A night or so ago, I was watching late-night cable and happened upon the David Arquette giant monster vehicle, “Eight-Legged Freaks.”  I was a bit startled to see Scarlett Johansson as a seventeen-year-old, playing Kari Wuhrer’s daughter (briliant bit of casting, I might add.)  For some reason, my mind wanted to believe that Scarlett’s first movie was Ghost World, but checking her history, it seems that she has been working in films since 1995’s ‘North.’  That movie was pretty much awful, but thinking about it started a train of thought in my head…

The MS-QOTD is a test of your memory:  What other actors’ early film roles (the goofier and more embarrassing the better) have most people forgotten about?

The Author

Matthew Peterson

Matthew Peterson

Once upon a time, there was a young nerd from the Midwest, who loved Matter-Eater Lad and the McKenzie Brothers... If pop culture were a maze, Matthew would be the Minotaur at its center. Were it a mall, he'd be the Food Court. Were it a parking lot, he’d be the distant Cart Corral where the weird kids gather to smoke, but that’s not important right now... Matthew enjoys body surfing (so long as the bodies are fresh), writing in the third person, and dark-eyed women. Amongst his weaponry are such diverse elements as: Fear! Surprise! Ruthless efficiency! An almost fanatical devotion to pop culture!

And a nice red uniform.

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  1. Ian
    May 28, 2012 at 11:45 am — Reply

    I used to have the major hots for Kari Wuhrer

    • May 28, 2012 at 2:40 pm — Reply

      I did too when she was in “Sliders”.

  2. Kenneth
    May 28, 2012 at 11:56 am — Reply

    Tim Robbins in Howard the Duck

  3. May 28, 2012 at 12:19 pm — Reply

    I’d say the goofiest has got to be George Clooney in 1988’s Return of the Killer Tomatoes.

    But I’d also nominate Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation for containing early roles for Renee Zellweger AND Matthew McConaughey.

    And last but not least, while it’s not an early role, I’d say Robert Downey Jr. probably would like to forget Tim Allen’s 2006 remake of “The Shaggy Dog”, which came out after a year after “Kiss Kiss Bang Bang” and two years before “Iron Man”.

  4. Damascus
    May 28, 2012 at 12:48 pm — Reply

    ARGH! I was just going to say George Clooney! I was just watching that movie again the other day and saw him in it, it was a little crazy. But for someone different, if you remember the awesome movie Monster in the Closet, a little girl gets sucked into her closet in the beginning of the film. That little girl was a very young Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas. My buddy Sam bought me that movie when my first son was born 4 years ago.

  5. May 28, 2012 at 1:39 pm — Reply

    I saw the very special episode of Family Ties with a young Tom Hanks as alcoholic Uncle Ned yesterday. That was pretty unsettling.

    • May 28, 2012 at 2:09 pm — Reply

      “I may not be Miller Time… But it is… VANILLA TIME!”

  6. May 28, 2012 at 2:44 pm — Reply

    Does Jim Carrey’s role in “Once Bitten” count? It was pretty bad (but in an enjoyable cheesy 80’s flick way).

    Ryan Reynolds in the Showtime movie adaptation of “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” (which spun-off into the TV series) as the popular High School jock Seth (had to look it up on wikipedia to recall the character name).

  7. Frank
    May 28, 2012 at 3:03 pm — Reply

    One of Jack Nickolson’s first roles was in the original “Little Shop of Horrors” as a patient in the dentist’s chair that refused Novocaine.

    • KevinPBreen
      May 29, 2012 at 5:00 am — Reply

      And he was the handsome young hero Rexford Bedlo in the horror-comedy THE RAVEN.

  8. brenton8090
    May 28, 2012 at 3:18 pm — Reply

    Speaking of “North” (which I loved as a kid) I just watched Back to the Future 2 with Elijah Wood. And also, Billy Zane. (I also loved the Phantom movie as a kid.)

  9. Georgedubya
    May 28, 2012 at 3:43 pm — Reply

    Natalie Portman as the President’s daughter in Mars Attacks. I may love the movie, but it was silly and campy as all get-out.

    • KevinPBreen
      May 29, 2012 at 5:02 am — Reply

      and her Marilyn Monroe impression in THE PROFESSIONAL!

  10. Lindsey
    May 28, 2012 at 3:46 pm — Reply

    Heh, funny you should ask, I was just reminded of Kate Winslet and Daniel Craig as love interests in “a Kid in King Arthur’s Court”

    You know, that movie where a kid that’s terrible at baseball foils and evil plot to usurp King Arthur’s throne all the while teaching the people of Ye Olden Times about the finer things in life like Big Macs, Mountain Bikes and rollerblades…

    • May 28, 2012 at 8:00 pm — Reply

      I found the premise of that movie to be ridiculous to begin with, but when he was making the Big Mac I just totally lost it. The roller blades I could almost buy, but for some reason it was the Big Mac that made the movie break my brain.

      Is it sad I could remember that after not seeing the movie in years?

  11. Gehrigan
    May 28, 2012 at 7:52 pm — Reply

    Moviles Kidman in BMX Bandits.

  12. faralar
    May 29, 2012 at 1:40 am — Reply

    Billy bob Thornton has a small role in the troma classic “chopper chicks in zombie town”.

    And you could probably count natalie portmans first real movie appearance in Leon as well, except for the fact thatthe movie is a masterpiece.

  13. Eddie T
    May 29, 2012 at 1:46 am — Reply

    Stallone’s porno maybe?

  14. KevinPBreen
    May 29, 2012 at 5:05 am — Reply

    Kiera Knightley as Robin Hood’s daughter in PRINCESS OF THIEVES. And Leonard Nimoy as an alien in ZOMBIES OF THE STRATOSPHERE.

  15. KevinPBreen
    May 29, 2012 at 5:09 am — Reply

    Scarlett was the little girl who lost a leg in THE HORSE WHISPERER, and one whose brother turned into a porcine in MY BROTHER THE PIG. And co-starred with Captain America in THE PERFECT SCORE.

  16. Oldcomicfan
    May 29, 2012 at 6:49 am — Reply

    That would have to be Pia Zidora in “Santa Claus vs. the Martians” – not that anything she made after hitting puberty was much better. But the one that amazes me is the cast of the movie “Judgement at Nuremberg”. Spencer Tracy, Maximillian Schell, Judy Garland, the list goes on and on, ending with William Shatner. William Shatner? With Spencer Tracy? That would be like teaming up Johnny Depp with Laurence Olivier!

  17. May 29, 2012 at 8:10 am — Reply

    Don’t forget Kate Winslet in “A Kid in King Arthur’s Court” or Leonardo DiCaprio in “Critters 3”.

  18. Ryan
    May 29, 2012 at 8:17 am — Reply

    2 Guys a Girl and a Pizza Place made me a fan of Ryan Reynolds.

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