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

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.


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