When hiring for a film that features either real life figures or easily recognizable characters, casting directors are really just looking for good actors whose likeness can pass in the role. Hell, sometimes they'll even compromise on the good actor part. Under normal circumstances, that is. Because every once in a while, the stars will align and there will just happen to be a really strong actor who could pass for the character in question's twin.
Those are very special days, my friends. When you've got the physical resemblance and a great performance to go along with it, you're almost guaranteed that your film will not suck. Here are some actors that made us do a double take when we saw them starring in some very recognizable roles.
10. Robert Downey Jr - Charlie Chaplin
One of the best kept secrets of Hollywood's silent era of cinema is the fact that Charlie Chaplin was actually kind of a hottie. There's a reason why he was pretty much always bedding and marrying young, attractive starlets (sometimes over 18, sometimes not, but hey, it was the 20s). Anyway, it makes perfect sense that they would cast Robert Downey Jr in his biopic. After all, RDJ has charisma, a keen sense of physical comedy and, as it turns out, more than a passing resemblance to the Tramp himself. You need only see him in costume and makeup, perfectly imitating Chaplin's signature walk, before you need to blink a few times and double-check Netflix to make sure you didn't accidentally put on one of Charlie's silent films instead.
Audrey Fox is an ex-film student, which means that she prefers to spend her days in the dark, watching movies and pondering the director's use of diegetic sound. She currently works as an entertainment writer, joyfully rambling about all things film and television related. Add her on Twitter at @audonamission and check out her film blog at 1001moviesandbeyond.com.