He’s become a pretty familiar face in movies for some time now and yet it still seems surprising that Justin Long has already spent more than two decades in the film industry.
Many of us still remember him as that fresh-faced kid back in 1999 when he made his first film appearance in Galaxy Quest. Justin has since gone on to appear in dozens of feature films and has a long list of TV appearances to add to his impressive acting resume.
Perhaps it’s the fact that he’s well-known for playing hysterically funny and immature young men in racy comedies that makes him seem like such an evergreen actor. However, aside from his hilarious comedy roles, over the years, Justin’s also been in quite a few horror films too. This has led to him developing something of a cult following among fans of the genre. In homage to Justin Long’s many appearances in horror movies, here’s a look back at the best ones he’s been in.
10 Jeepers Creepers 2
Given Justin Long’s early fame when he had a starring role in the first Jeepers Creepers film, you’d think Jeepers Creepers 2 would be higher on the list. It would have been since, like the first film, it was a box office success despite not finding much love among critics. Among horror fans, the Jeepers Creepers films have become a beloved franchise that now has four films to date. They feature the now iconic character known as the creeper, a hideous and terrifying demonic entity that emerges every 23rd spring to feed for 23 days.
Jeepers Creepers 2 takes place a few days after the events of the first film and is just as unnerving and entertaining. However, as for Justin Long, unlike the first film, his appearance in the sequel was only a brief cameo, and he didn’t have a main role in it. However, his short appearance was still a really cool one and was enough to evoke a haunting nostalgia for his character from the first film.
By 2014, Justin had long since become an established and popular movie star with some great credits to his name. Among these was a role that made him a memorable part of the famous franchise’s history when he starred alongside Bruce Willis in Live Free or Die Hard. With such roles, Justin proved that he had a lot more depth to his acting beyond the goofball characters he was usually associated with.
In 2014, he also starred in an independent and pretty disturbing horror-comedy flick called Tusk which was directed by Kevin Smith. The role saw him play a podcast host named Wallace who ends up duped and drugged at the mansion of an eccentric old seaman. Wallace has to then endure extreme torture and mutilation as his crazed captor basically transforms him into a grotesque human version of a walrus, complete with tusks. While not for everyone’s tastes, Tusk was a memorable movie and a favorite among fans of the subgenre known as body horror. The film did notably also feature Johnny Depp as a man-hunting tracker named Guy LaPointe.
8 Yoga Hosers
Two years after Tusk, Kevin Smith wrote and directed a spin-off film called Yoga Hosers. Smith’s own daughter, Harley Quinn Smith, again featured as she did in Tusk. This time, she was paired with Johnny Depp’s daughter, Lily-Rose Depp who was the film’s main star. Yoga Hosers was more of a comedy-horror than Tusk was and saw its leading ladies play a couple of yoga fanatics who team up to take on an evil entity.
Along the way, they wind up working with Guy LaPointe, who was again played by Johnny Depp. This time, Justin Long appeared as a character named Yogi Bayer, a yoga instructor who is made hilarious by the kind of effortlessly funny comedic demeanors Justin is famous for. Like Tusk, Yoga Hosers also bombed commercially and critically. However, it was still a fun and quirky take on horror movies and featured some notable actors in very memorable roles.
7 The Wave
Probably more of a suspenseful psychedelic science-fiction film than actual horror, The Wave was a somewhat eccentric but nevertheless intriguing movie. It follows Justin Long as a man named Frank who travels outside his hometown to celebrate a work promotion. What was a seemingly benign plot soon takes some weird turns as Frank’s night veers memorably away from his actual plans when he is drugged with a hallucinogen.
While the strange substance has mind-altering effects, it also changes his perception in some lurid and frightening ways as he has demonic visions and sees things that forever change him. As an insurance lawyer, the visions that first terrify him soon begin to unravel a deeper mystery that ultimately helps him realize the need to make some serious changes to the kind of person he’s been. The Wave was a low-budget independent film, but was still successful at being engaging and carrying a message, largely aided by Justin Long in its lead role.
6 Ghost Team
Sony Pictures Releasing
By the late 2010s, Justin had appeared in a fair few independent films. Among these, 2016’s Ghost Team was admittedly more of a comedy than a conventional horror. However, it was still an enjoyable watch if you’re not looking for anything too serious. The film follows a paranormal enthusiast who decides to assemble a ragtag ghost-hunting team to investigate a place he believes to be haunted.
Justin Long plays Ross, a security guard who is hilariously overzealous in the way he tries to contribute to the task at hand. A funny film with some comedic horror tropes thrown in, Ghost Team merged the best of Justin Long’s most noted acting genres and made for an entertaining and funny movie.
5 House of Darkness
Joining Kate Bosworth in the lead roles, Justin Long’s appearance in House of Darkness saw him play a serious variation of the kind of toxic alpha-male roles he’s known for in his raunchy comedy films. In this one, he plays a hedonistic young man who is enticed back to a massive estate by a beautiful woman.
There he meets her sister and imagines all manner of provocative scenarios as he believes he may have a chance of hooking up with them both. However, as the night progresses, the girls relate dark stories that soon prove he’s actually the object of a very different kind of lust. By the end, a third sister is revealed, and it’s soon apparent that none of the ladies are even human.
4 Drag Me to Hell
In contrast to his comedy horrors, Drag Me to Hell was a proper supernatural horror movie. In the film, Justin plays the boyfriend of a woman who works at a bank and has a curse placed on her by an old woman whose home loan she refuses to extend. The crone’s malicious retaliation throws the young woman’s life into chaos as she is now threatened with eternal damnation.
Definitely a cool horror film to add to Justin Long’s list, his role in it was a tragic one as he suffers alongside the woman he loves. The movie holds an impressive 92% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes and was directed by Sam Raimi. Drag Me to Hell was both a critical and commercial success that was praised for its fast-paced thrills and great effects. Known for other horror films like his contributions to the Evil Dead franchise, Raimi again delivered with this one.
He was praised by The Guardian who noted the following great features of the film in their review of it:
“Raimi is a master at maintaining a particular type of cinematic tone: scary without being unwatchable, and revolting without losing wit.”
Anchor Bay Entertainment
In contrast to Drag Me to Hell, the 2009 horror After.Life was panned by critics. However, among horror fans, the film was well-liked for a couple of reasons. Firstly, it featured a stellar cast that placed Liam Neeson and Justin Long between the iconic talent of Christina Ricci in its feature role. Secondly, the film was original and despite not being a bone-chilling kind of horror, was still pretty unnerving in the way it creeps under the skin.
The film saw Ritchie play the victim of a car crash who awakens in a morgue. The mortician convinces her that she isn’t alive and simply hasn’t yet transitioned into the afterlife, lending the film a pretty spooky and eerie atmosphere throughout. Justin Long plays her boyfriend, Paul Coleman, who begins to suspect that all is not what it seems with the apparent death of his partner.
20th Century Studios
The 2022 hit horror film Barbarian was one that terrified many people because of the unsettling way it draws out its plot. It initially sees two travelers, a man and a woman, unexpectedly thrown together when they discover they’ve been double-booked at an Airbnb. The place is a creepy one and a stormy night lends an even more suspense-laden atmosphere to the film. To the delight of horror buffs, the male guest is played by Bill Skarsgård, who has become a horror icon for playing Pennywise the Clown.
He’s joined by actress, Georgina Campbell, as the pair slowly learn that their Airbnb holds a dark and terrifying secret. Later on, Justin Long enters the fray as he plays a troubled actor who rents out the same house and also becomes embroiled in its dangerous secret. A great film with plenty of jump scares, a memorable antagonist, and some pretty hair-raising moments, Barbarian was definitely one of the standout horror films of 2022 and certainly one that elevated Justin Long’s standing as a horror actor even further.
1 Jeepers Creepers
Way back in 2001, the popular horror film, Jeepers Creepers, that started it all for Justin Long also became one of his most iconic ones. The movie also became a firm favorite among horror fans, as they were introduced to the creeper character for the first time. The film’s popularity has since spawned three sequels and birthed a horror franchise. Back then, Justin Long joined Gina Philips as a pair of siblings who travel home together from college for spring break.
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However, along the way, they encounter a hideous, inhuman entity that turns out to be a demonic creature who is in the middle of a feeding cycle. The pair end up separated and Long’s character has to endure most of the film trapped in the creeper’s lair. The film was packed with some very spine-tingling moments and one truly memorable horror villain. It’s also become synonymous with the popular old jazz song Jeepers Creepers from the 1930s which found a whole new generation of fans because of the part it plays in the film.