Actors who can only play one role (top 20)

These are the actors that for some reason whether it be their lack of talent, inability to play anyone other than themselves, or turn of fate that made the so famous for one role that the only work they can get now is doing the exact same thing only play the same role every time. these are the top 20 in my opinion.
View:
Log in to copy items to your own lists.
1.
Russell Brand
Russell Brand was born on June 4, 1975, in Grays, Essex, England, the son of Barbara Elizabeth (Nichols) and Ronald Henry Brand, a photographer. An only child, his parents divorced when he was only six months old, and he was subsequently raised by his mother. Enduring a difficult childhood that saw...
“ When I saw Forgetting Sarah Marshall I loved Russell Brand. I thought he was the funniest guy I'd seen in a long time. I couldn't wait to see Get Him To The Greek, but by the time Arthur came out I was completely sick of this guy, cause all he did was take what was so funny in Sarah Marshall and wring the same character out like a towel until it was completely dry. In my opinion, Russell Brand is wringing out a dry towel already, but for some reason I cannot imagine him doing any other role. He's without a doubt a very funny guy, but his career may be on a steep decline if he doesn't come up with some more original stuff. ” - kai-haaland
 
2.
Michael Cera
Actor, Juno
Canadian actor Michael Cera was born in Brampton, Ontario, to parents who worked for Xerox. His mother, Linda, who is from Quebec, has English, Irish, Scottish, and Dutch ancestry, and his father, Luigi Cera, is Sicilian. Michael is the middle child between two sisters. He was educated at Conestoga Public School...
“ What's the name of that Michael Cera movie where he plays an awkward teenager? If you name any movie that Michael Cera has ever been in, you'd be correct. Whether it was the popularity of Superbad or simply the fact that an awkward teenager is precisely what Michael Cera is, and it's the only work he's been doing since. In his defense It's really the only role he can play, at least until he's old enough to grow proper facial hair. I'm sure he'll always add a hint of awkwardness to every role he takes but maybe when he's older he'll be able to branch out a little more and leave his teenager years behind, as he's already been living through them cinematically about 4 years since he turned 20. ” - kai-haaland
 
3.
Seth Rogen
A talented actor, comedian and writer, Seth Rogen has come a long way from doing stand-up comedy as a teen. Rogen was born in Vancouver, British Columbia, to Sandy (Belogus), a social worker, and Mark Rogen, who worked for non-profits. His father is American-born and his mother is Canadian. He is of Russian Jewish descent...
“ Unlike Russell Brand, Seth Rogen is a guy that I don't get tired of seeing, but that can't hide the fact that he can only play himself. He'll always be the big funny jewish guy who smokes weed and laughs weird. ” - kai-haaland
 
4.
Sylvester Stallone
Actor, Rocky
Sylvester Stallone is an American actor, screenwriter, producer, and director. He is well known for his Hollywood action roles, particularly boxer Rocky Balboa, the title character of the Rocky series' seven films from 1976 to 2015; soldier John Rambo from the four Rambo films, which ran from 1982 to 2008; and Barney Ross in the three The Expendables films from 2010 to 2014...
“ If Sylvester Stallone was a scrawny little guy don't think twice he'd see a fraction of the success that he's had. The fact that he's still trying to make Rocky and Rambo movies into his 60's is proof that he's incapable of doing any other role. ” - kai-haaland
 
5.
Zach Galifianakis
Zach Galifianakis was born in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, to Mary Frances (Cashion), who owned a community arts center, and Harry Galifianakis, a heating oil vendor. His father is of Greek descent and his mother is of mostly English and Scottish ancestry. Zach moved to New York City after failing his last college class by one point...
“ All it took was the success of the Hangover and everyone loved him. It was like they couldn't get enough of him. Of course the person we're talking about was Alan, the man who became famous long before anyone learned how to pronounce Galifinakis. All we wanted to see was that fat funny bearded guy who said the most random stupid things. It worked in The Hangover so why not make him do it again in five more movies. when I saw Due Date I wondered why they even bothered making his character's name anything other than Alan because that's obviously who it was. The fact that his upcoming movie The Campaign is the first movie he's made since before the hangover to feature a beardless galifinakis shows how closely bound he was to the Alan character. However, I know Zach is one hell of a comedian and his range does extend far beyond a single character, and he should be showing a great variety of characters in his future movies. Why should we care whether or not they have facial hair. ” - kai-haaland
 
6.
Shia LaBeouf
Shia Saide LaBeouf was born in Los Angeles, California, to Shayna (Saide) and Jeffrey Craig LaBeouf, and is an only child. His mother is from an Ashkenazi Jewish family, while his father has Cajun (French) ancestry. His parents are divorced. He started his career by doing stand-up comedy around places in his neighborhood...
“ I don't know about you but this guy annoys the piss out of me. The way he always plays that antsy teenager who talks way too fast saying things that are supposed to be funny but have never made me laugh. The guy who always gets way over his head into some huge earth ending crisis and miraculously ends up with some girl far beyond his league. His talent will be put to the test for his upcoming movie, Lawless. ” - kai-haaland
 
7.
Vince Vaughn
Vincent Anthony Vaughn was born on March 28, 1970, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, and was raised in Lake Forest, Illinois. His parents are Vernon Vaughn, a salesman, and Sharon Vaughn (née Sharon Eileen DePalmo), a real-estate agent and stockbroker. They divorced in 1991. He has two older sisters...
“ The fast talking funny friend of the protagonist who wants to party and get laid but complains about everything in the process of doing so. Still a funny guy, but this is the role he's always played and always will. ” - kai-haaland
 
8.
Kristen Stewart
Actress, Twilight
Though most famous for her role as Isabella "Bella" Swan in The Twilight Saga, Kristen Stewart has been a working actor since her early years in Los Angeles, California, where she was born. Her parents, John Stewart and Jules Stewart, both work in film and television. Her mother is Australian...
“ Kristen Stewart never had much talent to begin with. Her line delivery is some of the worst I've seen for an actress as famous as her. She established her character early on as the pretty but slightly awkward teenage girl, which is what helped land her the role of Bella in Twilight, and seal the deal for what she'll always be remembered by. I wouldn't have any high hopes for her career as soon as the twilight hype is gone. ” - kai-haaland
 
9.
Joe Pesci
Actor, Goodfellas
Compact Italian-American actor Joe Pesci was born February 9, 1943, in Newark, NJ, to Mary (Mesce), a part-time barber, and Angelo Pesci, a bartender and forklift driver. Pesci first broke into entertainment as a child actor and by the mid-50s was starring on the series "Star Time Kids". In the mid-'60s he released a record under the stage name of "Joe Ritchie" titled "Little Joe Sure Can Sing"...
“ Joe Pesci may be the best actor on this list. He does his job incredibly well. It just so happens that his job is to always play new york mobsters and crooks. Weather its Home Alone or Goodfellas, they're all just versions of the same character. ” - kai-haaland
 
10.
Jackie Chan
Hong Kong's cheeky, lovable and best known film star, Jackie Chan endured many years of long, hard work and multiple injuries to establish international success via his early beginnings in Hong Kong's manic martial arts cinema industry. Jackie was born Kong-sang Chan on Hong Kong's famous Victoria Peak on April 7...
“ To be fair, Jackie Chan should be thought of more as a martial artist, maybe even a stunt man, than an actor. Precisely why he's the Chinese guy who knows how to kick some ass. Also precisely why he hasn't been on the map as much now that he's too old to do a lot of the stunts that he used to. ” - kai-haaland
 
11.
Ben Stiller
Producer, Zoolander
Benjamin Edward Meara Stiller was born on November 30, 1965, in New York City, New York, to legendary comedians Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara. His father is of Austrian Jewish and Polish Jewish descent, and his mother was of Irish ancestry (she converted to Judaism). It's not surprising that...
“ To his credit, Ben Stiller can do more than one character. It's more like 3. Let's just say he has as many different characters as Zoolander does looks. Ben Stiller character #1, (the one I hate the most) can be found in Night at the Museum, The Heartbreak Kid, Along Came Polly, and meet the parents. The timid, fast talking, nice guy who seems to have gotten progressively more annoying over the years. Ben Stiller Character #2 is found in Mystery Men, Starsky and Hutch, Dodgeball, and Tropic Thunder. The Overly cocky, slightly stupid guy trying too hard to be the confident, tough guy. Zoolander is in a breed of its own, but in a way it doesn't seem too different these two characters. He has also tried his hand in some dramatic roles like Greenberg and The Royal Tenenbaums and he hasn't been that bad. He may start doing more serious roles now as it seems his glory days in comedy are behind him. ” - kai-haaland
 
12.
Samuel L. Jackson
Samuel L. Jackson is an American producer and highly prolific actor, having appeared in over 100 films, including _Die Hard with a Vengeance (1995), _Unbreakable (2000), Shaft, Formula 51, Black Snake Moan, Snakes on a Plane, and the Star Wars prequel trilogy (1999-2005), as well as the Marvel Cinematic Universe...
“ Yeah, I know he was a real bad ass mother *beep* in Pulp fiction, but that was 1994 and since then he hasn't been anything but. ” - kai-haaland
 
13.
Matthew McConaughey
Matthew McConaughey is an American actor and producer. He first gained notice for his breakout role in the coming-of-age comedy Dazed and Confused (1993), and went on to appear in films such as the slasher Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation (1994), the legal thriller A Time to Kill (1996)...
“ You know the role. The southern cool cat. Every women's fantasy cowboy. Never a good performance, but that's not what the box office cares about. ” - kai-haaland
 
14.
Jennifer Aniston
Actress, Friends
Jennifer Aniston was born in Sherman Oaks, California, to actors John Aniston and Nancy Dow. Her father is Greek, and her mother was of English, Irish, Scottish, and Italian descent. Jennifer spent a year of her childhood living in Greece with her family. Her family then relocated to New York City where her parents divorced when she was nine...
“ Here's an actress who stars in romantic comedies about 95% of the time. She's the eccentric fun girl who's either the protagonist's girlfriend or girl of desire, with whom they need to over come a few personality flaws or plot set backs so that they can accept each other for who they are. Her best movie is probably her most different role, Friends With Money. ” - kai-haaland
 
15.
Jesse Eisenberg
Curly haired and with a fast-talking voice, Jesse Eisenberg is a movie actor, known for his Academy Award nominated role as Mark Zuckerberg in the 2010 film The Social Network. He has also starred in the films The Squid and the Whale, Adventureland, The Education of Charlie Banks, 30 Minutes or Less...
“ I Have to give him credit, He did one heck of a job in the social network. But he has the same problem as Michael Cera; he'll never be able to give a performance that isn't awkward, because that's what he is. Even his portrayal of Mark Zuckerberg was nothing like Mark Zuckerberg. That's because Jesse Eisenberg doesn't have the range and ability that Maryl Streep or Phillip Seymour Hoffman has to completely embody another person. Jesse in The Social Network was pretty much just Jesse Eisenberg + Ass hole ” - kai-haaland
 
16.
Owen Wilson
Self-proclaimed troublemaker Owen Wilson was born in Dallas, to Irish-American parents originally from Massachusetts. He grew up in Texas with his mother, Laura (Cunningham), a photographer; his father, Robert Andrew Wilson, an ad exec; and his brothers, Andrew Wilson (the eldest) and Luke Wilson (the youngest)...
“ Owen Wilson's movies often feature him as the relaxed party guy who seems know how to get with beautiful women despite his crooked nose. Every character he's ever done in a Ben Stiller movie has been the same, and every role he's done outside of that is still pretty darn close. His biggest leap in his range as an actor came most recently for Midnight in Paris, but that was only because he was trying to act like Woody Allen. ” - kai-haaland
 
17.
Harrison Ford
Harrison Ford was born on July 13, 1942 in Chicago, Illinois, to Dorothy (Nidelman), a radio actress, and Christopher Ford (born John William Ford), an actor turned advertising executive. His father was of Irish and German ancestry, while his maternal grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Minsk, Belarus...
“ I don't know what happened to the days of Han Solo, Indiana Jones, and Blade Runner, but I haven't seen a good Harrison Ford movie since Clear and Present Danger almost two decades ago. Since then he's been spending too much time killing bad guys in order to get his family back. ” - kai-haaland
 
18.
Kevin Costner
Kevin Michael Costner was born on January 18, 1955 in Lynwood, California, the third child of Bill Costner, a ditch digger and ultimately an electric line servicer for Southern California Edison, and Sharon Costner (née Tedrick), a welfare worker. His older brother, Dan, was born in 1950. A middle brother died at birth in 1953...
“ Kevin Costner makes me laugh. He's one of those guys who isn't a good actor at all, but he still thinks he is. It seems lately he hasn't been able to tell the difference a good movie and a bad movie, He'll just take whatever movie gets him a top billing, and his performance is always the same because he has no talent. ” - kai-haaland
 
19.
Jessica Alba
Actress, Sin City
Jessica Marie Alba was born on April 28, 1981, in Pomona, CA, to Catherine (Jensen) and Mark David Alba, who served in the US Air Force. Her mother has Danish, Welsh, German, English, and French ancestry, while her father is of Mexican descent (including Spanish, Indigenous Mexican and distant Sephardic Jewish...
“ Here's an example of someone who's very beautiful but not talented enough to get any role other than the protagonist's person of interest in cheesy romantic comedies and a few action flicks. ” - kai-haaland
 
20.
Will Ferrell
John William Ferrell was born in Irvine, California, to Betty Kay (Overman), a teacher, and Roy Lee Ferrell, Jr., a musician. His parents were both originally from Roanoke Rapids, North Carolina. A graduate of the University of Southern California, Ferrell became interested in performing while a student at University High School in Irvine...
“ I for one will never get tired of Will Ferrell, but I can understand why someone might. All his characters are pretty much in the same crazy screwball comedy ball park, he just happens to be a genius when it comes to improv. He does have a few exceptions like Stranger Than Fiction, which also happens to be a great movie. ” - kai-haaland