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15 Movies That Ruined The Careers of Famous Actors

27 December 2015 | Features, Film Lists | by Ryan Anderson

8. A.I: Artificial Intelligence (Haley Joel Osment)

best movies Artificial Intelligence_副本

He sees dead people. Haley Joel Osment was first seen on the screen as the son of Forrest Gump (also named Forrest Gump), in the film of the same name. Osment rose to fame for his performance as a young unwilling medium in M. Night Shyamalan’s thriller film The Sixth Sense, which earned him a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor. He then made the world cry in Pay it Forward. Then he left us scratching our heads with Artificial Intelligence.

A.I was supposed to be a science-fiction heart-warmer from director Steven Spielberg. The film began development in the late 1970s under the direction of the legendary Stanley Kubrick. It languished in development hell until Kubrick’s death in 1999. The film languished in development hell for years, partly because Kubrick felt computer-generated imagery was not advanced enough to create the David character, whom he believed no child actor would convincingly portray.

The film was greeted with generally positive reviews from critics, grossed approximately $235 million and was nominated for two Academy Awards at the 74th Academy Awards for Best Visual Effects and Best Original Score (by John Williams).

Although the film was decently successful, a good consensus of the American public did not really get the film and Osment’s career suffered because of it. He has mainly stayed to voice-over roles, such as Sora in the Kingdom Hearts games and independent cinema. He is the classic child star whose adult career has not worked out, at least so far, he’s only 27.


9. Pinocchio (Roberto Benigni)

Pinocchio (Roberto Benigni)

What Oscar curse? Oh yeah, him. Roberto Benigni did co-write, direct, and star in the lauded and beautiful comedy-drama Life is Beautiful, one of the most acclaimed World War II films ever. He had had some hits and misses in his home country and beyond, but absolutely exploded critically, commercially, and with audiences with Life is Beautiful.

The film was nominated for seven Academy Awards, and won three awards, including Benigni for Best Actor. Benigni also accepted the award for Best Foreign Language Film as the film’s director. The film received mostly positive reviews and commercial successful.

As a director, his 2002 film Pinocchio, one of the costliest films in Italian cinema, performed well in Italy, but it bombed in North America, with a 0% critic’s’ score at Rotten Tomatoes. He was also named as the Worst Actor for his role as Pinocchio, in the 23rd Golden Raspberry Awards. He has only performed in three films since its release. He is now mostly known for Life is Beautiful and his Oscar antics.


10. I Know Who Killed Me (Lindsay Lohan)

I Know Who Killed Me (Lindsay Lohan)

After successes like The Parent Trap, Freaky Friday, and Mean Girls, Lindsay Lohan was a teen idol sensation. She also became a household name and a frequent focus of tabloids and paparazzis. She had more hits with A Prairie Home Companion and Bobby, but misses too, like Just My Luck and Georgia Rule, but overall she was seen as the next big thing.

Then came I Know Who Killed Me. Lohan played a pair of twins, one of whom was abducted and tortured by a sadistic serial killer. She manages to make it out alive but after she regains consciousness in the hospital she insists that her identity is that of another woman. It was nominated for nine Golden Raspberry Awards and won eight, setting a new record for most awards won in a single year.

Lohan tied with herself to win Worst Actress and also won Worst Screen Couple for both characters she portrayed. Since the release of this film, Lohan has been in and out of rehab, had several critical and commercial bombs like Liz and Dick and The Canyons. Hopefully, Lohan can find a way to get healthy, get help, and return to her former glory. We all rooting for you, Lindsay.


11. Strip Tease (Demi Moore)

Strip Tease (Demi Moore)

At least she was paid $12.5 million. This was a record for an actress at the time for one film. she appeared on the soap opera General Hospital and subsequently gained recognition for her work in Blame It on Rio (1984) and St. Elmo’s Fire (1985).

Her first film to become both a critical and commercial hit was About Last Night… (1986), which established her as a Hollywood star. She starred in Ghost, in 1990, which the highest-grossing film of the year. It brought her a Golden Globe nomination. She had a string of additional box-office successes over the early 1990s with A Few Good Men (1992), Indecent Proposal (1993), and Disclosure (1994).

Her 1996 film Striptease was her $12.5 million payday. It was generally reviled by critics and “won” six Razzie Awards, including Worst Picture and Worst Actress for Moore.

It was a high profile disappointment for the actress and along with the disappointment of her next film, G.I Jane, and was by a lengthy hiatus and significant downturn in Moore’s career, although she has remained a subject of substantial media interest during the years since. Her career though has never really recovered from this high profile disaster.


12. The Adventures of Pluto Nash (Eddie Murphy)

The Adventures of Pluto Nash (Eddie Murphy)

One of the best stand-up comics of all time and the man who saved SNL in the early 80s, however his film career has been full of ups and downs. His successes include 48hrs., The Beverly Hills Cop franchise, the Shrek movies, and his Oscar nominated role in Dreamgirls. His failures include Daddy Day Care, Norbit, A Thousand Words, and this pitiful box-office bomb.

The Adventures of Pluto Nash cost $100 million to make, $20 million to market, and made about $7 million back in the theaters, making it one of the biggest box office bombs of all time. It is also considered one of the worst films of all time as well. Pluto Nash was nominated for five Golden Raspberry Awards in 2003 including Worst Picture, Worst Actor (Eddie Murphy), Worst Director, Worst Screenplay, and Worst Screen Couple (Murphy and himself cloned), but failed to win any.

It was later nominated for Worst Comedy of Our First 25 Years at the 25th Golden Raspberry Awards in 2005, but lost to Gigli. Murphy’s career has been a series of ups and downs since then and he is not considered the leading comedy man he once was.


13. Catwoman (Halle Berry)

Catwoman (2004)

What a mess this was. After a decade in development hell, Catwoman, a supposed spin-off to Tim Burton’s Batman trilogy was released in 2004. Originally, the film was going to be directed by Burton and star Michelle Pfeiffer reprising her role as Selina Kyle. Alas, that didn’t happen. Instead we got a clunky, poorly written, disaster that the talent of Halle Berry could not fix. Disregarding the character from the comics, we were presented with a Cat Woman who made up for her lack of seduction with acting like a cat.

Earning, its four Razzie awards, including Worst Picture of the Year, and Worst Actress for Berry, which she accepted in person, it was far from her Oscar win a few years earlier for Monster’s Ball. She has since starred in poorly received ensemble comedies like New Year’s Eve and Movie 43, and Cloud Atlas. Her recent role in the show Extant received positive reviews, even though the show was canceled. What’s next for Halle Berry? That’s anyone’s guess.


14. Basic Instinct 2 (Sharon Stone)

Basic Instinct 2

Sharon Stone film came to the attention of filmgoers for her role opposite Arnold Schwarzenegger in the 1990 sci-fi thriller Total Recall. She achieved international recognition with her starring role in the erotic thriller Basic Instinct by Paul Verhoeven. She was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress and won a Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a Motion Picture Drama for her performance in the crime drama film Casino.

She also was nominated for Golden Globe Awards for her roles in the drama The Mighty and the comedy The Muse. In 2004, Stone won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her performance in The Practice.

After being in developmental limbo for a number of years, the sequel to Stone’s most successful film was released in 2006. It was not well received by critics and audiences alike, receiving four Razzies for Worst Picture, Worst Actress (Sharon Stone), Worst Prequel or Sequel, and Worst Screenplay (Leora Barish and Henry Bean). It was also a noteworthy box-office bomb. Since its release, she has not been in anything of note.


15. Soul Man (C. Thomas Howell)

Soul Man (C. Thomas Howell)

Although an important film in terms of race relations in America, Soul Man still had C. Thomas Howell, a white actor, in blackface. It was released in 1985. Before that career blunder, C. Thomas Howell was a big budget actor and teen idol starring in such films as E.T: Extraterrestrial and Red Dawn, among early 80s blockbusters. The film was widely criticized for featuring a caucasian actor in blackface. When the film was released, some protests took place in the black community.

The controversy aside, Soul Man was panned by critics and audiences alike. However, it was still a box office success. Since starring in Soul Man, C. Thomas Howell has been working steadily in mostly independent or B movie roles.

Author Bio: Ryan Anderson is a sophomore at Miami University in Oxford Ohio, where he is studying Zoology and Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies. His love of classic cinema and film history keeps his love for film strong and ever-present in his life.



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  • Ozz Wald

    Kevin Costner – The Postman

    • It hurt his career badly but he redeemed himself with Open Range which is probably one of the most underrated films of the past 15 years.

      • Matthew Sutton

        Agreed. Open Range is actually pretty good, and probably one of the last respectable westerns.

  • Pingback: 15 Movies That Ruined The Careers of Famous Actors | roberto cimatti()

  • Jacob Lyon Goddard

    The Love Guru was so bad it made me re-evaluate his earlier movies.

  • Jacob Lyon Goddard

    Wish the list went back farther than 2 movies from the mid-80s

  • FlixtheCat

    1. Fairly certain many other movies ruined careers before the aughts as movies did exist before 1990. Might want to check those out in a sequel list or something.
    2. I’m fairly certain Sharon Stone’s career was already dead by Basic Instinct 2.
    3. Fairly certain Lohan’s career was on life support by I Know Who Killed Me due to the habit of her being a royal C U Next Tuesday to everyone she’s worked with.
    4. Routh has rebounded huge. Not only by regaining momentum with smaller roles, but playing another superhero in the popular “Arrow” on the CW as Ray Palmer aka The Atom. The character started as a charismatic supporting player and is now leading the new highly anticipated spin off “Legends of Tomorrow.”

  • First off, Hayden Christensen, Lindsay Lohan, and Elizabeth Berkley I wouldn’t call great actors since they never really did anything that people really remember them for with the exception of Lohan for Mean Girls and A Prairie Home Companion. Second, C. Thomas Howell is a fine actor but not a great one and he’s managed to do alright for himself after Soul Man as he was in the first Spider-Man reboot. Cuba Gooding Jr. is someone that I wouldn’t call but rather someone who started off with a lot of promise only blow it. As for Haley Joel Osment, A.I. didn’t kill his career as he’s still working. Not as big as he once was but he’s working. This list is stupid and how you even got a degree goes to show that you don’t know shit.

  • Matthew Sutton

    For what it’s worth Howard the Duck pretty much tanked both Lea Thompson and Howard the Duck’s respective careers. Also Rhinestone should’ve killed Sylvester Stallone’s career but I don’t think Dolly Parton’s acting career survived it.

  • Carl Peter Yeh

    One nasty article that ruined the writing career of a sophomore.

  • Edna Foster

    Interestingly, one of Hayden Christensen’s best performances, Shattered Glass, can be directly attributed to his “whininess” as an actor. He captured perfectly the victim complex that Glass used to manipulate and draw sympathy from his co-workers to avoid being exposed. As Skywalker though he came off as just some angry kid that’s mad because his parents won’t buy him a new phone. Which is also the same role he played in Life as a House, whiny kid.

  • Madrigalian

    With Christopher Reeve I will give you that the movie hurt him. As for the rest, there isn’t a movie is the world that could have saved them. The list would have been better titled; “People who Hollywood eventually realized couldn’t act.”

  • Steve Mahofski

    I actually thought Lohan, Stone and Moore were good in those movies. They weren’t particularly good movies, but the performances were good. I think Lohan and Stone were off the A-list well before these. Moore went into a semi-retirement, returned in supporting vehicles and threw off her momentum. Superman Returns is underrated. Shouldn’t have been a direct sequel, that was a bad idea, but would have been an interesting reboot. Most of the others I can see.

  • Karuna Jhani-Shikhar

    I think ‘Jumper’ is the reason of Hayden Christensson’s career and Brandon Routh was never famous.