[[quoteright:342:[[Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/t2guardtwins.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:342:Watch out, Don Stanton. Dan Stanton is about to kill you in five seconds.[[note]]On the left is Don Stanton as Lewis, the hospital security guard. In the background is twin Dan Stanton playing the T-1000 mimicking Lewis.[[/note]]]]

If you want to pull out some kind of {{doppelganger}} in an episode of TV, the ideal way to achieve it would of course be to bring in a whole other actor who just happens to look exactly like the actor you're duplicating. Unfortunately, actors typically don't have identical twins hanging around.

But hey, sometimes they do! Twins have a certain advantage when it comes to getting in movies and TV. For one, child labor laws limit the amount of filming a kid can do in a single day. When you've used one kid to the daily quota, there's always the backup kid. This trope is practically the rule with babies since they obviously can't follow stage direction; one might be better at sitting still when they need him to, whereas the other might be a little better at interacting with others. Also, identical twins make excellent doubles, which works even if the twin isn't an actor.

Not to be confused with BackupTwin. Nor is the title referring to TwinThreesomeFantasy.

The opposite of PlayingTheirOwnTwin.



[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* ''Film/Terminator2JudgmentDay'':
** There is a shot where Sarah Connor appears on screen at the same time as the T-1000 is mimicking her. This shot was achieved using Creator/LindaHamilton's twin sister Leslie Hamilton Gearren as the T-1000. Apparently the filmmakers were not aware until production commenced that Hamilton had a twin because the original plans were to use ''Film/BackToTheFuturePartII''-style camera tricks and film editing.
** Leslie is also used in a DeletedScene that appears to show Schwarzenegger in a mirror while Hamilton is [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yeL0xdVTy_g working on the inside of his head]]; this was actually a clever set piece done entirely without camera effects through the use of an empty mirror frame, where Linda operates on a Schwarzenegger dummy with an open robotic skull on one side, while Leslie [[MirrorRoutine mirrors her movements]] on the other side with the real Schwarzenegger.
** They also use Leslie in Sarah's dream sequence. In fact, is is THIS sequence for which the twin was considered absolutely necessary. They had no idea how to do it, until she revealed she had a twin!
** Real-life twins Don and Dan Stanton are used for a sequence where one plays a mental hospital security guard and the other plays the T-1000 mimicking him at the same time.
* Don and Dan Stanton also played two scientist twins in ''Film/Gremlins2TheNewBatch'', and had a minor part (a cameo, basically) in ''Film/GoodMorningVietnam''.
* ''Film/XMenFilmSeries'':
** Amusingly enough averted in ''Film/XMen1''. Mystique impersonates Bobby "Iceman" Drake (Shawn Ashmore), and in one scene, the real Iceman walks by a door shortly before the fake Iceman comes out of it. Director Bryan Singer states in the commentary that he didn't know he'd managed to hire somebody with an identical twin who could easily have played the double and went to the bother of doing two takes spliced together.
** They did make use of twins in ''Film/X2XMenUnited'' though, when Mystique walked past the janitor while doing some undercover work.
* Funnily enough, Aaron Ashmore (Jimmy Olsen) had the part of BOTH twins in a movie called ''Film/MyBrothersKeeper'', while they used Shawn for stuntwork.
* Creator/PenelopeCruz's younger sister Mónica (who looks exactly like her) was used as her double in ''Film/PiratesOfTheCaribbeanOnStrangerTides'' to [[HideYourPregnancy hide Penelope's pregnancy]].
* ''Seventeen Again'' (a 2000 Creator/{{Showtime}} movie, not to be confused with ''Film/SeventeenAgain''): The entire plot is that the grandmother is [[FountainOfYouth rascalized]]... and becomes the [[IdenticalGrandson spitting image of her granddaughter]], played by Tia Mowry. The rascalized grandma, naturally, is then played by Tamera Mowry, Tia's twin sister. (And just for kicks, the granddaughter's younger brother is played by...the twins' younger brother Tahj.)
* Used UpToEleven in ''Film/TheMatrix''. When Morpheus is taking Neo through the Agent Training Program (the "woman in the red dress" scene), you might think you just saw the same extras walk by the camera twice, with each pair wearing identical outfits. Those are real pairs of twins. No CGI of any kind. The in-universe explanation is that Mouse got lazy while creating the program that he just created half the crowd and copy-pasted it rather than code unique characters.
* For the TV movie ''I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus'', Cole and Dylan Sprouse alternated playing the main kid in order to get the film finished quicker without breaking child labor laws.
* Also, both play the role of Julian in ''Film/BigDaddy''.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* In ''Series/SonsOfAnarchy'', Abel Teller is portrayed by twins Ryder and Evan Londo.
* ''Series/BuffyTheVampireSlayer'':
** In "The Replacement", Xander is split into the strongest and weakest elements of his personality. Nicholas Brendon's twin Kelly Donovan guest starred -- but was only included when they had to be in the same shot together, due to the fact that Kelly Donovan isn't (primarily) an actor.
** Also, Nicholas Brendan was so sick in "Intervention" that Kelly played Xander for his fight scene. He went on to be Nicholas's stand-in throughout the rest of the series.
* ''Series/{{Charmed}}'': Young Wyatt Halliwell was played by the twin actors Jason and Kristopher Simmons, throughout his run in the series, exempt only in the cases of his older, future self appearing.
* ''Series/{{Dollhouse}}'': in "The Attic", Creator/EnverGjokaj's non-actor twin was used in a dream where Victor had to continually fight an enemy version of himself.
* ''Series/{{Sliders}}'': For three episodes, Rembrandt's double was played by Cleavant Derricks' twin Clinton Derricks-Carroll. In the first of these, they actually looked so different that it was preposterous Rembrandt's friends could get them confused. (The show even included a cringeworthy "how'd they do that?" scene with the doubles repeatedly circling each other in awe and touching each other's faces.) In the second, makeup made them sufficiently indistinguishable that they traded roles for the final scene, with Clinton playing the Rembrandt who slides away with the group. Few viewers noticed. In the low-budget Sci-Fi Channel seasons, Cleavant played all the Rembrandts.
* ''Series/FullHouse'': Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen spent eight years alternating in the role of Michelle, for the standard child labor law workaround. They were on screen simultaneously several times: a nightmare scene where Uncle Jesse sees two Michelles, an identical distant cousin visiting from Greece, a GoodAngelBadAngel scenario, and a dream sequence in the final episode when Michelle had amnesia and the other Michelle represented the memories that she'd forgotten.
** Throughout seasons 1 to 7, the part of Michelle Tanner was credited to "Mary-Kate Ashley Olsen", leading many audience members to believe that there was in fact only one girl. In season 8, the credits were finally changed to say "and Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen as Michelle".
** Mary-Kate and Ashley now say that when they watch old episodes from the earliest seasons, they can't actually tell which of them is actually in the scene.
* In ''Series/CoronationStreet'', the role of Bethany Platt was played by twins Amy and Emily Walton until the end of her first stint in 2007. The two girls were briefly seen together in a Christmas pantomime the show's cast put on.
* ''Series/BigBrother'': Reality TV example: In the Australian Big Brother house, a pair of twins posed as one housemate and would swap in and out at Big Bro's command. This happened in two seasons of the American version as well.
* In ''Series/FullerHouse'' baby Tommy is played by twins Dashiell and Fox Messitt.
* ''Series/{{Animorphs}}'': Jake (Shawn Ashmore) gets taken over by a Yeerk. The team needs a fake Jake while he recovers from the infestation. Ax morphs into Jake, a role played by the actor's twin Aaron. ''Far'' from the last time these two would be in the same show.
* ''Series/JukenSentaiGekiranger'' had an episode where the [=MOTD=] creates an EvilTwin of [=GekiBlue=], who was played by Creator/ManpeiTakagi's identical twin brother, [[Creator/ShinpeiTakagi Shinpei]]. These two have a habit of showing up in each other's shows.
** Averted in the counterpart series ''Series/PowerRangersJungleFury'', where Blue Ranger Theo's twin brother Luen stops by for a visit, but both are played by Aljin Abella.
* In episode 25 of ''Series/GoseiSentaiDairanger'', when the Dairangers fought evil clones of themselves, Kazu's evil clone was played by Daisuke Tsuchiya, the real-life twin brother of Kazu's actor, Keisuke Tsuchiya. The roles were later inverted in ''Series/JuukouBFighter'', where Daisuke was the main hero (Blue Beet), while Keisuke played his evil twin (Black Beet).
* When Jill Hennessey of ''Series/LawAndOrder'' was playing Claire Kincaid on a crossover with ''Series/HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'', she was mostly absent from the ''L&O'' set in New York. The producers brought her identical twin sister Jacqueline -- an occasional actress -- in to play Claire in the episode "Corpus Delicti" in wide shots, reaction shots and inserts, while Jill still filmed the dialogue scenes.
* A 2008 Australian children's serial called ''Double Trouble'' featured a ''[[Film/TheParentTrap Parent Trap]]''-style plot of twins separated at birth meeting by chance and pulling a TwinSwitch. However, instead of Hayley Mills or Lindsay Lohan doubling up, the series featured real twins Christine and Cassandra Glenn as the two girls, meaning there are noticeable differences between them.
* In 1977, a year after Deirdre Hall began playing Dr Marlena Evans on ''Series/DaysOfOurLives'', her twin sister Andrea was brought in to play Marlena's twin Samantha. Samantha was later killed off, but Andrea Hall again returned to the show to play Marlena's doppelganger Hattie from 2000-2001.
* The [[Creator/SidAndMartyKrofftProductions Sid and Marty Krofft]] show ''Series/ElectraWomanAndDynaGirl'' did an episode where the evil Spider Lady turns herself into a look-alike of Electra-Woman. Once again, Deirdre Hall was Electra-Woman, while the Spider Lady doppelganger was played by Andrea Hall.
* Mexican telenovela ''La Usurpadora'' used actress Gabriela Spanic's twin sister Daniela for a fight scene and a few other scenes that would have been tricky to film with one actress alone.
* ''Scoundrels'' inverted, Patrick Flueger plays both Cal and Logan West. Coincidentally, they don't appear in many scenes together.
* An episode of ''Series/TheLatestBuzz'' involves Amanda dating a guy who looks exactly like Wilder, naturally he was played by Munro Chamber's twin.
* In the ''Series/AreYouAfraidOfTheDark'' episode "The Tale of the Chameleons," the story involved a chameleon who turns into a evil doppleganger of a teenage girl and tries to kill her and steal her life. Who else would they get but Tia and Tamera Mowry?
* The Mowry twins actually subvert this in ''Series/StrongMedicine''. Dr. Kayla Thornton, the local ex-TeenGenius HospitalHottie (Tamera), ''does'' have a twin named Kesha (Tia), but she only appears once in the plot. [[spoiler:And Kesha turns out to be TheOphelia, contrasting with SugarAndIceGirl Kayla.]]
* Done in ''Series/HouseOfAnubis'' where Jade Ramsey's twin, Nikita, was brought into the show for a few episodes to play Patricia's identical, yet [[PolarOppositeTwins completely opposite]] twin sister, Piper.
* In ''Series/OrangeIsTheNewBlack'', Laverne Cox's twin brother M Lamar plays her character before her [[{{Transgender}} transition from male to female]]. Apparently Cox was willing to do the pre-transition scenes herself, but the producers weren't comfortable with making her do that and the problem was solved when they found out about her brother.
* ''Series/{{Smallville}}'', where Aaron Ashmore plays Jimmy Olsen, and Shawn Ashmore (who played a [[VillainOfTheWeek Meteor Freak-of-the-Week]] in the early seasons) makes the occasional double work possible.
* An episode of ''Series/Warehouse13'' was to involve Aaron and Shawn Ashmore, thanks to an artifact splitting Aaron's character into two people, but Shawn was unavailable when it came time to shoot the episode, so Aaron had to handle both roles by himself.
* An episode of ''{{Series/Roswell}}'' had shapeshifter Nasedo disguise himself as an FBI agent played by Gunnar Clancey. When the two were briefly seen together, Gunnar's twin brother Bo was used.
* ''Franchise/StarTrek'': in ''I, Mudd'', Alyce Andrece played Alice #1 through #250, while Rhae Andrece played Alice 251 through 500. Similarly Ted and Tom [=LeGarde=] played the Herman series, Colleen and Maureen Thornton played the Barbara Series, and Starr and Tamara Wilson played the Maisie Series.
* In the ''Series/{{Monk}}'' episode "Mr. Monk and the Kid", Tommy was played by twin brothers Preston and Trevor Shores.
* Used for a very clever visual effect in ''Series/TheTwilightZone1959'' episode "A Passage for Trumpet". Joey Crown (Jack Klugman) thought he was dead and wandering the world as a ghost when he saw a full-length mirror next to a theater ticket booth. He saw the reflection of the girl in the ticket booth, but not his own reflection. The set designers built the set so it had two identical theater entrances, only one was reversed as a mirror image, with a pane of clear glass between them. The girl in the ticket booth was played by twins, one in the "real world" and one in the "reflection".
* In ''Series/YesDear'', Anthony and Michael Bain alternated as the role of Sammy Warner. In TheStinger for the episode, "Headshot", both Anthony and Michael are shown when all four adult characters confess to having "broken" Sammy, and Jimmy and Christine [[ReplacementGoldfish replace Sammy with an identical child]] and throw the "broken" Sammy out to the curb.
* In the ''Series/OuterLimits'' episode "In Another Life", the [[AlternateUniverse multiple versions]] of Mason Stark are played by the twin actors Matthew and Mitchell Laurance.

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* While not actually a twin, wrestler Kurt Angle's older brother Eric looks quite a lot like him and is also a wrestler. On several occasions, WWE pulled a "switched Angles" plotline to let Kurt cheat his way to victory while his opponent was cluelessly attacking Eric.
* Also there's the Bella Twins, Brie and Nikki. Brie debuted first and, whenever she was in trouble, she rolled under the ring to let Nikki finish the match. Now they wrestle as a tag team. The twins revealed in an interview that in the early days when only Brie was wrestling regularly, sometimes Nikki would pretend to be her and go out and wrestle the match as her. They later revealed in another interview that one sister once had to break up with her boyfriend but couldn't go through with it, so the other sister did it in her place.
** Possibly subverted during a match with Maryse: Brie was hurt, so Nikki pulled her sister out of the ring while the ref was busy chastising Maryse. Maryse saw the switch and nailed Nikki with a [[FinishingMove French Kiss]].
** Parodied in a match where the twins wrestled Maryse and Wrestling/JillianHall. Jillian rolled Maryse out of the ring and lay down in her place attempting to pull the switch. Of course Jillian and Maryse aren't twins and the ref wasn't fooled.
** Became an issue in 2015; in the years since returning to the roster, Brie and Nikki no longer look identical; Nikki had breast implants, Brie got tattoos(though they aren't always noticeable due to their placement), the two have different work out regiments leading to different musculature, they have different hair colors, and they wear outfits made of different materials, making it very easy to tell the two apart, so fans called hijinks when the two managed to pull off "twin magic" against Wrestling/{{Paige}} and WWE expected everyone to buy it. WWE tried to address this a few weeks later in the rematch where they try twin magic again and it appears to backfire with Brie getting pinned, only to reveal the switch by showing that she's stuffed her bra, but given the other differences between them, it's still sketchy.
* When the Wrestling/{{WWE}} acquired Dave Hebner's twin brother Earl from NWA, the creative got an idea where Ted [=DiBiase=] would hire Earl to impersonate Dave in order to screw Hulk Hogan out of the title. Thus, the infamous EvilTwin Referee match was born.
* Another not actually a twin example, the wrestling team "The Killer Bees" often donned their masks at the end of a match so that they could swap without using a tag and not have the referee realise the wrong man was in the ring.
* Irish wrestler Kasey Owens frequently would have her twin sister Leah hide under the ring and swap places with her to win matches. They don't do it regularly though as Kasey frequently alternates between brown and red hair, and Leah has a different set of tattoos.

* Former professional baseball player and known goofball Jose Canseco once tried to have his twin brother Ozzie [[http://sports.espn.go.com/sports/boxing/news/story?id=6265329 take his place]] at a celebrity boxing match.
* Mario Andretti qualifies in second place for the 1969 Indy 500, then while practicing crashes and suffers facial burns (fortunately, much more common then than now). His injuries don't affect his plans to race, but they do affect the traditional front row photo, where the top three qualifiers pose in their cars. No problem, just get twin brother Aldo to pose in your place. Fellow front-row qualifiers A.J. Foyt and Bobby Unser ''don't even notice the stand-in''. Oh yeah, he went on to win the race.

* Without [[{{Spoiler}} spoiling the actual illusions]], let's just say that {{stage magician}}s employ a ''lot'' of twins for their "[[LovelyAssistant lovely assistants]]."

[[folder:Visual Novels]]
* ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneySpiritOfJustice'' has an In-Universe example. [[spoiler:In the second case, StageMagician Bonny De Famme is famous for her teleportation act. She pulls it off due to having a twin sister, Betty. Naturally you end up having to expose this in court when the "Bonny" testifying turns out to be Betty.]]

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* Semi-example; when Music/TheWho made a guest appearance as themselves on ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', Pete Townshend had a sore throat and wasn't able to read his lines, so his soundalike younger brother, Simon Townshend, read the lines on his behalf.
* Tom Hank's younger brother Jim Hanks would often take over his voice roles from the spinoffs and video games of both ''WesternAnimation/ToyStory'' and ''WesternAnimation/ThePolarExpress''.
* {{Implied}} InUniverse on ''WesternAnimation/TheClevelandShow:'' their fake LiveEpisode had all the {{Animated Actor}}s come out at the end, with two Rollos.

[[folder:Real Life]]
* Perhaps the coolest thing of all, '''NASA''' is getting in on this in 2015, sending astronaut Scott Kelly to space for a year while they use his identical brother and former-astronaut Mark on Earth as a control for data.