Celebrities might be able to lose themselves in their characters when it comes to fictional funny girls and bad-ass action heroes, but when they’re playing other celebrities? It’s weirdly fascinating.
Everyone from Amy Winehouse to Steve Jobs has been played for the big screen, with new Marilyn Monroe (starring Jessica Chastain) and Janis Joplin (featuring Amy Adams) biopics in the works, too.
So who’s already wowed us with their celebrity transformation, and who are we totally excited to see? We’ve got all the names you need to know.
Charlotte Riley, Kate Middleton
Charlotte Riley has been confirmed to play K-Middy in the TV adaptaton of play King Charles III. Peaky Blinders actress and wife of Tom Hardy says she’s ‘exciting’ to take on the challenge.
Jack O’Connell, Alexander McQueen
Derby’s Hollywood success story Jack O’Connell has just been confirmed to play Alexander McQueen in an upcoming biopic, directed by Andrew Haigh. Jack will portray the East End designer’s life, based on the biography Blood Beneath The Skin. Filming begins in January, with delivery scheduled for the end of the year.
Jared Leto, Andy Warhol
From The Joker to Andy Warhol? Jared Leto is rumoured to be in talks to play the artist in an upcoming biopic, co-producing the flick as well as taking on the main role. The film is said to be based on Victor Bockris’ 1989 book, Warhol: The Biography, and will be a big budget movie rather than an indie hit.
Natalie Portman, Jackie
The clue’s in the name — Natalie Portman's portrayal of Jacqueline Kennedy went down a storm at the Venice Film Festival, the film following the first few days after her husband’s assassination.
Antonio Banderas, Gianni Versace
Yes! Antonio Banderas will be playing legendary fashion designer Gianni Versace in a forthcoming film biopic of his life. Details are a little thin on the ground, but we do know that the flick will be directed by Bille August and that filming will begin in Milan later in the year. Watch this space...
Demetrius Shipp, Jr., Tupac
Released: Expected 2017
We'll forgive you if you haven't heard of Demetrius, but he looks SO much like the late, great Tupac that we did a double take. All Eyez On Me sees Kat Graham plays Jada Pinkett, Grace Gibson plays Faith Evans and Danai Gurira as Afeni Shakur, from Tupac's rise to his devastating fall.
Shia LaBeouf, John McEnroe
Released: Expected 2017
Is Shia LaBeouf staging some sort of comeback? If he is, it's working - Shia just landed the starring role of American tennis pro John McEnroe in an upcoming biopic Borg/ McEnroe, which focuses on the rivalry between John and Swedish player Bjorn Borg. A feisty leading man for a feisty role - we're into it.
Lady Gaga, Cilla Black
Is she or isn't she? While Lady Gaga denied that she was set to play Liverpudlian national treasure Cilla Black in the upcoming Dionne Warwick biopic, other industry insiders say she's signed on. We'll have to wait and see how this pans out (as well as that accent). As for Dionne Warwick? Former Destiny's Child star LeToya Luckett will take on the role.
Noomi Rapace, Amy
After that hugely successful documentary (you can read what director Asif Kapadia had to say about the men in Amy’s life here), The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo’s Noomi Rapace is rumoured to be taking on the role of Amy in an upcoming biopic. We can kinda see this working…
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Zoe Saldana, Nina
That VOICE! Zoe Saldana took on the role of the late, great Nina Simone in April, even belting out Nina’s most famous tracks. A black Latina herself, Zoe has still taken some flack for her darkened make-up in the biopic, with Twitter wondering why the casting directors didn’t just hire a darker-skinned actress.
David Schwimmer, The People v O.J. Simpson
Hands up who tuned in to American Crime Story?! Retelling the story of O.J. ‘The Juice’ Simpson and his famous friends (Robert and Kris Kardashian), Ross Geller played a very earnest Robert opposite Selma Blair’s Kris Jenner.
Johnny Depp, Black Mass
Johnny Depp is the king of the movie transformation. From pirates to spies and even Willy Wonka, Johnny’s latest makeover as an ‘70s gangster was unrecognisable. That hair still creeps us out.
Eddie Redmayne, The Danish Girl
If you haven’t seen The Danish Girl yet, where have you been?! Eddie Redmayne’s portrayal of the real-life Lili Elbe definitely brought a tear to our eye, and his transformation was seamless. Yes, Eddie, you’re pretty enough!
Tom Hardy, Bronson
Tom Hardy’s body has been through a LOT for his film roles. To play the notorious British criminal Charles Bronson, Hardy packed on 3 stone of muscle and fat, never mind the bulking up he did to play Bane in Batman.
Andre 3000, Jimi: All Is By My Side
He’s got the looks, he’s got the threads and he’s definitely got the talent, so we’re not surprised Andre 3000 was the man tapped to play rock legend Jimi Hendrix. He even learned how to play the guitar left-handed, just like Hendrix, and made it look easy.
Naomi Watts, Diana
This film was kinda slated by the critics, but Naomi Watts did an amazing job of getting across Diana’s love for life — and her chic-yet-sexy style.
Sienna Miller, Factory Girl
Blonde pixie crop? Swoon-worthy style? A love-life that the paparazzi just can’t get enough of? Sienna Miller was the perfect oick to play Edie Sedgwick in this ‘60s set flick, opposite Guy Pearce as Andy Warhol.
Ashton Kutcher and Michael Fassbender, Jobs/ Steve Jobs
Steve Jobs has been the star of two major biopics, featuring Ashton Kurcher and Michael Fassbender in all kinds of 00s normcore. Ashton went for pre-baldness brunette locks, while Michael portrays post-iPod Jobs.
Who are you most excited to see? Let us know below