Biopic or other non fiction actor who looked most like the person they portrayed?

Why do you say Jim Carrey ? It was actually Andy Kaufman. He never died.

Stephen Fry and Oscar Wilde.

I know as fiction this is outside the remit of the OP but Tony Currandeserves a mention for his portrayal of Vincent van Gogh in Doctor Who. He really was a very good likeness.

Several times I have seen articles about Harvey Pekar with accompanying pictures of Paul Giamatti. I can easily tell them apart, but it seems that a lot of editors can’t.

Hm, ya think? Could be. Sometimes the actor does such a great job that a few minutes into it you just ignore the lack of resemblance. Yanno, I think that deserves its own thread …

Not 100% a biopic, but Kevin Spacey as Jim Williams in “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil” was crazy. He also did a great job capturing his manners/mannerisms and even the accent was good (unlike virtually everyone else in that movie!)

Will Smith and Muhammad Ali

Were you familiar with Jim Williams, Lacunae?

Old-timer checking in…make way.
William Devane as JFK

Edward Hermann as FDR

Back in the Seventies, there was a pretty good TV biopic about this guy:

The casting was perfect, in my opinion:


Hilary Swank playing Amelia Earhart.



And Hillary Swank also looked quite a bit like Brandon Teena in Boys Don’t Cry. There’s a side-by-side as #19 here, along with several other side by side comparisons.

It’s surprising how much DeNiro looks like Jake LaMotta. And James Franco has always looked more like James Dean than James Dean does.

Are you sure? I always thought it was Tony Clifton.
Seriously though, Jim Carrey was *scarily *good in that role…

Cate Blanchett as Katharine Hepburn in the Aviator. She was spot on.

Everyone in Downfall looked amazingly like the person they were playing.

Well crap. I just posted this in the other thread, in that I don’t think they look alike in the slightest.

Gary Oldman as Oswald in JFK. Eerily similar.

Even better: Dan Lauria as Lombardi.

Also, Kevin Spacey as Bobby Darin.

Downfall was like watching a video tape of the real events. Despite all the parodies, Bruno Ganz still gave probably the best and most accurate portrayal of Hitler any actor has ever put on screen. He made Hitler human - not sympathetic, just explicable as a human being rather than an otherworldly demon. The movie was a revelation to me. I think part of it was that it was done by Germans in German, but it made me feel like I had a better handle on Hitler and his entourage better than anything else I’ve ever seen or read. Ganz was phenomenal. He should have been nominated for an Oscar. I don’t know why he wasn’t.

Even the parody videos wouldn’t be so effective if he wasn’t so believable as Hitler.

Morgan Freeman as Nelson Mandela in Invictus.