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‘SNL’: Willem Dafoe Explains His ‘Expressive Face’ in Monologue

‘The French Dispatch’ and ‘Spider-Man’ actor also met fellow Wisconsinites

Willem Dafoe opened Saturday Night Live by addressing the elephant in the room: his crazy facial expressions. After cutting to this insane still from Speed 2, Dafoe demurred. “One man’s over-the-top is another man’s engaged performance,” said the actor. “I can’t help that I have an expressive face. I’m not one of those subtle actors like Nicolas Cage or Al Pacino.”

People often tell Dafoe, who famously played the Green Goblin in the original Spider-Man movies, how he’d make a great Joker. “Always nice to hear you’ve got the vibe of a sociopath,” he cracked.

Despite Dafoe’s alien disposition, he originally grew up in the Midwestern town of Appleton, Wisconsin — which we learned when his monologue was interrupted by Aidy Bryant, playing a fellow Appletonian in the audience. She asked Dafoe to do a “real Wisconsin accent” on live TV, and he obliged.

Dafoe reprised his role as the Green Goblin in the new Spider-Man: No Way Home, which is part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Tom Holland, the actor who stars as Spider-Man, told The Hollywood Reporter that he “got scared” after bumping into Dafoe by accident before learning he was in the movie.

In addition to Spider-Man, Dafoe recently appeared in Wes Anderson’s The French Dispatch and Guillermo del Toro’s Nightmare Alley.

In This Article: Saturday Night Live, Willem Dafoe


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