Some celebrity wax figures can look uncanny compared to their real-life inspiration. However, some tread in what’s called the “uncanny valley.” This is when something looks almost human but not quite, resulting in a rather creepy image.
Check out these terrifying celebrity wax figures if you dare …
The Australian American actress hadn’t had a wax figure of her created until 2007. Perhaps she should have kept it that way …
This particular big forehead-ed celebrity wax figure is at the Madame Tussauds in Vienna. Now, Kidman is a tall lady, but her forehead isn’t THAT tall!
Fortunately, Kidman’s other celebrity wax figures aren’t that bad. The statue of her at Madame Tussauds in Berlin, Germany, is more humanlike — it shows the statuesque beauty in light-colored garb with red hair.
Another wax figure of Nicole Kidman shows her in a floor-length black gown with her blonde hair in ringlets.
A report in Teen Vogue says that Selena Gomez’s wax figure looks “eerily like the pop singer,” but I’m not sure that I can agree with that. Take a look for yourself …
The wax figure shows Gomez in a gold spangled dress like the one she wore at the 2013 MTV Movie Awards.
It’s a beautiful gown but the figure’s wide-set face is kind of creepy. The real Selena Gomez has a slimmer face that isn’t shaped like an upside-down pear.
This wax figure is located at the Hollywood Madame Tussauds. Visit it yourself if you’re a Selena fan — regardless of wide-faceness or not.
This wax figure is almost more disturbing than Efron’s portrayal of Ted Bundy. Sure, he’s smiling, but it’s an unsettling one that veers into the uncanny valley.
This photo was taken in 2011 at the wax figure’s home at Madame Tussauds Hollywood. (We hope it’s been replaced with a different waxwork by now.)
Another wax figure of Efron is less creepy, and shows him being totally swole like his character in the Baywatch movie (2017). It even has the actor’s bicep tattoo and armpit hair! How much more lifelike can you get when your celebrity wax figures have armpit hair?
This particular wax figure of actor Brad Pitt was unveiled alongside Angelina Jolie ahead of Pitt’s 50th birthday on December 17, 2013, in the London Madame Tussauds.
The figures were famously separated following the actors’ divorce announcement, reads a report in Teen Vogue.
“A spokeswoman for the wax museum in London says they wanted to mirror Jolie and Pitt’s separation, which came to light Tuesday,” reads a 2016 report in the Hollywood Reporter. “She says the wax figures ‘are now featured at a respectful distance from each other.’”
This particular Justin Bieber wax figure was at the Madame Tussauds in Hollywood, California. The photo was taken at the Friend Movement’s 2014 Stardust Soiree on September 20, 2014.
This waxwork is particularly shiny for some reason and also treading in that uncanny valley that some celebrity wax figures find themselves wandering into.
Wax figures of the pop singer that came after this rendition aren’t too much better. For instance, Teen Vogue pontificates on the 2016 shirtless Bieber wax figure, which has a “wet” look:
“But why, then, is his body wet, but his clothes, which include leggings and sweats and a hefty dose of bling, all remain dry?”
Selena Gomez’s wax figure has a terrifying-looking wax figure to hang out with in this Taylor Swift statue. (The actual pair are BFFs in real life.)
This Swift wax figure wearing an “I Love LA” shirt isn’t really the best-looking figure of the pop singer.
The one immortalizing her cheerleader outfit in the music video for “Shake It Off” looks waaaay better. It’s more lifelike than the eeriness in the pictured figure. The improved wax figure was unveiled February 10, 2015, in the Madame Tussauds in London, England.
If you’re up-to-date on your celebrity gossip, you might know that actor Ben Affleck has been banned for life from playing blackjack at the Las Vegas Hard Rock Casino. A source told the New York Post that Affleck wasn’t doing anything illegal, he just knew “what he was doing.”
So it’s only natural to make an Affleck waxwork of him gambling, no?
This particular wax figure has a blank stare, not unlike some of the other celebrity wax figures we’ve just seen. He’s also a bit shiny — humans just aren’t that shiny …
English actor Robert Pattinson was reportedly not too pleased with his waxwork figure. In fact, he thought the figure looked like another actor — Hugh Jackman.
When he was doing an interview with UK news publication Metro in promotion of his film Cosmopolis, he admitted he wasn’t really a fan.
He told Metro: “It looks like Hugh Jackman … I think it IS Hugh Jackman — they’ve just smushed it in a bit.”
Wonder if Madame Tussauds just reused an old Hugh Jackman waxwork to make a Robert Pattinson one? JK, I’m sure they’d never do that …
Now, this wax figure of actress and singer Jennifer Lopez doesn’t necessarily look bad, but it just doesn’t look like her and is very doll-like.
Other J.Lo celebrity wax figures aren’t better. Take one of her in her World Cup outfit. Ariel Nagi wrote in Cosmopolitan in 2014 that it was “ridiculous.”
“While many of these wax figures are clothed in suits or nice gowns, this statue is more about J.Lo’s butt than J.Lo,” writes Nagi. “Her butt is larger than it really is, and her shorts are smaller than they actually are in the music video for the World Cup song.”
This delightfully creepy rendition of actor Leonardo DiCaprio is housed at the Las Vegas Madame Tussauds museum. He’s got the same squinty-eyed look as the Titanic star, but his face is kind of misshapen and the forehead is quite big. Overall, this forces us to take a trip down the uncanny valley.
Surprisingly, there’s actually a way worse wax figure of DiCaprio that the Hollywood Wax Museum put out. A short 2014 article in Buzzfeed by Lauren Yapalater proclaims: “WHY? WHY DID THEY DO THIS TO HIM?”
Do a quick Google search for it if you dare …
Soooo this Jennifer Aniston waxwork doesn’t look like Jennifer Aniston, but rather a random blonde doll. Sometimes, it’s the details that make the celebrity wax figures look like their real-life celebrity counterparts. Meaning, you can’t just make a random blonde waxwork and expect it to look like Aniston. In fact, this wax figure kind of looks like the pre-nose job Rachel Green character portrayed in flashbacks on the show Friends.
Other iterations of Jennifer Aniston in wax do look more like the actress — just not this one …
When wax figures are unveiled and don’t look like their celebrity counterparts, they get ridiculed online. Take the Beyoncé statue unveiled in 2017 — it got roasted far and wide for looking unrecognizable.
Ummm, how come this wax figure looks very hairy? Like the delicate peach fuzz you might find on a hairless sphynx cat? Also, the skin tone is rather sallow-looking? Indeed it doesn’t look completely UNLIKE Timberlake, it just could look a lot better …
Fortunately, there have been much better Justin Timberlake wax figures, like the one shown in New York in 2014. It was part of a retrospective celebrating iconic Super Bowl halftime performances. How could anyone forget Timberlake’s 2004 Super Bowl performance with Janet Jackson and the “costume mishap” that occurred?
This wax figure of the singer/actor David Hasselhoff at Madame Tussauds’ location in Vienna, Austria, looks happy to see us. I can’t say I feel the same, unfortunately.
I think the wax Hoff is dancing while singing one of his hits the Germans seem to love, but the body looks contorted.
I know it’s hard to believe, but there’s a wax figure that might be even creepier than this waxwork: The giant Hasselhoff waxwork made for The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie. The wax Hasselhoff was used in a scene where the “Hoff” dons his Baywatch swimwear to help rescue Bikini Bottom.
Not sure where to begin with this one … Besides the fact that this doesn’t remotely look like the model Naomi Campbell, this wax figure doesn’t look human. Perhaps whoever made this mold was trying to make a giraffe, not a cellphone-throwin’ fashion model that beefed with Tyra Banks.
This particular wax figure was stationed at the Musée Grévin in Paris, France, and was unveiled in 2005.
Later, Campbell got another waxwork made of her in 2014 at the same French museum. Unfortunately, we can’t say it looked that much better than this 2005 major fail …
This photo was taken at an event called “Silicon Valley Con” at the Madame Tussauds booth in the San Jose Convention Center. It’s only natural you’d have a Zuckerberg waxwork present …
Like David Hasselhoff’s wax look-alike, this wax figure of Mark Zuckerberg is extremely happy to see visitors at Madame Tussauds.
He sits barefoot and cross-legged in a chair with a laptop in his lap, smiling creepily at passersby. This monstrosity was created when the San Francisco branch of Madame Tussauds opened in 2014.
Fans love it and line up to take selfies with him, according to a report in Business Insider.
This is the result of Madame Tussauds Hollywood’s revamping of actress Meryl Streep’s wax figure. It shows her in the lovely gold gown she wore at the 2017 Oscars, but not the same facial expression she wore during the award show …
Cosmopolitan’s Eliza Thompson put it best: “Meryl Streep is a gorgeous person who looked especially gorgeous the night she won her Oscar for The Iron Lady, and yet somehow the wax version looks like it’s about to kill and eat the first child it sees.”
Singer/actress Miley Cyrus has gotten a few outrageous wax figures of herself doing regular outrageous Miley Cyrus things. (See: Sticking out her tongue for pictures and riding a giant wrecking ball in underwear.)
However, this statue just looks like a doll of the “We Can’t Stop” singer your niece would buy in a store.
Or maybe even one of those Bratz dolls …
MTV “ranked” Miley Cyrus’ various wax figures, determining that one of the singer with long red hair and a Disney Club-approved tunic-looking outfit was the best. Others made the writer want to reach “for an EpiPen.”
This photo of this terrifying wax rendition of the famed talk show host/actress was taken at Madame Tussauds in London, England. Unlike Jennifer Aniston’s wax figure, this does look like Oprah, but Oprah with a crazed look in her eyes …
Now, Oprah got excited when she gave out free cars and such, but not THIS excited.
Like some of the other wax figures, this Oprah one looks very sweaty. It seems like she just hosted an intense hour of The Oprah Winfrey Show or maybe ran a mile.
Nicki Minaj’s Madame Tussauds wax figure is one of the most polarizing wax figures ever made. Polarizing, of course, because of its likeness to her outfit from the ‘Anaconda’ music video. The public was a bit outraged about her stance on all-fours as opposed to the rest of the celebrities whose figures were all standing upright.
Minaj, on the other hand, spoke out in favor of the wax artwork. She called it “iconic” and loved the attention it was receiving from fans who would pose with it. It’s hard to defend someone that doesn’t want to be defended.
This photograph of a very shiny-looking Prince William wax figure was taken at Madame Tussauds Wax Museum in London, England, in August 2008. Like some of the not-so-human-like wax figures created, this Prince William one looks like a doll you’d find in a toy store.
Other wax figures of the royal have been created of course, as well as waxworks of his brother, Prince Harry.
Since Prince Harry and his wife Meghan Markle have stepped back from their royal duties, Madame Tussauds London removed their waxworks from the royal family display. (#Megxit.)
Um, yeah, this looks nothing like Lady Gaga, except for the fact this is an actual outfit she wore to a party once. (Are you really surprised that Lady Gaga wore an outfit made from hair? This is coming from the lady that once wore a meat dress.)
At least with the Prince William wax figure we could tell who it was supposed to be (although he looked like a Ken doll), but with this one, it just looks like a Barbie wearing a hair dress. No indication anywhere of this being Lady Gaga.
This monstrosity is located in a wax museum in Shenyang, the capital of Liaoning, a province in China. This museum also includes replicas of some politicians, businessmen, and stars, which we HOPE don’t look like this Jackson waxwork …
So first off, the hands are in a weird contorted position.
Secondly, the skin is quite gray-looking and the cheekbones are EXTREMELY prominent. True, we can tell this is supposed to be the King of Pop, Michael Jackson, but this image is definitely drifting into that uncanny valley we hate so much.
Wonder what the late Jackson would’ve thought of this terror …
This photograph of singer Christina Aguilera’s waxwork was taken at Madame Tussauds in New York City in 2007. True, the figure does have the “Beautiful” singer’s red carpet pose down, but not much else …
Besides the waxwork’s face not looking like Aguilera, the whole thing looks like a doll.
This has been my critique of most of the celebrity wax figures in this article, I know. The whole point of waxworks is for them to look like the celebrities they were inspired by. That way, it’ll look like you’re actually taking a selfie next to your fave celeb.
This kind of looks like Lindsay Lohan, but … there’s something not quite right about it.
Looking like a Bratz doll, Lohan’s wax figure has very pronounced dimples, sallow skin, and facial features like the nose and lips that don’t seem quite Lohan enough.
The Lohan wax figure, which debuted at Madame Tussauds in New York City in April 2006, once donned old-timey prison stripes. It seemed like this outfit was created to “commemorate” when Lohan went to jail for 84 minutes in 2007. The beaming wax figure in jailbird garb was an odd sight indeed …
We can tell that this is actor Mel Gibson, but it’s just … ugh … This would make a good art installation illustrating an outward expression of Gibson’s insanity, but alas, that’s not the figure’s intention.
First off, check out those crazy eyes. (Likely a premonition of the craziness to come.)
The figure’s smile is equally as crazed-looking. Slap on an intense amount of self-tanner, a creepy hand stretching outward, and you’ve got yourself one of the most terrifying celebrity wax figures I’ve ever seen.
Great job, Madame Tussauds London. You’ve officially given me nightmares.
Oh lord, have mercy. This wax figure does not do Julia Roberts’ famous wide grin justice. Instead it just makes her look terrifying.
This wax figure was created to immortalize the moment that Roberts won an Oscar for Erin Brockovich. Sure, it did that, but it also terrorized children everywhere while at the Hollywood Wax Museum.
“Roberts was in her 30s when she won the award, but the wax figure looks like an aged and frightening version of the actress,” writes Olivia Singh in a 2020 Business Insider report. “Although Roberts was known for her curly hair at one point, she actually attended the 73rd Oscars with a sleek hairstyle.”
This photographer really didn’t need to photograph Heidi Klum’s terrifying wax figure THAT close up. Like some of the other bad celebrity wax figures, this one of Klum has that same dead-eyed stare. Unlike other figures, it has MASSIVE CHOMPERS.
Fortunately the German model got a better-looking wax figure in 2017 at Tussauds in Berlin.
“I’m also getting older — thank you for renewing me,” Klum was reported by DW saying at the unveiling. “The hair color is just perfect.”
This waxwork replaced one that was made over eight years ago. It was definitely time for an upgrade …
I think they tried to make singer James Brown look sweaty as he did after performing a set, but Madame Tussauds just made him look, like, totally melted … Sorry, that’s horrible to say, but I thought this was a wax museum, not the burn ward at a hospital for dolls.
This particular photo was taken at the Madame Tussauds in New York City in 2007. There is a better-looking one shown in an article by The Outline — a photo shows wax figure hair stylist Anna Lane touching up a James Brown statue in 1999.
OK, this is pretty bad. Not only is it just a head and hands, it makes the Beatles drummer look so misshapen and unnatural. Also the hair? Yikes, it kind of looks like a cheap toupee they found hanging around.
This monstrosity was on display with waxworks of the other Beatles at London’s Tussauds.
The other wax figures of the Beatles look terrible as well — just heads and hands sitting on a table together.
The Beatles were the first pop group to appear at Madame Tussauds, but not the first to have terrifying wax figures made of them. The first figures were unveiled in March 1964.
Now, this statue isn’t as bad as some of the ones on our list. However, the wax figure of singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran has a bit of a blank-eyed stare and yellowish skin color.
The photographs of Ed Sheeran interacting with his wax figure show him enjoying seeing his likeness set in wax.
Unveiled at the New York City Madame Tussauds on May 28, 2015, this wax figure clearly delighted Ed Sheeran. Did it delight me? No, I cannot say that it did. Sorry, Ed Sheeran. You’ve got good music but a bad wax figure.
- ACESHOWBIZ. December 6, 2007. “Madame Tussauds Museum In Central London Unveiled A New Wax Figure Of Nicole Kidman On Wednesday, December 5.” Accessed February 19, 2020.
- Associated Press via Hollywood Reporter. September 21, 2016. “Angelina Jolie, Brad Pitt Wax Figures Separated at Madame Tussauds Museums.” Accessed February 19, 2020.
- Billboard Staff. Billboard. August 15, 2015. “Music Stars’ Wax Figures: Beyonce, Nicki, Britney and More.” Accessed February 21, 2020.
- Canales, Katie. Business Insider. August 3, 2018. “There’s an easy way to take a selfie with a barefoot Mark Zuckerberg in San Francisco — even if it’s not the Zuck you wanted.” Accessed February 21, 2020.
- Ceron, Ella. Teen Vogue. October 10, 2016. “24 Wax Figures of Celebrities You Need to See.” Accessed February 19, 2020.
- Cho, Diane J.; Hefa, Kiran; Park, Andrea. People Magazine. January 28, 2020. “54 Celebrity Wax Figures That’ll Have You Seeing Double.” Accessed February 19, 2020.
- Clarke, Chevaz. CBS News. January 9, 2020. “Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s wax figures removed from Madame Tussauds’ royal family display.” Accessed February 24, 2020.
- Gallot, Ann-Derrick. July 20, 2017. The Outline. “Wax museums are a scam.” Accessed February 21, 2020.
- Madame Tussauds. “Nicole Kidman.” Accessed February 19, 2020.
- Nagi, Ariel. Cosmopolitan. June 10, 2014. “Is This the Most Offensive Wax Figure of All Time?” Accessed February 20, 2020.
- O’Neill, Natalie. NY Post. May 2, 2014. “Ben Affleck banned for life from playing blackjack at Vegas casino.” Accessed February 20, 2020.
- Serjeant, Jill. Reuters. November 16, 2007. “Lindsay Lohan spends 84 minutes in jail.” Accessed February 24, 2020.
- Sharkey, Linda. Independent. December 16, 2014. “Cara Delevingne and Naomi Campbell are immortalised in wax – and the results don’t do much justice.” Accessed February 21, 2020
- Sims, Andrew. Hypable. June 15, 2012. “Rob Pattinson thinks his Madame Tussaud’s wax figure looks like another particular celebrity.” Accessed February 20, 2020.
- The Beatles Bible. “The Beatles are photographed with their Madame Tussauds wax figures.” Accessed February 24, 2020.
- Thompson, Eliza. Cosmopolitan. December 23, 2019. “32 of the Worst Celebrity Wax Figures Ever Made.” Accessed February 20, 2020.
- Walker, John. MTV.com. March 9, 2015. “A definitive ranking of Miley Cyrus’ wax figures.” Accessed February 21, 2020.
- Yapalater, Lauren. Buzzfeed. February 14, 2014. “This Wax Statue Of Leonardo DiCaprio Is The Worst Thing Ever.” Accessed February 20, 2020.
This article was originally published on Living 101: Terrifying celebrity wax figures.
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