ELLE’s favourite on-screen transformations

Guess who?

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Elle Fanning is sporting a drastic new look at the moment. The long angelic locks and Alexander McQueen dresses we became so accustomed to for Maleficent have gone; in comes the chopped brown hair, baggy jeans and skateboard. Hold fire this is not a teen revolt but for her upcoming film 'Three Generations', in which she will playing a teen who transitions from female to male. 

Filming began this month and Naomi Watts and Susan Sarandon are also to star. 'Three Generations' is due to be released in 2015.

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Elle has inspired us to recall the rest our favourite on-screen transformations.

Supernatural thriller, Horns – which sees Daniel Radcliffe undergoing one certain notable physical alteration (the film name is pretty self-explanatory). Boy wizard to another mythical creature, at least his transformations are themed. 

Jennifer Lawrence, X-Men

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Remember seeing images of Jennifer Lawrence in head-to-toe blue body paint? No, you weren’t dreaming. Twice, the actress has taken on the role of mutant Mystique for the film franchise. The shape-shifting super villain character saw Lawrence don scales, layers of blue paint, frightful yellow contact lenses and a sleek copper wig. Not someone we’d want to encounter down a dark alleyway.

See the transformation:

Heath Ledger, The Dark Knight

Heath Ledger’s portrayal of The Joker in Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight was chilling to say the least. The maniacal laughter, paired with the menacing question, ‘Why so serious?’, won the late actor much admiration for his dedication to the role. But let’s not forget the overall (physical) picture: the hunched posture, caked white face, acid-green lank hair and lipstick smeared over a special-effects scar. We shudder.

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See the transformation:

Aubrey Plaza, Life After Beth

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Baby-faced Plaza looking terrifying? Yes, we wouldn’t have thought it either, but the actress proved us wrong in her recent role in zombie-horror Life After Beth. Plaza plays a young woman who experiences reanimation after meeting her untimely death. Her transformation is complete with matted hair, milky, unfocused eyes, and blood. Lots of blood, everywhere.

See the transformation:

Johnny Depp, Edward Scissorhands

In fact, this could be extended to Johnny Depp in several of his films (he plays a vampire in Dark Shadows, and The Mad Hatter in Alice In Wonderland), but Depp as an artificial science-project-gone-wrong in the 1990 gothic Tim Burton film was truly a visual abomination. Scissors for hands? Can you think of anything worse?

See the transformation:

Zoe Saldana, Avatar

Zoe Saldana is basically unrecognisable in James Cameron’s epic science fiction flick, Avatar. Still can’t figure out who she plays? Neytiri, the indigenous female lead (avatar). Ten feet tall, smooth, striped skin, amber eyes and a long, sweeping (strangely interactive) tail. Saldana who?

See the transformation:

Ralph Fiennes, Harry Potter

Yes, the book-to-screen translation of the petrifying Voldemort was always going to be a challenge, but not for Ralph Fiennes, with his epic transformation into ‘He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named’ in the Harry Potter franchise. With snake-like facial features, the ghostly pallor and evil sneer, he's a nightmare to behold.

See the transformation:

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