movies on a list like this? Cause apparently you have an audience that consists of 12 year olds that think black and white tvs and movies are a myth.

  • http://twitter.com/#!/Ant2206 ant2206

    Jim Lahey’s mad.

  • T’laryth Phalyn

    Just because some of you have never seen let alone heard of the older flicks doesn’t mean that others have not. I’m twenty nine and I’ve seen hundreds, if not thousands, if films from the sixties and earlier. You’re truly missing out on the history of film (not to mention some good flicks). Oh and quit whining about it, it only makes you look like an inept twit.

  • Derrick Mead

    @ Jim Lahey

    I understand, yes, it is all about you.

  • Mike

    Then, of course, there’s the late, great Tony Randall who played all “Seven Faces of Dr. Lao.”

  • kim

    @willis mcphilliis

    o i wish there was a “like” button here: i would like your post so hard. dr. strangelove is still one of my favorite films ever, and peter sellers? just genius.

  • gajanthan

    the tamil actor Mr.Shivaji Ganesan had portrayed 9 roles in the 1964 tamil film “Navarathri ” and another tamil actor Mr.Kamal Hassan had portrayed 10 roles in the 2008 tamil film “Dasavathaaram”, which includes Mr.George.W.Bush as one and the make-up was done by star treak fame Michael George Westmore.

    the wikipaedia links are below
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Navarathri_%281964_film%29
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dasavathaaram

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