In a world of billions of people, what are the chances of meeting someone who looks almost exactly the same as you do? It must be an eerie feeling, yet there is probably someone resembles you, at least a little. For those people whose face is the spitting image of someone famous, it can be an unusual way to earn an extra buck.
Celebrity lookalike agencies are flourishing. You can hire the spitting image of your latest movie star heartthrob, or an uncannily realistic impersonator of a popular stand-up comedian to entertain the guests at your party or corporate function. Or maybe you’d prefer to meet Abraham Lincoln or Marilyn Monroe?
Lookalikes might be hired to “mix and mingle” with a crowd, to open a museum, or to act as a decoy for the real star who wants to avoid the crowds. There is even a conspiracy theory that the Beatles singer-songwriter Sir Paul McCartney died in 1966 (he’s actually still very much alive and his new album is due to be released in September) and was replaced by an impersonator named William Shears Campbell.
In this curious gallery of lookalikes, we have compiled a line-up of well-known faces from history who bear a spookily striking resemblance to some of today’s celebrities.
1. President Millard Fillmore and Alec Baldwin
2. John Brown (American abolitionist) and Charlie Sheen
3. Sir David Wilkie (Scotish Painter) and ‘Harry Potter’ actor Rupert Grint
4. Branch Rickey and John Goodman
5. President Andrew Johnson and Tommy Lee Jones
6. Perhaps they both share ‘blue blood’: Philip IV of Spain and Mark Zuckerberg
7. General Douglas MacArthur and Bruce Willis
8. Sebastián de Morra (as portrayed by Diego Velázquez) and Peter Dinklage
9. Johann Vogt and Robert De Niro
Celebrities and their historical look-alikes
10. Actress Zubaida Tharwat as the twin of Jennifer Lawrence
11. The 3,000-year-old Egyptian bust of a woman sitting in a Chicago museum and Michael Jackson
12. Author Zora Neale Hurston and Queen Latifah
13. A man in a 19th Century Englishman named Charles Burns and Justin Timberlake
14.American essayist and poet Henry David Thoreau and Ellen Degeneres
15. Eerie: A Raphael masterpiece in Vatican City hides Sylvester Stallone’s doppelganger
16. Romanian painter Nicolae Grigorescu and Orlando Bloom
17. Vincent van Gogh as he self-portrayed himself and Chuck Norris
18. American silversmith Paul Revere and Jack Black
19. Philosopher John Lock and Adrien Brody
20. Dorothy Dandridge and Halle Berry, who also starred as her in Introducing Dorothy Dandridge
21. Clergyman and activist Henry Ward Beecher next to Jon Stewart
Some of these lookalikes are uncanny, and we hope you enjoyed sharing them.
If the idea of having a doppelgänger seems attractive right now, just bear in mind–it is an idea that has led to all kinds of intriguing, and often tragic, consequences inside the imaginations of a number of writers throughout history.