The Typecasting: A smirking, sexpot adventurer who plays nearby menfolk for fools, and kicks the arses of anyone who doesn't like it.
Examples: Gone In Sixty Seconds, Tomb Raider, Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Wanted, Salt, The Tourist
Strangest Specific Detail: Despite her sexual wiles, this character type also seems utterly bored with the attention of the opposite sex. Girl power!
Tommy Lee Jones
The Typecasting: Ageing, grouchy authority figure with his expression permanently set to "seen it all before".
Examples: The Fugitive, US Marshals, Men In Black, Captain America
Strangest Specific Detail: He's never phased, even by the most outlandish of plot developments. No Country For Old Men subverts this, with Jones' sheriff left dumbfounded by Chirgurh's capacity for violence.
The Typecasting: A hapless schmuck whose body is drastically altered by a sudden and highly improbable happening.
Examples: The Hot Chick, The Animal
Strangest Specific Detail: This sudden transformation provokes a series of beneficial life lessons, rather than a nervous breakdown. Hooray!
Helena Bonham Carter
The Typecasting: Madly cackling crone, with a power complex and a distinctly barmy wardrobe.
Examples: The Harry Potter Series, Sweeney Todd, Alice In Wonderland
Strangest Specific Detail: A manic cockney accent often completes the picture.
The Typecasting: Aloofly quirky pixie dream girl, whose main purpose is to help the hero establish just what's missing from his life.
Examples: Yes Man, Elf, 500 Days Of Summer, The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy
Strangest Specific Detail: The combination of indie smarts, snarky quippage and otherworldly beauty, which makes her seem like some form of alien.
The Typecasting: Lovelorn everyman, bumbling and bungling his way from one romantic misadventure to the next.
Examples: Bridget Jones' Diary, Love Actually, Bridget Jones: The Edge Of Reason, A Single Man
Strangest Specific Detail: All of these characters seem designed to avert what could have been an alternative typecasting as a smouldering romantic lead, following his celebrated turn as Mr. Darcy in Pride And Prejudice .
The Typecasting: The arrogant fitness freak who used to be fat and won't let anyone forget about his new physical prowess.
Examples: Heavyweights, Dodgeball
Strangest Specific Detail: The OTT hairstyle. Gym obsessives love big hair, apparently...
The Typecasting: The wise, cuddly old sage with a wry smile and bags of helpful advice for the film's younger hero.
Examples: The Shawshank Redemption, Se7en, Bruce Almighty, Million Dollar Baby, The Dark Knight Trilogy
Strangest Specific Detail: An uncanny ability for dispensing life lessons.
The Typecasting: Hip, slightly jittery scientist boasting a host of idiosyncratic mannerisms.
Examples: The Fly, Jurassic Park, Independence Day, The Lost World
Strangest Specific Detail: Goldblum's scientists are all presented as suave, ladykiller types. Our experience tells us such a character doesn't exist outside of the silver screen.
The Typecasting: Softly spoken, vaguely pathetic uber-geek, with a fine line in mumbling humour and an eye for the ladies.
Examples: Arrested Development, Superbad, Juno, Youth In Revolt, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World
Strangest Specific Detail: Despite looking like a baby lamb in the headlights of an 18-wheeler, the character will prove bizarrely irresistible to the opposite sex. Cera gets his leg over nearly every time!