I have noticed that a couple of actors have got themselves trapped in a rut as of late. They seem to be playing the same character every time they step onto the screen. I like seeing actors push themselves and taking roles that nobody would really think to see them in. When an actor gets lazy and begins taking a character they know they can ace every time, I begin to get a little sceptical of their actual talents. I am not saying that I don’t like these actors. I love two out of three of them. But they need to try and take on a new character. And soon.


Stock character: The perfect girl

She may have started her movie career, playing one of the most evil girls in cinema, Regina Queen, but since getting famous Rachel McAdams has got into the business of starring in most chick flicks as the perfect girl. In the ‘Notebook’, she is the girl that the main character is infatuated with. In the ‘Vow’, she plays the perfect wife that Channing Tatum is struggling to keep. ‘About Time’: no different. ‘Time Traveller’s Wife’: check! She even was Terrence Malick’s artistic stereotype for the dream girl.


Here McAdams needs a complete rebranding. It isn’t enough to portray something a slight evil side. We tried that by casting her as Irena Adler in Guy Ritchie’s ‘Sherlock Holmes’ and she still came across as that girl that everyone wants a piece of. Adler is the kind of character that most female actresses would kill for a chance to get and McAdams wasted it on… being Rachel McAdams. McAdams needs a role that completely changes everything we thought we knew about her. With the right director, she could be a surprise hit in the box office, rather than being ‘that girl’.


Stock character: Silent tough guy

Ryan Gosling is a fantastic actor, capable of a wide range of roles. When he accepted the job of playing ‘Drive’, something totally different from anything he had done before, he found a calling. He had the potential to be the next great action hero. The ladies loved him and he had the respect of the blokes. It was the perfect role. However, then he went on to play the exact same person in ‘Place Beyond the Pines’ and ‘Only God Forgives’. We have kind of gotten a little bored with this side to Gosling and want to see him do something new.

He is capable of it. I love him as the silent, tough guy, but at the same time, movies like ‘Fracture’ prove that he is good at the cocky hothead too. Imagine him playing the tough guy but one that was cracking jokes all the time (a little like his role in ‘Gangster Squad’). He would still be a leading action hero, but he could approach it from another angle. That or he could play a villain rather than an anti-hero. There are possibilities out there, but at the moment, Gosling seems unwilling to go for them.


Stock character: John McClane


Looking at the last several movies, Bruce Willis has done, it does seem that he is playing a parody of his famous role in Die Hard, rather than anything new. The Expendables, Cop Out, GI Joe: Retaliation and Red all have the joke of: ‘Haha, look we’ve got John McClane in our movie’ and seem to run with it. Admittedly Bruce Willis is good at this side of things and often, as he does with Expendables, takes the movie to another level. But still, he needs to do more.

As much as I hate Oscar-bait films (films made with the sole intention of getting someone an Oscar), I think Bruce Willis needs to take one. A true story or a drama about an interesting character. Something that is more than a few stereotypes thrust together. A role that we have never seen before, especially on Bruce Willis. He has the acting talent to pull it off, as we saw from some of his earlier roles. He never seems to tap into that gift though (this is more the film industry’s fault rather than his). He has great potential and it is about time we saw him achieve it.

5 thoughts on “3 Actors Who Need To Do Some-Thing New

  1. Spot on post! I just saw ‘Passion’ the other night and I was excited to see Rachael Mc Adams play a ‘bad girl’ again and though she tried the whole film was a complete mess and her performance just came off as laughable, she needs to be given a good ‘evil’ role again!

  2. I’m agree with you on the first two since they’re so damn talented, young, and ready to take over the movie world at anytime, it makes you wonder just why they continue to choose the same roles, time after time again. As for Willis, I’ve given up on him. He’s just a d-bag. Nice list!

  3. I agree, there are so many actors who get stuck in the rut of playing the exact same roles over and over. I am entirely put off and have never seen any movie with Ryan Gosling in it, purely because he does just seem to play the same character all the time. However, perhaps the writers should stop writing the exact same characters over and over and give actors something to work with.

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