The Best Horror Star Cameos In Sam Raimi Movies

Sam Raimi is one of the most unique and inventive filmmakers of our time. Coming out of an independent background, his early films are noted for their daring style and wacky sense of humor, elements that Raimi would carry over into his big-budget Hollywood films. Even in his more mainstream work like the "Spider-Man" trilogy, "The Quick and the Dead," "Oz the Great and Powerful," and "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness," you can easily tell that Raimi hasn't lost his imaginative spark.

While Sam Raimi has established himself as a major studio director, it's nice to know that he still retains connections to his low-budget horror past. After all, it was his "Evil Dead" trilogy that really put him on the map and allowed him to helm films in a variety of genres, from fantasy to drama to western. For many fans, he's still their favorite horror film director, and it's always a treat when he returns to the genre that made him famous. Because Raimi is so closely associated with horror, it makes sense that genre actors would appear in his movies, so here's a list of the best horror star cameos in his movies.

John Krasinski

While John Krasinski made a name for himself as Jim Halpert in the hit NBC sitcom "The Office," he's recently been making waves in the horror genre with the "Quiet Place" films. He played a major role in the first installment by directing, starring in, and co-writing the script. The film, which followed a family navigating a post-apocalyptic world dominated by blind aliens with hyper-sensitive hearing, was a critical and financial success. Krasinski followed up "A Quiet Place" with a sequel in 2020 that he wrote and directed, which was just as successful as its predecessor, and is expected to return to helm "A Quiet Place III."

You may have seen John Krasinski in Sam Raimi's "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness," in which he made Marvel fans' dreams come true by playing Reed Richards of the Fantastic Four. For those not in the know, Krasinski has been fans' top choice to play the character for some time now, and while the one we saw is technically a variant from a different dimension, it was still a blast to see him stretch for the role.

Daniel Gillies

Daniel Gillies is largely known for his role as Elijah Mikaelson in the CW's vampire drama "The Originals," but he's also appeared in numerous horror films throughout his career. He played Dirk Mettcalfe in "No One Can Hear You," which follows an average suburban family who welcomes the wrong guest into their house; Mark in "Evil Remains," a film about a graduate student and his friends who fall prey to a killer while exploring an infamous historic estate; and Gary Dexter in "Captivity," wherein a famous model is kidnapped and slowly learns the terrifying secret behind her abduction.

Fans of Sam Raimi will recognize Daniel Gillies in "Spider-Man 2," in which he played John Jameson, son of Daily Bugle editor-in-chief J. Jonah Jameson. Just like his comic book counterpart, John is an astronaut, much to his father's delight. In the film, John also strikes up a romantic relationship with Mary Jane Watson and is even about to marry her until she runs off to be with Peter Parker.

Anson Mount

One of Anson Mount's earliest film roles was playing the character Toby in "Urban Legends: Final Cut," the second installment of the "Urban Legends" series. The film is about a young woman who is trying to make a film about urban legends for a college film class only for her crew to fall victim to copycat murders, with Toby being one of the prime suspects. In 2006 Anson appeared in "Hood of Horror" as Tex Jr. This horror-comedy anthology starred Snoop Dogg, Ernie Hudson, and Danny Trejo, and consisted of three short stories that took place in an urban setting. A more recent horror film that Anson starred in was 2015's "Visions," in which he played the husband of a pregnant woman plagued by horrific hallucinations after they move to a picturesque vineyard together.

Anson Mount made his debut in the popular Marvel Cinematic Universe as the Inhuman leader Black Bolt for the ABC miniseries "Inhumans." While the series wasn't exactly a hit, it was a nice surprise to see Anson return to the role as a variant version of Black Bolt (in full costume this time, as well) in Sam Raimi's "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness," where he meets a gruesome end at the hands of a mad Scarlet Witch.

Brian Cox

Brian Cox is no stranger to the horror genre, and even has the distinction of playing the first live-action version of Hannibal Lecter in 1986's "Manhunter," beating Anthony Hopkins to the punch by five years. His next big horror role was in the 2002 American remake of "The Ring," wherein he played Richard Morgan, the father of the deceased Samara Morgan. However, Cox is most famous among horror fans for playing Mr. Kreeg, the Halloween-hating citizen of Warren Valley who harbors a dark secret, in the 2007 anthology film "Trick 'r Treat," which has since gone on to become a cult favorite.

"For Love of the Game" is one of the more unusual films to appear in Sam Raimi's body of work, as the sports-drama-romance is quite a bit different from the usual horror, fantasy, and superhero projects he helms. While the film may not be as beloved as some of Raimi's other movies, it does feature Brian Cox as Gary Wheeler, the (fictional) owner of the Detroit Tigers who serves as a father figure to the aging baseball pitcher Billy Chapel (played by Kevin Costner).

David Paymer

David Paymer is another one of those actors whose name might not be familiar to casual TV and movie fans, but whose career is so expansive that everyone is bound to have seen him in something. His most popular films include "Mr. Saturday Night," "Quiz Show," "Searching for Bobby Fischer," and "City Slickers." Fans of cult horror films will know him for his role as a young scientist who becomes one of the first victims to get infected with an alien slug in the 1986 science fiction horror comedy "Night of the Creeps."

While David Paymer isn't exactly known for his horror roles, it's interesting that one of his few forays into the genre was in Sam Raimi's "Drag Me to Hell," in which he plays Jim Jacks, the tough boss of bank loan officer Christine Brown. He has a memorable scene when, after she has a spell put on her by Sylvia Ganush, Christine's nose spews blood like a firehose, dousing him in crimson splatter.

Tobin Bell

With more than 120 credits to his name, Tobin Bell has quite a long and varied career in film and television, but it is inarguably his role in the popular "Saw" franchise that he's most famous for. Over the course of eight films, Tobin portrayed John Kramer, who ⁠— after learning that he's dying from cancer ⁠— gains a new appreciation for what little life he has left and sets out to teach others to appreciate their lives. Instead of holding some seminars through which to impart his wisdom, Kramer abducts people he believes have a disregard for life and forces them to participate in "games" in which they must go to extreme lengths to survive.

Among Bell's many credits is Sam Raimi's 1995 western "The Quick and the Dead," where he played Dog Kelly. The film told the story of a female gunslinger known only as "The Lady" (Sharon Stone) who returns to the town of Redemption that's run by the outlaw John Herod (Gene Hackman) to participate in a shooting duel to avenge the death of her father. Dog Kelly meets his end in the first round of duels when going up against The Lady. Let's just hope that Kelly appreciated his life before a bullet took it away.

Roberts Blossom

Roberts Blossom has had a long and varied career as a character actor, appearing in supporting roles in many hit movies including "The Great Gatsby" (1974), "Close Encounters of the Third Kind," "Escape from Alcatraz," "The Last Temptation of Christ," and "Home Alone." His forays to the dark side of cinema are what horror fans will remember him the most for, such as his performance in the gruesome 1974 film "Deranged," inspired by the infamous crimes committed by Ed Gein. Blossom was also seen in John Carpenter's adaptation of the Stephen King novel "Christine" playing George LeBay, the man who sells his possessed 1958 Plymouth Fury to awkward teenager Arnold "Arnie" Cunningham.

Blossom sadly passed away on July 8, 2011, but his last role was in Sam Raimi's "The Quick and the Dead." In the film, he played Doc Wallace, who helps "The Lady" take down the ruthless John Herod. With a career appearing in films of such prestigious directors as Steven Spielberg, John Carpenter, and Martin Scorsese, playing a role in a Sam Raimi flick is the perfect swan song.

Keith David

Keith David is no stranger to classic horror films. His powerful presence made quite the mark in John Carpenter's beloved 1982 remake of "The Thing." He played Childs, the chief mechanic of the Antarctic research team that is plagued by a shape-shifting alien that was dug up from the ice. While this was only Keith's first major role in a feature film and fourth overall, his stellar acting in it is still remembered today. He would go on to star in another classic Carpenter film "They Live" as Frank Armitage, the first person to join Nada in his quest to warn the world of the alien species living among them. Let's not forget David's iconic voice in "Gargoyles," the animated children's horror show from the 1990s wherein he played lead gargoyle Goliath.

Keith David collaborated with Sam Raimi on his 1995 western film "The Quick and the Dead." He played Clay Cantrell, a veteran gunslinger hired by the local townspeople to engage in a duel with the outlaw John Herod, only to be killed by him. It may have been a minor role for the actor, but his presence is so strong that it's far from unmemorable.

Ellen Sandweiss, Betsy Baker, Danny Hicks, and Timothy Patrick Quill

Sam Raimi's "Evil Dead" movies didn't just help launch his career, but also several of its actors. Known as Cheryl in "The Evil Dead," Ellen Sandweiss' film career was sparse but still includes such fright flicks as "Satan's Playground," "My Name Is Bruce," "The Dread," and "Dark Fields." Betsy Baker (Linda in "The Evil Dead") has since had a long career in television, but also went back to her horror roots with roles in the films "Witches' Night," "2084," and "Lake Eerie." Danny Hicks (Jake in "Evil Dead 2") would go on to appear in numerous horror films like "Maniac Cop," "Intruder," "Wishmaster," "2001 Maniacs," and "My Name Is Bruce." Timothy Patrick Quill (the blacksmith in "Army of Darkness") has had a steady career in the horror genre and has been seen in "Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except," "From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money," "The Trees Have Eyes," and "Last American Horror Show: Volume II."

It certainly pays to be friends with Sam Raimi, as he would cast all of these actors in his later, more mainstream movies. For example, Ellen Sandweiss and Betsy Baker (along with fellow "Evil Dead" actress Theresa Tilly) made cameo appearances as Quadling women in "Oz the Great and Powerful." Danny Hicks made brief appearances in "Darkman" and "Spider-Man 2," while Timothy Patrick Quill can be seen in "The Quick and the Dead" and "Oz the Great and Powerful."

Ted Raimi

While Sam Raimi may be the Raimi who gets most of the attention, his brother Ted is a pretty underappreciated talent himself. Ted hasn't had too many major leading roles, but he's been in enough movies and TV shows to fall into the "I've seen that guy before" category for even mainstream audiences. Of course, he's most recognized by horror fans for his long career in fright flicks, dating all the way back to the 1980s. Some of his earliest horror movie roles include "Blood Rage," "Intruder," and "Shocker," which was written and directed by horror legend Wes Craven. Other cult horror movies that Ted was seen in are "Candyman," "Maniac Cop 3: Badge of Silence," and "Wishmaster." Some of his more recent horror movie appearances include the American remake of "The Grudge," "Man with the Screaming Brain," "The Midnight Meat Train," and "Darkness Rising."

Of course, being the brother of one of the most popular movie directors of our generation means that he's able to find work in some pretty big films as well. One of Ted's most recognizable Sam Raimi roles is that of Ted Hoffman in the "Spider-Man" trilogy, which sees him constantly being yelled at by J. Jonah Jameson. Ted's also been seen in Sam's "Oz the Great and Powerful," "Drag Me to Hell," "For Love of the Game," and "Army of Darkness."

Bruce Campbell

Bruce Campbell is pretty familiar to horror fans. After getting his start in Sam Raimi's "Evil Dead" trilogy, Campbell would go on to star in countless other low-budget horror films throughout the 1980s, including "Thou Shalt Not Kill... Except" (which starred Raimi as a murderous cult leader), "Maniac Cop," "Moontrap," "Sundown: The Vampire in Retreat," and the slasher classic "Intruder." While Bruce would appear in bigger and more mainstream projects in the 1990s, he kept his horror fans happy with roles in such films as "Maniac Cop 2," "Mindwarp," "Waxwork II: Lost in Time," and "From Dusk Till Dawn 2: Texas Blood Money." Since 2000, Bruce has been seen in an even wider swath of movies but always going back to his horror roots, with appearances in "Bubba Ho-Tep," "The Woods," "Man with the Screaming Brain," "My Name Is Bruce," and even a post-credits cameo in the 2013 "Evil Dead" remake.

Possibly because Raimi has been friends with Campbell for so long, he's given his pal plenty of work in the form of numerous cameos. Bruce has a brief appearance at the end of 1990's "Darkman," and played a different character in each installment of Raimi's "Spider-Man" films: a wrestling ring announcer, a snooty usher, and a maître d'. Look beneath the heavy makeup and you'll see Bruce as a Winkie guardsman in "Oz the Great and Powerful," and let's not forget his most recent appearance in "Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness" as Pizza Poppa.