A Harvard student was bewildered on a visit to Vatican City, not because of the beauty or the history, but because a 500-year-old painting by Raphael which shows a man who is an exact doppelganger of Sylvester Stallone.
As soon as we saw the painting, we knew it was him. My whole family thought it was hilarious. It could actually be a portrait of Stallone, 20-year-old Anthony Zonfrell of Mass. told The Sun.
Displayed in one of the Raphael Rooms at the Vatican, the fresco painting called The Cardinal and Theological Virtues was created in 1511 by Raphael, famous for being the third in the trinity of great artists which include Michaelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci. Raphael was commissioned to paint four rooms in the Apostolic Palace in Vatican City, which later became known as the Stanze di Raffaello, which translates to the Raphael Rooms.
The painting on one wall in the Stanze della Segnatura room depicts Pope Gregory IX approving the Vatical Decretals to represent a balance between law and religion. According to The Daily Mail, art historians believe that Raphael sketched the outline while Lorenzo Lotto actually painted the fresco, namely the Stallone part.
Upon discovering the likeness between one of the men in the painting and Stallone, Zonfrell uploaded a photo to Reddit, pointing out the similarities. The post became a viral Internet sensation posted on the front page of Reddit, garnering over 700,000 clicks.
I posted it at night, and when I woke up it was on the front page, Zonfrell told The Sun. I was shocked at the response it got, it really blew up quite fast. All of the comments were hilarious.
While it's obviously not the real life Sylvester Stallone, the resemblance is uncanny, namely in the cheekbones, chin and the heavy eyes. However, Stallone isn't the only famous celebrity who was named a doppelganger of historical figures and people in paintings.
Last year, a photo of a man from the late-1800's who bears resemblance to Nicolas Cage surfaced, drumming up rumors - created by the person who found the vintage photo -- that Cage is actually a vampire.
150 years from now, he might be a politician, the leader of a cult or a talk show host, Mord writes. My theory is that he allows himself to age to a certain point, maybe 70, 80 or so, then the actor 'Nicolas Cage' will 'die' ... but in reality, the undead vampire 'Nicolas Cage' will have rejuvenated himself and appeared in some other part of the world, young again, and ready to start all over, Jack Mord of the Thanatos Archive in Seattle wrote. From time to time somebody might mention to him that he bears a slight resemblance to the young version of that dead American actor, whose name they can't recall, but eventually, those occurrences will stop altogether.
In fact, there is an entire blog at Humor Share dedicated to celebrities who look like historical figures. The best ones? Jack Black as The Barber of Seville, Jimmy Fallon as the Russian revolutionist and Justin Timberlake as an unnamed ancient criminal.