Every once in awhile, we get a pleasant surprise while watching a movie. Someone that we recognize makes an unexpected appearance and it boosts the overall enjoyment of the film. Who could ever forget Bill Murray stealing the show in 2009’s Zombieland? Or Matt Damon’s random part in 2004’s Eurotrip?
The 2010s was a decade filled with these kinds of cameos in movies. Some were celebrities playing fictionalized versions of themselves, while others reprised roles from past work. So, we’ve taken the best and ranked them based on how entertaining they were and how much they surprised us.
10 Anna Faris (Keanu)
There couldn’t have been anyone expecting to see anything like this when they watched 2016’s Keanu. The film starred Jordan Peele and Keegan-Michael Key as two buddies who infiltrate a gang to get their stolen kitten back. One of their “team-building” missions was to make a drug sale.
The buyer surprisingly turned out to be Anna Faris, playing an insane and drug-addicted version of herself. The scene unfolds hilariously, as Faris is unhinged and forces them to play a tense game of “truth or dare.” It all leads to a bloody shootout where Faris’ character dies.
9 Emily Blunt (The Muppets)
Since The Muppets was released back in 2011, you may have forgotten about this one. The film was loaded with cameos from the likes of Jim Parsons, Sarah Silverman, Selena Gomez, Donald Glover, and more. However, none were more fun than the one from Emily Blunt.
When the gang heads to Vogue Paris to meet with Miss Piggy, they run into her receptionist, played by Blunt. Everything about this appearance, from her attitude to her look, was meant to be a spoof of Blunt’s character from The Devil Wears Prada, Emily Charlton. It was the kind of meta cameo that we love.
8 Billie Lourd (Star Wars: The Force Awakens)
The only reason this doesn’t rank higher is because most of us didn’t know Billie Lourd when Star Wars: The Force Awakens was released. She had only just begun starring in Scream Queens when it came out. Lourd played a Resistance member who was mostly in the background but the cameo meant so much because her real-life mother is Carrie Fisher.
In the following two installments, Lourd’s role grew past a cameo. Also of note, the sequel trilogy was filled with great cameos. Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Prince Harry, Prince William, Daniel Craig, Ed Sheeran, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Harry Styles, Warwick Davis, Simon Pegg, and more all have cameos.
7 Johnny Depp (21 Jump Street)
Here’s a case where something paid homage to its source material. In the late 1980s, 21 Jump Street was a popular television series about young police officers undercover at high schools and colleges. The most notable star to come from the show was Johnny Depp.
When 21 Jump Street was rebooted as a 2012 film, Jonah Hill and Channing Tatum were given the lead roles. During a showdown near the end, a gang member removes his disguise and reveals himself to be Depp reprising his role as Tom Hanson from the show. Peter DeLuise and Holly Robinson also returned from the series.
6 Community Cast (Marvel Cinematic Universe)
Talk about unexpected crossovers. This all started when Joe and Anthony Russo were chosen to direct 2014’s Captain America: The Winter Soldier. They brought along Danny Pudi for a cameo since they worked closely with him during their time on the NBC series Community.
Since then, the Russos have continued to helm MCU films and keep adding in Community stars. Captain America: Civil War had a cameo from Jim Rash, while Yvette Nicole Brown and Ken Jeong appeared in Avengers: Endgame. Throw in starring roles for the likes of Donald Glover and Brie Larson and its clear Community is a significant part of the MCU.
5 The Whole Fight Scene (Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues)
In the original Anchorman, the fight scene involving all of the major news networks is probably the most iconic and memorable moment. When the sequel came around, the filmmakers knew they had to somehow top it. They did so by bringing in a barrage of surprise guests.
The list is almost endless. Sacha Baron Cohen as a BBC anchor, Kanye West as an MTV host, and Amy Poehler and Tina Fey from Entertainment News are just the beginning. There’s also Will Smith as an ESPN host, Jim Carrey and Marion Cotillard from Canadian networks, as well as Kirsten Dunst as an angel.
4 Hugh Jackman (X-Men: First Class)
The X-Men franchise got a soft reboot of sorts with 2011’s prequel X-Men: First Class. The film took place in the 1960s, giving us younger versions of characters we had come to know over the years like Professor X and Magneto. The two characters visit a bar to give us arguably the best moment of the film.
They try to recruit Wolverine (Hugh Jackman), who swiftly sends them away. It’s hilarious and Jackman didn’t have to look younger because of Wolverine’s aging factor. Also, this movie saw Rebecca Romijn make a quick appearance as Mystique after playing the character in the original trilogy.
3 Matt Damon (Thor: Ragnarok)
Matt Damon has a surprising history of cameos. There was the aforementioned one in Eurotrip, one in Jay & Silent Bob Strike Back, and even a hard to spot one in Deadpool 2. However, our favorite and possibly the funniest might be from 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok.
When the film begins, Loki rules Asgard under the disguise of his father Odin. He puts on a play about his life for everyone to see. Damon plays this version of Loki. To make it better, Luke Hemsworth(brother of real Thor actor Chris) plays Thor, and Sam Neill is Odin.
2 Channing Tatum (This Is The End)
Almost every character in This is the End could be considered a cameo. The film features fictionalized versions of many Hollywood stars. Who could forget the cocaine abusing jerk version of Michael Cera? Or Emma Watson, Rihanna, Kevin Hart, Aziz Ansari, Paul Rudd, the Backstreet Boys, and so many others?
However, the highlight was easily the surprise cameo by Channing Tatum. Near the end of the story, Danny McBride appears and has become the leader of a group of cannibals. His sex slave crawls out and starts humping his leg, only to remove his mask and reveal himself as Channing Tatum. A shocking sign that the world had really gone to hell.
1 Brad Pitt (Deadpool 2)
The ultimate “blink and you’ll miss it” cameo. In 2018’s Deadpool 2, the titular hero puts a team together that he calls the X-Force. Considering this team featured Terry Crews and Bill Skarsgård, those cameos would be good enough on their own. However, there was Vanisher.
Deadpool recruits him to the team but we never see him because he’s supposedly invisible. The whole time, you just assume Deadpool was acting like this person was real. Vanisher dies when his parachute crashes into electric cables. For the brief second that we see him getting electrocuted, we can tell that it’s Brad Pitt. It only lasts a few frames but it’s glorious and incredibly random.
NEXT: 21 Behind-The-Scenes Secrets About Deadpool 2