Music

The Best Actors Who Played Rock Stars On Film  

Celebrity Lists
4.3k votes 630 voters 15k views 26 items

List Rules Portrayals of real-life rockers only (sorry Bradley and Gaga)

Several famous rock stars have led lives so intriguing and/or troubling that they've inspired enviable acting roles. From Kurt Cobain and Jim Morrison to Elvis, Elvis, and more Elvis, actors have brought the stories behind the music to life in iconic films. Several actors who have played rock stars have even been nominated for Academy Awards.

Which actors have played rock stars in movies? In 2018, Rami Malek helped Bohemian Rhapsody dominate at the box office thanks to his portrayal of Queen vocalist Freddie Mercury. The following year, Rocketman actor Taron Egerton donned his giant sunglasses to portray Elton John in the 2019 film.

Val Kilmer not only portrayed the Doors singer Jim Morrison in Oliver Stone's 1991 film The Doors, but he later played Elvis Presley (AKA "The Mentor") in True Romance. But he is not the only one who played Elvis. That role has also been portrayed by Kurt Russell and Jack White. Other actors who played rock stars include Kristen Stewart as Joan Jett, Gary Oldman as Sid Vicious, and André 3000 as Jimi Hendrix.

Which actor do you think made the best rock star? Give your favorite actors who played musicians a vote up to show you're ready for an encore.

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Dennis Quaid is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Actors Who Played Rock Stars On Film
Photo: Great Balls of Fire/Orion Pictures

Dennis Quaid played Jerry Lee Lewis in the 1989 film Great Balls of Fire!. The actor is a musician in his own right and frequently headlines concerts with his band, Dennis Quaid and the Sharks.

Date Born: 1954

Birthplace: Houston, Texas, United States of America

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Kurt Russell is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Actors Who Played Rock Stars On Film
Photo: Elvis/ABC/Dick Clark Productions

Kurt Russell played the title character in Elvis, a 1979 TV movie about the King of Rock 'n' Roll. John Carpenter directed the film, the first of many collaborations - including The Thing and Escape from New York - between the actor and director.

Date Born: 1951

Birthplace: Springfield, Massachusetts, United States of America

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Gary Oldman is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Actors Who Played Rock Stars On Film
Photo: Sid and Nancy/Palace Pictures/The Samuel Goldwyn Company

In the 1986 biopic Sid and Nancy, Gary Oldman played infamous Sex Pistols bassist Sid Vicious.

Fun Fact: Real life rocker Courtney Love appears briefly in the film, a few years before she started the band Hole.

Date Born: 1958

Birthplace: New Cross, London, England, London, United Kingdom

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Kyle MacLachlan is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Actors Who Played Rock Stars On Film
Photo: The Doors/Tri-Star Pictures

Kyle MacLachlan played Ray Manzarek to Val Kilmer's Jim Morrison in the 1991 film The Doors. In 1991, MacLachlan was actually nominated for a Grammy Award for Best Spoken Word Album for "Diane..." The Twin Peaks Tapes Of Agent Cooper.

Date Born: 1959

Birthplace: Yakima, Washington, United States of America

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