Morgan Freeman, Helen Mirren, and John Malkovich in RED and RED 2
After originating the role of Alex Cross in Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider, Freeman who didn't return for RED 2 after his character was killed off at the end of the first film oddly was the likeliest of this trio to play a ''Retired and Extremely Dangerous'' CIA assassin. Based on his prolific career, the mannered Malkovich would rank next after playing a CIA agent in 1993's In the Line of Fire. Least likely to rock this role? All bets would have been on Mirren, who was better known for waving off Brits, instead of baddies, as The Queen's Elizabeth II. And yet it was Mirren who turned out to be the most effective actioner of the bunch. Then again, Freeman, Malkovich, and Mirren's fourth co-star Bruce Willis also once found himself on the receiving end of doubts when he signed up for Die Hard.