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Why Poe Dameron From The Last Jedi Looks So Familiar

After Star Wars: The Force Awakens, moviegoers across the world fell in love with Poe Dameron. And really, it's easy to see why he's such a fan favorite: Poe is a loyal soldier, a good friend, and a heroic leader. He's not afraid to crack jokes when squaring off against lightsaber-wielding psychos, and the dude can fly any ship you put in front of him, whether it's an X-wing or a TIE fighter.

So naturally, fans are excited for Dameron's return in The Last Jedi, but if they've been paying attention over the past few years, chances are they've seen his face in quite a few films. After all, Poe is played by none other than Oscar Isaac, one of the most talented actors in Hollywood today. Isaac has starred in everything from indie thrillers to superhero blockbusters, which is probably why Poe Dameron looks so incredibly familiar.

The Nativity Story (2006)

For his fifth feature film, Oscar Isaac landed the part of St. Joseph, who—if you actually read through the New Testament—is only mentioned in a handful of verses before disappearing completely. Despite the lack of background info, Isaac totally succeeds in bringing the Biblical character to life, playing Joseph as virtuous man who sticks by his betrothed, Mary (Keisha Castle-Hughes), even when she mysteriously becomes pregnant. While the rest of the village regards her with suspicion, Joseph stands by her side the entire time, refusing to condemn her (as was the custom of the day) and believing her story that she's pregnant with the Son of God. If you're familiar with the Christmas story, then you know exactly how the film plays out, but Isaac adds a new dimension to the classic tale by portraying Joseph as an actual human being with fears, hopes, and dreams—a quiet man who becomes a dignified hero when faced with a divine challenge.

Body of Lies (2008)

One of Ridley Scott's lesser-seen films, Body of Lies follows a CIA agent (played by Leonardo DiCaprio) who's hunting insurgents across the Middle East. But despite his fluent Arabic and scraggly beard, DiCaprio can't win the entire Iraq War by himself, so he needs a bit of backup from his sidekick and field operative, Bassam (Isaac). Sporting a ponytail and a machine gun, Bassam is the guy who sets up meetings with turncoat terrorists, covers DiCaprio when the going gets rough, and ferries the CIA agent through bustling streets and desert landscapes. Unfortunately—as you'll notice with a lot of Oscar Isaac's early movie roles—Bassam doesn't live very long, as he's blown into little bits by an RPG. But despite his limited screen time, Isaac totally holds his own against DiCaprio, and he's bristling with energy and charisma, right until he's turned into human toast.

Robin Hood (2010)

Just a few years after Body of Lies, Isaac re-teamed with director Ridley Scott and co-star Russell Crowe for a grittier take on England's most famous outlaw. In this medieval adventure, Crowe plays Robin Hood (excuse us, Robin Longstride), an archer who's drawn into a game of backstabbing, bloody battles, and secret identities. Granted, the film didn't do especially well with critics or audiences, but you can't fault Oscar Isaac's sleazy turn as the infamous Prince John. A man obsessed with taxing peasants and cheating on his wife, John has got to be one the most incompetent rulers in English history, and it's a role that gives Isaac plenty of opportunities to chew the scenery, stand around naked, and come off as a royal jerk. It's not the most memorable role of Isaac's career, but it proved he's skilled at playing villains, setting him up for future films like Ex Machina and X-Men: Apocalypse.

Sucker Punch (2011)

One of the first films that really gave Isaac a chance to flex his mainstream movie star muscles, Sucker Punch tells the story of Babydoll (Emily Browning), a young girl who's framed for murder and shipped off to a horrific 1950s mental asylum. Once she shows up, Babydoll realizes she's going to be lobotomized, so in order to cope, she imagines herself as a prostitute imprisoned in a fantasy brothel. Forced to perform in a bizarro cabaret, Babydoll escapes even further into her subconscious by imagining herself battling dragons and Nazi robots. Yeah, it's pretty wild, and the visuals are insane, but almost wherever Babydoll goes, she keeps running into Blue Jones.

In the real world, Blue (Isaac) is a pale and sickly orderly at the mental asylum. He's the guy slinking down the hallway, pulling all the strings in the hospital, and plotting Babydoll's lobotomy. But in the brothel-fantasy world, Blue exchanges his scrubs for a snazzy jacket, slicked-back hair, and a pencil mustache ripped from the face of a 1930s movie star. In the real world, he's sneaky and conniving. In the fantasy world, he's a head honcho pimp whose word is law, or it's the back of his hand...or worse.  The dual role gave Isaac quite a bit of room to show his A-list material—and the opportunity to show off his sexy singing voice.

Drive (2011)

There's no denying that Ryan Gosling is the star of Drive, but Oscar Isaac is the one who sets the wheels of the plot in motion. In this 1970s-style thriller, Isaac plays Standard Gabriel, an ex-con recently released from prison. He's hoping to start his life anew, grateful at getting a second chance to set things right with his wife Irene (Carey Mulligan) and son Benicio (Kaden Leos). Unfortunately, life on the outside turns out to be pretty complicated. During Standard's time behind bars, Irene has developed a bit of a crush on her cool and quiet neighbor (Gosling). Even worse, Standard owes some serious cash to some very serious people.

But this where Drive takes an interesting turn. While it initially seems like Standard and the Driver are going to be enemies—their hallway introduction is more than a tad tense—Gosling's character decides to put the family's needs above his own and help Standard pay off the mob. Of course, that involves robbing a pawn shop, and unfortunately, the scheme goes horribly wrong. And spoilers, Oscar Isaac doesn't make it all the way through the movie. However, his death sets off a chain of events involving a strip club showdown, an elevator beatdown, and a very angry Albert Brooks.

The Bourne Legacy (2012)

What the fourth Bourne film lacks in Matt Damon, it makes up for with Oscar Isaac. Sure, he's only on for a few scenes, but even before he hit the big time, audiences could tell there was something special about this guy.

The up-and-comer plays the enigmatic Number Three, a government operative who's being punished for falling in love on the job. Romance and assassination never work well together, so Number Three has been relocated to a cabin in the middle of Alaska. While manning his icy post, he bumps into fellow black ops agent Aaron Cross (Jeremy Renner), who shows up at the cabin in desperate need of "chems," drugs that keep his brain and body working at Jason Bourne levels.

Despite some initial pushing and posturing, Number Three finally gives Cross a helping hand, but unfortunately for our boy Oscar Isaac, the government has decided to clean house and wipe out all their undercover operatives. So when a drone shows up outside his cabin, Number Three is quickly reduced to Number Zero.

Inside Llewyn Davis (2013)

Written and directed by the Coen brothers, Inside Llewyn Davis is the movie that finally made audiences take notice, and he was nominated for a ton of awards—including a Golden Globe—for his performance as the title character, a musician struggling to make it in New York's folk music scene. But even though he's incredibly talented (Isaac's singing skills are on par with his acting abilities), Llewyn just can't seem to catch a break. The music industry just doesn't care about his particular talents, although Llewyn isn't helping himself much with his bad attitude and drunken antics.

Still grieving from a devastating loss, Llewyn manages to hurt almost everyone he comes into contact with, and as he chases his musical dreams, he passes up opportunity after opportunity to turn his life around and actually find some sort of happiness. In another actor's hands, Llewyn might come off as 100 percent unlikeable, but thanks to Isaac's performance, we can't help but sympathize; whether he's auditioning for a hard-bitten music producer, verbally sparring with John Goodman, or chasing down a cat, you can't help but root for the guy. And while the movie's sense of humor is pretty bleak, it's incredibly fun watching Oscar Isaac perform a duet with his future enemy, Kylo Ren.

A Most Violent Year (2014)

Set in 1981, A Most Violent Year finds Oscar Isaac playing Abel Morales, an immigrant businessman with big plans and even bigger problems. The owner of a heating oil company, Abel plans on taking control of the Big Apple, but first, he needs to raise enough money for a pricey piece of real estate, tangle with a district attorney (David Oyelowo), and discover who's stealing his oil. If Abel would only listen to his gangster wife (Jessica Chastain), he could solve his problems with a couple of threats and a handful of bullets, but Abel desperately wants to follow the law and keep away from Mafia tactics.

Of course, when you're struggling to keep your business afloat in the cutthroat world of capitalism, sometimes you've got to bend a few rules. And while Abel hopes to keep his hands clean, that's easier said than done when you're dealing with mobsters, money, and men with guns. Isaac's performance echoes Michael Corleone from The Godfather, and with his camel skin coat and perfectly coiffed hair, Abel comes across as a calm and collected man of principle, a guy who believes in the American dream. But with the beautiful and brutal Chastain egging him on, Isaac's conflicted character has to decide if he should take the high road or "the path that is most right."

Ex Machina (2015)

Directed by Alex Garland, Ex Machina finds Oscar Isaac at his bad guy best playing a tech genius named Nathan, a man with some freaky Frankenstein ambitions. The creator of the world's most popular search engine, Nathan lives in a secluded modern mansion, a fortress surrounded by glaciers and pine trees. And when he's not swilling alcohol or throwing haymakers at a punching bag, he's trying to create artificial intelligence.

With his latest robot, the mysterious Ava (Alicia Vikander), Nathan thinks he might've finally created life and become God. To prove Ava really is intelligent, Nathan brings out a young coder named Caleb (Domhnall Gleeson) to conduct a complicated Turing test. But as the experiment goes on and Ava starts begging for help, Caleb realizes that Nathan has a lot of scary, sick secrets.

In a movie where everyone is on their A game, Isaac completely steals the show, oozing with menace and contempt, bullying Caleb, harassing Ava, and hiding something truly horrible deep within his lair. Isaac plays the mad scientist as a mix of Mark Zuckerberg and Mark Wahlberg, part smarmy savant, part uber-macho dude bro, and he's absolutely terrifying. But while Nathan is a manipulative monster with a bad habit of abusing women, we've got to admit, the man certainly knows how to tear up the dance floor.

X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)

With everybody in Hollywood getting into the superhero game, Oscar Isaac finally gave the genre a go with X-Men: Apocalypse. Directed by Bryan Singer, this installment follows Charles Xavier and his gifted youngsters as they save the world from Apocalypse (Isaac), a blue-skinned mutant with a major God complex who's been around since the days of ancient Egypt.

Naturally, Apocalypse has all sorts of powers. Cut this dude, and he'll heal right up. Tick him off, and he'll turn you into a pile of dust. No wonder he's been known by so many names over the years—Elohim, Shen, Ra. But after napping for a couple of millennia, Apocalypse emerges from his tomb, decides he hates the '80s, and prepares for world domination. After assembling his four horsemen, the ancient entity hijacks the world's nuclear arsenal, goes one-on-one with James McAvoy, and soon discovers he's stumbled into one of the worst films of the X-Men franchise.

Yeah, critics hated X-Men: Apocalypse, and American audiences weren't crazy about it, either. That's too bad for Isaac, since he had to spend hours under all that makeup. He's also going full ham, and as a result, some praised him as "the life of the party," while others claimed Apocalypse was "an incredible letdown as a foe." Either way, just because this mutant flick was a failure, that doesn't mean Isaac needs to worry about his blockbuster future. After all, when you're a Star Wars hero, you're pretty much set for life.