10 Actors Who Looked EXACTLY Like the Real-Life Serial Killers They Played


Real-life criminals in film and television demand a special combination of talent and physical transformation. Some performers go out of their way to capture the essence of the roles they play. In this post, we’ll look at the top ten actors who resembled the real-life killers they represented on screen.

Quick Facts about 10 Actors Look Like Serial Killers

RankActorReal Life KillerNotable PortrayalTransformation Efforts
1Paul Walter HowerLarry Hall“Blackbird” (Apple TV Plus)Mutton chop sideburns, high-pitched voice, and unsettling behavior.
2Elle FanningMichelle Carter“The Girl from Plainville” (Hulu)Changes in hair, makeup, and wardrobe to capture Carter’s evolving appearance.
3Darren ChrisAndrew Cunanan“The Assassination of Gianni Versace”Balanced emotions, resembling killer’s National Heritage, earning various awards.
4Jared LetoMark David Chapman“Chapter 27”Complete physical transformation, gained over 60 lbs, changed posture.
5Joey KingGypsy Rose Blanchard“The Act” (Hulu)Shaved head, fake teeth, and childlike tone to mirror Gypsy’s appearance and voice.
6Zac EfronTed Bundy“Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile” (Netflix)Captured Bundy’s charm and manipulative nature, sparking discussions.
7David TennantDennis Nilsen“Des” (ITV)Thick accent, mannerisms, and matter-of-fact portrayal, earned International Emmy Award.
8Charlize TheronAileen Wuornos“Monster”Dramatic physical transformation, gained roughly 30 lbs for authenticity.
9Damon HerrimanCharles Manson“Mindhunter” (Netflix), “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood” (Quentin Tarantino)Played Manson at different ages, highlighted uncanny resemblance.
10Evan PetersJeffrey Dahmer“Dahmer: Monster”Natural resemblance, Wisconsin accent, and physicality captured Dahmer’s persona.

Paul Walter Hower as Larry Hall (Blackbird):

Paul Walter Hower, best known for his appearances in films such as “Black Clansman” and “Cruella,” took on a grim makeover as American serial killer Larry Hall in Apple TV Plus’s “Blackbird.” Hower’s performance gained him critical accolades and prizes, from his mutton-cut sideburns to his impersonation of Hall’s high-pitched voice.

Elle Fanning as Michelle Carter (The Girl from Plainville):

Elle Fanning played Michelle Carter, a woman convicted of involuntary manslaughter for encouraging her boyfriend’s death via text messages. Fanning’s transition included hair, makeup, and outfit changes to reflect Carter’s changing appearance throughout time.

Darren Chris as Andrew Cunanan (American Crime Story):

In Ryan Murphy’s “The Assassination of Gianni Versace,” Darren Chris played Andrew Cunanan, the serial killer who attacked the iconic Italian designer. Chris not only resembled Cunanan but also conveyed the killer’s intensity and shifting emotions, earning him several important honors.

Jared Leto as Mark David Chapman (Chapter 27):

Jared Leto had to grow more than 60 pounds for the role of Mark David Chapman, the admirer who shot and killed John Lennon. Even though the picture received mixed reviews, Leto’s dedication to the part was admirable.

Joey King as Gypsy Rose Blanchard (The Act):

Gipsy Rose Blanchard, a victim of Munchausen syndrome by proxy, is played by Joey King in Hulu’s “The Act.” King’s commitment conveyed the essence of Gypsy’s terrible story by shaving her head, donning artificial teeth, and adopting a childlike tone.

Zac Efron as Ted Bundy (Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil and Vile):

The strong resemblance between Zac Efron’s portrayal of renowned serial killer Ted Bundy in the Netflix film was originally alarming. Efron’s portrayal of Bundy’s charm and manipulative personality sparked debate concerning the romanticization of the killer.

David Tennant as Dennis Nilsen (Des):

In ITV’s limited series “Des,” David Tennant portrayed Scottish serial killer Dennis Nilsen. Tennant’s thick accent, mannerisms, and matter-of-fact portrayal earned him an International Emmy Award for Best Actor.

Charlize Theron as Aileen Wuornos (Monster):

Charlize Theron’s transforming portrayal in “Monster” as Aileen Wuornos, a former sex worker turned serial killer, garnered her an Academy Award and a Golden Globe for Best Actress. Theron’s dedication entailed a 30-pound physical makeover.

Damon Herriman as Charles Manson (Mindhunter and Once Upon a Time in Hollywood):

Damon Herriman played Charles Manson in Netflix’s “Mindhunter” as well as Quentin Tarantino’s “Once Upon a Time in Hollywood.” Herriman’s casting in two different projects, each portraying Manson at a different age, emphasized his remarkable similarity to the infamous cult leader.

Evan Peters as Jeffrey Dahmer (Dahmer: Monster):

Former Disney star Ross Lynch portrayed a young Jeffrey Dahmer in “My Friend Dahmer,” but Evan Peters played him in Ryan Murphy’s series “Dahmer: Monster.” Dahmer’s terrifying presence was captured by Peters’ natural likeness, Wisconsin accent, and physicality.


These performers not only gave outstanding performances but also underwent astonishing physical modifications to represent real-life murders. Their effort to recreate the essence of these personalities astounded and impressed audiences.

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