A Cameo role can be a fleeting moment or something more enduring. Generally, a cameo role is someone of celebrity status playing a very small part but their appearance adds a certain frisson or gravitas. Many great books have been made into movies so it’s not surprising to find that many writers have wanted the thrill of appearing in cameo roles in their film adaptation. Great stars who often appear in cameo roles in movies well below their usual status are instantly recognizable. When an author pops up, many of us probably have no idea of who they are. Look out for these 8 Writers Who Made a Cameo Appearance:
1. Michael Morpurgo
Michael Morpurgo is a prolific English writer, specializing in children’s fiction. He is celebrated sufficiently to have been made Children’s Laureate. He wrote War Horse back in 1982 and after successful runs in London’s West End and Broadway, it was finally turned into a fabulous movie. Both Michael and his wife, Clare, filmed cameo roles for War Horse.
2. Alfred Hitchcock
The master of suspense, Alfred Hitchcock directed 52 movies. He started directing in his British homeland and only made a few cameo appearances in his early movies. On his move to Hollywood however, his cameo roles became famous and he appeared in every one of his US made movies. So as to not interfere with the enjoyment of the plot, the appearances were made in the first half hour.
3. Kathryn Stockett
The Help was one of the sensational movies of 2011 and indeed earned a Best Picture Nomination at the 2012 Oscars. Writer Kathryn Stockett appears in one scene in the movie (the Junior League Scene) and other members of the cast include her sister, her mother and some friends.
4. John Irving
John Irving has to be one of the quirkiest authors around and Robin Williams was the perfect choice to take the eponymous lead role in The World According to Garp. The movie that features John Lithgow as a cross-dresser, Glenn Close as a driven mother also gives us a cameo appearance by John Irving. Look out for him scuttling around the floor as a wrestling referee.
5. Peter Benchley
Did you stay out of the water for ages after watching Jaws? Steven Speilberg may have directed the movie, but it was thanks to the writer Peter Benchley that the great white shark terrorized the people of Amity and millions of viewers worldwide. Benchley appears in the movie as a reporter on the beach.
6. Fannie Flagg
Who doesn’t love Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistlestop Café? This enduring tale of friendship and memories, and good food, of course, is an all-American classic. Fannie Flagg’s cameo role sees the writer playing the workshop leader of a woman’s seminar.
7. Stephenie Myer
One of the most celebrated genres of the 21st century so far – romantic vampires – is personified by the Twilight series penned by Stephenie Meyer. She’s enjoyed phenomenal success with the books and the movies have followed suit. The author’s only cameo role so far comes in a diner sign in the first movie.
8. Stephen King
Another author who like Hitchcock likes to film multiple cameo roles, Stephen King has appeared in a number of his movies – Rose Red, The Shining, The Stand, Sleepwalker, The Langoliers, the Storm of the Century and Thinner included. He also appears in a number of his TV mini-series and made for TV movies. Probably his most notable cameo appearance is as the minister in Pet Sematary.
You can never guess when a cameo appearance may pop up. They very often aren’t known until the movie is released. There’s no rhyme nor reason why some movies have cameo roles nor why some writers do them and other’s not. I personally think some writers shouldn’t definitely appear in movies based on their books. JK Rowling for example. Who do you think should have made a cameo appearance?
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