Acting is not an easy job. Just like modeling, it involves making drastic changes to the actors or actress’ appearance for certain roles, such as drastic weight loss or weight gain, body piercings, change of hairstyles and other changes made using makeup.
Sometimes actors and actresses also have to play characters that do not conform to their own gender, which is also known as ‘cross-gender acting.’ Surprisingly they play such characters flawlessly and they always impress their audience.
This is definitely one role that not everybody can pull off very well. It would require a lot of skill and research to be able to pull off a role like this well and respectfully.
Here are 15 actors and actresses who have played the opposite gender and totally nailed it.
1. Angelina Jolie in Salt: Jolie had to spend several hours in the dressing room to achieve this transformation. She played CIA officer Evelyn Salt in which the female officer has to transform into a male.
2. Gael Garcia Bernal in La Mala Educacion: Bernal plays a transgender woman in this classic Spanish drama cinema.
3. Eddie Redmayne in The Danish Girl: This drama set in the 1920’s tells the story of Einar Wegener who posed as a woman for his wife. Upon doing this he realizes he no longer wants to be a man and decides to get the world’s first ever sex-change. Eddie did a terrific job and it was a strong film.
4. Cillian Murphy in Breakfast on Pluto: This film follows the life of Patrick played by Murphy who was left by his mother as a baby. As he grows he goes from an androgynous teenager to a transgender woman named Kitten setting off on a mission to find her mother.
5. Adam Sandler in Jack & Jill: Sandler plays an advertising agency employee and his crazy sister in this comedy. He won two Golden Raspberry Awards for this film–worst male and female roles.
6. Elle Fanning in 3 Generations: Fanning plays a teenager who makes the decision to transition from female to male. He hopes to get the support of his mother and grandmother.
7. Hilary Swank in Boys Don’t Cry: Based on true events, Swank plays a character who was born female but always identified as a man. Swank received an Oscar for the role and worked hard on her image by cutting her hair and living in the image of a man for a month.
8. Robin Williams in Mrs. Doubtfire: Most are familiar with this classic Robin Williams film. He plays an elderly nanny in order to stay close to his family.
9. John Travolta in Hairspray: Although Travolta is usually associated with tough action characters, he plays Edna Turnblad in the musical Hairspray. The original Edna was played by drag queen and actor Divine.
10. Amanda Bynes in She’s The Man: Based on the Shakespeare play Twelfth Night, this film follows Viola who poses as her twin brother Sebastian in order to play men’s soccer and prove to her ex-boyfriend that it’s not just for guys.
11. Patrick Swayze in To Wong Foo Thanks For Everything, Julie Newmar: Swayze got a Golden Globe for his role as drag queen Miss Vida Boheme.
12. Tony Curtis and Jack Lemmon in Some Like It Hot: This famous film follows the lives and adventures of two musicians forced to pretend to be women.
13. Cate Blanchett in I’m Not There: Blanchett plays Jude Quinn, a personification of Bob Dylan in the film based on his life. She received many awards and nominations for her performance on her representation of the singer in 1965.
14. Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie: Using makeup and costumes, this talented actor transformed into a woman for another classic. He was nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor.
15. Alec Guinness in Kind Hearts and Coronets: In this 1946 comedy, Guinness played eight different roles and one of them was a woman named Lady Agatha D’Ascoyne.
There you have it! 15 Actors and Actresses who flawlessly played a role of the opposite gender.