10 Movie Bombs Actors Couldn’t Come Back From


The movie business can be harsh. For every good movie that’s released, it seems like there are 100 bad ones. One bad movie can ruin even a credible actor’s career, as studio executives, directors, and crew members all rely on their art to make a living. After all, the actors are the face of the movie. It may not be fair, but it makes sense that actors shoulder the blame when a movie bombs at the box office.

Some actors have been able to come back from sub-par movies. Nicolas Cage, for instance, was in a position where he had to make movies that weren’t necessarily the best choices for his career to pay off his debts. Even in 2023, some of Cage’s acting choices are questionable. Nevertheless, he was able to bounce back and sustain a career in the film industry. Other actors have not been so lucky, and these are the ones that haven’t been able to come back from a bad movie (yet).

10 Francesca Hayward – Cats (2019)

Francesca Hayward in Cats
Universal Pictures

Cats was supposed to be a big breakthrough for Francesca Hayward. She’s an accomplished ballet dancer with the Royal Ballet in London. Hayward was all set to make the jump to the big screen via Universal Pictures’ big-budget film adaptation of the popular Andrew Lloyd Webber musical. Unfortunately for Hayward, the film was panned by critics and audiences alike and it didn’t even come close to making back its production budget at the box office.

The difficult part is that Hayward is actually decent in Cats. In it, she plays Victoria the White Cat, an abandoned cat who finds friends on the streets. She’s encouraged to compete in a contest where the winner has a chance at reincarnation. While the singing and dancing in Cats were alright, viewers hated the bad CGI and corny dialogue. Hayward hasn’t landed another major movie role since.

9 Armie Hammer – The Lone Ranger (2013)

The Lone Ranger
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures 

Disney’s The Lone Ranger is one of the company’s biggest box office bombs ever. The film cost upwards of $250 million to make ($319.5 million in today’s dollars) and took in just $260 million ($332 million in today’s dollars). Considering marketing and publicity costs, the movie was a net loss for the House of Mouse. Still, director Gore Verbinski later talked about a reboot, which would contain a werewolf for some reason.

Armie Hammer stars as the title character in The Lone Ranger, but his performance didn’t resonate with anyone who saw the film. Some people viewed some of the cultures and characters portrayed in the movie as problematic, and Hammer soon found himself in hot water. Multiple people accused him of sexual assault and his career has never recovered.

8 Taylor Kitsch – John Carter (2012)

Taylor Kitsch John Carter
Walt Disney Pictures

Another Disney movie that went off the rails was 2012’s John Carter. Taylor Kitsch stars as Civil War veteran John Carter who finds himself in the middle of a war on a red planet called Barsoom. He soon realizes that it’s up to him to stop the war before everything collapses. John Carter was insanely expensive to make, and it barely made back its budget. The film slowly grew a cult following overseas even though it didn’t fare very well in North America.

Before John Carter, Kitsch was mostly known for his role in the series Friday Night Lights from 2006 to 2011. He was just establishing his career as an actor when John Carter failed domestically at the box office. Disney put a ton of marketing effort into the movie and Kitsch’s character didn’t hit home with many movie fans. Viewers found the movie to be bloated, silly, and confusing.

7 Rob Schneider – The Ridiculous 6 (2015)

Rob Schneider in The Ridiculous 6
Happy Madison Productions

Netflix’s 2015 movie The Ridiculous 6 is a spoof of the excellent Quentin Tarantino film The Hateful Eight. While Tarantino’s film was superbly paced, beautifully shot, and full of smart dialogue, The Ridiculous 6 was, well, ridiculous. Not only was the movie not funny, it was mainly offensive and took shots at several different cultures and stereotypes. The Ridiculous 6 was one of the first movies Adam Sandler made for Netflix after signing a multi-film deal.

In the movie, frequent Sandler collaborator Rob Schneider plays Ramon Lopez Stockburn, a half-Mexican burro rider who is the half-brother of the protagonist Tommy (Sandler). Schneider’s take on the character was stereotypical and mildly racist, which is par for the course of the actor. Schneider’s film career has floundered since the movie was released, and he’s relegated himself to blaming woke culture for his problems. For all its cringe-worth scenes, The Ridiculous 6 has the distinction of being one of the few films to score a sad 0% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.

6 Cara Delevingne – Suicide Squad (2016)

Warner Bros.

The original Suicide Squad movie from 2016 had a ton of potential to be great. Instead, it was a jumbled mess, partially caused by a heavy reliance on the wrong characters to carry the story. Rather than focus on the more interesting connection between The Joker (Jared Leto) and Harley Quinn (Margot Robbie), the movie went down the path of following Enchantress (Cara Delevingne) and her paranormal superpowers.

Delevingne was respectable as Enchantress, but the Suicide Squad bombed at the box office. She also did a formidable job of playing a love interest of Selena Gomez’s character on the hit Hulu show Only Murders In The Building, but her movie career hasn’t taken off. It’s not all her fault, though, as Delevingne has openly admitted to battling depression and mental health issues in recent years.

5 Dana Carvey – The Master of Disguise (2002)

Dana Carvey and Jennifer Esposito in The Master of Disguise
Sony Pictures Releasing

In the 1990s, Dana Carvey hit it big as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, where he was known for his outrageous impressions. In 2002, Carvey attempted to translate those impressions to the big screen in The Master of Disguise. He plays a humble waiter who enjoys doing impressions to guests at his father’s restaurant. Soon, Carvey’s character learns that he’s a descendant of a long line of impressionists, and he needs to learn how to utilize his talent for good.

The Master of Disguise is as flat and bland as it sounds. Without a good script or an interesting story, Carvey was left to carry the heavy load. He’s simply not funny enough to sustain his own movie, and the film flopped at the box office. Despite this, Carvey’s co-star Brent Spiner says he doesn’t regret being in the movie. Carvey, on the other hand, hasn’t had a chance to do a big movie ever since. He’s been relegated to small roles and none of them have been particularly memorable.

4 Jamie Kennedy – Son of the Mask

Jamie Kennedy in Son of the Mask
Warner Bros.

The 1994 movie The Mask was a huge hit for its star, Jim Carrey. It’s natural to think a spin-off could do just as well, but that wasn’t the case for 2005’s Son of the Mask. Tim Avery (Jamie Kennedy) is a cartoonist who is happy with his middle-class life: a loving wife, a happy dog, and a baby to keep him busy. But when the dog finds a magical mask, Tim soon finds himself transformed into a different character and chaos ensues.

Jamie Kennedy is mostly known for his nonsensical prank show The Jamie Kennedy Experiment, which ran from 2002 to 2004, so he’s not really a movie actor. He didn’t bring anything special to Son of the Mask and his performance was a let-down compared to Carrey, who was hilarious in a similar role. Kennedy’s list of film credits has dwindled since the movie came out, which is not surprising considering it didn’t make anywhere near its $100 million ($147 million today) production budget back.

3 Tom Green – Freddy Got Fingered

Tom Green in Freddy Got Fingered 
20th Century Fox

Freddy Got Fingered is one of the worst gross-out comedies of all time. Tom Green stars as a slacker named Gord Brody who dreams of being a cartoonist but can’t escape his abusive past. Gord leaves home to chase his goals but is stuck working in a cheese factory to make ends meet. He sets off on a ridiculous journey that doesn’t make sense and ends up delivering a baby, getting arrested, and performing several disgusting sight gags along the way.

It’s anyone’s guess as to how Freddy Got Fingered was green-lit at the movie studio, but for some reason 20th Century Fox released the film in 2001. It was immediately critically panned for its over-the-top scenes, and it made audiences, who were already weary of Green’s antics at the time, gag in their seats. Roger Ebert gave the film zero stars and said it was one of his most hated films of all time. Green never got the chance to spearhead another movie.

2 Alicia Silverstone – Batman & Robin (1997)

Alicia Silverstone Would Like Another Shot at Playing Batgirl
Warner Bros.

In 1997, Joel Schumacher took a crack at directing Batman & Robin, with George Clooney as the Caped Crusader. Alicia Silverstone, known at the time for her work in the 1995 hit Clueless, was cast as Batgirl. The problem was that Silverstone’s limited screen time before that was mostly in comedies, and she wasn’t given much to work with for the Batgirl character. The whole movie was a convoluted flop, and it made Hollywood weary of making another Batman film for a long time.

Silverstone herself has said that being a celebrity after Clueless was difficult. She acknowledged that she wasn’t ready for it and that she didn’t feel comfortable with her newfound fame. Batman & Robin did well at the box office, but history has not been kind to Silverstone. Aside from 1999’s Blast From the Past, it’s hard to picture a movie in the last 25 years when she was a main character.

1 Lindsay Lohan – I Know Who Killed Me

Lindsay Lohan in I Know Who Killed Me
TriStar Pictures

Lindsay Lohan was thrust into fame at an early age. After several hits as a child actor, she started to move into more mature movies with adult audiences in mind. In 2007, Lohan starred in I Know Who Killed Me as a woman named Aubrey Fleming who is abducted and held captive by a sadistic killer. After she escapes the abuse, Aubrey starts to believe she is actually a different person.

Lohan’s personal life was not in a good place when I Know Who Killed Me came out, so when the movie bombed, it was devastating for her film career. The movie was panned by critics and ended up with eight Golden Raspberry Award nominations. Lohan is still a very well-known celebrity, but she hasn’t bounced back from I Know Who Killed Me on the big screen just yet.

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