12. Patrick Wilson
Patrick Wilson has kind of carved out a nice niche for himself lately within the horror film genre. He’s certainly not limited to this genre, he’s simply done a great job on several films that make us want to sleep with the lights on. In fact, the three films he’s probably best known for are The Conjuring, Insidious, and Hard Candy (ok, this last one’s not quite horror, but it’s certainly freaky).
Obviously, he understands how to build suspense. I, for one, was very pleasantly surprised by his role in Insidious back when I first saw the move in 2010. I won’t give away any spoilers, but let me just say that he toes the line well between the hero and the haunted. He accomplishes the same spookiness in The Conjuring. He helps me to better believe in a world full of possessions, magic, and unearthly visitors.
Another credit of Wilson’s that I find incredibly applicable here is his work on the 2009 superhero flick Watchmen. First of all, this movie is seriously underappreciated. It often gets trampled by the mainstream popularity of movies like The Avengers or The Dark Knight. If you haven’t seen Watchmen, stop what you’re doing and check it out now.
In this offbeat drama, Wilson plays a very subdued version of a modern hero. He proves with ease that he can play the ordinary man to which extraordinary things happen. I feel that one of the best elements of Stranger Things is its ability to depict normal people tackling some very crazy stuff. Patrick Wilson is certainly an attainable casting choice for the Stranger Things team, and I think his strong background would help him to easily integrate into the Duffer Bros Universe.