Top 10 Greatest Movie Villain ActorsThis is not a list of the great villains who have been played in cinema (Although that is an eventual by-product), but rather a list of the outstanding actors that played these roles, oftentimes on multiple occasions. Some here are known as playing almost solely villains, some have played a number of different character types through the years, but its the treacherous villain(s) they played that stand out. There's just something about a believable, eerie bad guy that can carry a film to greatness. Its also these roles that character actors of all types want desperately to play, they can define their careers. While this top 10 represent only my 10 favorites, there are a number of character actors omitted who could have easily made the list, please feel free to add any you feel deserve recognition.
The Top Ten
Born to play a convincing villain, his commanding, booming and domineering voice alone demands respect. And fear. Has played Dracula on many occasions, and played the character very well, he remains my favorite to this day. Many here will remember him as the sinister Count Dooku in the "Star Wars" franchise. RIP Mr. Lee - CyberRat
Dracula. I Monter. Dracula A. D. 1972. And several other Dracula movies. The Wicker Man.
Lord of the Rings. The Two Towers. Return of the King. Star Wars: Attack of the Clones & Revenge of the Sith. The Mummy. The Fu Manchu movies.
A villain staple, Hans Gruber is unquestionably one of the most memorable villains ever - CyberRat
Alan Rickman had a way of making any evil character believable, or any character at all for that matter. He was at his best when playing the villain.
He simply became the villain, and with that voice, nobody could do it better. He is missed.
One of the best actors of all time
Waynes World 2 is his best movie!
There is just something about Walken that makes the skin crawl, the spine tingle and forces you to run into the night screaming.
My favorite of all times
Gary Oldman is legend no matter what he does, but there's no doubt that his most memorable roles involve villainy. I mean, his Stansfield in "Leon": absolutely chilling! He certainly has an affinity for the bazaar, sadistic, and the just plain creepy.
True Romance. (Drug Dealer With Dreadlocks) The Professional. (Corrupt Cop) Air Force One. The Fifth Element. (Leon) Murder In The First. (The Warden) JFK (Lee Harvey Oswald) Drakula. Air Force One. State of Grace. Lost In Space.
Gary Oldman has played some of the greatest villains ever, Stanfield from "Leon", Dracula from "Bram Stroker's Dracula, Russian guy with long name from "Air Force 1".
With the 3 of the greatest villains already under his belt, it was impossible not to list him as number 1. Amon Goeth, Lord Voldemort and the Red Dragon are just 3 of the many outstanding less than loveable characters played by Fiennes. The Goeth character was one of the most terrifying, and brilliantly played roles in the history of cinema, in mho. His Harry Waters in "In Bruges" definitely deserves a nod as well. (One of the greatest, and funniest, dark comedies of all time). - CyberRat
Nothing can get close to his role as the sadistic voldemort, he was so crazy, he made the audience root for him. And don't forget his role as the dragon in red dragon, he was brilliant. And also as hades in clash of the titans
Schindler's List. Wallace and Gromit: The Curse Of The Were-Rabbit. The Prince Of Egypt. Harry Potter. Clash Of The Titans. Wrath Of The Titans. Red Dragon.
The standard baddie in many major Hollywood productions throughout the 80's, and rightfully so. Very effective and convincing, albeit maybe just a bit redundant. - CyberRat
Hollow Man. The River Wild. Super. Trapped. X-Men First Class. Wild Things.R.I.P.D. Crazy, Stupid Love.
His role as Smith was the best!
Morgan Freeman was a bad guy in (spoilers):
Wanted. Nurse Betty. Dreamcatcher. Hard Rain. Street Smart. The Contract. Chain Reaction. Lucky Number Slevin.
He's always the bad guy
SE7EN. enough said. - courier28
The Departed. The Shining. A Few Good Men. Batman (1989 film)
The Witches Of Eastwick. Blood and Wine.
The undisputed champion of method acting, his roles of Bill "The Butcher" Cutting in "Gangs of New York" and as Daniel Plainview in "There Will be Blood" will go down of 2 of the greatest baddies in history. - CyberRat
Best known for playing "Freddy Krueger" in A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984).
Robert Englund is best known for playing Freddy Krueger
Taxi Driver. Goodfellas. Meant Streets. Angel Heart. The Untouchables. The Fan. Heat. This Boy's Life. I know I'm missing a few.
Cape Fear (1991)
A convicted rapist, released from prison after serving a fourteen-year sentence, stalks the family of the lawyer who originally defended him.
Cape Fear (1991)
A convicted rapist, released from prison after serving a 14 year sentence, stalks the family of the lawyer who originally defended him.
He seemed to be a good guy at the beginning of The Wolfman, but near the end, he's revealed to be the villain.
Best known for playing "Hannibal Lector" in The Silence of the Lambs (1991).
Quite possibly the scariest character I have ever seen on the big screen (Anton Chigurn-"No Country for Old Men"). A complete lack of compassion and empathy. Psychotic killing machine. Bardem has played other baddies, most notably in "Skyfall", but everything else pales in comparison. - CyberRat
The Specialist. Ghosts of Mississippi. Casino. Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths. Hercules. Stuart Little 2. Recess: School's Out.
Although Widmark did play other villains in his career, nothing can compare to the ruthless Tommy Udo in 1947's "Kiss of Death". Every time I re-watch it, I'm amazed a character this aggressive was allowed to be viewed by 1947 audiences. It is a very good film as well. - CyberRat
One of the greatest - BorisRule
KENT MANSLEY! - 445956
If for only that one role, he deserves inclusion. Ledger played nothing like his Joker in "The Dark Knight" in any of his previous efforts, yet it is undoubtedly his finest acting achievement. Scary, smart and decidedly twisted, Ledger's Joker took over the screen in every shot he was included in, and still resonated in the film many times when he was not on screen. Brilliant. It really is tragic we lost this actor right when he was on the cusp of greatness. RIP Heath. - CyberRat
Much like Michael Ironside, but in the 50's thru 80's, Palance was the standard of slightly crazed, intimidating villains - CyberRat
Played the heavy or bad guy in: Tequila Sunrise. Breakdown. Backdraft. The Negotiator. Good Morning Vietnam. Needful Things. Sling Blade. Nixon. Pleasantville. And a few others I probably can't think of.