On screen, they were bagged and tagged. But in real life, they lived to see another day. But where are the actors behind some of the silver screen’s memorable murder victims today? You’ll be surprised to learn quite a few of their careers didn’t crumble to discarded ash after their breaks.
Probably the most famous pixelated dead body in television history, the frame belonging to Sheryl Lee went on to do much more than just float stilly down a Snoqualmie river. Originally, “Peaks” co-creator David Lynch planned for Lee to simply play the body and that was to be the end of her involvement. But after shooting an additional scene, the home video footage (with Donna and James), and haunted (like most of us) by that great portrait they took of her in-character, Lynch decided to keep her on. In addition to flashbacks (and later a spin-off movie), Lee would also play the character of Laura’s cousin, Madeline.
It’s fair to say Lee would never top Laura Palmer as a character, but she does still pop up on TV and in film occasionally – she was in the “Psych” episode that served as a homage to Lynch & Mark Frost’s cult series, appeared, fittingly, in the flick “Texas Killing Fields”, and recently did a spot on the new cable series “Perception”.
Lily Kane – Veronica Mars
Much like the young actress who played the titular crime solver, Seyfried went on to bigger and better things as a result of her work on the critically dry-humped series (and her subsequent role on fellow series “Big Love”).
Thanks to some flashback-y stuff on “Mars”, coupled with her role as Bill Paxton’s daughter on HBO hit “Big Love”, Seyfried went on to become an in-demand little daisy pusher. The “Mamma Mia!” star is a bit of a blockbuster regular these days, next appearing in the imminent musical smash “Les Miserables”.
Okay, so Freddy Krueger’s first on-screen kill didn’t exactly chalk up a Johnny Depp-sized character for herself, but Wyss is still doing pretty well for herself – claw marks and all. She can be seen regularly doing guest spots on series like “CSI” and, appropriately, “Dexter”.
It took a few attempts, but the paddles ended up powering young Galecki’s career back up. About a decade after playing annoying fish-food Max – killed by cloaked fisherman Ben Willis, like everyone else in the teeny slasher flick – Galecki found fame on big-time TV sitcom “The Big Bang Theory”.
Fellow stiffs in the film included Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe and Bridgette Wilson-Sampras.
Years before she gave life to the long-suffering Jane Mancini on “Melrose Place”, foxy young thing Josie Bissett played dead body, all in the name of Charlie Schlatter’s imminent retirement fund. In this one, Schlatter’s character finds himself the suspect in a murder case involving the passing of the hot blonde. Bissett’s still steadily employed – unlike Schlatter, funnily enough – , for instance she’s currently a regular on TV’s “The Secret Life of the American Teenager”.
Emilie de Ravin
Granted, Australia’s own Emilie de Ravin had already carved herself quite a career for herself at this point in time (she had just finished up on TV’s “Roswell” and wasn’t far off joining small-screen mega-hit “Lost”) but her role as the drainpipe stiff in Rian Johnson’s “Brick” definitely helped solidify the Mt Martha girl’s movie career. In recent times, de Ravin’s been in the films “Remember Me”, “Public Enemies” and “Love and Other Troubles”. TV wise, she’s currently playing Belle on “Once Upon A Time”.
Seems acting wasn’t to be for the stout Mr Mack who, audience-evoking dry reaching aside, played one of the most memorable of John Doe’s kills in the 1995 masterpiece. Only one of three jobs (one of his others was standing-in for ‘Fat Bastard’ on the “Austin Powers” movie) in the film industry it may have been, but thanks to you Bob, spaghetti will never be the same. Bob no longer weighs 480 pounds. Thank god.
Model and Thesp Scacchi – whose other credits include “Shattered” and “Turtle Beach” – went on to do many more things after playing victim to Rusty Sabbich (oh! That’s right! It was actually…), most recently appearing in a redo of “Brideshead Revisited”.
A couple of bullets and a flat pulse didn’t stop Burrough’s career like it did her character – Seagal’s murdered wife – in the 1990 revenge actioner. The Atlanta-born actress, though not exactly a household name, has been choca-bloc with work – largely television, though she did appear in the recent flick “Easy A” – for several decades now, most recently appearing in episodes of “Justified” and “Shameless”.
Who killed the young soldier Santiago!? Doesn’t matter! Wanna know why? BECAUSE You can handle the truth! DeLorenzo, best known for his role on TVs “New York Undercover”, is still a steadily employed actor. Ironically one of his more recent parts was playing someone with the surname ‘Santiago’ on an episode of “CSI Miami”.
Wesley Snipes ultimately tracked down her killer in the White House-set thriller – in which she plays a slain staffer who spawns a string of interesting suspects – but the actress behind the corpse is a little more difficult to locate. Seems she quit acting professionally about fifteen years ago and, according to the web, was last noted to be teaching drama at a Canadian college.
You might also remember these 5 stiffs…
1. Casey Becker (Drew Barrymore) from “Scream” | 2. Marion Crane (Janet Leigh) from “Psycho” | 3. Alex (Kevin Costner) from “The Big Chill” | 4. Teresa Banks (Pamela Gidley) from “Twin Peaks : Fire Walk With Me” | 5. FBI Man (Ted Grossman) from “The Goonies”
Enjoy your lunch!