Female Actresses in Male Roles

It’s remarkable how we look at the lives of actors and imagine them living glamorously every day, but we don’t even consider that their job is that that easy and that it is actually quite difficult. And the female actresses we are talking about in this article had a double challenge: for one it is to get into the skin of someone of the same gender as you and something completely different having to interpret a role of the opposite sex. Let’s see ten actresses who have done flawless work in male roles:

1. Cate Blanchet – I’m Not There

Beautiful Cate Blanchet paid tribute to the famous singer B = in the film I’m Not There. She has played the role so well that you could swear she was born a man! Cate was not alone in interpreting Bob Dylan in this movie: there were Richard Gere, Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Ben Whishaw, Marcus Carl Franklin, but she was the only woman.

2. Glen Close- Albert Nobbs

If you saw her on the street, you could have sworn she was a man! In the top of most successful disguises, Glen Close would take first place. In Albert Nobbs she plays a woman disguised as a man trying to survive in a male dominated world where women have no chance. The action of this disturbing drama, which won three Oscar nominations takes place in the 19th century, when a woman’s life was not easy.

3. Hilary Swank -Boys Do Not Cry

In the drama Boys Do Not Cry (1999), Hilary Swank plays a girl who thinks she is a man, a role which earned her a well-deserved Oscar for her performance. The film is inspired by the dramatic and true story of Tina Brandon, known as Brandon Teena, a girl who wants so much to be a man that she disguises as one, outwitting others.

4. Amanda Bynes – She’s the Man

I know what you are going to say: what is Amanda Bynes doing next to Glen Close and Cate Blanchet. She is miles away from being even in the same room with such actresses, but you have to admit she did a pretty good job interpreting a man in the movies She’s the Man. A comedy which is based on Shakespeare’s play, Twelfth Nght. Amanda Bynes is Viola, a teenager who dresses up as her twin brother and enters the football team, but also falls in love with her new roommate.

5. Tilda Swinton – Orlando

Orlando is a film that is based on a novel by Virginia Woolf. Tilda Swinton is Orlando, a person living two lives, one interior and one exterior and has two bodies, one man and one woman.

6. Julie Andrews – Victor, Victoria

Men will find it easier to work…even in the arts. So Victoria, an opera singer whose says in the business are almost over, is now looking for good fortune in a new identity and turns into Victor from Victoria.

7. Gwyneth Paltrow – Shakespeare in Love

A film with seven Academy Awards in which Gwyneth is Viola de Lesseps, who is transformed for a short period in Thomas Kent to play Romeo. Maybe it is not the most successful disguise, Gwyneth keeping a somewhat feminine allure, but considering that the role earned the actress an Oscar for her performance, we do not have any comments.

8. Keira Knightley – Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest

Sometimes, even women want to become pirates, although it is a “job” usually reserved for men. And Keira Knightley is one of those women. In the 2006 adventure movie Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest, Keira Knightley has to disguise herself as a male in order to be accepted in the pirate ship to search for the chest.

9. Julia Roberts – Sleeping with the Enemy

I know it is just a small role, but we certainly have to mention the role of Julia Roberts in Sleeping with the Enemy, because it proves her versatility as an actress. For a short period of time, Roberts disguises as a man while stealing her mother away from the nursing home in order to escape her abusive husband.

10. Felicity Huffman – Transamerica

You might think it is not right to include Felicity Huffman into this list. In Transamerica she played the role of a transsexual man, which basically means she still played the role of a woman in man’s shoes. And her performance was close to perfection.