->''"Creator/SeanConnery elevates everything he's in... Except like, you know, [[Film/HighlanderIITheQuickening that one movie]] [[FanonDiscontinuity we don't talk about.]] And ''Film/{{Zardoz}}'', I guess."''
-->-- '''The Spoony One''', ''WebVideo/TheSpoonyExperiment''

A subtrope of the "RuleOfCool". This is about actors who make movies cooler or better just by their mere presence in them.


[[folder: Creator/Sean Connery: ]]
A = Movie's Awesomeness Factor without Sean Connery\\
B = Awesomeness Multiplier of Sean Connery = 100\\
C = Movie's Actual Awesomeness Factor\\
If Sean Connery is in the movie then C = BA = 100A, otherwise A=C.


[[folder: Creator/Nicolas Cage aka The Great Variable: ]]
A = Movie's Awesomeness Factor without Nicolas Cage\\
B = Awesomeness Multiplier of Nicolas Cage = ±5\\
C = Movie's Actual Awesomeness Factor\\
If Nicolas Cage is in the movie then C = BA = ±5A, otherwise A=C

!Connery Factors (Your mileage WILL vary with all of these)

* ''Film/TheLeagueOfExtraordinaryGentlemen''... It may be InNameOnly, but '''Creator/SeanConnery''' single-handedly raises it from an F to a C+.
** ''Film/IndianaJonesAndTheLastCrusade'', '''Creator/SeanConnery''' as Indiana Jones' ''dad''? AWESOME! And despite he's clumsier and an AbsentMindedProfessor, it doesn't mean he gets [[TookALevelInBadass a few levels in badass]].
** ''Film/TheHuntForRedOctober''.
--->'''Captain Ramius:''' We will pass through the American patrols, past their sonar nets, and lay off their largest city, and listen to their rock and roll... while we conduct missile drills.\\
'''Captain Ramius:''' You're afraid of our fleet. Well, you should be. Personally, I'd give us one chance in three. More tea anyone?
** ''Film/JamesBond'': More than 50 years later, every actor who followed him as 007 continues to be measured by the standard Connery set.
** ''Film/FindingForrester'': "[[MemeticMutation You're the man now, dog!]]"
** ''Film/{{Dragonheart}}'': It's Mr. Connery voicing a huge fire breathing dragon. '''''YESH!'''''
** ''Film/TheUntouchables''. Let's face it, not even [[OohMeAccentsSlipping terrible]] or [[NotEvenBotheringWithTheAccent nonexistent accents]] can diminish his awesomeness multiplier. Oscar voters agreed. (See also ''Film/TheHuntForRedOctober'' and ''Film/{{Highlander}}''.)
--->'''Mobster:''' You gotta warrant?\\
'''Jim Malone:''' Sure, here's my warrant. ''[punches him in the stomach]''
** ''Film/{{Highlander}}''... and ''Film/HighlanderIITheQuickening''. If it existed.
** ''Film/TimeBandits'': Agamemnon was never so freakin' awesome. WordOfGod states that the script notes for Agamemnon called for [[PoorMansSubstitute a Sean Connery-looking actor the production could afford]]. After reading the script Connery was so amused by the comment he agreed to do the role at a reduced rate.
** ''Film/{{Marnie}}'' : [[Creator/AlfredHitchcock Good evening. I'm Sean Connery]].
** [[SoBadItsGood Hell, even]] ''Film/{{Zardoz}}''.
** ''Film/ABridgeTooFar'' shows you what happens when you multiply Connery by Hopkins and raise it to the Hackman.
** "Welcome to ''Film/TheRock''!" The only Creator/MichaelBay movie people and critics admit on liking, and also notable as having wildcard Creator/NicolasCage come out as a positive factor.
** [[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1552111/ Sir Billi]]... is an exception.
** ''Film/FirstKnight'': Sean Connery as KingArthur? Forgettable movie, but still awesome.
** ''WesternAnimation/TheThiefAndTheCobbler'': The original director's workprint portrays the titular cobbler Tack as a HeroicMime until the end of the movie. Connery provided vocals for that line.
** For an example of how the absence of Connery can negatively impact a film, see ''Film/StarTrekVTheFinalFrontier''. Spock's brother, Sybok, was originally to have been played by Connery. When he declined they made do by casting a near-lookalike and naming a planet "Sha-Ka-Ree" as an in-joke. Today reviled by Trekkies as one of the worst ''Trek'' films, one wonders what impact Connery's presence would have had.
** ''Film/TheAvengers1998'' Sean ''original Bond'' Connery as an absolutely over the top Bond villain..
** One wonders about the impact on ''[[Disney/DarbyOGillandtheLittlePeople Darby O'Gill and the Little People]]'' of Sean Connery and his singing, given that Connery's type hadn't yet been established in film.

!Other Actors Full of Awesome


* '''Creator/JulieAndrews'''
* '''Creator/TomBaker'''. Not just as the [[Series/DoctorWho Fourth Doctor and the Curator]], but also as [[Series/BlackAdder Captain Redbeard Rum]].
* '''Creator/ChristianBale''', no one could have been a better [[Film/AmericanPsycho Bateman]] or a better [[Film/TheDarkKnightSaga Batman]].
** Many otherwise admirers of ''Film/TheDarkKnight'' think little of his acting as Batman, [[{{Narm}} particularly voice-wise]].
* '''Creator/CateBlanchett''': The ultimate [[ManOfAThousandFaces Woman of a Thousand Faces]].
** Especially if she's playing a [[TheHighQueen beautiful, powerful]] and [[GodSaveUsFromTheQueen occasionally terrifying]] queen, whether that be the [[Film/TheLordOfTheRings Queen of the Elves]], the [[Film/{{Elizabeth}} Queen of England]] or even the freaking [[Film/ThorRagnarok Queen of the Underworld]].
* '''Creator/SeanBean''': To truly get an idea of his greatness, see [[http://web.archive.org/web/20081219185129/http://uncyclopedia.wikia.com/wiki/Sean_Bean this article]].
* '''Music/TheBeatles''', either solo or as individuals. Often an appearance or starring role by Music/RingoStarr or Music/JohnLennon is the best part of many films.
** Not to mention music-wise, of course. Featuring Music/PaulMcCartney and Music/GeorgeHarrison in your song is always an advantage!
* '''Creator/BrianBlessed''' is just ''SO'' [[LargeHam hammy]] that any movie he is in is ''automatically'' awesome. Even in Kenneth Branagh's Hamlet, in which he only ever whispers, he helps it.
* '''Creator/ClancyBrown''' -- no matter what he is in, it is automatically rendered awesome by his mere presence.
* '''Creator/HumphreyBogart''' actually rivals Connery for dominion over this trope if you go back and watch his less famous roles. ''Tokyo Joe'', for example, is an absolutely horrible ''Film/{{Casablanca}}'' retread with awful casting and a terrible script, yet Bogart somehow elevates it from "garbage" to "wow, that was pretty decent." ''The Two Mrs. Carrolls'' is another example, although even Bogie can only drag that wreck so far (though you still won't regret watching it). On a more positive note, he took ''Film/TheCaineMutiny'' from a good-but-forgettable war movie to an Oscar nominated masterpiece, and he did it with what, twenty minutes of screen time? If that?
** He got the part in ''The Petrified Forest'' because he'd played the role on Broadway, and was so good that leading man Leslie Howard wouldn't make the movie unless they cast Bogie. He of course nailed it so well that he immediately became the go-to guy to play tough villains in Hollywood until ''Film/TheMalteseFalcon'' bailed him out of his TypeCasting.
** Bogart wasn't named the Greatest Movie star of All-Time by the AFI for nothing. Even when he played supporting roles, he elevated mostly forgettable films into must see viewing.
* '''Creator/HelenaBonhamCarter''', who occasionally has her awesomeness multiplied by [[WesternAnimation/CorpseBride working with]] [[Film/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet Tim Burton]]. Also see her awesomeness as she plays an [[Film/HarryPotter insane witch.]]
* '''Music/DavidBowie''', even if it's just for [[OneSceneWonder one scene]].
** [[Film/TheLastTemptationOfChrist In one Pontius scene]].
** He [[MadeOfWin played]] [[UsefulNotes/NikolaTesla Nikola]] [[Film/ThePrestige Tesla]]. For 16 minutes. And it was ''[[MomentOfAwesome awesome]]''.
** His portrayal of [[Film/{{Labyrinth}} the Goblin King]] is forever burned into the world's collective memories.
* '''Creator/MarlonBrando''': Even when he was [[JerkAss behaving like a dick]], demanding [[MoneyDearBoy exorbitant salaries]], or [[InsufferableGenius eulogizing about his own awesomeness]], he delivered a whole new level of oomph to just about every film he was in.
** Brando's standout example was [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0JrK4gnNqOU his ten-minute scene]] in ''Film/ApocalypseNow'' - for which he demanded ''$3.5 million dollars!'' He showed up to play the AuthorityEqualsAsskicking warlord at the last minute at least a dozen pounds overweight and drunk as a fish - '''They had to have another actor play him for far-off shots.''' His scene was one long CloseUpOnHead, FaceFramedInShadow. '''''[[TropesAreNotBad And he owns the movie!]]'''''
*** So much that most of the added scenes in the ''Redux'' version feature him, including well-lit full body appearances!
* '''Ewen Bremner''': Anytime he shows up in a film, you KNOW he's going to do something interesting (and probably hilarious).
** On the other hand, however, ''Film/AVPAlienVsPredator'' exists.
* '''Creator/JeffBridges''':
** [[Film/TheBigLebowski "Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, uh, your opinion, man."]]
** [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UCmeQaXuFig JEFF BRIDGES!]]
* '''Creator/CharlesBronson''': Many of his films are just him staring people coldly before shooting them, but that's all that is needed.
* '''Creator/PierceBrosnan''': widely considered the definitive Film/JamesBond after the trope namer. Even if the Bond movies he did after ''Film/GoldenEye'' weren't that well written, Brosnan in the very least made them watchable, if not more so. And then there's [[Series/RemingtonSteele his]] [[Film/TheThomasCrownAffair other]] [[Film/TheTailorOfPanama work]].
* '''Creator/SteveBuscemi''':
** Multiply by 10 if he's working with Creator/TheCoenBrothers.
*** Or Quentin Tarantino.
* '''Creator/MichaelCaine''':
** Multiply him by the trope namer and you get a [[Film/TheManWhoWouldBeKing golden crown]]
* '''Creator/BruceCampbell''':
** "Hail to the king, baby."
** ''Assault on Dome 4'' is a forgettable low-budget [[DieHardOnAnX 'Die Hard on a scientific facility on another planet']] TV movie with your average hero. Bruce playing the villain makes you simply wanna [[RootingForTheEmpire root for him]].
* '''Creator/PeterCapaldi''' as of summer 2014 showed every sign of this. Even before his first full episode as the The Doctor in ''Series/DoctorWho'' aired, he was already being acclaimed as Best Doctor Ever.
** Even before he became the eponymous Time Lord, he was elevating works he was in. Whether it's playing the villainous Cardinal Richelieu in a 2014 [[Series/TheMusketeers BBC adaptation]] of ''Literature/TheThreeMusketeers'', dropping cluster f-bombs in [[Series/TheThickOfIt Whitehall]] and [[Film/InTheLoop abroad]] or even just trying to help [[Film/WorldWarZ Brad Pitt survive the Zombie Apocalypse,]] Mr. Capaldi makes anything he's a part of that much better by his presence.
* '''Creator/JessicaChastain''': She can be a [[Film/TheHelp dumb blonde with a heart of gold]], [[Film/{{Interstellar}} throw papers out of a glorious]] ''[[EurekaMoment eureka]]''; and tell in front of James ''[[Series/TheSopranos "Tony Soprano"]]'' Gandolfini, [[Creator/JohnBarrowman Jack]] [[Series/{{Torchwood}} Harness]] and Creator/MarkStrong that she was the ''[[BadassBoast motherfucker]]'' [[Film/ZeroDarkThirty who found]] [[UsefulNotes/OsamaBinLaden this place]].
* '''Creator/JohnCandy''', the man who reeks of comic gold and silvery awesomeness.
** ''{{Volunteers}}'', especially his interrogation by the Thailand Commies before he's brainwashed. ([[{{Irony}} "That will be]] [[GilliganCut a challenge."]])
** ''Film/{{Splash}}''.
** ''Film/{{Spaceballs}}''.
** ''Film/SummerRental''. ([[MakesSenseInContext "I'd take those over a power tool any day."]])
** ''UncleBuck''. Oh god, Uncle Buck.
*** "Nyi-hi-hi-hi-hi-hi ... ever heard of a ritual killing" (beat) "nyi-hi-hi-hi-hi-hi."
*** The cordless drill break-in, with the most epic lighting and camera angles ever seen in a John Hughes movie. [[OhCrap Then Buck realizes his mistake]]. But he keeps going. And all without dialogue, carried by John Candy's impeccably-timed facial expressions.
** ''Film/{{JFK}}'', even though he's a bad guy. ("I was on drugs at the hospital.")
** [[Film/PlanesTrainsAndAutomobiles Those aren't PILLOWS!!!!!!!!!!11111111oneoneoneone]]
* '''Creator/JamesCagney'''
* '''David Carradine'''
* '''Creator/JimCarrey''', whether it be [[Film/TheMask comedies]], [[Film/TheTrumanShow dramas]], or [[Film/KickAss2 action movies]], Carrey always brings enjoyment.
* '''Creator/GeorgeClooney''': He even makes it through ''Film/BatmanAndRobin'' somewhat dignified, in contrast to the villains [[ChewingTheScenery overacting down in every scene of theirs.]]
* '''Creator/JamesCoburn''' He made ''Film/HighRisk'', a subpar action/drug comedy, decent for the twenty minutes or so he's in it. Not to mention his roles in good movies like ''Film/AFistfulOfDynamite'' and ''Film/CrossOfIron''.
* '''Creator/JeffreyCombs'''
* '''Creator/JenniferCoolidge''' (aka [[Film/AmericanPie Stifler's mom]]): A LargeHam with a hefty dose of NarmCharm, she tends to steal every scene she's in.
* '''Creator/KevinCostner'''. He makes great westerns, and helps films such as ''Film/{{JFK}}'' and he shared protagonism with the very Connery in ''Film/TheUntouchables'', who served him as a mentor figure.
* '''Creator/BryanCranston'''
** He appears as (initially) the OnlySaneMan in ''Film/{{Godzilla 2014}}''. Convinced that the earthquake in 1999 that resulted in a near-meltdown at the power plant he was in (which also caused [[spoiler:the death of his wife]]) was caused by a creature, Cranston's characterization of Joe Brody runs rings around the rest of the cast, so much so that he's a featured part of the advertising (however, that's to [[spoiler:cover up [[DeadStarWalking his death 40 minutes into the film]]]]). In fact, a common criticism of the film is that the rest of the cast just can't measure up to him when he leaves, and the rest of the film suffers as a result.
* '''Creator/RussellCrowe'''
* '''Creator/BenedictCumberbatch'''
* '''Creator/AlanCumming'''. Bonus points [[Film/X2XMenUnited if he's blue]]. Even more points if [[WesternAnimation/StrangeMagic he's]] [[Film/ReeferMadnessTheMusical singing.]]
* '''Creator/TimCurry'''. [[Film/TheRockyHorrorPictureShow He can sing!]] [[Literature/{{It}} He can terrify!]] [[WesternAnimation/TheWildThornberrys He can]] [[https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Wwj0tuvoi0 do THIS]] [[WesternAnimation/TheWildThornberrys with his hands!]]
* '''Creator/PeterCushing'''
* '''Creator/WillemDafoe'''
** Even in that [[Film/SpiderMan1 ridiculous outfit]].
** And especially in [[Film/TheBoondockSaints that other ridiculous outfit]].
** And doubly so in [[Film/StreetsOfFire that other ridiculous outfit]].
** Or even [[WesternAnimation/FindingNemo as a fish]].
** Or as an [[Film/TheGrandBudapestHotel assassin]] who follows Creator/AdrienBrody's orders.
** Or as an [[Film/JohnWick assassin]] who used to hang out with Creator/KeanuReeves.
* '''Creator/CharlesDance''' Whatever your opinion of ''Film/LastActionHero'' may be, there's no denying that he stole the show right out from under the nose of Arnold himself. No small feat.
* '''Creator/TimothyDalton'''
* '''Creator/KeithDavid''': And his voice even more.
* '''Creator/RobertDeNiro'''
* '''Creator/JohnnyDepp'''. Whether he's [[Franchise/PiratesOfTheCaribbean a pirate]], a [[WesternAnimation/{{Rango}} a lizard]], [[Film/FearAndLoathingInLasVegas a drug-addicted journalist]], or [[Film/SweeneyToddTheDemonBarberOfFleetStreet a vengeful barber]], he rarely disappoints with his performances.
* '''Creator/JohnDiMaggio''': Because [[WesternAnimation/{{Futurama}} bite his shiny, metal ass]]. That's why.
* '''Creator/PeterDinklage''', provided he's not talking [[VideoGame/{{Destiny}} about wizards from the moon]].
* '''Creator/VincentDOnofrio''': Name just one bad performance he ever gave in any movie. [[PunctuatedForEmphasis Just. One.]]
* '''Creator/RobertDowneyJr'''. He IS [[Film/IronMan Iron Man.]]

* '''Creator/ClintEastwood''', be it acting or directing.
* '''Creator/IdrisElba''', who from a guest shot on the American version of ''TheOffice'' to Series/{{Luther}} to [[Film/{{Thor}} Heimdall]], and everything in between, will always raise the quality of anything he is in.
** Though he will always be [[Series/TheWire Stringer Bell]] to us.
** If there really ever was a [[{{Film/Thor}} dark-skinned Asgardian]], that deity must have reincarnated as this guy.
* '''Creator/RLeeErmey''' didn't create the DrillSergeantNasty trope, but he certainly codified it to the extent that any DI or "tough coach" in an animated work since ''Movie/FullMetalJacket'' has been voiced by Ermey himself or someone doing their level best to sound like him.
* The English quartet of awesome:
** '''Creator/JudiDench'''
** '''Creator/HelenMirren'''
*** Regarding the film adaptation of ''Film/{{Red}}'', Warren Ellis, author of the original comic, said any and all changes were okay by him, simply because the movie had Helen Mirren with a sniper rifle.
** '''[[IronLady Maggie Smith]]'''
** '''Creator/EmmaThompson'''
* '''Creator/MichaelFassbender'''
* '''Creator/TinaFey''': Even when its just [[WesternAnimation/{{Megamind}} her]] [[Anime/PonyoOnTheCliffByTheSea voice]]...
* '''Creator/NathanFillion'''
* '''Creator/LaurenceFishburne'''
* '''Creator/HarrisonFord''', who is still singled out as a highlight even above the age of 60.
* '''Creator/MartinFreeman'''
* '''Creator/MorganFreeman''', particularly his voice.
* [[Creator/StephenFry 'Cos he's Stephen...Stephen Fry-yyyyyyyy. Yes he's Stephen...super-flyyyy-hiiii...]]
* '''Creator/PaulGiamatti'''
* As pointed by her page, '''Creator/SummerGlau'''.
* '''Creator/JohnGoodman''': The same rule under Steve Buscemi also applies to Mr. Goodman.
* '''Creator/CaryGrant'''
* '''Creator/AlecGuinness''':
** In the case of Guinness (or Peter Sellers), the true Awesomeness number of the film can only be arrived at by multiplying the normal total by the number of roles in the film played by Guinness/Sellers.
* '''Creator/GeneHackman''', who used to work a lot and always make his appearance memorable.
* '''Creator/JackieEarleHaley''': In everything he's made since his 2006 comeback.
* '''Creator/TomHanks'''. Used in-universe in ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsonsMovie'', during a tourist attraction ad: "Hi, I'm Tom Hanks. The American Government has used up all its credibility so it's borrowing some of mine."
* '''Creator/MarciaGayHarden''' makes everything she is in significantly better simply by showing up. Even if it's otherwise a complete turkey.
* '''Creator/EdHarris'''
* '''Creator/NeilPatrickHarris'''
* '''Creator/AnneHathaway'''
* '''Creator/RutgerHauer'''
* '''Creator/AnthonyHopkins''', especially when playing [[Literature/TheSilenceOfTheLambs a certain cannibal]].
* '''Creator/AudreyHepburn'''
* '''Creator/KatharineHepburn''': Was awesome both in movies and in real life.
* '''Creator/WernerHerzog''': Whenever he acts.
* '''Creator/TomHiddleston'''
* '''Creator/DustinHoffman'''
* '''Creator/PhilipSeymourHoffman'''
* '''Creator/JohnHurt''', a classically-trained Shakespearean actor with [[AudioErotica an incredible voice]], lends dignity and panache to every film he's in, no matter how bad.
* '''Holly Hunter'''
* '''Creator/JasonIsaacs'''
* '''Creator/JeremyIrons''': Even in the godawful ''Film/DungeonsAndDragons'', he was the one redeeming factor.
* '''Creator/MichaelIronside'''
* '''Creator/ZeljkoIvanek'''
* '''Creator/EddieIzzard''''s been in some objectively bad movies, but you'd be hard pressed to find even one of them that wasn't better for his presence.
* '''Creator/HughJackman'''. [[Film/XMen Snikt]].
* '''Creator/SamuelLJackson''' is synonymous with awesomeness. [[OldShame Except in]] ''JungleFever''.
* It doesn't seem to matter what '''Creator/AllisonJanney''' is in: she sells it.
** Except for ''[[Creator/SeltzerAndFriedberg Date Movie]]''. But then, ''no one'' could have sold ''Date Movie''.
* '''[[Creator/DwayneJohnson "The Rock"]]''' falls in this list as well, athough being billed as "Dwayne Johnson" is not as lucky. Until ''Film/FastFive'' and ''Film/GIJoeRetaliation'', that is. There's a reason why some movie analysts have coined the term "Franchise Viagra" regarding him.
* '''Creator/AngelinaJolie''': Her bad movies would be much worse without her.
* '''Creator/JamesEarlJones''': The voice.
* '''Creator/TommyLeeJones'''
* '''Creator/RaulJulia''', whose performance in the notoriously awful ''Film/StreetFighter'' movie is widely regarded as the only part of the movie which is truly good (as opposed to merely SoBadItsGood).
** His virtuoso turn as [[Series/TheAddamsFamily Gomez Addams]] is beyond reproach; he didn't make a bad film good, he took what could have been a rough film and polished it to a high sheen.
*** To give an idea of just how iconic his performance as Gomez was, not even ''Tim Curry'' (also appearing on this page) could fill Julia's shoes in the role.
* '''Creator/BorisKarloff''' and/or '''Creator/BelaLugosi'''.
* '''Udo Kier''', who build a career on HamAndCheese.
* '''Frank Langella'''
* '''Creator/HughLaurie'''
* '''Creator/JenniferLawrence'''
* '''Creator/BruceLee'''
* '''Creator/ChristopherLee''': Look no further than ''Film/TheManWithTheGoldenGun'' and ''Film/HowlingIIStirbaWerewolfBitch'' for evidence of how even total crap can be made awesome by his being there (to say nothing of his ''good'' movies, and disputed stuff such as the ''Franchise/StarWars'' prequels).
** Also that he continued soldiering on through the Hammer ''Dracula'' films as they got worse and worse solely because of how many crew jobs the studio reminded him would be lost if they stopped making the films says something for this man's character. Not to mention that he tries his hardest to make each one of them worthwhile.
* '''Creator/ChristopherLloyd''' the best character actor in Hollywood in whatever role he may fall into, whether it's [[Franchise/BackToTheFuture a mad genius going through time or allowing someone else to do so]] [[Series/DeadlyGames or as a videogame devil]] [[Film/OneFlewOverTheCuckoosNest or else as a mad man in a madhouse]] [[Film/TheAddamsFamily or a crazy bald uncle coming back from the Bermuda triangle]] [[WesternAnimation/ThePagemaster or an eccentric librarian]]; whatever his role is, it's awesome thanks to him.
** And particularly [[Film/SuburbanCommando anything in which he]] [[LargeHam was]] [[WebVideo/TheNostalgiaCritic frozen]] [[MemeticMutation today]].
* '''Creator/PeterLorre''' was the master of wit, style, and vaguely sinister Eastern European accents. Inspired a song by Music/TomSmith.

* '''Creator/JohnMalkovich'''
* '''Creator/JamesMarsden'''
* '''Creator/LeeMarvin''': To quote Homer Simpson: "He's ALWAYS drunk and violent!"
* '''Creator/IanMcDiarmid'''
* '''Creator/MalcolmMcDowell'''
* '''Patrick [=McGoohan=]'s''' intense presence (in whatever amount) would considerably lift the awesomeness of whatever production he was in and make you take even the most rubbish lines seriously.
* '''Creator/IanMcKellen'''
* '''Creator/SteveMcQueen'''
* '''Creator/AlfredMolina'''
* '''Ricardo Montalbán'''
* '''Creator/MontyPython members''', collectively, individually or in sections, whether a Python has any input into the writing/directing/producing or not, can certainly be a highlight of many movies. In ''really'' dire productions, they tend to be the ''only'' light!
* '''Creator/ViggoMortensen'''. One need only look at his brief appearance as Satan in [[Film/TheProphecy The Prophecy]], where he may very well have stolen the film from Christopher Walken!
* '''Creator/BillMurray'''
* '''Creator/LiamNeeson'''
* '''Creator/SamNeill'''
* '''Creator/JackNicholson''': Even when he's essentially [[AdamWesting playing himself]], he makes everything better.
* '''Creator/BillNighy''': The best part of many bad films.
* '''Creator/LeonardNimoy''': Even ''VideoGame/{{Civilization}} IV'' improves from his presence!
* '''Creator/NickNolte'''
* '''Creator/MaureenOHara''' Her synergy with Creator/JohnWayne as noted down there.
* '''Creator/PeterOToole'''
* '''Creator/GaryOldman'''
* '''Creator/LaurenceOlivier''': considered to be one of the greatest actors of all time. Despite all the professional success and having the official knight title of Sir Laurence Olivier, [[HumbleHero he always insisted on being called "Larry".]]
* '''Creator/AlPacino'''
* '''Creator/EllenPage'''. Not a lot of people liked ''Film/XMenTheLastStand'', but they did like Kitty Pryde taking down the Juggernaut. This included Bryan Singer, who had to bring Page back as Kitty in ''Film/XMenDaysOfFuturePast''.
* '''Creator/RonPerlman''': Because he's willing to be in anything, it's even easier to get him to elevate your work. Additionally, he's willing to do roles most bigger names wouldn't, like narrating [[{{Fallout}} a little post-apocalyptic RPG]]. One could make a drinking game out of unexpected Ron Perlman.
* '''Creator/JoePesci''': Friend Creator/GeorgeCarlin claimed that he prayed to Joe because he looked like a man that 'could get things done'. If that doesn't say anything about how convincing he is, nothing will.
* '''Creator/PetePostlethwaite''': Creator/StephenSpielberg once called him "the greatest actor in the world" because of his ability to be the absolute best part of even the absolute worst films.
* '''Creator/ChrisPratt''', who has become known for starring in [[WesternAnimation/TheLEGOMovie insanely]] [[Film/GuardiansOfTheGalaxy awesome]] [[Film/JurassicWorld films]] as of late.
* '''Creator/VincentPrice''' Mix carefully with Music/MichaelJackson, and you get [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome Thriller]]!

* '''Dennis Quaid'''. There's the obvious ones like ''Film/EnemyMine'', ''Film/{{Dragonheart}}'', ''The Rookie'' and ''The Special Relationship''. But he delivers even in less universally-praised films like ''Film/TheDayAfterTomorrow'', ''Film/TheFlightOfThePhoenix2004'', ''Film/GIJOETheRiseOfCobra'' or the otherwise so-so ''Wyatt Earp'' where he rivals [[Film/{{Tombstone}} Val Kilmer]] with his rendition of Doc Holliday.
* '''Creator/OliverReed'''. The fact that he is in certain movies is often the most -- or even ''only'' -- notable thing about them.
* '''Creator/JeanReno''': He even made parts of ''Film/{{Godzilla 1998}}'' bearable.
* '''Creator/JeremyRenner''' is becoming this ever since ''Film/TheHurtLocker''.
* '''Creator/AlanRickman''': Really, the only reason to see ''Film/RobinHoodPrinceOfThieves'' is him ChewingTheScenery as the Sheriff Of Nottingham. It's also another example for Creator/SeanConnery, who makes a uncredited cameo right at the end and [[OneSceneWonder steals the scene completely]].
* Anything can be improved with the addition of '''Creator/MarkRuffalo'''. ''Anything''.
-->'''[[http://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/begin-again-2014 Susan Wloszczyna]]''': Basically, a movie canít help but be bettered by the presence of this gloriously hirsute actor with the killer smile, unruly curls and bedroom eyes.
* '''Creator/GeoffreyRush''': Case in point, ''Film/TheWarriorsWay''.
* '''Creator/ArnoldSchwarzenegger'''. Especially if you like a lot of NarmCharm in your films.
** It's been said that only the HamAndCheese performances by him and Creator/UmaThurman put ''Film/BatmanAndRobin'' into SoBadItsGood territory (plus Uma's FanService, of course).
*** He does seem to really be enjoying himself with it. Possibly making him the only one who realized how awful that movie was going to be. His performance of Mr. Freeze was on par with the villains of Adam West's Batman. Probably BETTER than the actual Mr. Freeze actor from the 60s (of which there were three: George Sanders, Otto Preminger[[note]]whom Adam West ''loathed''[[/note]] and Creator/EliWallach).
*** He's also been delivering [[BondOneLiner absurd]] [[PreMortemOneLiner zingers]] for years, so he knew how to pull it off.
*** Especially when he subverts his tough guy roles, like in ''Film/{{Predator}}'', he gets to flex more than just arm muscles.
* '''Creator/JasonSegel''', especially if he is singing or playing music.
* '''Creator/MichaelShannon''', who is right up there with Creator/ChristopherWalken and Creator/OrsonWelles with his ability to [[OneSceneWonder steal a movie simply by showing up]].
* '''Creator/CharlieSheen'''
* '''Creator/MartinSheen''', if his very first scene in ''Series/TheWestWing'' is anything to go by.
* '''Creator/JKSimmons''', [[VideoGame/{{Portal}} even]] [[WesternAnimation/LegendOfKorra if it's just]] [[WesternAnimation/GravityFalls his voice]], but '''especially''' if he's playing [[Film/SpiderManTrilogy a certain comic book newspaper boss whom Spider-Man]] [[Film/{{Whiplash}} isn't quite his tempo]].
* '''Creator/WillSmith''', to many people. ''Film/AfterEarth'' was specially despised for being a movie that wasted whatever improvement Smith could give.
* '''Kang-ho Song'', whose quietly commanding screen presence is worth any movie he so much has a cameo in.
* '''Creator/KevinSpacey'''
* '''Creator/TerenceStamp''' commands you to "[[Film/SupermanII KNEEEEEEL!]]" [[KneelBeforeZod before his awesomeness]].
** Except for [[Film/ThePhantomMenace that one time]] he was utterly wasted by Creator/GeorgeLucas.
* '''Creator/JasonStatham'''
* '''Creator/PatrickStewart'''
* Creator/RogerEbert has what's called the "Stanton-Walsh Rule" which states that nothing featuring '''Creator/HarryDeanStanton''' (''Film/{{Alien}}'', ''Paris, Texas'', ''Repo Man'' and TV's ''Series/BigLove'') or '''M. Emmett Walsh''' (''Film/BloodSimple'', ''Film/TheJerk'', ''Film/BladeRunner'') in a supporting role can be altogether bad. However when ''Film/WildWildWest'' (Walsh) and ''Dream a Little Dream'' (Stanton) came out Ebert had to recant.
** Similarly, movie critic Jeremy Jahns has what he calls the "Strong/Tucci Rule". Named after actors '''Creator/MarkStrong''' and '''Creator/StanleyTucci''', the rule reads that any movie featuring either Strong or Tucci is instantly better than they would be were it not for their participation, and their the two actors are likely going to be the best things about the movie, regardless.
* '''Dean Stockwell'''
* '''Creator/EmmaStone'''
* '''Creator/MerylStreep''' is singlehandedly capable of making any movie she is ever in ''awesome'', by virtue of the fact that she is ''Meryl Frakking Streep''.
** AMPAS (Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences) should just rename the Best Actress award into the Meryl Streep Award and call it a day. She won only 3 of 17 (!) nominations because it would be boring if she just took it every time.
* '''Creator/TildaSwinton''' [[http://ohnotheydidnt.livejournal.com/64047251.html who is a goddess that can do no wrong.]] It's the exact reason she's become obligated to appear in every one of the [[Film/TheChroniclesOfNarnia Narnia movies]] despite her character only being present in two of the books!
* '''Creator/MrT''' pities the foo' who doesn't include him on this list!
* '''Creator/AmandaTapping'''
** Or, for that matter, her ''Series/StargateSG1'' co-star '''Richard Dean Anderson'''. Stargate series aside, there's also a voice-acting turn as himself on ''WesternAnimation/TheSimpsons'', a stint in soap operas, and of course his ''other'' most famous role, Series/MacGyver.
* '''David Thewlis'''
* '''Connor Trinneer''': Even some of the worst episodes of ''Series/StarTrekEnterprise'' are elevated by virtue his presence. That he managed to be the subject of an [[MisterSeahorse M-preg]] episode and still retain some dignity and even bring some genuine pathos to it is a testament to his skill.
** '''Scott Bakula''', '''Dominic Keating''', and '''Jolene Blalock''' as well, all of whom managed to sell some truly atrocious writing during their tenure on ''Enterprise''. It's safe to say that those four carried the show on their exceptionally talented shoulders, and did such a good job of it that they managed to win over a considerable number of fans despite the extremely shaky storytelling. If any one department on ''Enterprise'' hit their job out of the park, it was the casting department.
* '''Creator/KarlUrban''', particularly if he's [[StarTrek a doctor]] or [[Film/{{Dredd}} the law]].

* '''Creator/JeanClaudeVanDamme''', who gives some entertainment to even the worst movies. However, many consider his performance as [[Film/StreetFighter Guile]] to be a massive exception to this rule, indeed -- many think that it's one of the (many, many, many) things wrong with the film.
* '''Music/VladimirVysotsky''' was this for the Soviet Sinema.
* '''Creator/ChristopherWalken''', [[OneSceneWonder full stop]].
** Single-handedly manages to prevent ''Film/AViewToAKill'' from being one of the worst ''Film/JamesBond'' films.
** On the same vein of [[MoneyDearBoy overworked\well-paid]], '''Creator/LanceHenriksen''' and '''Creator/EricRoberts'''.
* '''Creator/EliWallach''' just seemed to make every film better with his mere presence, whether it was because of his distinctive voice, his unconventionally handsome looks or, most of all, the fact that his acting style was more natural than that of his wooden co-stars. He had a weight to him that made him stand out from everyone else around him. He managed to save even his worst films, such as ''The Hunter'' and ''The White, The Yellow, The Black''.
* '''Creator/ChristophWaltz'''
* '''Creator/PatrickWarburton''', even if it's just his voice.
* '''Creator/DavidWarner''': He was in both the [[Film/StarTrekVTheFinalFrontier fifth Star Trek film]], [[Film/TeenageMutantNinjaTurtlesIITheSecretOfTheOoze second Ninja Turtles film]], the [[Film/TheBeastmaster third Beastmaster film]], and he is arguably the best thing in those films.
** [[Film/{{Tron}} End of line.]]
** The smug valet Lovejoy in ''Film/{{Titanic 1997}}''
** David Warner + Sean Connery + Creator/MontyPython equals ''Film/TimeBandits'', and Warner pulls a [[EvilIsHammy deliciously hammy job]] as Evil.
** David Warner showed up as Abraham van Helsing in Series/PennyDreadful for two episodes and gave a near-definitive portrayal of the character.
* '''Creator/DenzelWashington''', who audiences trust so much most of his work since ''Film/MalcolmX'' [[http://www.boxofficemojo.com/people/chart/?id=denzelwashington.htm has $50+ million grosses]].
* '''Creator/JohnWayne'''. Notice that his movie awesomeness multiplier increases by a factor of 10 when it's also a Western, or if Creator/MaureenOHara is playing opposite him.
* '''Creator/HugoWeaving''', even when [[Film/TransformersFilmSeries he doesn't give a shit]] [[Film/CaptainAmericaTheFirstAvenger about the role he's playing]].
** Even die-hard Alan Moore fans who disliked ''Film/VForVendetta'' praised Weaving's performance as V. Plus, he did that with a mask the entire time, never getting to use facial language.
* '''Creator/PeterWeller''': The man was [[Film/TheAdventuresOfBuckarooBanzaiAcrossThe8thDimension cool]] before it was [[Franchise/RoboCop cool]]. He worked with some rough material; some more [[Series/{{Fringe}} easier to get away with]], some [[Series/StarTrekEnterprise harder]].
* '''Creator/OrsonWelles''': [[Film/TheThirdMan Enough]] [[Film/AManForAllSeasons said]].
* '''Creator/BettyWhite'''
* '''Creator/GeneWilder''': He appeared in a lot of stinkers, but there isn't one that he didn't make better just by being involved. A Good example is the film Start the Revolution Without Me. It could've been horrible, but thanks to his ChewingTheScenery it's something of a cult classic.
* '''Creator/BruceWillis'''. Makes generic action movies more memorable, and contributes hilarious cameos to movies such ''Film/LoadedWeapon1'', ''Film/CharliesAngelsFullThrottle'' and ''[[Film/OceansEleven Ocean's Twelve]]'' (the last one, AsHimself!).
* '''Tom Wilkinson'''
* '''Michael Wincott'''. He ad-libbed a lot of his famous speech in Film/TheCrow, and even when the films aren't great, like Film/TheThreeMusketeers1993, he's captivating. The BadassBaritone voice helps.
* '''Creator/ReeseWitherspoon''': She was in ''Film/{{Freeway}}'' and ''Film/{{Election}}''. She will forever be awesome!
* Any movie featuring '''Creator/ShaileneWoodley''' is instantly guaranteed to be infinitely superior to that same film without Shailene Woodley. Even those who trashed everything else about the ''Film/{{Divergent}}'' film praised her performance.

!Voice Acting

* '''Creator/LauraBailey''' is not only OneOfUs she is clearly having a ball with most any work she does and immediately elevates [[Franchise/StreetFighter any]] [[VideoGame/BloodRayne character]] [[VideoGame/TheElderScrollsVSkyrim she]] [[Series/SaintsRow voices]] instantly memorable.
* '''Creator/ClaudiaBlack''': Even if it is [[VideoGame/DragonAgeOrigins just]] [[VideoGame/{{Uncharted}} her]] [[VideoGame/MassEffect2 voice]].
* '''Creator/SteveBlum''': From his first line as [[WesternAnimation/{{XMen}} Logan]] to his last sign-off as [[Creator/{{Toonami}} TOM]] and beyond, he's been entertaining children and adults (and oftentimes, the children of adults who watched him as children) for decades. He's not the Guinness World Record Holder for Most Prolific Video Game Voice Actor for nothing, after all.
* '''Creator/KevinConroy''', so good he's played Batman more times than any other actor living or otherwise.
** Speaking of Batman, '''Creator/MarkHamill''' is, in the eyes of many, the definitive and most awesome [[SelfDemonstrating/TheJoker version of Batman's greatest foe]]. And that's not getting into his '''other''' roles, [[Franchise/StarWars live-action]] or [[WesternAnimation/AvatarTheLastAirbender otherwise]]
* '''Creator/PeterCullen''', anyone? He consistently brings awesomeness to everything he is involved in from Franchise/Transformers as Optimus Prime to Franchise/WinnieThePooh as Eeyore.
* Voice actor '''[[VideoGame/{{Bastion}} Logan Cunningham]]'''.
%%* '''Creator/CrispinFreeman'''
* And let's not forget the inimitable '''Creator/DanGreen'''.
* '''Creator/JenniferHale''': Full stop. Has been called the Creator/MerylStreep of video games if that's any indication.
* '''Creator/TaraStrong''': As her Twitter says, "Hey, you don't know me, but I've babysat your kids for 15 years." She's performed so many memorable roles (such as [[WesternAnimation/ThePowerpuffGirls Bubbles]], [[WesternAnimation/BatmanTheAnimatedSeries Batgirl]], [[WesternAnimation/TeenTitans Raven]], [[WesternAnimation/MyLittlePonyFriendshipIsMagic TwilightSparkle]], or [[VideoGame/BatmanArkhamAsylum Harley Quinn]]) that not only has she gained RetroactiveRecognition for some of her earlier roles, films/games/shows that feature her as a prominent VA are getting labeled as good before the show even premieres.
* '''Creator/NorioWakamoto''': If any anime has this guy playing a part, be him doing villains (mostly, [[PigeonholedVoiceActor it's what he's known for best]]), heroes, recurring or just one shot character, played for dead seriousness or PlayedForLaughs, it can be a saving grace of even the worst, and makes an already good anime ''even more awesome''.

!Cage Factors

* '''Creator/NicolasCage''' can elevate films like ''Film/WildAtHeart'', ''Film/LeavingLasVegas'', ''Film/{{Adaptation}}'', and ''Film/KickAss''.
** Creator/NicolasCage is best described as good in good movies, and hilarious in bad movies.
*** So much that ''Film/TheWickerMan2006'' can be a GREAT movie [[{{Narm}} as long as you view it as a comedy.]] I mean, how else are you supposed to view him punching a woman out while dressed in a bear costume, or the infamous "Not the bees"?
*** Cage is the only reason anyone should EVER willingly watch the movie ''Film/{{Deadfall}}''. But good god he makes every second of his screen time a joy to watch.
** See also [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeXIoBnu2MU The Nic Cage Song]], for a loving musical tribute to his best AND worst moments.
* '''Creator/JenniferAniston''' has an acting range that stretches all the way from A to B, but sometimes (''Series/{{Friends}}'', ''The Good Girl'') is helpful to what she's working on.
** ''Film/HorribleBosses'' where she plays against type. It works.
* '''Creator/JackBlack'''. His LargeHam can be positive (''WesternAnimation/KungFuPanda''), and he can even be subdued and rather sweet (''Film/TheHoliday'', ''Film/ShallowHal'').
* '''Creator/MatthewBroderick''', depending on whether he's in [[Disney/TheLionKing Simba]] mode or [[Film/{{Godzilla 1998}} "That's a lot of fish"]] mode.
* '''Creator/SandraBullock''' is the only actress to win an Oscar for Best Actress (for ''TheBlindSide'') and a Razzie for Worst Actress (for ''Film/AllAboutSteve'') in the same year. She even [[MedalOfDishonor attended the 2010 Razzie ceremony to collect her "award".]]
* '''Creator/MichaelCera''', to the point he earned a {{Hatedom}} - but still works in works such as ''Series/ArrestedDevelopment''.
** When it comes to Cera there are two types of viewers: Those who like Michael Cera Hipster flicks (who still hate ''Film/YearOne''), and those who hate Michael Cera Hipster flicks (who will still enjoy ''Film/ScottPilgrimVsTheWorld'').
* '''Creator/JackieChan''' may have some amazing fight scenes, but his acting ability and insistence on being family friendly trumps any badass factor he may have had.
** Jackie is aware of this and actually tried to remedy it with ''Film/ShinjukuIncident''.
* '''Creator/TomCruise''' has played several roles that were seemingly made for him. He's not always good, but when he is, he is exceptional.
** Definitely a +5 (at the very least) for playing [[ClusterFBomb a certain role]] in [[Film/TropicThunder a certain movie]].
* '''Creator/EugeneLevy'''. Heís not the guy to save a film if itís otherwise bad, but if youíre already suffering through it, heíll brighten up your experience for however long heís onscreen. And when heís in a genuinely good movie, all the better.
* '''Creator/AdamSandler'''. Mostly during his ''Series/SaturdayNightLive'' tenure, but occasionally makes movies that work in his favor (such as ''Film/AngerManagement'' and ''Film/MrDeeds'').
* '''Creator/SylvesterStallone''', who despite ''Franchise/{{Rocky}}'' and ''Franchise/{{Rambo}}'' under his belt, has taken home more [[UsefulNotes/GoldenRaspberryAward Razzie Awards]] than anyone due to ''many'' unsalvageable films.
* '''Creator/BenStiller''' has certainly become this if he wasn't this already. He helps many of his mainstream comedies, such as ''Film/NightAtTheMuseum'' and ''Tower Heist'', and is more successful when he's directing himself in a film like ''Film/TropicThunder'' or is starring in an art house film like ''Film/TheRoyalTenenbaums''.
** Consider the irony given that his dad Jerry Stiller certainly follows Rule of Sean Connery as far as his role and delivery in Series/{{Seinfeld}} is concerned, though [[Series/TheKingOfQueens some of his work]] is irredeemable crap.
* '''Creator/RobinWilliams'''. Whenever he was funny, he was REALLY funny, and elevates such films as ''Disney/{{Aladdin}}'', ''Film/GoodMorningVietnam'' and ''Film/MrsDoubtfire''. However, when heís obnoxious (see ''Film/{{Jack 1996}}'', ''Film/{{Flubber}}'' and ''Film/PatchAdams''), heís REALLY obnoxious. And when he's [[Film/OneHourPhoto creepy]]...
** And the there's those rare times when he's doing a [[Film/GoodWillHunting dramatic]] role, which he can be surprisingly good at. It mainly depends on the writing.
* '''Owen Wilson''', who like Ben Stiller can help a mainstream comedy or improve some unusual fare (including the movies he co-wrote with Wes Anderson).
* With the possible exception of Cage, the thing these actors have in common is [[IAmNotLeonardNimoy playing every role the same way.]] When it works, it really works. When it doesn't, it can ruin the picture.
** Another thing these actors have in common is that their hits are usually films where their abilities are put to best use, for example if one considers Tom Cruise 'good' in ''Film/RainMan'', it's because his acting style is minimalistic and doesn't clash with Dustin Hoffman's more extravagant performance.


[[DeaderThanDisco ... and let's not forget he]] [[DeadHorseTrope who works in any work he's in, namely]] Creator/ChuckNorris.