We all know about the famed "final girl." She's the one who, after much running and screaming, gets away from the killer in a slasher film and lives to tell about it. But how about the thankless job of being among the first to go under the knife — or machete, chainsaw, shotgun, etc.? Her death is usually a showy one, but then you never see her again. It's not exactly an actor's dream, but here are a few good sports who made the most of it. (And, duh … spoilers ahead!)
Paris Hilton, House of Wax (2005)
Warner Bros.' marketing slogans laid it right out there: "On May 6 ... See Paris Die!" The blonde boneskull was most famous for her on-camera sexual exploits, and even in those flicks, her acting was shaky at best. So when she made her big movie debut in the House of Wax remake and was impaled once again, audiences applauded.
NEXT PAGE: Shannon is all Jack'd up[PAGEBREAK]
Shannon Elizabeth, Jack Frost (1996)
The carrot is no demerit for Jack Frost — this sinister snowman uses it as a nose and for, um, other things. When he sees sexy Shannon soaking in a hot tub, the chill-killer is infuriated. What's warm water got that he doesn't? With Jack Frost nipping at more than just her heels, one can't help but wonder with horror what he's going to do with those coal eyes of his.
NEXT PAGE: Jaws' sexy sharkbait[PAGEBREAK]
Susan Backlinie, Jaws (1975)
Susan was "just" a stuntwoman on Jaws, but her skinny-dip just above those snapping jaws made the movie poster, and hence movie history, in one of the first "summer blockbusters." Audiences still bite their nails knowing the mermaid is about to become mincemeat — and her first gasp is always a spine-tingler no matter how many times you've seen the movie.
NEXT PAGE: Jordan's got a Fever ... for death![PAGEBREAK]
Jordan Ladd, Cabin Fever (2002)
Before Eli Roth literally split her beaver in the gruesome “trailer” for Thanksgiving, he off’d poor Jordan in Cabin Fever. Spitting image of her vintage vixen mommie (Charlie's Angel Cheryl Ladd), the young actress shucks her clothes, then sheds her skin after a flesh-eating virus is unleashed upon unhappy campers.
NEXT PAGE: Janet checks out ... permanently![PAGEBREAK]
Janet Leigh, Psycho (1960)
At the time, Janet's cold shower courtesy of Anthony Perkins was an audacious audience-shocker, to say the least: How could Hitch kill his blonde so early on? This vintage vixen's goodies are on display — albeit strategically — as she is knifed time and time again, and we watch her life go down the drain.
NEXT PAGE: Slithery Salma is slain[PAGEBREAK]
Salma Hayek, From Dusk Till Dawn (1996)
Salma plays a snake-slathered stripper named Santanico Pandemonium. She works the pole at the “Titty-Twister” tavern in Mexico, but patrons Quentin Tarantino and George Clooney don't realize she's moonlighting as a vampire till the curvy countess drains one of his blood. His buddy comes to the rescue (too late), blowing the sexy sucker away with a bullet blast to the face.
NEXT PAGE: Margot's horrific holiday[PAGEBREAK]
Margot Kidder, Black Christmas (1974)
Margot's the boozy coed who gets wasted under the covers courtesy of a sharp glass unicorn-horn. I always thought the mythical creature (the horned horse, not the soused sister) was associated with virginity, but director Bob Clark really goes deep with this death scene. Paging Dr. Freud! Try not to wince as you watch the phallic trinket plunge into her again and again … and again.
NEXT PAGE: Betsy gets Bloody[PAGEBREAK]
Betsy Rue, My Bloody Valentine 3D (2009)
Betsy bares all except for the soles of her feet in this fearless, feisty (but sadly for her, fatal) face-off with the Miner. He's got his wicked pick-axe, and she's got nothing but pluck. Buck-naked save for a pair of sky-high wedges, she fights for her life in a cheap no-tell motel giving her all — and us — quite a show!
NEXT PAGE: A Bond Girl's Short Night[PAGEBREAK]
Barbara Bach, Short Night of the Glass Dolls (1971)
Before she was a Bond babe, and before she married Ringo Starr, bodacious Barbara was (usually while in the buff) getting her come-uppance in gory Italian thrillers with nonsensical names like Short Night of the Glass Dolls.
NEXT PAGE: Radha's dark demise[PAGEBREAK]
Radha Mitchell, Pitch Black (2000)
Cargo-spacecraft pilot Radha's fate is sealed in this sci-fi shocker as soon as she says she would die for her crew. Turns out her crew dies first, and she's left alone in the dark with a criminal called Riddick (Vin Diesel) … and a flock of freakish winged creatures with an insatiable thirst for human blood.
NEXT PAGE: Christian goes Psycho on Cara[PAGEBREAK]
Cara Seymour, American Psycho (2000)
Before he was Batman, Christian Bale was Bateman. Patrick Bateman, serial killer at your service. Expensive suit, nice business card, stock tips, wing tips, and … a dead hooker's head in his fancy freezer. Cara's name may not be household, but she is unforgettable in American Psycho as a blonde who definitely doesn't have more fun.
NEXT PAGE: Drew's death is a Scream[PAGEBREAK]
Drew Barrymore, Scream (1996)
Drew's death scene in Scream is totally off the hook. (Bah-dum-bum!) But seriously, when people saw the extended opening sequence, they were completely stunned that she'd be killed. The movie starts off with Drew as a babysitter who gets a mysterious crank call. Suddenly, Ghostface sidles up beside her, a chase ensues, and Drew is slew.
NEXT PAGE: Lena gets Laid[PAGEBREAK]
Lena Headey, Laid to Rest (2009)
A woman in her bedroom alone. A chrome-skulled killer standing just outside. The door is jammed. Let's just say Lena Headey gives great window.
NEXT PAGE: Holly hangs out[PAGEBREAK]
Holly Palance, The Omen (1976)
Talk about a bummer of a birthday. Who can forget the Antichrist's 6th, when his nanny, played by tough-guy Jack Palance's daughter Holly, hangs herself in full view of the horrified guests shouting, "It's all for you, Damien!" The candles are barely cool when Damien's mom (Lee Remick) also meets a devilish demise.
NEXT PAGE: Audrina aches[PAGEBREAK]
Audrina Patridge, Sorority Row (2009)
When Audrina joined Theta Pi, little did she know that her sacred vows of sisterhood included painful, violent death! When an innocent prank goes horribly awry, the Hills homegirl takes a tire iron to the chest, leaving her to munch on oversized teriyaki burgers in hottie heaven.