Never exactly a leading man, Roberts showed early promise in Scorcese-on-a-budget affair The Pope of Greenwich Village (also starring Mickey Rourke, btw). And though a recent turn in Heroes and a bit part in The Dark Knight show he may have been down but still isn’t out, he’s got a stretch to go in making up for two decades of stinkers like Dark Honeymoon. Projects in 2010/11: 26. Choice Upcoming Title: A New York Heartbeat
C. Thomas Howell
He started off on the rightest of feet in the 80s with a string of roles in great films like E.T.: The Extraterrestrial, The Outsiders and Red Dawn. Things took a turn though, likely around day 4 of shooting Soul Man. Some recent TV work on Criminal Minds and SouthLAnd show he may have a comeback playing freaky genius serial killers or self-destructive burned out cops, but it will take a lot to erase stains like Mutant Zombie Vampires from the ‘Hood. Projects in 2010/11: 12 . Choice Upcoming Title: Camel Spiders
Maybe being cast as burnout John Bender in The Breakfast Club left a deep mark on Judd’s career. That or the curse of The Brat Pack was in full effect. While he didn’t clutter up his C.V. with as many C movie roles as others on this list, his career seems defined by shlubby projects that needed what little boost his “name” could provide… like his turn as Father Brian in The Lost Angel for example. Projects in 2010/11: 11. Choice Upcoming Title: Mayor Cupcake.
The jump from TV to the big screen is always perilous. But surely someone whose character could leap tall buildings…? Well, no. Cain’s leap landed him in such roles as Will Murdock in Dark Descent (you know, the one co-starring Biliana Petrinska), or Roger Tarso in Max Havoc: Ring of Fire (you know, the one starring Mickey Hardt). Projects in 2010/11: 21 . Choice Upcoming Title: Home Run Showdown.
We SciFi/Horror geeks will always love Lance for his turns as Bishop in the Alien franchise and the preternaturally taciturn profiler Frank Black in Millennium. Unfortunately that means some of us might accidentally rent Sasquatch Mountain. Though that might have been partly in hopes of a Cerina Vincent nude scene. Don’t bother. Projects in 2010/11: 17. Choice Title: Scream of the Banshee.
Cuba Gooding Jr.
He starred in Boyz n tha Hood. He won an Oscar for Jerry Maguire. He played Radio in Radio. Ummm. We haven’t quite given up, but…. Projects in 2010/11 (mercifully):4. Choice Upcoming Title: Sacrifice co-starring Christian Slater.
Mr. Glover may be a controversial choice on this list. He has never completely gone off course, always veering back with a Royal Tenenbaums to balance each The Cookout. Perhaps his extended exposure to Mel Gibson can explain how an obviously great actor and intelligent man could appear in something like The Shaggy Dog, though. Projects in 2010/11: 16. Choice Upcoming Title: Age of Dragons
A surgically installed eyebrow cock and squint have carried Madsen through a hard scrabble career with a good share of highlights like Reservoir Dogs, Donnie Brasco and, of course, my favourite Species. The problem of course is that he is always playing “that” character… and “that” character seems to be in endless demand… and he can’t seem to ever say no. Which is why he’s been in 202 movies since 1982… including Projects in 2010/11: 47. Choice Upcoming Title: Mafia: Farewell to the Godfather co-starring Tom Sizemore.
See Michael Madsen… add more drugs, more alcohol, (more talent) + a sex tape… and voila. Projects (possibly) in 2010/11: 32. Choice Upcoming Title: Monsterpiece Theatre Volume II
Val Kilmer is an amazing actor. No really. I swear to God. Here’s my theory though. Val lives on a ranch in Wyoming. I don’t think he has a TV or a computer or maybe even indoor plumbing. Therefore I don’t think he ever has to watch anything he stars in… at least for the last decade or so. How else explain the mind-boggling amount of Z-grade crap he’s appeared in (between such legitimately great things as Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and Pollock). He obviously (a) has no agent and (b) only takes roles where he can fly in, work for 1-5 days and fly home. Probably carried by an flock of eagles he tamed. Project in 2010/11: 16. Choice Upcoming Title: The Codfather