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Gary Barlow in Star Wars? The unexpected movie cameos that came out of nowhere


Gary Barlow in Star Wars? It's safe to say that no-one saw that coming. Yes, it appears that the Take That singer will be cameoing in the next Star Wars film, The Last Jedi. But what other cameos have enriched our favourite movies? These are our favourites...

Dan Aykroyd, Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom

Dan Aykroyd was already a star by the time of 1984’s Indiana Jones sequel, having co-headlined musical-comedy smash The Blues Brothers a few years before. But despite his star wattage, it’s a real blink-and-you’ll-miss-him moment from the Saturday Night Live giant.

Danny Glover, Maverick

Richard Donner took a break from directing Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in the Lethal Weapon movies to, well, direct Mel Gibson and Danny Glover in a Maverick movie in 1994. There’s a lot of wink-wink moments in this comedic updating of the old 60s Western series, not least when Gibson’s Lethal Weapon co-star pops up. He even gets to utter his famous Lethal Weapon line of "I’m getting too old for this s***."

Keith Richards, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

Johnny Depp wasn’t shy about telling the world that he’d based his eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow performance on the hell-raising guitarist of the Rolling Stones, Keith Richards. So when it came to casting Sparrow’s pop in the third Pirates Of The Caribbean film, there really was no other person to turn to...

Marcel Marceau, Silent Movie

Clever one this. Years before The Artist, Mel Brooks’ loving homage to the days of silent cinema remains talk free until the very end of the film, where the world’s most famous mime artist, Marcel Marceau, delivers the movie’s only line: "Non!"

John Hurt, Spaceballs

In this rib-tickling Star Wars parody, courtesy of Mel Brooks, John Hurt turns up for a neat little cameo referencing his most famous scene from Alien.

Martin Sheen, Hot Shots: Part Deux

Although it’s testosterone-drenched action flicks films like Rambo and Commando that are the real movies in this comedy’s firing range, Hot Shots! Part Deux does manage to sneak in a crafty reference to Apocalypse Now when star Charlie Sheen spots dad Martin Sheen on a passing boat.

Alice Cooper, Wayne's World

The world’s most famous glam metal golfer delivered a scene-stealing cameo in the first Wayne’s World film, suggesting a softer, more erudite side than he projects on stage. Random trivia fact: Alice Cooper used to be great friends with the late, legendary comic actor Groucho Marx.

Kevin McCarthy, Invasion of the Body Snatchers

Twenty years separates the two Invasion of the Body Snatchers movies, but it was like no time had passed at all when original star Kevin McCarthy popped up, repeating his final lines from the original film, for a fan-pleasing cameo.

Bill Murray, Zombieland

Bill Murray as one of the last humans on Earth in a zompocalypse film? What’s not to love?

Sean Connery, Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves

This Kevin Costner-headlining Robin Hood movie waits until the very end for its surprise cameo when Sean Connery – SEAN CONNERY, EVERYONE! – turns up and steals the film as King Richard. Note for trivia fans: Connery played Robin Hood in 1976’s Robin and Marian.

Martin Scorsese, Taxi Driver

Martin Scorsese has cameoed in many of his own movies, but this is his best, as a psychotic passenger in this 1976 classic.

Stan Lee, Mallrats

Long before Marvel maestro Stan Lee began his long line of MCU cameos, the then septuagenarian turned up to play mentor to comic book geek Brodie (Jason Lee) in this underrated comedy from director Kevin Smith.

Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back

In this gleefully indulgent smut-fest, director Kevin Smith reunited Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Good Will Hunting director Gus Van Sant for a scene where the three are filming a bullets-drenched sequel to the 1997 Oscar-winner.

Jessica Hynes, Martin Freeman, Reece Shearsmith, Tamsin Greig, Julia Deakin, Matt Lucas, Shaun of the Dead

One of Shaun of the Dead’s very best moments is when Shaun (Simon Pegg) and his band of fellow zombie-dodgers cross paths with ANOTHER group of survivors, comprising of Pegg’s Spaced co-star Jessica Hynes, The Office’s Martin Freeman, Reece Shearsmith (The League of Gentlemen), Tamsin Greig (Green Wing), Julia Deakin (Marsha from Spaced) and Matt Lucas (Little Britain). It’s not hard to imagine the other gang as lead characters in their own movie…

George Harrison, Monty Python's Life of Brian

When Monty Python were struggling to finance their comedy masterpiece The Life of Brian, an unlikely saviour came in the form of ex-Beatle George Harrison, who happily bankrolled the 1979 comedy. In return, the Pythons put him in the movie!

Donald Trump, Home Alone 2: Lost in New York

Yes, long before he was President, the Donald was famous enough for a cameo – as himself – in the New York-set Home Alone sequel.

Hugh Jackman, X-Men: First Class

We’ve gotten used to the fact now that Hugh Jackman is going to turn up sometime, somewhere, in an X-Men film, but back in 2011, we thought we’d seen the last of the classic X-Men lineup. So it came as a complete surprise to see Wolverine (who, remember, is pretty much ageless) pop up for a hilariously memorable – and potty-mouthed – appearance in this prequel movie. It even won the Best Cameo gong at the 2011 Scream Awards.

David Bowie, Zoolander

Zoolander, and its sequel, are chock with cameos, but our favourite has to be the appearance from the late, great David Bowie, who turns up to play judge to a walk off competition between Derek and Hansel.

Johnny Depp, 21 Jump Street

The Deppster started his career on this TV crime series, starring as undercover police officer Tom Hanson. Twenty-five years later, he cameoed - as the same character! - in the 2012 movie version!

Cate Blanchett, Hot Fuzz

You’ve got to admire the chutzpah of Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright to rope in one of the world’s most respected actresses and not even show her face!

Richard Branson, Casino Royale

When 007 arrives at Miami International Airport, Virgin’s Richard Branson can be seen at airport security. A big Bond fan, Branson supplied a few Virgin Atlantic planes for the movie, so its co-producer Barbara Broccoli asked him to be in the film as a thank you.

Arnold Schwarzenegger, Terminator: Salvation

When Terminator: Salvation came out in 2009, we thought Arnie was done with the franchise. So we were agog when he turned up for a short cameo in the Christian Bale-headlining sequel. And not only that, it was a younger Arnie too! But in fact, it’s not really him – a double was used for the body shots, with his face created using CGI.

Tom Cruise, Gwyneth Paltrow, Kevin Spacey and Danny DeVito, John Travolta, Steven Spielberg, Austin Powers in Goldmember

The third Austin Powers flick kicks off with a film-within-a-film – Austinpussy – starring Hollywood’s highest paid faces in the roles of Austin Powers, Dixie Normous, Dr. Evil, Mini-Me, Goldmember and Austinpussy’s director. WE WANT TO SEE THIS FILM!

What are your favourite movie cameos, and what are your thoughts on Gary Barlow appearing in Star Wars? Let us know @Cineworld.