8 Stars Who Became Their On-Screen Characters

Published on August 11, 2015.

You know how people say that dog owners begin to look like their dogs? Well, we’re concerned that some Hollywood celebrities have begun to look like the characters they’ve played on-screen. It seems like method acting has gone a little too far! Here are 8 stars who have become just like their on-screen characters, for better or for worse:

8. Ben Affleck/Nick Dunne

Ben Affleck gave a memorable performance as a philandering husband-turned-murder-suspect Nick Dunne in Gone Girl. In the film, he looked much more scruffy and messy than the real-life Ben, and Nick’s troubled marriage didn’t seem to bear any resemblance to Ben’s real-world relationship with Jennifer Garner. But now that Ben and Jen have announced that they’re getting a divorce, Ben is starting to look more and more like Nick. Rumors have swirled that Ben might have had a relationship with the couple’s nanny, the way that Nick in the film had a relationship with a young student. And when paparazzi have caught Ben out and about, he’s looked rather rough around the edges, with his graying beard and his penchant for cigarettes. Someone had better keep an eye on Jennifer Garner, or she might disappear!

© Debbie Vanstory/ABACA.

7. Reese Witherspoon/Elle Woods

Reese Witherspoon has acted in a ton of great movies, even winning an Oscar for her portrayal of June Carter in Walk the Line — but she’s probably remembered most as Elle Woods in classic girl-power comedy Legally Blonde. In the film, Elle Woods enrolls at Harvard’s Law School to prove to her lame ex-boyfriend that she’s smart so that he’ll want to marry her, but then she realizes that she actually is a good lawyer in her own right and deserves a better man.  Now, Reese hasn’t become a lawyer or decked herself out in pink, but she has taken some of Elle’s feminist confidence into her career: instead of just acting, she now produces films through her production company, Pacific Standard, which specializes in roles for women. “We are looking for great female parts. If she’s the girlfriend or the wife, probably don’t send it to us,” Reese told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this year. Elle Woods forever!

Elizabeth Goodenough/Everett Collection

6. Mischa Barton/Marissa Cooper

Child actor Mischa Barton skyrocketed to fame when she starred as troubled rich girl Marissa Cooper on The O.C. — and unfortunately, her life began to parallel that of her character. Mischa became known as Hollywood’s party girl and developed a drinking problem like Marissa (Mischa got arrested for DUI in 2007). Also like Marissa, Mischa had a nervous breakdown and was placed on a psychiatric hold in 2009. “It was a full-on breakdown. It was terrifying, straight out of Girl, Interrupted. Story of my life,” Mischa told People magazine in 2013. Also, Marissa never got along with her mother, Julie, who valued money and image over everything else, and in real life, Mischa has had problems with her own mother: earlier this year, Mischa filed a lawsuit against Nuala Barton, calling her a “greedy stage mother” and accusing her of stealing all of her earnings. We hope Mischa can break away from the Marissa identity.

Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com

5. Johnny Depp/Captain Jack Sparrow

Johnny Depp has played all sorts of bizarre characters in movies, from Edward Scissorhands to Mortdecai. But the character he seems to most emulate is Captain Jack Sparrow of the Pirates of the Caribbean series. Now, we’re not suggesting that the 52 year-old actor has hopped aboard a ship in search of lost treasure or anything — but when it comes to fashion and style, he’s constantly sporting scruffy mustaches and patchy beards, multiple necklaces, long hair and shirts with ill-advised deep Vs. Occasionally he’ll clean up nicely in a tuxedo or suit, but even when he graced the red carpet at the Japanese premiere for Mortdecai in Tokyo in January, he sported long, oily hair and several dirty-looking scarves around his neck. Did you just return from a voyage on the high seas, Johnny?

Helga Esteb / Shutterstock.com

4. Leonardo DiCaprio/Jordan Belfort

In real life, Leonardo DiCaprio is a great actor and humanitarian, not a finance guy who swindles money from people — but that doesn’t stop him from living the luxury lifestyle that we saw his character Jordan Belfort live in The Wolf of Wall Street. Belfort had a young, pretty wife (played by Margot Robbie); Leo, at age 40, is constantly dating gorgeous young supermodels (his latest one is Sports Illustrated swimsuit model stunner Kelly Rohrbach, who is just 25). Jordan also liked partying on yachts, another activity that real-life Leo indulges in — he made quite a splash at the Cannes Film Festival in France. It’s not your average boat: Leo owns the 11th largest yacht in the world, which he had custom built for $200 million. It houses up to 16 guests and 45 crew members and features a movie theater and wine cellar.

(AP Photo/Craig Ruttle, File)

3. David Duchovny/Hank Moody

David Duchovny has starred on Showtime’s Californication since the show aired in 2007, and soon afterward, it was revealed that he had a lot in common with his character, Hank Moody. On the show, Hank sleeps with a variety of women; in 2008, David released a statement saying that he was battling sex addiction  and entered a rehabilitation facility. Rumor has it that David was unfaithful to wife Tea Leoni for a long time and he only entered rehab when she gave him an ultimatum of getting help or getting a divorce because she felt that his problem was detrimental to their children’s welfare. It sounds like maybe David had issues before he played Hank, but there’s a blurry line between the real person and the character.

Jaguar PS / Shutterstock.com

2. Dustin Diamond/Screech

Remember Screech from Saved By The Bell? As kids, we loved to laugh at how ridiculous he was and how everything went wrong in his life — unfortunately, actor Dustin Diamond seemed to become a sad celebrity tale that the entertainment industry laughed at, too. In 2006, he released his own sex tape, which he also directed, Screeched – Saved by the Smell – yikes, right? Then last year, Dustin was arrested for possessing a switchblade — and TMZ also reported that he allegedly stabbed a man and was booked on a disorderly conduct charge. At least Screech got himself into more PG hijinks…if only Dustin had tried to emulate A.C. Slater. 

Photo by REX/Jonathan Hordle

1. Lindsay Lohan/Cady Heron

In Mean Girls, Lindsay Lohan plays Cady Heron, a high school student who starts out as an outcast, becomes a mean popular girl and then learns to be more considerate by the end of the movie. As it happens, real-life Lindsay is most like the Cady in the middle of the film. Her off-screen antics have become more scandalous than anything she ever did as a character on-screen; Lindsay has been arrested numerous times for driving under the influence, violating probation and getting into car accidents. She’s also been in and out of rehab a few times, and was once even accused of stealing jewelry from a store. Most recently, Lindsay and her friends were accused of dining and dashing after racking up a $1,300 bill at the upscale restaurant Sea Satin in Mykonos, Greece — and that sounds like pretty egregious, immature Mean Girl behavior to us.

Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com
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