Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Actors Who Admitted Their Performance In A Movie Was Terrible

Actors are known for having enormous egos, but no matter how much you might believe in your own talent, every so often, real life intrudes — as it does in Hollywood when a superstar delivers a performance that's so widely trashed, even they have to step back and admit that their work didn't live up to the standards of the project. From shoddy dialogue to weak storylines, to actors who were more concerned with their social lives than the work they brought to the set, you have to admire a celebrity who's at least humble enough to admit that they may not have delivered the goods in a particular movie role. Let's take a look at the actors who've been brave enough to confess that they might not have deserved their huge paycheck for a movie... as well as some actors who can't stand their own performances, but might just be a little bit too hard on themselves.

Harry Potter and the Self-Deprecating Actor

2009's Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince marked the sixth installment in the Harry Potter franchise. Teenagers when this chapter of the story begins, Harry and his magical pals probe deeper into the mystery of Voldemort's origins, all the while battling "the Dark Lord" and his Death Eaters as well as teenage hormones that distract them from their mission — and lead Harry to share his first kiss with Ginny Weasley.

The film was critically acclaimed, receiving an 84 percent rating at Rotten Tomatoes. Particularly notable were Oscar-nominated visuals, called "stunning" and "lush." But do you know who doesn't enjoy watching the film? Daniel Radcliffe, who says he can't bear to view his terrible performance.

"I hate it," Radcliffe told Daily Mail. "My acting is very one-note and I can see I got complacent and what I was trying to do just didn't come across." Radcliffe admitted that he rarely enjoys watching himself on film, though he'll make an exception for Harry Potter and Order of the Phoenix, which he deemed his best work.

Not meow, not ever

Based on the character of DC Comics fame, 2004's Catwoman starred Halle Berry in the title role. Fresh off of her Best Actress win at the 2001 Academy Awards for Monster's Ball, Berry managed to win another big award for Catwoman — the Golden Raspberry Award, or Razzie, for Worst Actress of the year.

They should also have given Berry the award for best sport of the year, because she showed up at the Razzies to accept her trophy and give a spirited speech. Captured here on video, Berry accepts her trophy with tearful elation, and drags her manager out on stage to "thank" him for his contribution to her accomplishment. She then proceeds to call out her co-stars, saying "to give a really bad performance like mine, you need to have really bad actors." Also mentioned: the French director, the one-named Pitof, whom Berry says she could barely understand. Being the class act she is, Berry rounded out the speech by paying tribute to a lesson she learned from her mother, who told her as a child that to be a winner, you also need to be a good loser.


Before he wielded a lightsaber as a young Obi-Wan Kenobi, or crooned his heart out on the roof of the Moulin Rouge, Ewan McGregor was known as the breakout star of Danny Boyle's Trainspotting.  The tale of a group of friends in Edinburgh, struggling with heroin addiction and dabbling with crime, put McGregor's star on the map and left him eager to show the world he had the acting chops to play a different kind of role. That's what led him to accept the role of Frank Churchill in Emma — the film that, as McGregor told The Guardian in 2003, he viewed as his worst work.

It may not have helped McGregor that he didn't bother reading the Jane Austen novel upon which Emma was based before showing up on the set — a habit he admitted indulging on more than one acting job. "It's a good film, Emma, but I'm just... not very good in it," he shrugged. "I'm not helped because I'm also wearing the world's worst wig. It's quite a laugh, checking that wig out." 

He had a bad feeling about this

Most fans of Star Wars are aware that Sir Alec Guinness, the original Obi-Wan, wasn't always too thrilled with his association with the blockbuster trilogy. Though he made a few positive comments about the original film upon its release in 1977, saying it had a "wonderful freshness about it," his negative comments about his experience on the set far outnumber the good. In a letter to a dear friend written during filming, Guinness referred to the "rubbish dialogue," adding he'd be thankful for the "lovely bread" that would keep him solvent if an upcoming play turned out to be a flop. In his autobiography, Guinness recalled asking a young boy to never watch the film again after being told he'd seen it 100 times.

"I regret having embarked on the film," Guinness later lamented. "It's not an acting job... and I find myself old and out of touch with the young."

Taking the title literally

2006's Miami Vice, based on the hit '80s television series, seemed to have all the ingredients for a huge hit. A-list co-stars Jamie Foxx and Colin Farrell were both coming off a string of hit films, and writer/director/producer Michael Mann, who executive produced the series, was back in the saddle to deliver fans a big-screen version of the classic cop drama.

Though critics agreed that the film was beautifully shot, it failed to deliver at the box office, racking up only $63 million domestically against its $135 million price tag. Critics blamed the lack of a strong storyline and performances by Farrell and Foxx that didn't compare to the charismatic rapport of the original Crockett and Tubbs, played by Don Johnson and Philip Michael Thomas. As for Farrell, he seemed resigned to shoulder the blame. "Miami Vice? I didn't like it so much," he admitted. "I thought it was style over substance and I accept a good bit of the responsibility." He also said he was struggling with drugs and alcohol during filming and wasn't focused on his performance. "I just completely fell to **** on that one."

Should've stayed in the Outback

2008's Australia promised to be quite the epic blockbuster. The fictional tale of a local Australian cowboy enlisted to help a British lady traverse the Australian outback, only to stumble into the Japanese bombing of Darwin, it starred Nicole Kidman and Hugh Jackman, and was directed by Baz Luhrmann. It's hefty $130 million price tag was paid for partly by the Australian Tourism Export Council, who thought the film would do for Australia what Schindler's List had done for Krakow. It didn't.

Poorly received in Australia and a box office bomb in America, the film was also a bomb for Nicole Kidman, who received a good deal of vitriol from the press for her "close to dreadful" and "painfully corny" performance. Daily Mail reported that Kidman herself admitted on Sydney radio that she was squirming in her seat throughout the Australian premiere, asking husband Keith Urban, "am I any good in this movie?" That feeling of discomfort lingered. "I can't look at this movie and be proud of what I've done," she reflected. "It's just impossible for me to connect to it emotionally at all."

Down with the ship

She's an A-lister and an Oscar winner, but even Kate Winslet has a few projects she wishes she could get a do-over on. Surprisingly, one of them is her performance as Rose in 1997's mega-blockbuster Titanic.

Titanic catapulted Winslet from mere movie star to certified superstardom, but she told The Telegraph in 2012 that though she can never bear to watch any of her performances, her Oscar-nominated turn in Titanic is particularly painful for her. "Every single scene, I'm like 'Really, really? You did it like that? Oh my God.'"

It seems that playing an American was part of what British-born Winslet feels she struggled with in her delivery of the character. "Even my American accent, I can't listen to it. It's awful. Hopefully it's so much better now... Oh God, I want to do that again." Considering the box office take topped two billion dollars worldwide, it seems likely they'd let her.


2007's Transformers wasn't Megan Fox's first film, but it was certainly the one that made her a household name. And her subsequent firing from the hit franchise also made household news when word circulated that her comments comparing director Michael Bay to Hitler got her booted from the film.

Fox admitted that she was struggling with some aspects of superstardom when she spoke to Entertainment Weekly in 2009, prior to the release of Transformers: Revenge of the Fallen. In addition to coping with paparazzi, Fox said she was also worried she wasn't giving her performances her all. "I'm terrible in it," she said of the first Transformers movie. "I just wasn't proud of what I did." While she added that she did try harder on the second film, she insisted that audiences had only seen about "seven percent" of her acting range. "I think one day I could be a good actress," she mused. "But so far, I haven't done anything yet."

Wrath of the actor

2010's Clash of the Titans remake left much to be desired for many diehard fans of the 1981 original, with critics saying that the weak storyline and less-than-stellar visuals failed to meet expectations. But it made enough money to warrant a sequel, 2012's Wrath of the Titans, and star Sam Worthington decided this was his opportunity to deliver audiences a better film — and a better acting performance.

"I think I can act f***ing better, to be honest," he argued. "Just take all the notes from people that I have been reading about on the 'net and give them a movie they f***ing want. This one I want to kind of try to satisfy a lot more people."

Sadly for Sam, the sequel didn't bring satisfaction to audiences like he'd hoped it would. Critics of Wrath of the Titans called out the dialogue and acting, and the movie failed to score big at the domestic box office, though it was successful worldwide. Is that enough to warrant a third installment in the series? According to Worthington, "I don't think so."

Holy flop, Batman

Audiences had plenty to complain about when it came to 1997's Batman & Robin. From the corny jokes to the infamous nipple suit, even Uma Thurman's turn as the villainous Poison Ivy couldn't save this film from widely being considered the worst of the Batman movies. One of the bigger disappointments was George Clooney's performance as the guy in the batsuit — casting that had initially seemed ideal, but failed to deliver. And nobody agrees more than Clooney, who has frequently commented on the failure of the film and his turn in the Batmobile.

When asked what he thought of Ben Affleck taking the role for 2016's Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice, Clooney said, "I am the least qualified person to comment on anyone playing the role of Batman since I so terrible destroyed the part." After the part in a quest for commercial success, Clooney has said he keeps a photo of himself in the nipple suit displayed in his office as a reminder to weigh his project choices carefully.