When it comes to Hollywood films, there are a lot of remakes, meaning two or more actors are going to have the chance to play the same character. In some instances, the role is iconic, so fans won’t give the new actor a shot at playing them, such as Gene Wilder vs. Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka.
Then, there are other times, when the new actor knocks the character out of the park. Tobey Maguire vs. Tom Holland as Spiderman, anyone? Either way, studios have learned they can’t make everyone happy. But, according to fan accounts and polls, some actors played their roles better than the other.
Pierce Brosnan Vs. Daniel Craig — James Bond
007 is a character that has been played by many different actors, with two of the most recent being Pierce Brosnan and Daniel Craig. While fans of the James Bond franchise tend to agree that each actor brings something different and special to the role, that doesn’t mean both actors are created equal in the eyes of fans.
According to an IMDb poll consisting of 2,253 votes, neither won the “top James Bond actor” spot! It seems as though fans actually prefer Sean Connery over both Brosnan and Craig, with 805 votes. Craig came in second with 648 votes.
Leonard Nimoy Vs. Zachary Quinto — Spock
Yes, we know more than two actors have played Spock, but for our purposes, we’re looking at Leonard Nimoy and Zachary Quinto. And, when it comes to these two, fans have an obvious favorite actor who played the human-Vulcan. Here’s a hint, his eyebrows are at a more intense angle.
Obviously, you’d be hard-pressed not to find people who are fans of Quinto’s take on the character; he did a fantastic job. It’s just that it’s Leonard Nimoy. Out of 1,013 votes on an IMBd poll, fans agree Nimoy makes a better Spock. The actor won the fan vote with 811.
Heath Ledger Vs. Joaquin Phoenix — Joker
It’s is very difficult to compare the brilliance of Heath Ledger and Joaquin Phoenix’s respective Joker characters, but fans have spoken up on which portrayal they prefer. While Ledger’s played a character who was more of an anarchist, Phoenix showed someone who was slowly slipping away into madness.
But the fans made up their mind via IMBd poll. Out of 1,742 votes, Heath Ledger’s Joker won by a landslide, winning 1,352 votes. Personally, we’re not sure who we would choose. They both won Oscars for the role, for crying out loud!
Lynda Carter Vs. Gal Gadot — Wonder Woman
When it comes to Wonder Woman, it’s difficult for die-hard fans to not think of Lynda Carter, the OG Amazonian warrior, automatically. Then Gal Gadot showed up in all her god-slaying glory, and people were torn between which actresses portrayed the warrior princess the best.
Thankfully, the fans have spoken. And while the poll taken on IMDb was technically between Carter, Gadot, and Susan Eisenberg’s voice acting, the latter didn’t really make the cut. Out of 3,438 votes, it seems as though fans prefer Gadot’s portrayal of the character over Carters, awarding her 1,961 votes.
Tobey Maguire Vs. Tom Holland — Peter Parker/Spider-Man
Sorry, Andrew Garfield, but you’re not in the same league as Tobey Maguire and Tom Holland’s Spider-Mans (according to fans). As for the other two web-slingers, fans were a bit torn. While both have their issues when it comes to the portrayal of the superhero, at the end of the day, both of them do a standup job.
Of course, some fans side with Holland, solely because of his younger age. Reddit user hankbaumbach said, “I’m a big fan of Holland. He actually looks like he could be in high school, he’s the right kind of socially awkward that is endearing instead of annoying, and he’s funny.”
Gene Wilder Vs. Johnny Depp — Willy Wonka
Both Gene Wilder and Johnny Depp earned Golden Globe nominations for their portrayals of the quirky candyman Willy Wonka. It’s safe to say both actors did a great job with their roles. But is anyone really surprised? They’re both oddly talented at playing the “crazy guy!”
But, for fans of the Chocolate Factory films, one of these men played Wonka better. According to an IMDb poll consisting of 1,084 votes, Gene Wilder stole the show with 852 votes. Sorry, Johnny, but maybe just stick to playing a crazy pirate instead.
Michelle Pfeiffer Vs. Anne Hathaway — Catwoman
Catwoman is another character that has been played by multiple women. For now, we’re going to focus on the lovely actresses Michelle Pfeiffer and Anne Hathaway. Both actresses had different versions of Selina Kyle to go off; with Tim Burton’s direction, Pfeiffer was a bit more crazy. Then there was Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight Rises, where Hathaway was a bit more dramatic.
Both of them played the character perfectly in their given films, but fans preferred one actress. According to a CelebBattleVoteBot on reddit, Hathaway came out victorious, with 95 out of the 135 votes.
Sir Ian McKellan Vs. Michael Fassbender — Magneto
Sir Ian McKellan played the evil mutant Magneto in the original X-Men films while Michael Fassbender took up the role of the younger Erick. And while it’s hard to compare the two, with one being such an older version of the character, fans have spoken.
Reddit user, MarggotRobbieRotten, said, “I think Fassbender has been given a lot more to work with, McKellen is great but he mostly just gave speeches and played chess.” The thing is, they’re not wrong. While McKellan did a great job, the script Fassbender was given allowed him to play around with Magneto’s personality and power.
Ian Holm Vs. Martin Freeman — Bilbo Baggins
When it comes to the actors who played Bilbo Baggins in the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, it’s kind of difficult to chose who was better. While Ian Holm was an older version of the character, playing a minor part, Martin Freeman’s Bilbo was a bit more involved, going on an adventure.
So, it begs the question, which actor played the character of Bilbo Baggins the best? Well, for fans, Freeman stole the show. One reddit user said, “[Freeman] captured Bilbo’s character, exactly. When I read the Hobbit before I watched the movies, I even imagined Bilbo acting as Martin Freeman did in the movies.”
Christopher Reeve Vs. Henry Cavill — Clark Kent/Superman
We know more than two actors have played Superman, but for this instance, we’re going to go with Christopher Reeve and Henry Cavill’s Clark Kent version. For fans, it was honestly a toss-up between the two, as one is iconic while the other is more layered.
But, there was a poll, and fans have concluded that one of the actors played the superhero better than the other. Out of the 5,600 votes cast in a Cosmic Book News poll, 62 percent chose Cavill’s character over Reeves. As it turns out, people enjoy the more modern version of the man of steel.
Mel Gibson Vs. Tom Hardy — Max Rockatansky
In 1979, Mel Gibson bust onto the scene in the post-apocalypse film Mad Max. He went on to reprise his role as Max Rockatansky twice more before saying goodbye to the character. Fast forward 30 years, and there’s a new Mad Max in town, played by Tom Hardy. But, according to fans of the films, who played the role better?
After looking at the results of an IMBD poll, comparing Gibson and Hardy, the results were clear. Out of 1,610 votes, Gibson’s portrayal of the character won out over Hardy’s, earning 926 votes.
Sissy Spacek Vs. Chloë Grace-Moretz — Carrie
When it comes to the horror movie Carrie, it was very hard for fans to look past the new casting choice of Chloë Grace-Moretz to play the title character. Actress Sisy Spacek’s performance is just so iconic that they were confused as to how the studio was going to top the film and original actress.
Regardless, they did, and fans responded. One reddit user, zedoktar, said, “I think Sissy Spacek captures the vulnerability and freaked-outness of Carrie way better. The scary girl monster look doesn’t suit her. I like Chloe Moretz, but this seems wrong.” Many agreed with the users’ statements, going on to say Grace-Moretz was way too pretty for the role.
Sir Patrick Stewart Vs. James McAvoy — Professor Xavier
The role of the mutant Charles Xavier, aka Professor X, is played by two very different actors. In the original films, an older professor is portrayed brilliantly by the one and only Sir Patrick Stewart. But, when the X-Men films got their reboot, James McAvoy stepped in to play a younger version of the telepath.
According to fans, the choice of who played the character best is obvious — Sir Patrick Stewart. On an IMDB poll of 4,658 votes, the OG professor won with 2,997 votes in his favor. Apparently there is nothing like the old, wise professor, for fans of the franchise!
Arnold Schwarzenegger Vs. Jason Momoa — Conan
The character of Conan requires a big, buff guy. So, who better to play the part than Arnold Schwarzenegger and then Jason Momoa. But when it comes to who played the barbarian better, fans are in agreement. And let us tell you, it probably has something to do with the ratings of a certain remake.
Alas, according to a poll fans took on Comic Vine, there is only one person meant to play the character of Conan, and that man is Arnold Schwarzenegger. Out of a tiny poll of 23 votes, he won 57 percent of them.
Robert Downey Jr. Vs. Benedict Cumberbatch — Sherlock Holmes
So far, ten actors have portrayed the infamous detective Sherlock Holmes. But for our sake, we’re going to focus on two, Robert Downey Jr., who plays Holmes in film, and Benedict Cumberbatch, who portrays the man in the BBC series Sherlock. Amazingly, after looking at a poll consisting of the ten actors, these two come out as the top guys.
Of course, there can only be one winner. And the fans have made their choice. Out of 6,302 votes, Benedict Cumberbatch is seen as the better Sherlock Holmes, winning 3,329 votes to RDJ’s 1,199 votes.
Noomi Rapace Vs. Rooney Mara — Lisbeth Salander
If there is anyone else as cool, calculating, and looks as good in a black leather jacket as Lisbeth Salander in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, we’d love to hear it. But for now, let’s focus on the two actresses who portray the gifted computer hacker.
In one corner, we have Noomi Rapace, who set a high bar on the character in the original Swedish version of the film. Then, there’s Rooney Mara, who beat out starlets for the role. But, for fans, one actress was better. According to an IMDb poll of 1,418 votes, Rapace’s original portrayal of Lisbeth was better, winning 818 votes.
Michael Keaton Vs. Christian Bale — Bruce Wayne/Batman
Although many fans of Batman consider the only plausible choice for the character to be Adam West, we’re going to look at fans’ reactions to Michael Keaton and Christian Bale. As both actors do a great job portraying Bruce Wayne and Batman in their respective films, fans agree that one is better than the other.
In a Hollywood Reporter poll, Christian Bale barely skates by, just making it past Keaton as “the best Batman.” Bale’s vote came out to 39 percent of the total, while Keaton nearly tied him with 38 percent.
Kirsten Dunst Vs. Zendaya — MJ
For Peter Parker’s love interest, MJ, two actresses have graced the screen. Originally, the character was played by Kirsten Dunst, and while many enjoyed her “damsel in distress” take on the role, others kind of enjoy Zendaya’s fresh portrayal. Pretty much, the character is the opposite of Dunst’s, brash, outspoken, and with an “I really don’t care,” attitude.
But fans will be fans, especially when it comes to superhero flicks, and they have concluded that one of these actresses is the one and only MJ. According to an IMDb poll, fans prefer Kristen Dunst to Zendaya’s MJ, winning 305 votes to the other actresses 165.
John Wayne Vs. Jeff Bridges — Rooster Cogburn
For many, there is nothing quite like an original movie. So, when a remake comes out, they’re a bit skeptical about seeing an iconic character played by someone new. So when John Wayne’s Oscar-winning Rooster Cogburn was recast to Jeff Bridges in the remake of True Grit, fans were uneasy.
Of course, the Coen Brothers no what they’re doing when it comes to filmmaking, and fans tend to agree. In an IMDb poll of 807 votes, Jeff Bridge’s came out on top, winning 461 of the total votes. It goes to show that even Oscar-winning performances can be remade if done correctly!
Anthony Hopkins Vs. Mads Mikkelsen — Hannibal Lecter
Who thought we’d be seeing which actor played a better cannibal? But, when it comes to Hannibal Lecter, it’s very much a love-hate relationship with fans, especially with Anthony Hopkins primal Lacter and Mads Mikkelsen’s suave, calculating portrayal. Even so, fans have found they prefer one cannibal actor more than the other.
According to an IMDb poll of 2,830 votes, Hopkins’ Hannibal Lecter sparks fans’ interest more than Mikkelsen’s, winning 2,030 votes to the Hannibal actor’s 699 votes. Keep in mind; this poll also included a few more actors who played the character. Even so, Hopkins came in first, and Mikkelsen came in second.