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10 Actors Who Should Sue The Movies That Destroyed Their Careers

By Kristy Puchko | Lists | July 22, 2015 |

By Kristy Puchko | Lists | July 22, 2015 |

If you ask actress Paz de la Huerta, her career is in ruins. And she’s putting the blame squarely on the horror movie Nurse 3D and its director Douglas Aarniokoski.

TMZ reports De la Huerta is demanding $55 million for the income she believes she’s lost over Nurse 3D’s derailing of her once lucrative career. And if this is a thing stars can do, we’ve got a few suggestions for who should sue next.

Brandon Routh Vs. Superman Returns
Imagine—if you will—how full-body thrilled Routh must have been when he found out he’d play the most iconic superhero on the planet. Batman Begins had made superhero cinema respectable and cool again. But fuck that punked Caped Crusader, this was SUPERMAN! And with the director of two awesome X-Men movies to boot!

Routh surely thought he had it made. But few superhero movies as are loathed as this. While Routh has managed to forge a career on television post-caped catastrophe, it’s on shows we’ve never heard of before. Like this one:

Halle Berry Vs. Catwoman
A female-fronted superhero movie SO bad that it’s still used as an excuse for execs to keep superheroines on the sidelines. (Sorry, Black Widow!)

Berry made history as the first woman of color to win the Best Actress Oscar (for Monster’s Ball). Then, this festering shit show of stupid, sexist nonsense showed up in theaters as welcomed as the hairball your passive-aggressive pet spits in your sneakers. She’s still recovering 11 years later, scraping by with shark attack movies and that TV show you might have heard someone talk about once, Extant.

To Berry’s credit, she earned another history-making moment with Catwoman by becoming the first actress to accept her Razzie in person. Check it out, she was a great sport, even bringing her Oscar to the party.

Chris O’Donell Vs. Batman & Robin
Clooney, Thurman and Schwarznegger all recovered from the movie notorious for giving Batman rubber nipples. But poor Circle of Friends, Mad Love and In Love and War hunk O’Donnell did not pull off the Batfleck/Daredevil rebound. Instead he’s been cast out of blockbusters to the trenches of TV dramas, where he still lingers on NCIS: Los Angeles. Which is a show apparently.

Colin Farrell Vs. Alexander
With a handful of thrillers under his belt like Phone Booth, The Recruit and S.W.A.T., Farrell was thrilled to hit the big time fronting an Oliver Stone epic about Alexander the Great. But the $150 million movie was a massive flop that drew lawsuits over its misrepresentation of history, and criticisms for it sucking hard.

Instead of making Farrell an A-list leading man, it threw him scrambling into another bloated blunder, Miami Vice.

The silver lining to these successive duds was that Farrell pivoted by taking on riskier, more intriguing roles like the pitch-black comedy In Bruges, Terry Gilliam’s fractured fantasy The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, and the lovable trainwreck that is Winter’s Tale.

Elizabeth Berkley Vs. Showgirls
She established herself as Bayside’s hard-nosed yet so excited feminist on Saved by the Bell. So what better way to make the leap from teen idol to respected adult actress than to do an adult film about the cutthroat world of Vegas entertainment? I guess it sounded better in the pitch meeting.

At least it gave us the hilarity of CGI bras for TV censorship:

20 years later Showgirls has become a cult classic that is beloved by the gay community in particular, making Berkley a rare breed of diva. And while she’s hung in there, she told Out in 2011, “I know what it feels like to be made fun of, to be humiliated, to be rejected. …there was no bigger time in my life at 21 years old where I had to walk through basically having my head handed to me on a national level.”

Cuba Gooding Jr. Vs. Boat Trip
The alternate title for this movie about two straight dudes who accidentally take a gay cruise could be called “Gay Panic on the High Seas.” (Props to the people of 2002 that decided to steer clear of this Boat Trip.) After his adorable Oscar win for Jerry Maguire, Gooding did this comedy for the dough, explaining to The New York Times, “When I got to ‘Boat Trip,’ I thought it was time to do something that was going to make me a $20 million player.”

Oh, precious lamb!

Like C. Thomas Howell, who tried to bring back blackface in Soul Man, Gooding’s callous cultural appropriation comedy sunk him. Gooding is still on the road to recovery, taking small roles in acclaimed efforts like Selma and Empire. Also, he’s playing OJ Simpson in the upcoming American Crime Story. So…yeah.

Armie Hammer Vs. The Lone Ranger
By rights, this record-breaking bomb should have slaughtered Depp’s career. But nope. He’s still piling on scarves, shitting on Australia, and phoning in performances for ungodly amounts of money. Poor Hammer.

He’s the Brendon Fraser of our generation: handsome, charming in a dopey way, and willing to go goofy for the joke. But despite lead roles in Mirror Mirror and this atrocity, he’s failed to launch. In case a lawsuit against Disney is actually a terrible plan, we’re hoping the upcoming action-comedy The Man from U.N.C.L.E. will be his Encino Man.

Mike Myers Vs. The Love Guru

Despite an appearance by future Pajiba 10 king John Oliver, this movie proved Myers’ career was Titanic, seemingly unsinkable until it brushed up against the iceberg of his own hubris. Myers co-wrote, produced and headlined this so-called comedy that’s offensive on about every level, and funny on none. Since then, his saving grace has been the Shrek movies. So, he’s actually not totally boned.

Maybe director Marco Schnabel should sue instead. Love Guru was his first and last credit as a director. Since then, he has only penned a pair of made-for-TV movies, Brain Trust and The Librarian: The Curse of the Judas Chalice, which starred ER end days Noah Wyle.

Sean Connery Vs. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

This Scottish tough guy is an icon, James Bond, father of Indiana Jones. But this adaptation of the Alan Moore comic was so abysmal it knocked Connery out of the game. Since its release in the summer of 2003, Connery only contributed to one other film, an animated comedy called Sir Billi where he voiced the titular “retired veterinarian living in a remote Scottish village (who) encounters a goat who thinks he’s a dog, an Admiral who’s afraid of the water and a beaver who was raised by rabbits.”

You want to see a trailer for that? Of course you do:

Real talk, Sean. Don’t let this be your last movie ever. That’s too damn depressing.

Geena Davis Vs. Cutthroat Island
Davis was at the top of her game coming off of A League of Their Own, Thelma & Louise and Beetlejuice. And then came this high seas epic that crashed so hard at the box office it is said to have sunk the pirate genre completely for nearly a decade until Johnny Depp and his shenanigans revitalized it with Pirates of the Caribbean. And—you know what, no!

I know it got mixed to shit reviews. I know it crippled Davis’s career. But Cutthroat Island is great. It’s bonkers and tons of fun, a bit sexy and I still dream of being a pirate solely because of Davis’s wild-eyed performance.

If she’s suing anyone over this, it should be all you jerks who didn’t go see it.

Oh, man. That could be a whole other list.

Kristy Puchko makes no apologies for loving Cutthroat Island and Winter’s Tale. She has no fucks to give.

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Kristy Puchko is the managing editor of Pajiba. You can follow her on Twitter.