25+ Unexpected Celebrity Cameos We Almost Forgot About
| LAST UPDATE 11/10/2022
From Rita Ora in Fifty Shades of Grey to Britney Spears in Sabrina, the Teenage Witch, these A-listers appeared in some major on-screen projects. Don't worry, we're here to re-jog that memory...
Jack Black in The Muppets (2011)
Jack Black is primarily famous for his lead comedic roles. From teaching the art of rock, diving into a career as a luchador, time traveling back to year one, and even finding true love over the Christmas holidays.
Black has always secured leading roles, yet sometimes his talent has been used for smaller contributions. In the same year he transformed into an animated karate-kicking panda, Black was given the part of the mortal villain to the most famous puppets in the world. Though he prompted many gags, perhaps no role can top Mr. Shneebly.
Michael Jackson in Men In Black II (2002)
What the King of pop wants, the Kind of pop gets. Michael Jackson dominated pop culture throughout the years. After joining The Jackson 5 at age 10, he became one of the smoothest and most thrilling entertainers in history. Of course, behind the stage, he clearly had other dreams which he was eager to pursue.
According to BBC News, the 'Bad' singer had a passion for Men in Black. In fact, director Barry Sonnenfeld wanted Jackson to feature in the first production, but he "didn't want to be considered as an alien." When filming for the sequel came around, Jackson revisited the opportunity. His secret-agent role was made specifically for him.
Mike Tyson in The Hangover (2009)
Ex-professional boxer Mike Tyson punched his way through the industry to star alongside Bradley Cooper, Zach Galifianakis, and Ed Helms. Tyson, also known as 'Iron Mike' or 'Kid Dynamite,' redefined himself as a C-list actor after appearing in The Hangover. After a heavy night in Vegas, Tyson showed up out of nowhere with a bang.
After Phil, Alan, and Stu drank their way into oblivion, their blurry morning in the Ceasar's Palace penthouse suite led to them finding a tiger in the bathroom. That tiger belonged to Tyson. It seems Tyson was used as drunk bait, as the troubled trio soon were enlightened, they broke into Tyson's mansion and stole his exotic pet.
David Bowie in The Zoolander (2001)
In an ultimate fashion showdown between the Zoolander and long-term rival Hanson, there was only one celebrity judge who could settle things there and then. As the duo prepares to walk the runway, David Bowie chimes in to offer his valuable opinion on the walk-off. Although this was a surprise cameo, this wasn't Bowie's first gig.
Bowie understandably appeared in the fashion-centered comedy, considering his history of inspiring designers such as Alexander McQueen for his abstract designs, Jean Paul Gaultier, and Armani. Though Zoolander stood out in Bowie's track record, he has also made cameos in The Prestige (2006) and The Last Temptation of Christ (1988).
Britney Spears in Sabrina, the Teenage Witch (2000)
Move over Michael Jackson, because the Princess of Pop had her cameo moment in one of the most popular shows in the early 2000s. In season four, episode one, Sabrina struggles to discuss problems with her dad, while subtly boasting about how she meant to attend a Britney concert.
With just a zap of a finger, Sabrina's dad made Britney appear in their living room as she dances and sings her heart out to Crazy. The scene randomly continues as Miss Spears teaches the teenage protagonist some dance moves. But, it seemed all worthwhile, as actress Melissa Joan Hart had her own cameo in the Crazy music video!
Rita Ora in Fifty Shades of Grey (2015)
The British singer was almost unrecognizable throughout her feature in the Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. In the steamy set of films, the Poison singer was given a small but active role as Christian Grey's sister, Mia. Her character originally had a bowl-cut wig and an American accent. Ora was introduced when Mia first met Anastasia.
Director Sam Taylor-Johnson explained in a BTS special, "the role of Mia, it was a fun role for someone… and you know it's a small role, but nothing is unimportant." The girl can sing, and her acting is not too shabby either! Her part became a reoccurrence for the second and third films, with one line even in French.
The Jonas Brothers in Night at the Museum 2 (2009)
The Jo-bros were primarily known for their iconic rockstar era as the ultimate heartthrob teens. It is no secret the three brothers are very talented and definitely have a humorous flare. Although their faces are well recognized, their subtle entrance in the production starring Ben Stiller had audiences a little, well, confused.
As the artifacts came to life one by one, the three stone ruins looked a little too familiar. Taking into consideration the Justin Bieber look in between two curly-haired cupids, it is confirmed these lovebirds were voiced by the Jonas brothers. They even sang their hit Love Bug in one scene.
Dolly Parton in Miss Congeniality 2 (2005)
Well, good golly Miss Dolly! The country-singing music star is definitely a star to be reckoned with. While she was blessed to be working the same air as Sandra Bullock, we are sure feelings were mutual. In a particular scene, Bullock's FBI agent character, Gracie, runs after the singer thinking she was an imposter.
The audience doesn't even see Dolly's face until Gracie chases the so-called imposter through The Venetian Hotel in Las Vegas. When Gracie tackles this woman to the floor, we are welcomed with a warm Dolly appearance. According to her personal site, Bullock wrote a letter to her begging to be a part of the film. Iconic.
Pamela Anderson in Borat (2006)
The King of Kazakhstan is renowned for his uncomfortable yet hilarious films. Sacha Baron Cohen created this character in the light that there had never been anything like him before. The aim was to incorporate real-life scenes into production, one of which was a book signing with Pamela Anderson.
The fictional character approached the Baywatch star's book signing. However, things took a turn when he tried to kidnap her, placing a large sack over her head. Security rushed to the frantic scene. Don't worry folks: this was set up in advance, and Miss Anderson was fully aware. Yet, we don't think surrounding fans were...
David Hasselhoff in The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (2005)
It was a quiet and sunny afternoon in Bikini Bottom. Spongebob and Patrick were making their way home from the beach when they needed a ride back into the water. What better star to feature than the man who lives to protect the ocean? The Baywatch icon arrived at the live-action scene, approaching the animated characters.
In a confident attempt to save the day, Hasselhoff duplicates as a human speed boat, carrying the sponge and starfish on his back. To be honest, there was no better beach they could have washed up on. With a little CGI action, his pecks launched the pair back into the water, landing at the Krusty Krab.
Billy Idol in The Wedding Singer (1998)
What is Billy Idol doing in an Adam Sandler film? When punk rock met rom-com, it was always going to be up for questioning. It turns out, he was a great addition to the film after helping the 80s wedding singer put on quite a show to win back Julia's heart. There was also a valid reason why Idol took part.
According to Contact Music, the White Wedding singer agreed to feature in the film because he would have been forced to watch the film with his son anyway. He might as well enjoy watching himself, right? While he was a little concerned for his rockstar reputation, there was a thrilling feeling knowing he was in a Sandler classic.
Lady Gaga in The Sopranos (2001)
We might have never guessed the Poker Face singer was anywhere near fame before her entrance into the world of pop. However, it turns out the multi-Grammy Award-winning artist had her on-screen debut in the American drama series. It seems like a star was born before Lady Gaga existed. However, it was just her face that played a part.
Although she has proved her advanced acting skills after co-starring alongside Bradley Cooper, her Sopranos role was extremely minor. At the age of 15, Stefani Joanne Angelina Germanotta was an uncredited extra in a season three scene. She was seen drinking and smoking with a group of teens but didn't have any lines.
Coldplay in Shaun of the Dead (2004)
For those few audience members that stay until the very end of a film, they were lucky enough to witness this next quick celeb cameo. In the final scene of the horror comedy, Shaun of the Dead, Chris Martin and Jonny Buckland from the band Coldplay are seen on-screen. As random as this was, it was a great surprise.
Their faces were shown on Shaun's TV as news channels started flickering through. The pair were introduced as supporters of the fictional charity 'ZombAid,' where they were seen wearing t-shirts for promotion. However, Reddit users went wild when they thought Chris Martin was allegedly one of the zombies. But, this was sadly false.
Mike Myers in Bohemian Rhapsody (2018)
This one was pretty groovy baby! The Canadian actor is renowned for being a temperamental green ogre, a troublesome giant Cat, and a magically charming CIA agent. An icon like Mike Myers has reached a height of fame where he can afford a cameo here and there. However, he was ironically unrecognizable in the Queen production.
Myers played EMI Executive Ray Foster. Though this was not a large role, it provided a little nostalgia for audiences. His line in the scene read, "No one is going to be headbanging in the car to Bohemian Rhapsody!" Funny enough, Myers was seen headbanging to the same song in his 1992 film Wayne's World in the opening scene.
Elon Musk in Iron Man 2 (2010)
It was only a matter of time that two high-tech masterminds were put in the same room. For all those Marvel fans out there, we were wondering if Elon Musk's cameo was noticeable. Within his very short appearance, Musk attends the same gathering as Tony Stark, where his only line revolves around technology.
We never thought we'd see the CEO of Tesla and SpaceX come into contact with a fictional superhero. But it happened, and audiences were here for it. When Tony complimented Musk's 'Merlin engines,' the billionaire businessman could only respond with something entrepreneurial, "I've got an idea for an electric jet." Of course, he did.
Kesha in Jane the Virgin (2015)
The ultimate party girl of the mid 2000s made a special and fiesty cameo in the comedy-drama. However, Kesha's character was pretty much a depiction of her real-life personality, besides the attitude. The Tik Tok singer appeared in an episode of season two as one of Jane's noisy musician neighbors - see the similarity?
Jane encounters a predicament when she goes next door to confront Kesha about the booming noise coming from her apartment. Her character, needless to say, was not going to shut the party down soon. Although, how could she say no when Jane's adorable baby, Mateo, was right there? She had only had a couple of lines, but it was a fun time!
Karlie Kloss in Gossip Girl (2010)
Hello Upper East siders. Did it ever occur that the Waldorfs would obviously have some sort of association with high-profile celebs in New York? For Eleanor Waldorf, the ultimate fashion icon of their time, she was used to this. This could explain why no one was that shocked when Karlie Kloss attended one of their parties.
In season four, the supermodel made a special cameo as herself at a fashion party in the Van Der Woodsen household. When Juliet tells the Victoria's Secret angel, "let me know if there's anything else I can do for you, Karlie," Kloss asks for Eleanor. Later on, when Georgina enters, Karlie asks for her name, but she dismisses her.
Jeff Bezos in Star Trek Beyond (2016)
The Amazon CEO pretty much has access to anything and everything. So, it was a given to have him experience something further out of this world. Bezos, disguised in prosthetic makeup, transformed into an alien Starfleet official. The American entrepreneur begged Paramount to be in the film and came up with the cameo idea himself.
According to GeekWire, he said, "look, I'll put any amount of makeup on. I'll be invisible, nobody will know it's me. But I want a speaking part, and I want it to be in a scene that is central to the storyline." As a fan since childhood, it was revealed Amazon Alexa was inspired by the "know-it-all computer on the Starship Enterprise."
Johnny Depp in 21 Jump Street (2012)
Anything can happen on Jump Street, even an iconic return of an original member. Police Academy graduates Jonah Hill (Schmidt) and Channing Tatum (Jenko) venture through high school and college on an undercover mission. In the first film, in one of the final scenes, a familiar Jump Street alumni reveals himself in a penthouse fiasco.
It wasn't long before Schmidt and Jenko found themselves in the presence of Johnny Depp, an original cast member from the 1987 drama series. He was disguised as one of the biker gang members. For those original J.S. fans, this was a nostalgic moment. Out of the five seasons, Depp terminated his role in the final episode of season four.
Leonardo DiCaprio in Roseanne (1991)
It's almost impossible to not fall in love with Leo. At the age of five, his career kicked off with children's TV shows and commercials. Before DiCaprio trademarked his deep-sea role as Jack, the Oscar-winning actor appeared in the famous 1988 sitcom, Roseanne. He was sixteen and an extra in season three - but re-appeared later on.
The A-list actor was cast as no ordinary extra. With a few lines here and there, the producers were clearly impressed with his talented charm. Leo was a classmate of Darlene Conner, and after season 3, he made a cameo again in season 7, but not just in the classroom. Leo's scenes extended to household dinner-time scenes with friends.
Donald Trump in Home Alone 2: Lost In New York (1992)
Home Alone is a Christmas classic. While many viewers gather around to watch the film annually, we wonder how many have noticed the cameo from the former President of the United States. It was super quick and came out of nowhere. Although, it makes sense since Kevin was running around Trump's NYC hotel, The Plaza.
Before becoming the 45th man of the oval office, the politician and real estate mogul featured in a short scene. He is playing himself and kindly gives Kevin directions. Funnily enough, this is not Trump's first acting job. He also appeared in the 1994 film Little Rascals as Waldo's dad, as well as the 1989 film Ghosts Can't Do It.
Carrie Fisher in The Big Bang Theory (2014)
Carrie Fisher is renowned for her role as Princess Leia in the legendary Star Wars films. The girl in gold has made small surprise appearances in the past, such as in Hook as the woman kissing on the bridge. But, before she passed in 2016, she was blessed to feature in The Big Bang Theory, which held some sentimental value.
Sheldon ventures on a crazy night out with fellow Star Wars actor, James Earl Jones, the memorable voice of Darth Vader. The two get tangled up in a game of ding-dong-ditch, running away from Fisher's door. Yet, the humorous personality Fisher had was perfectly projected as she opened the door with a baseball bat in hand.
Madonna in Die Another Day (2002)
The Halle Berry action/adventure film was not only an add-on to the famous James Bond franchise, but included the Queen of Pop to enhance its star power further. It was only right to feature the face behind the film's theme song, Die Another Day.
The Vogue singer was cast as a sleek fencing instructor, Verity, who offers her service to Irish actor, Pierce Brosnan's character, Bond. The 007 is taken by surprise when Verity turns to him with intelligence and intimidation, "I see you handle your weapon well." Only Madonna has the ability to intimidate Bond's masculinity.
Tom Cruise in Tropic Thunder (2008)
Tom Cruise was given a run for his money. After becoming the face of the successful action/thriller Mission Impossible films, his cameo in the parody action film was aimlessly perfect. However, Cruise was unrecognizable with his pot belly and half-bald aesthetic.
Cruise was cast in a supporting role, playing the part of Les Grossman, a studio executive. If audiences didn't realize this was Top Gun's finest, they were probably distracted by the high-tech smartphones, blue-tooth gadgets, and an absurd amount of chest hair on display.
Stan Lee in Every Marvel Movie (1989-2019)
This might be the best cameo selection in history. The creative genius behind all things Marvel and every superhero film we fell in love with had the chance to feature in all of his films. From 1989 until 2019, while Lee passed in 2018, his wholesome appearances almost represent a tribute to his greatness.
Throughout his time creating the film adaptations of the comics, Lee made appearances as an astronaut, a bus driver, a Fed Ex delivery man, a jury member in the Hulk's trial, a hot dog vendor, a security guard, and so much more! While he contributed on many occasions just by being a part of a large crowd, he always did us proud.
Daniel Craig in Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015)
Are these cross-movie appearances even legal?! Two of the most successful franchises, James Bond and Star Wars, crossed paths when Daniel Craig camouflaged himself as a stormtrooper. In episode VII of the Skywalker saga, there is one stormtrooper who watches over the character Rey. Though, Craig wanted to keep his identity hidden.
It was a highly memorable scene, but with a full bodysuit and a helmet, people would not have second-guessed it was 007. After rumors sparked that Craig was involved, it circulated. Then, Simon Pegg let it slip to The Sun in an interview that Daniel Craig was the stormtrooper from the scene, despite Craig originally denying it.
Tom Brady in Living With Yourself (2019)
There's not always a game plan behind celebrity cameos. Sometimes it's for fun or a special request. However, Tom Brady's feature in the Netflix comedy series was rather unexpected. If Brady isn't already unrecognizable without his Buccaneers uniform, his cameo was even more surprising.
Paul Rudd's character, Miles, drives up to a spa, uncertain whether to enter or not, but becomes more puzzled to see the NFL quarterback right in front of him. While there was no real reason behind his feature, he states it was his sixth time visiting the spa, referring to his number of Super Bowls successes. Well-played Netflix.
Ed Sheeran in Yesterday (2019)
If musician, Jack, could remember The Beatles, then Ed Sheeran's appearance should have taken him by surprise. In a film where a puzzled musician wakes up in an alternative universe, there might not have been a better artist to reassure him of his talent. Ed Sheeran played himself in this film - which was a big win for him too.
There's always a first for everything, even for A-listers like the Shape of You singer. This was Ed's longest cameo ever in production, and it wasn't small either. Ed had many lines and even performed, but primarily pep-talked Jack after being impressed by his lyrical talent. Together, they could have created the perfect duet.
Justin Bieber in Zoolander 2 (2016)
If there was anyone who could pout better than Zoolander, it could have been Bieber. But it was still a close call. JB's cameo in Zoolander 2 was not long but quite confusing. It was advertised for a while, and his role participated in a fight against a biker gang. Unfortunately, the One Time singer was doomed.
We hate to break it to the 'beliebers,' but the 'Baby' artist's death was inevitable. Ben Stiller told Jimmy Fallon the singer was always written into the original 2010 script when Bieber had just made headlines. When the film was released, he had already gained lovers and haters, leading to diverse audience reactions.
Jessica Biel in Bojack Horseman (2007)
The animated show about a talking horse included Jessica Biel in one of its episodes. In her specific cameo episode, she plays an exaggerated version of herself and the second wife of Mr. Peanutbutter. Her character expresses her as someone who adores being in the public eye and incorporates her name into everything.
The actress has shown up on various occasions throughout the show's duration. However, we could not Biel-eve how her character was portrayed in season four, episode seven. The writers spontaneously turned her character into a Cannibal Queen, without absolutely no reason behind it. Then again, nothing has to make sense in animation.