17 Best Julian Sands Movies and TV Shows: Remembering the Late Actor

Soumya Nair

Written by Soumya Nair

Updated On November 27, 2023

julian sands movies

The unfortunate sudden demise of veteran actor Julian Sands has left Hollywood with a void that can never be filled. The actor was announced dead on January 2023 after he went missing during a hike. Julian Sands movies are a testament to his amazing acting skills and he will always be remembered by fans for his iconic roles as he never shied away from experimenting on screen. 

Julian Sands has been an integral part of the industry since 1984 and since then has worked in more than 70 movies and almost 50 TV shows. The actor has left behind a legacy for all cinema enthusiasts which can never be summarised. In loving memory of the actor we have shortlisted some of the most loved Julian Sands movies along with this, we also listed the best Julian Sands TV shows.

The Ghosts of Monday (2023)

The Ghosts of Monday
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 43%

The most recent Julian Sands movie, The Ghosts of Monday, was released in January this year and marked the last movie before his untimely death. As the title suggests, it is a horror movie and is based on the haunted story of Cyprus’s hotel Gula. Eric is a director who is on the verge of losing work and is desperate to deliver one successful paranormal documentary. 

He arrives at Hotel Gula with his team to shoot the documentary but before they can even start the team is under the deadly threat of the haunted hotel. Sands plays the documentary’s host and feels natural in his character. The makers did well in bringing out the horror factor and is filled with jumpscares. With the perfect combination of horror and mystery, The Ghosts of Monday won’t disappoint you and is worth watching. 

Benediction (2022)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 93%

One of the most recent and underrated Julian Sands movies Benediction was released in 2022. The movie is about the life of renowned World War 1 poet Siegfried Sassoon who was loved for his poetry and was recognized for his bravery during the war. But later when he opposed the government’s their war policies he was admitted into a psychic ward as a punishment. 

Sands plays a small but impactful role in the movie. Benediction is a well-executed movie that deserves much recognition but sadly failed to get noticed. 

A Room With a View (1985)

A Room With a View
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 100%

If you are a fan of classic novels, A Room With a View is like your favorite romance novel coming to life. The movie is set in the Edwardian Era and tells the tale of a free-spirited romance between Sands’ George Emerson and Helena Bonham Carter’s Lucy Honeychurch. 

The movie brings out the beauty of courtship and is a treat to watch especially in this era of ‘Netflix and Chill.’ Among all the Julian Sands movies this one feels as if it was tailor-made for the actor as he carries the character of George with such finesse that you can’t help but fall for him more and more as the story progresses.

Arachnophobia (1990)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 93%

There is something about going back in the past and watching the movies that became trendsetters. One such Julian Sands movie is Arachnophobia and as the name suggests it set the trend for all the animal and insect-related movies that we see today. The movie starred Sands as Dr James Antheron who is an entomologist who discovers a new deadly species of spider.

The plot revolves around mysterious deaths in a small town in California. Later it is discovered that the reason behind all the deaths is a particular species of spider that is on the verge of taking over the town. Arachnophobia feels realistic and relatable with its portrayal of raw characters and a subject that seems believable as most of us are creeped out by spiders.

The Killing Fields (1984)

The Killing Fields
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 93%

The Killing Fields is a biographical drama film based on the life of two journalists in Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge regime. Though Sands has a supporting role in the movie, it is an impactful role and his work and the movie deserve to reach the audience even after years. The movie gave Sands his breakthrough and the industry learned more about who is Julian Sands.  

Haing S. Ngor plays a Cambodian journalist and Sam Waterston plays an American journalist Sydney Schnaberg. The story of friendship between the two, despite belonging to the opposite side of the world, the love, and sacrifice that stood the test of a brutal war restores our faith in humanity. The movie is a raw depiction of the lives that were affected during the infamous “year zero” in Cambodia.

The Painted Bird (2019)

The Painted Bird
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 82%

The most beautiful piece of cinema I have ever come across! It is not often that a movie truly brings out the essence of artistic touch and The Painted Bird is a prime example of an artistic masterpiece. The whole movie is shot in black and white and tells the tale of World War 2 through the eyes of a young Jewish boy. The movie portrays the most grueling parts of war like disfigurement, rape, and bestiality.

Julian Sands movies are known for staying true to the raw emotions and this one is no different. The movie is the adaptation of Jerzy Kosinskis novel and the author himself has been a Jewish orphan after the Nazis took over Poland, which explains the intimate storyline. Sands plays the role of a pedophile who adds to the trouble of the innocent boy. He portrayed the character so well that you can’t help but hate him. 

Leaving Las Vegas (1995)

Leaving Las Vegas
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 91%

The movie has an ensemble of talented cast with Nicholas Cage, Julian Sands, and Elisabeth Shue. The movie is often quoted as one of the best movies of Nicholas Cage. When Cage’s distressed character, Ben, arrives in Las Vegas with the intention of drinking himself to death, life has other plans for him. 

Sands once again picked up a negative character named Yuri who abuses Sera who works as a sex worker for him. The whole movie has a depressing tone as each character is dealing with something and has an unhealthy coping mechanism. While Sera and Ben strike a deal to stay together without questioning each other’s personal life, the deal does not go too far. 

Tale of a Vampire (1992)

Tale of a Vampire
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 56%

In the long list of Julian Sands movies with his versatile work, this one had him playing a vampire, Alex, who lost his love. When Alex meets Anne, she reminds him of his lost love, Virginia, and hence decides to stay close to her. But little does he know that another Vampire, Edgar, is using Anne as bait to reach him. The movie is inspired by the poems of Edgar Allen Poe and what better fit for bringing out the gothic vibe of Poe’s poetry than Julian Sands?

Gotham (2014-2019)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 77%

One of the hit series of the Batman franchise was released in 2014 and aired till 2019. The series took a different take on the story of the superhero and focused more on the villain origin stories of all the villains of Gotham City. Sands plays the character of Gerarld Crane, a biology teacher turned criminal. As usual, Sands did an exceptional job at bringing out the lunatic and bipolar character of Gerarld who is fascinated by the effect of fear on people.

Gotham is one of the most recent Julian Sands TV shows and was appreciated by the audience. One of the main villains of Batman is the Scarecrow, and the series shows how Gerarld’s obsessiveness with his experiments turned his son into the infamous Scarecrow. 

Impromptu (1991)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 74%

The British-American historical drama is about the life of a French author who disguises herself as a male to get people to treat her articles well in a male-dominated society. Impromptu movie explores the life of artists during the 19th century. 

Sands plays the role of Franz Liszt, a renowned prodigy pianist widely known for his contribution to classical music. The actor portrayed the character of the renowned pianist who was known for his personality to enchant the audience with his stage presence. The movie has a complex yet interesting storyline that will keep you engaged till the last minute.

Naked Lunch (1991)

Naked Lunch
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 71%

With the unique idea put into the narrative, Naked Lunch was destined to be a cult classic. The movie was considered bizarre at the time of its release and not many appreciated David Cronenberg’s creative mind. We are not surprised that Sands decided to be a part of such a unique film. 

The plot revolves around the life of a writer Bill Lee, whose addiction to substances makes him hallucinate people as insects. Sands plays the character of Yves Cloquet who contributes a major twist to the movie. Julian Sands movies and TV shows are always known for their out-of-the-box concept and Naked Lunch is no different. The movie has everything from giant insects to a monstrous typewriter. 

Gothic (1986)

Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 60%

The movie is based on the night that inspired author Mary Shelly to write the novel, Frankenstein. When all the romantic writers gather in a mansion near Lake Geneva, they experience some horrifying visions of their worst fears. Sands plays the character of Percy Bysshe Shelley who did well in the gothic setting as he is horrified by visions of his own death by drowning. The movie was not well received by the critics but years later is considered a cult classic.

The Medici: Masters of Florence (2016-2019)

The Medici
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 50%

The Julian Sands TV show is a historical drama based on the Medici family, bankers of the Pope. The series covers the history of the family during the Renaissance period in Italy. The series is divided into 3 seasons starting from the death of the head of the family in 1429. 

Sands plays the character of Piero di Cosimo de’ Medici, the father of Lorenzo. Lorenzo is the most prominent figure in the history of the Medici family and the whole series is about his life and his struggles for power. Sands did an excellent job of portraying the bond and the power struggle between Piero and Lorenzo. Piero is constantly divided between his affection for his son and his worries about the future of the Medici family. Among all the Julian Sands series, this one did an excellent job of bringing out the acting prowess of the actor in period dramas. 

Crooked House (2017)

Crooked House
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 58%

This one is for all the mystery enthusiasts out there. Crooked House is the movie adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novel of the same name. Charles Hayward arrives in London to work as a private detective and his first case is the seemingly accidental death of a business tycoon, Aristide Leonides. Hayward has to keep his mind clear as the prime suspect includes his former lover and Aristide’s granddaughter.

Sands plays the character of Philip Leonides, the eldest son of Aristide. Philip is a character who does not welcome anyone into his personal space and remains bitter throughout the movie. He did well as a person who does not express much and hates to get involved in anything. 

The Chosen (2016)

The Chosen1
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 47%

The Spanish thriller is based on the murder of Leon Trotsky, a Russian revolutionary Soviet politician. The Chosen did a good job at recreating one of the most prominent historical events with the perfect star cast that includes Alfonso Herrera, Hannah Murray, Henry Goodman, and Julian Sands. Sands stood out with his performance as General Leonid Aleksandrovich Kotov who brings the major twist in the story. 

Blood and Bone (2009)

Blood and Bone
Rotten Tomatoes Rating: 71%

The movie is based on underground fighters and fight clubs and is known for featuring real-life fighters and martial artists. The plot follows the story of an ex-prisoner who enters the world of underground fight clubs to avenge the death of his close friend. Sands nailed his role as Franklin McVeigh, who arranged the underground fights. If you love an action-packed movie with lots of bloodshed, Blood and Bone is for you.


It is unfortunate that the veteran actor had an untimely tragic death, but he gifted us with a legacy of movies. Julian Sands movies have always had a uniqueness to them as the actor always tried to unleash his potential as an actor till his last days. His filmography is the proof of gem he has been and the Hollywood has experienced an irreparable loss. We pray for his soul to rest in peace and will always carry his memories in the form of his artistic work.

Author: Soumya Nair

Soumya Nair is an entertainment industry enthusiast who loves to write and bring in all the gossip and news to everyone interested. She always make sure to keep a keen eye on everything that goes behind the glam and glitter of the industry.

Related Post's