From Halloween to Nightmare On Elm Street to The Exorcist, horror movies are a staple of the film industry, and not only because they scare the daylights out of us.
The actors and actresses who play the villains in horror movies are some of the best actors of their kind, simply because they embody the roles so perfectly that sometimes we have a hard time remembering that they are, in fact, just actors.
If you wanted to know what some of your favorite horror movie villains look like in real life, you’ll love this list.
1. Bonnie Aarons famously played the role of the demon nun named Valak in 2016’s The Conjuring 2.
The Conjuring 2 is the sequel to 2013’s The Conjuring, and follows a husband and wife who travel together to London to help a woman who is haunted by an evil spirit. Bonnie Aarons may look nothing like the evil demon named Valak, but she certainly did a great job playing her!
2. Daveigh Chase famously played the character that haunted our childhood fears in 2002’s The Ring.
Chase played Samara, the creepy child who famously came crawling out of the television and straight into our nightmares. It’s hard to picture Chase playing such an evil and creepy character, but she didn’t fail to impress (and scare) us.
3. Anyone who has ever had a childhood can probably remember Pennywise the Clown from 1990’s classic remake of Stephen King’s famous novel, IT. If Pennywise has haunted your nightmares since you were a kid, you might be surprised to find out who played him.
Tim Curry famously played the role of Pennywise, and if you weren’t scared of him before, you’re probably scared of him now.
4. Pan’s Labyrinth is a creepy and dark fantasy film which took 2006 by storm.
You might be surprised to find out that the child-eating creature in the movie was played by Doug Jones.
5. The Grudge, like The Ring, is yet another horror movie which scared the living daylights out of me as a child. The villain Kayako was creepy, nightmare-inducing and actually kind of traumatizing to watch.
Japanese actress Takako Fuji played the role of Kayako in this movie. She also something reprised the role in The Grudge 2.
6. A Nightmare on Elm Street is quite possibly one of the most popular horror franchises of all time, thanks to the actor who played the infamous Freddy Kruger.
Robert Englund played the role of Freddy Krueger, and is one of just two actors in the whole world to reprise a horror character role a total of eight consecutive times.
7. The Exorcist was a dark and disturbing movie that made our heads spin (see what I did there?) when we watched it for the first time, for a large part thanks to the actress who played Regal Macneil, the possessed child.
Linda Blair played the possessed child and even received an Oscar nomination for her amazing performance. She later reprised the role in The Exorcist II: The Heretic, but still remains best known for her role in the original film.
8. The Hellraiser series is one which every horror movie fan has in their collection, primarily because of the iconic character Pinhead.
Actor Doug Bradley played this iconic character. He shares the spot with Freddy Kruger’s Robert Englund for being only one of two actors to ever play the same horror character role in 8 consecutive films.
9. Although 1974’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre has had several sequels with different actors, it’s hard to forget the original actor who played the notorious Leatherface.
Gunnar Hansen played Leatherface in the 1974 horror flick, and set the stage for countless horror movie villains for years to come.
10. Although Halloween’s Michael Myers was played be several different actors over the years, it’s next to impossible for any horror movie buff to forget the man who played the original Michael Myers.
Nick Castle played the role of Michael Myers in 1978’s Halloween, and is arguably the best actor to have played the psychotic killer.