Actors have to fake a lot of things, but when it comes to playing guitar, even the best can't fake it credibly. That's undoubtedly why Academy Award winner Meryl Streep spent six months actually learning how to play guitar for last year's Ricki and the Flash flick, directed by Jonathan Demme.
It just goes to show that when you want someone to look like they're playing guitar, the best option is to get a guitarist and let them do their thing.
Here for your consideration are 15 guitar players who actually performed with their guitars on the silver screen—including a few guitar-strumming actors who honed their six-string skills for their onscreen performances.
Purple Rain (1984)
Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck
“Stroll On,” Blow Up (1966)
John Lennon and George Harrison
“If I Fell,” A Hard Day's Night (1964)
School of Rock (2003)
“Minor Swing,” Chocolat (2000)
“Somebody Kill Me,”The Wedding Singer (1998)
“Fallin’ & Flyin’,” Crazy Heart (2009)
“Honkytonk Man,” Honkytonk Man (1982)
“Stand Up and Shout,” Rock Star (2001)
“Light of Day,” Light of Day (1987)
Steve Cropper, Matt “Guitar” Murphy and Donald “Duck” Dunn
“Rawhide,” The Blues Brothers (1980)
Christopher Guest and Michael McKean
“Big Bottom,” This Is Spinal Tap (1984)
“The Lady Loves Me,” Viva Las Vegas (1964)