The 15 Most Surprising Deaths in Movies
Warning: MAJOR SPOILERS.
Old-school comics fans may have seen it coming, but for those less familiar with the storylines of The Amazing Spider-Man of yesteryear, the death of Gwen Stacy (Emma Stone) in The Amazing Spider-Man 2 came as quite a surprise.
Sure, it makes for some impressive cred when you stay that true to your source material (Gwen died via Green Goblin shenanigans in issue No. 121, released in June 1973), but whoa — you’ve got Emma Stone in your summer movie mega-franchise, and you kill her off? That’s bold.
Upon the shocking demise of our dear Gwen — and two (two!) unexpected deaths in next week’s Godzilla — we’ve compiled a list of those whose shuffling off this mortal movie coil we never saw coming.
Another Warning: The videos embedded below contain graphic content and are NSFW.
15. Bill Murray, Zombieland (2009)
Just when you thought Zombieland couldn’t get any more fun, along comes Woody Harrelson’s Kingpin co-star Bill Murray all done up as a zombie, wits still about him, blithely explaining his tactics (“Oh, I do it to blend in”) with a bemused, characteristic shrug. Unfortunately, his performance as one of the undead proves to be all too convincing to Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg), who freaks out and blows him away with a shotgun. “Is that how you say hello where you come from?” asks the dying Groundhog Day star, before admitting that his only regret in life is “Garfield, maybe.” A classic cameo.
14. Maggie Gyllenhaal, The Dark Knight (2008)
Batman’s girlfriend met a rather ferocious demise in the second installment of Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight trilogy, with Assistant D.A. Rachel Dawes (Maggie Gyllenhaal, who replaced Katie Holmes after Batman Begins) being blown to smithereens by the Joker (Heath Ledger) right as Harvey Dent (Aaron Eckhart) suffers the disfiguring injuries that will transform him into the maniacal Two-Face. Rachel’s death is even more dramatic as the explosion cuts her off mid-sentence, the fire quickly consuming her as Bruce Wayne suffers yet another personal tragedy — one that will once again lead him to make a life-altering decision.
13. Kevin Spacey, L.A. Confidential (1997)