Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Superhero Actors Who Look Nothing Like They Used To

For as long as Hollywood has been making movie magic, ambitious actors and actresses have squeezed themselves into spandex hotpants, donned clunky prosthetics, and otherwise pushed themselves to the physical limits in order to portray some of our favorite superheroes onscreen. But after shooting wrapped, not all of those stars stayed in peak crime-fighting condition. We rounded up ten heroes who you'd never recognize if you ran into them in LA today.

Chris Evans

Don't worry, Chris Evans still looks every inch the Captain America you know and love — but he also doesn't look anything like he did back in his first stint as a Marvel comics superhero in the 2005 movie Fantastic Four. Most people have forgotten that Evans ever starred in the Fantastic Four franchise, probably because when he played the Human Torch, the actor looked less like himself and more like Chris Evans' smaller, furrier little brother with a regrettable haircut. We'll take the star-spangled man with a plan over that flaming baby doofus any day, thank you very much.

Tobey Maguire

Tobey Maguire still made a believable onscreen teenager back in 2002, when Sam Raimi finally got his hands on the Marvel superhero franchise he'd always wanted and cast the then-20-something actor as Spider-Man. Since then, however, the actor has experienced a lot of life changes: celebrating his 40th birthday, becoming a father, and trading his youthful, musculature for a physical condition most famously known as "dadbod." Plus, while his frame filled out, his facial hair filled in — leading to a level of beardedness that would have been but a distant dream for young Peter Parker.

Michael Keaton

After being originally born onscreen as a campy, spandex-wearing television character, Batman made his blockbuster film debut in 1989 — with the now-65-year-old Michael Keaton playing the man in the suit. Because superhero standards were a bit different back then (a ripped bod wasn't required to play the Caped Crusader until the mid-1990s or so), Keaton might actually have more muscle nowadays than he did as Batman, when he had to keep his weight in check in order to avoid outgrowing the unforgiving rubber bat-suit. But he's definitely lost certain elements of his trademark superhero look... including his hair.

Anna Paquin

Back in the heyday of Bryan Singer's X-Men, Anna Paquin was a cutie-pie brunette who hadn't yet shed her teenage baby fat. And now? She's a grown-up blonde in her '30s with two actual babies of her own (and very little fat, as we all know from watching her occasionally nude starring performance on HBO's True Blood.) Although she's stunning in both roles, the Anna of today is practically unrecognizable as the girl with the deadly touch who attended Xavier's Academy for Gifted Youngsters.

Liam Neeson

Before he launched the career renaissance that turned him into everyone's favorite Action Dad with a particular set of skills, Liam Neeson starred in one of the weirdest superhero movies of the 20th century, the 1990 cult classic Darkman. The film was the brainchild of Sam Raimi, who wanted to direct a superhero flick but hadn't quite gotten the whole Army of Darkness aesthetic out of his system — which is to say, Neeson spent most of his screen time looking less like Bryan Mills and more like a wayward extra from The Walking Dead. Needless to say, he looks very different now: nearly 30 years older, and with actual flesh on his face.

Val Kilmer

Unless you've been hiding under a rock, you won't be surprised to see Val Kilmer on this list. Back in 1995, he was the superhero star of Batman Forever, where he became the first (and gratefully last) Caped Crusader to wear the infamous nippled bat-suit. But in the 20 years since he bested the Riddler and saved Gotham from criminal destruction, Kilmer has definitely not kept up with his superheroic nutrition and workout regimen... or even cut his hair, apparently. We won't make the obvious pun about the change in his appearance vis-a-vis his Batman Forever performance, but let's just say he'll have his work cut out for him if he wants to take his old costume out for a little nostalgic try-on.

Lou Ferrigno

It probably goes without saying, but Lou Ferrigno looks rather different as a 21st-century human man than he did when he played the Incredible Hulk onscreen back in 1977. Ferrigno has since traded that puce-colored caveman wig for a natural head of jet-black hair, and of course, he doesn't put on that green body makeup anymore (except maybe for special private occasions when he's feeling a tad nostalgic.) However, there's a twist: unlike other actors on our list who failed to stay in peak hero condition, the former Hulk is, if anything, even more ripped as a senior citizen than he was in his bodybuilding prime. Smashing!

Dolph Lundgren

Lantern-jawed, dark-haired, and oozing intimidation from every visible pore: that was Dolph Lundgren back in 1989, when he became the first feature-film incarnation of Frank Castle, AKA The Punisher. However, Lundgren's brunette locks only lasted as long as the movie did — and nearly 30 years later, he doesn't look a thing like that vengeance-obsessed anti-hero. The big Swede has long since gone back to his original blond (which is coming in platinum at the roots as he approaches 60), and while he's still in terrific shape, he's morphed from a smooth-complected Punisher into a craggy, cranky member of the Expendables. He still loves himself a big scary gun, though.

Alec Baldwin

Lately, this Hollywood A-lister and sometime-Donald Trump impersonator sports a luxurious head of silver hair and an age-appropriate bit of paunch around his midsection — but he cut a long, lean, tall-dark-and-handsome silhouette back in 1994, when he played the hypnotically-gifted hero The Shadow (at least, when they showed his face; most of the time, the only part of The Shadow seen onscreen was his... well, you know.) Baldwin's brief foray into superhero films saw him boasting a greasy wig and some scary prosthetic fingernails, along with a very respectable (albeit furry) set of crime-fighter's pecs, but he didn't hang on to any of it after shooting wrapped.

Billy Zane

In the vast pantheon of superhero flicks, Billy Zane's turn as the gun-slinging, horse-wrangling, purple-spandex-wearing star of The Phantom often goes overlooked. But it happened, and he looked great doing it! (At least, as great as anyone can look while riding on horseback in a hooded purple unitard.) That was in 1996, though, and Zane's appearance has dramatically changed in the intervening decades. Back then, he was in peak crime-fighting condition with a shredded, screen-ready physique, not to mention a full head of beautiful, flowing hair. Now, he's quite bald and sporting a lot more padding around his midsection — although that might be intentional, the better to fill out his role as the latest celebrity KFC spokes-Colonel. Whatever the reason, it's clear that Zane won't be fitting back into that vivid Zentai suit anytime soon.