On Friday, Logan concludes the Wolverine story and ends Hugh Jackman’s 17-year run as the beloved X-Men character. Possessed of mutant powers, Wolverine is also famous for his incredible sideburns and generally being a hairy beast. In honor of Logan, we decided to pay tribute to other classic furry men (and women) in film — guys with outrageous chest hair, wizard-like facial hair and nothing but body hair. There are, however, zero mentions of Chewbacca. That would be too easy.
The 40-Year-Old Virgin (2005): The movie that launched director Judd Apatow’s and star Steve Carell’s big-screen careers is also the movie that features one of the most painfully funny scenes this century. Yes, it’s that moment when Carell’s virginal Andy gets his chest waxed — and, yes, it was done live on camera. “It had to be real,” Carell said while promoting The 40-Year-Old Virgin. “It wouldn’t be as funny if it was mocked up. You have to see it really happening. … There’s a specific gene we have where men enjoy watching other men in excruciating pain. You just laugh.” That, and wince a little. (Stream The 40-Year-Old Virgin on Amazon)
Teen Wolf (1985): Filmed before Back to the Future made Michael J. Fox a movie star, Teen Wolf is an unabashedly dopey teen comedy in which the Family Ties actor plays awkward high school kid Scott, who discovers that his family is a bunch of werewolves. Once he goes through the transformation himself, however, his classmates don’t recoil in fear but, rather, treat him like the big man on campus. Partly because, inexplicably, Scott can suddenly do things like dunk, breakdance and ride atop vans without any problem.
All that hair and makeup, however, drove Fox crazy. “I couldn’t eat food because I would break the foam on the sides of my mouth,” he later told Rolling Stone. Even worse, Back to the Future, which he’d originally passed on because of a commitment to Family Ties, was being filmed in the same neighborhood as Teen Wolf. “I knew Crispin [Glover, who played Marty McFly’s father in the movie],” Fox said in the same interview, “and I was like, ‘Shit. Crispin gets this Spielberg movie, and I’m out in Pasadena with werewolf makeup on, sucking a weak-ass shake through a straw.’” But after Eric Stoltz got fired from the lead role as McFly, Fox ended up getting the part after all. (Stream Teen Wolf on Amazon)
Harry and the Hendersons (1987): A perfect time-capsule of 1980s family comedies, Harry and the Hendersons starred John Lithgow as George Henderson, a father and husband who accidentally hits a hairy monster with his car while his family is on vacation. Turns out it’s a Sasquatch, which the Hendersons reluctantly decide to adopt. Winning an Oscar for Best Makeup — it was the second of seven Academy Awards for makeup maven Rick Baker, who’s also won for the body-hair-heavy An American Werewolf in London and The Werewolf — Harry and the Hendersons is a lighthearted kids’ movie, but it’s full of honest sentiment about the need for family. Plus, the film inspired a whole Harry-centric episode of 30 Rock, complete with a wonderfully random Lithgow cameo, in which the TGS crew reluctantly decides to be better people in honor of the movie. (Stream Harry and the Hendersons on Amazon)
Monsters, Inc. (2001): Monsters, Inc.’s Sulley looks menacing but, deep down, he’s a sweetheart. Voiced by John Goodman, he’s part of a two-man crew (alongside Billy Crystal’s one-eyed Mike) whose job it is to scare kids at night, their terror powering the monsters’ city. But when Sulley and Mike accidentally bring a little girl back into their dimension, everything goes comically wrong. Of all the characters Goodman has played over the years, it’s Sulley who best represents that actor’s yin-and-yang, intimidating/lovable persona. On the outside, Sulley is a scary monster with sharp teeth and horns sticking out of his head (and hair everywhere). But with that soft fur and an even softer disposition, he’s also the world’s biggest teddy bear. No wonder the little girl happily screams out “Kitty!” whenever he comes into the room. (Stream Monsters, Inc. on Amazon)
The Lord of the Rings (2001–2003): For a super-successful trilogy filled with plenty of colorful characters, it’s pretty easy to name The Lord of the Rings’ best one. It’s Gandalf, and a big reason why is Ian McKellen’s elegantly regal performance as the iconic wizard. Also important: That hair. Between his flowing locks and robust beard, Gandalf is the epitome of the wise, magical elder, blowing away former title-holders like Obi-Wan Kenobi. The Oscar-nominated actor’s long gray locks and facial hair were all the product of wigs and makeup — which proved annoying to McKellen, who’s no fan of a razor. “Beards and mustaches catch food; they smell, tickle and repel: but they are better than shaving every day, any day,” McKellen wrote in 2011. “When I’m not working I avoid shaving. … Younger fans of LOTR ask if I grew my hair long specially. No, I didn’t; nor did anyone else in the trilogy.” (Stream The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring on Amazon)
Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant (2009): If Cirque du Freak’s title doesn’t ring a bell, don’t worry: This fantasy film was a box-office bomb, failing to capitalize on Harry Potter/Twilight mania. But what it did provide viewers was the answer to the question none of them had ever pondered: What would Salma Hayek look like with facial hair? She plays Madame Truska, who’s one of the performers in a traveling circus. Her trick? At a moment’s notice, she can grow a beard to rival Rasputin’s and then slice it all off in a few seconds. What’s interesting is that this is not the first movie in which Hayek sported a little scruff: Her only Oscar nomination came for 2002’s Frida, in which she played iconic artist Frida Kahlo, who wore a mustache in defiance of gender norms. “[Miramax] was not crazy for me to have a mustache for the whole film,” she later said. “I shaved myself a couple of times so it would grow naturally. It’s very small, but it’s there.” (Stream Cirque du Freak: The Vampire’s Assistant on Amazon)