Many Marvel fans are very used to trying to spot Stan Lee in different Marvel movies such as The Avengers, Ant-Man and in the Spider-Man series. Though Stan the Man is the most notable celebrity to cameo in Marvel movies, he is not the only one to do it.
Countless other people (whether they be fellow actors, crew members, or previous actors) have also had cameos in different Marvel films over the years. Some of these cameos were rather obvious, while others were actually quite difficult to spot.
Here are 8 shocking cameos you may not have spotted in some of your favorite Marvel movies...
1. Lou Ferrigno - 'The Incredible Hulk' (2008)
Let's start out with the big one: actor Lou Ferrigno is best known for starring as the Hulk himself in the TV series The Incredible Hulk from 1977 to 1982. Ferrigno also appeared in 2008's The Incredible Hulk as a security guard. He shows up part way through the film as Bruce Banner is delivering a pizza. During their brief conversation, Banner calls Ferrigno a "cool dude."
In addition to this, Ferrigno also appeared in 2003's Hulk as a security guard, and voiced the Hulk himself in 2003's Hulk, 2008's The Incredible Hulk, 2012's The Avengers, and 2015's Avengers: Age of Ultron. He is rumored to voice the Hulk yet again in 2017's [Thor: Ragnarok](tag:956858).
2. Michael Papajohn - 'The Amazing Spider-Man' (2012)
Michael Papajohn appeared in 2002's Spider-Man and 2007's Spider-Man 3 as the carjacker (wrongly) accused of killing Uncle Ben after Peter let him rob the wrestling arena. Though this was a rather influential role, this was not Michael Papajohn's only appearance in a Spider-Man film.
In 2012, Papajohn returned to the Web Slinger's universe in The Amazing Spider-Man where he played a taxi driver during the intense bridge scene. It was short and brief, but still a fitting cameo for such an important actor from the prior Spider-Man series.
3. Nathan Fillion - 'Guardians of the Galaxy' (2014)
Nathan Fillion is very good friends with Guardians of the Galaxy director James Gunn, so when he asked for a small role, he got it! Fillion briefly appeared as a blue monster in the prison Klyn towards the beginning of Guardians of the Galaxy. He tries to "claim" Star-Lord by calling him the "new meat," but is quickly attacked by Groot who sticks his wooden fingers up his nose.
Fittingly, when it was first announced that Fillion would be playing an unknown role in Guardians of the Galaxy, the Internet went into a frenzy trying to guess who the Castle actor could possibly be playing. Of course, now we know that his role was no larger than that of Simon Pegg's role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens.
Check out his cameo in the clip below:
4. Bruce Campbell - 'Spider-Man' (2002), 'Spider-Man 2' (2004), 'Spider-Man 3' (2007)
Though this famous actor is best known for being in films like Army of Darkness (1992) and The Evil Dead (1981), Bruce Campbell actually made a cameo in every single film in Sam Raimi's Spider-Man trilogy. This was due to the fact that Campbell and Raimi are actually life-long friends, both making their first big (yet low budget) film together, The Evil Dead, which kick-started both of their careers.
In 2002's Spider-Man, Campbell played the Ring Announcer during the Wrestling Match, giving Peter the name Spider-Man instead of "The Human Spider." In Spider-Man 2, Campbell returned to the series, this time as the snooty usher who would not allow Peter into the theater to see Mary Jane's play. His third appearance in the trilogy was in Spider-Man 3 where he played the French Maître d' who helped Peter with his attempted proposal to Mary Jane.
5. Seth Green - 'Guardians of the Galaxy' (2014)
Guardians of the Galaxy was chock full of cameo appearances. This is one of the cameos that most people saw, but didn't realize was a cameo. The post credits scene of Guardians featured the first (and hopefully only) appearance of Howard the Duck in the Marvel Cinematic Universe.
Though most people spotted Howard, not many caught onto the fact that he was actually voiced by actor Seth Green, who his best known for his roles in The Italian Job, Robot Chicken, Austin Powers, and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Green played this role due to his friendship with director James Gunn. And really, who would deny the opportunity to briefly voice Howard the Duck? It actually sounds rather fun to me!
6. Joe Russo - 'Captain America: The Winter Soldier' (2014)
Anthony and Joe Russo are brothers and directors, best known for directing Captain America: The Winter Soldier, and are also in charge of directing Captain America: Civil War and Avengers: Infinity War. They are both very talented directors, but Joe even briefly tried out a minor acting role during the production of The Winter Soldier.
After Cap and the gang are rescued by Maria Hill, they are taken to a secret S.H.I.E.L.D. hide-out. During this scene, Joe Russo plays the doctor who takes care of Black Widow's wounds. It is unknown why Joe made this cameo and why Anthony did not cameo at all. My guess is that they were missing an actor and Joe simply volunteered, but who knows. Nevertheless, it is a cameo from a director that should be noted.
7. Shaun Toub - 'Iron Man 3' (2013)
After appearing as Yinsen during 2008's Iron Man, Shaun Toub briefly returned as this character at the very beginning of Iron Man 3. In Iron Man, Yinsen was the man trapped in the cave alongside Tony Stark. Though Yinsen tries to discuss meeting Stark in the past, Stark has absolutely no recollection of it whatsoever.
In Iron Man 3, we see this character briefly return in the opening flashback from New Year's Eve of 1999/2000. It is a short and brief cameo that actually fulfills the conversation between these two characters during Iron Man.
8. Peter Billingsley - 'Iron Man' (2008)
Peter Billingsley was an executive producer for 2008's Iron Man who shaved his head and grew a mustache just so he could have a cameo in the film as one of Obadiah Stane's scientists. Though he may be an executive producer, Billingsley is actually best known for playing Ralphie in 1983's A Christmas Story.
After all these years, it is good to see young Ralphie appear again, and in a Marvel movie at that! As mentioned earlier, Billingsley does not actually look like that today. He is still in his 40s and actually looks rather youthful with a full head of hair.
Later, in Iron Man 3, there is a quick reference to Peter Billingsley, even though he was not at all attached to the film. While signing autographs, Tony Stark looked at a boy that looked similar to young Peter Billingsley and told him, "I loved you in A Christmas Story by the way." Whether this reference was intentional or not, I do believe it was worth a mention considering that the actual actor had already appeared in a prior Iron Man film.
Marvel movies are chock full of surprise cameos — this is just the tip of the iceberg! There are plenty of others, including music composers, crew members and, obviously, Stan Lee. It is so fun watching a Marvel movie, just waiting for an Easter Egg or a cameo to pop up because really, who doesn't enjoy someone surprisingly showing up in a movie when you weren't expecting them to?