Danny Trejo has made a career out of playing scary badasses, most prominently in Robert Rodriguez's Machete, and then very occasionally as opposite characters that attempt to subvert the stereotype (A Very Harold and Kumar Christmas and...an Old El Paso advert). However, did you know that Trejo is the real deal? Trejo is a straight-up, legit, genuine thug, which led to him being sentenced to 11 years jail time for an assortment of drug, murder and robbery charges. Trejo was released in 1972 at the age of 28 having kicked his drug addiction, and over a decade later, he eventually found work on the Oscar-nominated movie Runaway Train, training Eric Roberts for a boxing scene. His presence was so strong that he ended up winning a small role in the film, and the rest is history. To the actor's credit, he has, unlike many on this list, kept his nose clean since his incarceration, and the rather ambiguous nature of his crimes only adds to the mystique and the menace of the man.
Frequently sleep-deprived film addict and video game obsessive who spends more time than is healthy in darkened London screening rooms. Follow his twitter on @ShaunMunroFilm or e-mail him at shaneo632 [at] gmail.com.