The Art of Playing Multiple Characters in the Movies and on TV

Acting is an art form that many movie and television viewers take for granted. The amazing TV shows and movies that we’re able to watch are held heavily upon the skill of the actors. It’s very hard to act as a character in a movie or TV, but it’s even harder to act as multiple characters. There are very few who can really nail this. The ones who’re able to pull it off have gone down in history as some of the funniest and most well-rounded actors audiences around the world have ever seen.

Robin Williams played an amazing role in the movie Mrs. Doubtfire when he dressed up as an older woman in order to see his children after a nasty divorce. This showed the amazing contrast of characters that Robin Williams could bring out in his acting. In this movie you know that Williams’ character is dressing up as a woman but you almost forget that they’re the same character. This is remembered as one of Robin’s best movies due to the amazing dual acting that is performed in this movie.

John Cleese is known to be one of the funniest comedians to ever grace TV and Film. He’s best known for his work with Monty Python. The full-length Monty Python and the Holy Grail happens to be one of the most critically acclaimed comedic films of all-time. Cleese played the roles of The Black Night, Sir Lancelot The Brave, The Taunting French Guard, and Tim The Enchanter. The amazing thing about this acting performance is that many viewers would never know that all of these roles are being played by one person unless you were to point it out to them.

Martin Lawrence is known for his comedic styles both on television and on the big screen. And since we’re talking about multiple roles, the show Martin comes to mind. He played eight characters on the show that ran from 1992-1997. His two most notable characters he played, besides himself of course, were Sheneneh Jenkins, the stereo-typically flashy Detroit “ghetto girl” who was the owner of a hair salon, and Mama Pain, who was Martin’s loud-mouth mother. These characters and others had personalities of their own that Martin was able to play to a tee. On the big screen, who can forget him playing the role of a cop and Big Momma in Big Momma’s House.

Eddie Murphy has been very good at playing different characters in a movie for a long time now. He was first most notably recognized for this skill when he was playing the role of the Nutty Professor. He played perfectly into the dichotomy of a self-conscious overweight professor who overnight turns into a charismatic sexy ladies man. It was so good, that Hollywood made a sequel for it. He also plays the role well in Bowfinger of an A-lister famous action star Kit Ramsey and his nobody brother Kip. Eddie also played multiple characters in the movie Coming To America as well as Norbit. This shows his mastery of the art of acting and comedy.

Mike Myers is quite possibly the best multiple role actor in the entertainment industry. The success of the Austin Powers trilogy was greatly dependent on the characters that he created. Austin Powers and Doctor Evil were the two characters that Mike Myers played in the first Austin Powers. In the second Austin Powers movie, Myers raised the stakes and played Doctor Evil, Austin Powers, and Fat Bastard. In the third movie, he took it one more level and played Austin Powers, Fat Bastard, Doctor Evil, and Goldmember. Myers will be remembered as one of best comedic actors due to his amazing success in the Austin Powers movies.

So as you can see, these actors have made a career of playing multiple parts in the movies they starred in. And not only have they made it a career, they have set the bar higher for Hollywood and the next generation of actors to really start thinking outside the box for how to make movies and TV shows  more enjoyable for audience around the world.

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