I stole the idea for this list from Ellie Garratt at her self-titled blog, but to be fair it’s a blogfest so she meant for it to be stolen. All I had to do is recast the actors in ten movies.
10. Kevin Bacon as Jamie Lee Curtis’s date in Prom Night
I don’t even know what the character’s name was, because I just think of him as the guy who has the nerve to date Jamie Lee without telling her he helped coax her sister out a window. If Kevin Bacon had played the part he might have said, “you know, I already took an arrow in the throat from Mrs. Voorhees, what the hell, I think this character should be killed off too because he’s kind of a douchebag.” I never understood why the prom king character didn’t die. I guess it just didn’t fit with the plot, but they totally should have had him offed while he was tied up and then sent Lou’s head rolling down the runway as planned. If Slick the van driving sex god had to die, that guy should have died.
9. Bill Bixby as John Russell, The Changeling
George C. Scott, you could still have Exorcist 3. You own it. But Bill Bixby is one of the actors from the 70s I actually remember liking during the 70s, and he should have made more real movies instead of doing 80s TV. I mean, for Christ’s sake, the man was in Clambake with Elvis! I think he could have played a tortured concert pianist living with a pissed off dead brat. *That is not an Elvis joke, really.
8. Julian Sands in Serpent and the Rainbow
I get that Bill Pullman looked out of place in Haiti because it was a fish out of water story, but I could see Sands in a more “based on a true story” meaning “as far from the story as luridly possible” film. He’d get over being a zombie, become the leader of the coven or whatever and start making his own zombies, while looking fabulous.
7. Benicio Del Toro in White Noise 2
I just have this feeling that if creepy things are gonna happen in a movie, they should happen to a creepy actor. Nathan Fillion, while possessing many adjectives, is not creepy to me.
6. Ric Flair as Rowdy Roddy Piper in They Live
What better way to demonstrate how a bunch of people aren’t in touch with reality than having the big secret figured out by the living embodiment of Space Mountain. He’d be putting “Woo!” signs in place of the “Obey” signs.
5. Walter Matthau as Father Karras in The Exorcist
I have this curiosity that can only be satisfied when funny people act in creepy movies. It would have given a whole new spin to The Bad News Bears. Tony Randall could have played the other priest, the friend who played the piano at Chris’s party. And Jack Klugman could play the detective!
4. Brad Pitt as Lestat, for the love of all that is holy in Interview With the Vampire
I just never liked Tom Cruise in that part. Brad Pitt makes a great psycho. I always thought they should switch roles.
3. Frank Sinatra as Guy Woodhouse in Rosemary’s Baby
I’ve always read complaints that Cassavetes was miscast as Guy. Frank divorced Mia Farrow over her decision to make Rosemary’s Baby rather than go party with him. He should have just gotten himself put into the film in the Guy role, and we’d now have an even more badass satanic panic film.
2. Buck Owens in Tourist Trap
I love the music of Buck Owens, but the character he played on Hee Haw terrifies me. I think what gets me is the extremely false sincerity, which could easily be misinterpreted as masking hostility such as that contained within the Chuck Connors character. Psycho killer qu’est-ce que c’est?
1. Jon Finch as Norman Boyle in The House by the Cemetery
House is missing a slumming English-speaking actor. I pretty much couldn’t look away from Jon Finch in Frenzy. And he definitely could make you wonder how much he knew.