8 Biggest Surprise Cameos of 2019
Over the year we have had such a large number of movies which have had an immense amount of coverage in the media, making it almost impossible to keep anything a secret when it comes to appearances. Sadly, we had some of the biggest ones given away in the trailers or news beforehand, with Keanu Reeves’ appearance in Toy Story 4, Billy Dee Williams in The Rise of Skywalker and most of Zombieland Double Tap. The picks below were eight that gave the audience a delightful surprise while watching the movies.
Please remember there will be spoilers below, with just seeing some of these actors’ names, you will know who they are playing in the film.
8 – Keanu Reeves – Always be My Maybe
Always Be My Maybe is one of the most standard romantic comedies out there this year, but in the true highlight of this movie, we get a special cameo from Keanu Reeves, playing himself as an over the top arrogant actor. The dinner sequence and drinking games show that he is, in fact, the funniest person in this movie, by a long way, proving he has hit another level for his career in comedy.
7 – Michael Rooker – Brightburn
Brightburn is the anti-superhero origin story, the villain origin story, if you like, following a lot of the themes we saw in Superman, only for evil. After the events of the film, we head to a YouTube channel of a conspiracy expert The Big T whose latest show involves looking at a host of strange events giving us an introduction to the villains that reflect the superheroes in the DC Universe. Michael Rooker has been in plenty of the James Gunn movies, which is the main reason he appears but to see a star of his quality in the film only makes us want to learn about the other characters in the universe.
6 – Robert Carlyle – Yesterday
Yesterday puts us into a world where musician Jack wakes up after an accident in a world where The Beatles never existed, only he remembers all their songs and decides to make his own name off their music, which sees him rise to international stardom. Where one of the twists along the way leaves us is with another couple of people that remember The Beatles, leading him to meet an estranged artist known as John Lennon, played by Robert Carlyle who gives him the guidance he requires.
5 – Tilda Swinton – Avengers: Endgame
In the epic conclusion to the Infinity Saga, we do get plenty of returning characters who were involved in different moments of the past with the time travel elements of the story, most of which we knew about. The one that stands out of some of the many cameos includes Tilda Swinton returning as The Ancient One, from the Doctor Strange movie. She meets Bruce Banner to discuss the outcome of getting the infinity stones from the past and how the changes would play out. It is the most interest cameo because it doesn’t involve any action, focusing more on the ideas of time travel’s effects, which is a nice break.
4 – J.K. Simmons – Spider-Man: Far from Home
In this outing for Spider-Man, we got the first film after the effects of Endgame, and we deal with plenty of problems in the world that Peter must come to grips with. After he defeats the villainous Mysterio, Peter looks to get back to his normal life in New York, only for the shocking return of J. Jonah Jameson, who was a major part of the original Spider-Man trilogy. He breaks the news that Spider-Man is, in fact, a criminal and killed Mysterio, the hero who was sent to replace Iron-Man. This is the cameo that got the biggest reaction, it has the biggest twist in the whole story preparing for the next chapter and after what happened between the studios, this scene could well have helped save Spider-Man in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
3 – Harrison Ford – Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker
The final chapter of the latest Star Wars saga was received with mixed reviews and reactions; we won’t get into complete details here on our thoughts overall. We do have one scene that does stand out here, though. After Kylo Ren is saved by Rey, he returns to being just Ben Solo, lost and alone, with his mother Leia passing away. He gets a visit from the ghost of his father Han Solo, granting him forgiveness for what happened in The Force Awakens. This is one of the most important scenes, because not only did it play into the fan service, it was a moment that moved the story onto the next stage. Unlike most sequences, seeing Harrison as Han Solo one last time was delightful to see.
2 – Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Hart, and Rob Delany – Fast & Furious Presents Hobbs & Shaw
Hobbs & Shaw is the spin-off from the Fast and the Furious franchise. We knew we were getting some new faces in the excellent Vanessa Kirby, Idris Elba and first acting role for WWE wrestler Roman Reigns; we could imagine getting an appearance from Helen Mirren in a small role too after her appearance in the last movie. What we didn’t expect was Deadpool 2 castmates Ryan Reynolds and Rob Delaney portraying agents who bring both the men in. The connection with the director David Leitch helped out here, and then there was Dwayne Johnson’s long-time friend Kevin Hart being an over-eager air marshal. All three cameos were complete surprises, got a rise out of the audience, and plenty of laughs without overstaying their welcomes in a macho-man action film.
1 – Bebe Neuwirth – Jumanji: The Next Level
This might well be the least known actress on this list, but it is one of the smartest and most well-delivered cameos of the year. Bebe played Nora Shephard in the Robin Williams version of Jumanji back in 1996, she is the Aunt of Judy and Peter who has just adopted them after their parent’s death. She suffers from what happens in the game in that film, but because of the outcome, she has no idea about the game. In The Next Level, she has a normal life that gets referenced early on during the film before we meet her in one of the final shots. I could feel the cinema get excited when we saw her walk into the frame because the appearance is such a big moment of respect to the much loved original movie.
Darren starting writing for films at Movies Reviews 101. He joined the Ready Steady Cut team in 2018 and is a proud member of the LAMB (Large Association of movie bloggers).