Some producers want to base everything around A rated or A+ rated stars because it makes them feel happy or because they expect a boost in audience perception. The actors on the other hand are not sad at their talents being underused. They get the same kindda money they would have gotten for the full role. We found ten such actors who said only a line or two in the whole movie but were paid some good amount for it.
10 Major Actors Hired to do Very Little
10. Vin Diesel: Guardians of the Galaxy
Marvel paid Vin Diesel more-than-my-salary-illion for saying three words over and over again. From dawn till dusk he said “I am Groot” in different ways obviously but that was all he said. Depending on the mood that the tree was in- sad, silly, happy, apprehensive- the tone and inflection change but the words don’t. Interestingly, each word that Diesel here says is more memorable than the whole lot that he said in The Pacifier.
9. Jay Leno/George Clooney for South Park
Taking a celebrity voice in the backdrop can be milked quite well but when it comes to South Park, the makers have treated celebrities like they barely exist. KoRn does the new premiere song and takes centre stage but in one of the first few new episodes, they snagged Jay Leno and asked him to meow several times for the voice of a cat and then go back home. Literally! The biggest talk show star on this Earth was hired to meow, only. And then there is George Clooney who was hired for the episode “Big Gay Al’s Big Gay Boat Ride”. Now you’re thinking that Clooney is fine if he was Al or even the boat for that matter, but no. Clooney played the dog. He woofed and barked quite like any other dog would and then he took his cheque and went back to his wife.
8. The Three Stooges
The legendary Three Stooges stood like extras in a film scene, doing nothing during the 1960s for a film. For It’s a Mad Mad Mad Mad World- yes, saying it four times ensures that it is mad- in 1963, Larry, Moe and Curly Joe are just standing there in a scene with axes and firehoses. They aren’t even talking to each other, not asking each other to do anything like putting out a fire or lighting up one for the sake of doing “something”. They stand there in the scene for as long as it would take to make popcorns in the microwave and then disappear. Puff, yes exactly like that. Someone thought that taking the three funniest people on TV to do nothing funny would be a good strategy and for the most part it actually worked.
7. John Hurt: 1987 Spaceballs
When my sister first told me that they used the major A rated actors for two liners in Happy Two Feet it surprised me. I wondered whether the actors did it for free, just for PR but I was wrong- they didn’t. John Hurt appeared in a scene in Spaceballs in 1987 only to express his horror at an alien coming out of his tummy.
6. Cate Blanchett: Hot Fuzz
The actress Cate Blanchett is a big deal to be honest and if she is appearing in a big deal movie like Hot Fuzz then it makes quite a lot of sense to us at least. She was the main character’s estranged girlfriend in the movie so the role kind of fits in right? What doesn’t fit in though was the fact that she appeared for two minutes in the movie and then disappeared. We did not see her again. In fact we didn’t actually “see” her for the first time even because she was dressed up in a white examiner suit and didn’t take off the face mask. So she doesn’t even get credited for the British scene that she did.
5. Kurt Russell in the Forrest Gump
15 years ago, Russell had played Elvis in a movie called Elvis and then he also voiced the Elvis with a guitar. He didn’t sing in the first Elvis because Ronnie McDowell handled that but more than a decade later Kurt Russell can sleep tight because he finally got to do the Elvis part completely- acting and singing both- even if not in one movie.
4. Brad Pitt and Matt Damon: Confessions of a Dangerous Mind
Who doesn’t know Brad Pitt and Matt Damon. They are both our favourites in fact Matt Damon’s voice in Spirit: Stallion of the Cimarron actually gave us a crush on the horse- yes imagine that! Matt and Damon are both just sitting as the camera moves over them not even pausing for a minute so that we could register back to back A rated major stars, no it doesn’t do that, instead it stops on bachelor#3 who is a vague and schlubby guy with weird answers. This bachelor won despite his answers because the other two competitors just sat there: mute. They didn’t even attempt to talk to the girl for that matter.
3. Glenn Close: Hook
Glenn is the bearded pirate getting beaten for betting against Hook’s success so she is not only hidden amongst so many underling pirates but hidden well with the hair sprouting all over her face. It is amazing what not using the razor for a few days can bring you to. The pirate dude called Gutless is a part that is played by Glenn who gets thrown into a box full of scorpions because of being a “traitor” and presumably gets killed due to these arthropods. She did make a few sounds though- like crying when the boss finds out that Gutless is a traitor.
2. Michael Bay: Mystery Men
If the 1999 superhero spoof was seen by any one of us, we saw Michael Bay for like four seconds. He is the guy who asked Ben Stiller is he and his buddies can bring some “brewskis” to the bad guy’s table meeting and then hollers when he gets a response. Interestingly he does not return, not even to hit Ben Stiller with a beer can. Michael Bay is as famous as anyone he directs and although he does have a few dumb action movies to his credit, his role in this movie makes us think that he foresaw his future as a dumb frat boy.
1. Dan Aykroyd: Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom
Dan pulled off an uncredited cameo and very few people realized that it was him when they saw Temple of Doom. He has one of the most distinct voices in Hollywood- like an auctioneer who knows how to play with inflection coupled with interest of the audience and the price tags. Dan escorts Indy and his female friend on the plane and then apologizes for who their flight escorts are. He is on screen for about 20 seconds more than most in this list if that makes you happy.