9 Movie Heroes & Villains That Didn't Know Each Other Existed

These movie heroes and villains were like ships in the night.

The Fifth Element
Buena Vista Pictures

It's a pretty basic assumption in most movies that the hero and villain will eventually end up meeting or, in the very least, actually know who each other are.

But there are always exceptions where this isn't the case, strange as it might sound, where the Good Guy and Bad Guy are just going about their respective lives without even knowing their rival lives and breathes.

It's certainly a tough trick to pull off given that most films thrive on direct conflict between the hero and villain, but when it works, it really works.

Often this is achieved by placing hero and villain on opposite sides of a wider conflict where there's no need for them to actually interact.

Again, it's tough to do, but when filmmakers nail it, it can bring an added layer of uniqueness to a given story.

While most budding screenwriters should probably avoid doing this unless they're really confident in their vision, it can nevertheless be a daring way to tell a familiar story in a wildly unfamiliar way, keeping hero and villain at arm's length and entirely unaware of each other for the film's entirety...

9. Alan Grant & Dennis Nedry - Jurassic Park

The Fifth Element

Jurassic Park's big hero is of course grumpy paleontologist Dr. Alan Grant (Sam Neill), while the man responsible for the park's catastrophe is disgruntled computer programmer Dennis Nedry (Wayne Knight), who causes the dinosaurs to escape while trying to smuggle frozen dinosaur embryos off the island.

And yet in spite of this, these two forces operate entirely independently of one another, and never end up crossing paths throughout the film, nor even knowing of each other's existence.

Nedry is "only" trying to commit corporate espionage, and endangering Grant and company is really just the collateral damage of that, while Grant is in the thick of it for the entire movie and so doesn't have much time to ponder why the dinosaurs escaped their containment.

Though it's reasonable to assume that Grant certainly found out who Nedry was during the subsequent investigation into the disaster, he's absolutely none the wiser while it's happening.


Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.