ByTommy DePaoli, writer at
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Tommy DePaoli

Anyone who grew up around the release of Arachnophobia will remember it as the movie that instilled (or confirmed) a deep-seated fear of spiders? For many of us, this fear has continued into adulthood. For me, I like to project my fear outward, so is there anyone better to blame than the film's cast?

In honor of our collective arachnophobia, here's how the cast of Arachnophobia looks like more than 24 years after the movie's debut.

Jeff Daniels - Dr. Ross Jennings

Dr. Ross Jennings was terrified of spiders, so of course, he ends up in the same town as the most lethal arachnid in the world. Daniels has maintained quite the career since 1990, starring in nineties favorites Dumb and Dumber, Speed, and Pleastantville. While he does comedy very well, he earned critical praise for his dramatic roles in The Hours and The Squid and the Whale.

He just wrapped up the series finale of HBO's [The Newsroom](series:663653) and the successful sequel [Dumb and Dumber To](movie:293924). Next up, we'll see Daniels appear alongside Matt Damon and Jessica Chastain in Ridley Scott's [The Martian](movie:959366).

Harley Jane Kozak - Molly Jennings

After her starring role as animal pacifist Molly Jennings in Arachnophobia, Harley Jane Kozak made the move to TV in short-lived series like You Wish and Bringing Up Jack. She also appeared in a mini-series about the Titanic that premiered one year before the blockbuster smash. Although she still acts intermittently (mostly in small shorts), Kozak has devoted much of her time to writing. She's penned five novels about a greeting card designer/amateur sleuth Wollie Shelley, some even earning esteemed awards for mystery fiction.

John Goodman - Delbert McClintock

John Goodman's self-assured exterminator was one element of comic relief in a movie full of creepy crawlies. Since then, Goodman's become a household name, starring in pretty much everything from TV's Roseanne to multiple Coen brothers movies including Raising Arizona, The Big Lewbowski, and [Inside Llewyn Davis](movie:250255). He may be best known for his voice, which he has lent to roles in The Emperor's New Groove, Monsters, Inc., and [Monsters University](movie:38845). Most recently, he's still dominating the big and little screens, starring in upcoming [The Gambler](movie:581011)and Amazon's [Alpha House](series:976288).

Julian Sands - Doctor James Atherton

The guy that played the creepy but intelligent Dr. Atherton has made a career playing creepy, intelligent characters. Julian Sands is probably best known for his role as Yuri in Leaving Las Vegas, and he continues to play a great villain. He's starred on the small screen as an adversary in shows like 24, Smallville, and Dexter. moMost recently, you can find him guest starring on [Gotham](series:1127075) as Gerald and Tod Crane.

Stuart Pankin - Sheriff Lloyd Parsons

I feel like Stuart Pankin was in EVERYTHING from my childhood. Following his role as the insufferable suck-up Sheriff Lloyd Parsons, he starred in Honey, We Shrunk Ourselves, Zenon: Girl of the 21st Century, and Babylon 5: The River of Souls. Lately, he's been staying in the acting game, appearing in 2011's amazing silent film The Artist and an episode of Desperate Housewives.

Brian McNamara - Chris Collins

Brian McNamara played Dr. Atherton's assistant, who receives the misfortune of accompanying his boss to the spider-ridden small town. He's had a very steady career since then, appearing in numerous guest starring roles on shows like CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, E.R., and The O.C. aFTER After a few appearances on CBS procedurals like The Mentalist and NCIS: Los Angeles, McNamara locked down a leading role in Lifetime's extremely popular [Army Wives](series:761578).

Mark L. Taylor - Jerry Manley

He didn't last very long in the movie, but Taylor, another familiar face from my childhood, has maintained pretty steady work in Hollywood. Like many of his Arachnophobia co-stars, he got many guest starring roles on TV in classics like Seinfeld, Home Improvement, and Melrose Place. Fans of Disney Channel Original Movies will recognize him as the dad from Eddie's Million Dollar Cook-Off and High School Musical 2. Most recently he guest starred on Saving Grace and Robin William's last show [The Crazy Ones](series:872963).

Kathy Kinney - Blaire Kendall

The town gossip who loved to eat as much as she liked to gab, Kathy Kinney's character ultimately met a gruesome fate. Kinney, however, went on to become one of television's most recognizable faces, starring as the outrageously vulgar Mimi Bobeck on The Drew Carey Show. That role allowed her some face time on The Price is Right, appearing in character as a model to plug her latest projects. After guest starring on My Name is Earl, she appeared on The Secret Life of the American Teenager as Bunny the Butcher Shop Lady.

Now it's time for me to relive this "evil animal on the loose" classic. In the meantime, did any of the casts' transformations really jump out at you—y'know like a spider?


Did 'Arachnophobia' make you scared of spiders?


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