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Actors in Multiple Movie Franchises

Some movies make a lot of money. And people like money, so they decide to make a sequel to make even more money. And if that sequel makes money they might make a third movie. And three movies in the same series makes a trilogy, and (for the purposes of this article) a trilogy is a film franchise. So if an actor appears in three or more movies in the same franchise and three or more movies in another franchise, then they will appear on this list. Unless I forgot about them. Sorry forgotten celebrity.

Harrison Ford starred in the original Star Wars trilogy and the Indiana Jones trilogy (and that shitty fourth movie that I try to forget about). He’s also rumored to come back in the new Star Wars movies.

Tim Allen starred in the Toy Story trilogy and the Santa Clause movies.

Michael J. Fox went Back to the Future three times and voiced Stuart Little three times.

Matt Damon was Jason Bourne three times and was in Ocean’s Eleven, Twelve, and Thirteen.

Eddie Murphy was Donkey in four Shrek movies and Axel Foley three times as a Beverly Hills Cop. Mike Myers was Shrek in the Shrek flicks and Austin Powers and Dr. Evil in the Austin Powers movies.

Shrek And Donkey - Shrek The Final Chapter Desktop Wallpaper

Orlando Bloom was Legolas in the Lord of the Rings trilogy, and he’s reprising his role in The Hobbit movie. He was also in the first three Pirates of the Caribbean movies too.

Sir Ian McKellen has saved the world as Gandalf in three Lord of the Rings movies and will do so again in The Hobbit trilogy. He’s also threatened the world three times as Magneto in the X-Men franchise.

Patrick Stewart played Captain Jean-Luc Picard four times on the big screen and played Charles Xavier in three X-Men movies with a cameo in the Wolverine movie.

Crazy anti-Semite Mel Gibson has been in four Lethal Weapon Movies and was Mad Max three times. You know he hates Jews right?

Warwick Davis was in six Leprechaun movies (about half were direct-to-video) and was also in all eight Harry Potter Movies playing duel roles as Professor Flitwick and Griphook.

Sylvester Stallone was Rambo four times and Rocky Balboa six times. I have a feeling he might be Expendable three times too.

Vin Diesel sucks a lot of balls, but he’s been in four Fast and/or Furious movies (one of them was just a cameo), and he will play Riddick again in 2013. I’m sure that there are at least four people who will pay to see that shit.

Ben Stiller has played Gaylord Focker in three movies and loaned his voice to three Madagascar movies.

Gary Oldman played Sirius Black in Harry Potter 3, 4, 5 and 7.5 and has been James Gordon three times in Christopher Nolan’s Batman trilogy.

Bruce Campbell has played Ash in the Evil Dead movies and had cameos in all of Sam Raimi’s Spider-man movies. That might be a stretch, but it still counts.

Antonio Banderas has been Puss in Boots in three Shrek movies and one spinoff and was in four Spy Kids movies (his scene was cut in the fourth one. Yes, there are four Spy Kids movies). He was played El Mariachi in two out of the three El Mariachi movies, so he doesn’t get any points for that.

John Cho has hung out with Kumar three times as Harold, and he was in American Pie, American Pie 2, American Wedding, and American Reunion. Cameos count. Right, Bruce Campbell?

Samuel L. Jackson was Mace Windu in Star Wars Episode I-III. He also played Nick Fury in Iron Man, Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America, and The Avengers, which are all part of the same universe, so he gets included.

Jackie Chan has three franchises under his belt. Three Rush Hour movies, four Police Story movies, and he’s loaned his voice to two Kung Fu Panda movies with a third coming out in 2013.

Christopher Lee played Fu Manchu three times, he was Dracula in a bunch of movies. He was Count Dooku in Episodes II and III and the animated Clone Wars movie. He was in Lord of the Rings too.

Hugo Weaving has also been in three franchises. He threatened Neo three times as Agent Smith in the Matrix trilogy. He loaned his voice to Megatron in the Transfomers movies. And he was Elrond in the Lord of the Rings movie and will reprise his role again in one of the upcoming Hobbit movies.

So that’s my list. I think it’s pretty complete. If you see anyone that I’m missing leave a comment. And I’ll either correct you or add it to my list. I don’t know how to rate this so I will just settle for something like this:

Critically Rated at 12/17

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Rocky is Sylvester Stallone’s best movie. It’s a requirement for a boy to watch this in order to become a man. It is a cinematic bar mitzvah. If you’ve never seen this flick, I’m going to go out on a limb and assume that you don’t have TBS, TNT or basic cable.  I’m pretty sure there’s a cable network that shows the Rocky saga nonstop.

Rocky is the story of a boxing underdog. Rocky is just an average boxer. He’s not a has-been, he’s a never-was (and yes, I did steal that from the Mighty Ducks). He gets a shot to take on the reigning champ, and his only goal is to go the distance with him. He doesn’t want to win, he just wants to put up a fight. He doesn’t win in the end, one of only a handful of movies where the good guy loses in the end. A League of Their Own and Friday Night Lights also come to mind. It is more realistic to have a team lose rather than win everything. Most sports competitions only have one winner, and so statistically there are a lot more losers.

Rocky was made on a shoestring budget. The plot parallels Sylvester Stallone’s real life. It is a very personal project, and it shows. It’s a great “You-Can-Do-It-If-You-Put-Your-Mind-To-It” story. Sly wrote it as a vehicle for himself, and eventually got his way. With a budget of less than a million dollars, the film went on to gross over $225 million, earned ten Oscar nominations, and spawned five sequels. Not too shabby for a script written in three and a half days.

Rocky made a star out of Stallone, but it also had a great supporting cast. Talia Shire plays Adrian, the shy love interest that blossoms into a beautiful woman. Burt Young plays Paulie, Adrian’s brother and Rocky’s best friend. Rocky represents hope and Paulie represents reality. Burgess Meredith plays Mickey, the disgruntled trainer who thinks Rocky wasted his talent, but who is still willing to help get him into shape. Carl Weathers plays Apollo Creed, the cocky reigning heavyweight who challenges an unknown Rocky to a title fight. It’s very difficult to play an antagonist with out making them a villain, so props to Weathers for playing the character the right way.

The soundtrack is amazing. It elevates the whole movie. Gonna Fly Now is the best workout song of all time. There was pioneering use of the steadicam. The training montage, fight sequences, and Rocky running up the stairs are all iconic moments that are elevated because of the filming technique. The fight choreography seems slightly dated now, but at the time it was the closest to an actual fight than anything previously seen on screen.

This is one of the best sports films of all time. It was the start of a sometimes great, occasionally mediocre film franchise. There are plenty of real life parallels that make the movie even more relatable and enjoyable. Sylvester Stallone’s best movie, and any actor should be proud to have a film of this caliber on their resume.

Critically Rated at 16/17

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