Thursday, November 03, 2005
The Most Filmed Character Ever!
According to the Guinness Book of World Records, the "Most Portrayed Character In Films" is Sherlock Holmes, the master detective created by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. According to Guinness, Sherlock Holmes has been portrayed by at least 75 actors in more than 211 movies since 1900. In addition to Basil Rathbone (perhaps the most famous portrayal of Holmes), other actors who have taken on the role include: Buster Keaton, Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, George C. Scott, Michael Caine, Christopher Plummer, Roger Moore, and Leonard Nimoy. Other camps contend that not Holmes, but Dracula, the vampire created by Bram Stoker holds the record for the most filmed character. In addition to Bela Lugosi's signature performance, the Transylvanian count has been played by Christopher Lee (who also played Holmes!), John Carradine, Frank Langella, Gary Oldman, Max Schreck, Klaus Kinski, Udo Kier, Rutger Hauer, David Niven, Michael Nouri, Miles O'Keeffe, Jack Palance, David Carradine, Peter Fonda, Forrest J. Ackerman; (and spoofed by) Charlie Callas, George Hamilton, Judd Hirsch, and Leslie Nielsen. Still others hold that, in fact, Tarzan, created by Edgar Rice Burroughs, is the most filmed character. In addition to the best remembered performance by Johnny Weissmuller, the "King of the Jungle" was also played on screen by Elmo Lincoln (the first to portray him), Buster Crabbe, Joe Lara, Gordon Scott, Ron Ely, Christopher Lambert, Miles O'Keeffe (who also played Dracula!) Lex Barker, and Bruce Bennett. But regardless of the record holder, the fact that these three characters have been revisited so often is a testament to their enduring iconographic existence in the collective unconsciousness of the movie-going public.