While most actors go through audition processes, A-list actors have so many offers thrown their way that they can generally choose what project they want to work on next. But that isn't always as great as it sounds, and it's so easy to slip up and make the wrong choice. Between Robert De Niro's venture into comedy and Michael Fassbender's unlucky streak, these great actors picked some bad roles.
Matt Damon has an outstanding filmography that's filled with some of the best dramas of the 21st century and some of the most envelope-pushing action movies such as the Bourne series. But one action movie that wasn't quite as groundbreaking was the sci-fi flick Elysium.
Strange-Shape-9281 thinks Damon made a terrible choice taking the role, positing, "I remember being interested in the premise, but the translation to on screen just didn't work for me." While the movie didn't turn out great, it's actually easy to understand why Damon took the job. Director Neill Blomkamp became the talk of Hollywood after the success of District 9, and, like the user states, the movie had a great concept; the filmmaker just couldn't stick the landing.
Critical-Writer3968 believes that Jared Leto has chosen some bad roles in the past, particularly the Joker in Suicide Squad. The Redditor claims, "Jared Leto is a good actor, but his Joker is kinda weird, and not in a good way." The trailer spoiling its ending was the least of Suicide Squad's worries, as the movie's gangster rapper-like Joker was criticized to no end when it was released.
But while Leto should have stayed clear of the movie, the character was less to do with the movie and more to do with the performance. The actor made some strange choices when it came to embodying the Clown Prince of Crime. Unfortunately, Leto has seemingly made another bad choice with the recently released Morbius, which underperformed at the box office and left audiences bewildered.
Strange-Shape-9281 thinks Robert De Niro has taken a few too many bad roles and uses Dirty Grandpa as the prime example. The Redditor comments, "It's hard to imagine Travis Bickle is the same guy who's going to frat parties with Zac Efron." After the success of Analyze This, the floodgates opened and De Niro started starring in loads of subpar comedies.
However, De Niro has such a consistent output as an actor, as he's still giving incredible performances in instant-classic movies, even if he does take a few too many comedy roles. In 2019 alone, the actor starred in both Joker, the highest-grossing billion-dollar movie, and The Irishman, Martin Scorsese's late-career masterpiece.
Michael Fassbender is a genuinely incredible actor, he doesn't practice strange method acting, he can deliver a powerfully emotional performance on command, and he's great at action. But it seems as if few people ever actually see that because most of his movies bomb at the box office, and there's a clear reason why.
Callmemacready hilariously notes, "Michael Fassbender needs to fire his agent, he's too good for a lot of his roles." There's no knowing how a movie can turn out, as a screenplay can read well but the final result could very easily be a complete mess, and that seems to have been the case with Assassin's Creed, Macbeth, and The Counselor. Fassbender is so unlucky with his choices that, according to Cinema Blend, 15% of the incoherent thriller The Snowman wasn't even shot.
Nobodycares2022 thinks Nicolas Cage makes the worst acting choices, positing, "I bet he's never turned down a role if he wasn't already busy with another one." There's no better actor who is cast in worse films than Cage, but what makes it hilarious is that the actor almost wears his bad acting choices like a badge of honor.
And no matter how bad the movie is, he still gives the performance his all instead of phoning it in, which is rather respectable. But what makes his choices more interesting is that Cage turned down so many iconic roles. The actor passed on Aragorn in The Lord of the Rings and Neo in The Matrix, the latter of which was simply because the actor didn't want to fly to Australia.
Hillz44 thinks Guy Pearce botched his entire career with one movie, noting "Fantastic actor. Time Machine ruined him." The Time Machine is a bad remake and doesn't do the original justice whatsoever. It was so bad that Redditors want another remake. However, while Pearce might have chosen badly, it certainly didn't ruin his career.
The actor has starred in tons of movies since the 2002 sci-fi film, including Lawless, Iron Man 3, and Without Remorse. And the Redditor might not have noticed because he was covered in tons of prosthetics, but Pearce plays the 109-year-old Peter Weyland in Prometheus too. But, in fairness, the actor also doesn't play the lead in movies anymore either.
Dame Judi Dench has one of the most impressive filmographies ever, and the prolific actor's list of awards and accolades is even longer. But after being in the industry for 60 years, there are obviously going to be some misfires and bad choices along the way. Howarth points to one of the most recent choices of hers, 2019's Cats.
The Redditor notes that the movie was so bad that "even the Great Dame Judi Dench couldn’t give us anything to rave about." The musical fantasy drama is one of the weirdest movies of recent times, as the cats have weird, terrifying human faces.
After a string of bad movie choices in the late '80s and early '90s, John Travolta almost disappeared completely. But Quentin Tarantino brought him back from obscurity by casting him as the iconic hitman Vincent in Pulp Fiction. However, Inevitable_Working55 mentions, "John Travolta ruined his career twice with terrible choices."
It's unclear which two films the user is talking about, as he could be referring to a number of movies in Travolta's filmography. However, one movie they're most likely referring to is 2018's Gotti, which was intended to be the next huge gangster movie hit. Instead, it was critically scathed, bombed at the box office, and nominated for six Razzie awards. At this point in Travolta's career, he needs Tarantino to throw him another lifeline.
Poorly-Drawn-Beagle thinks that the former James Bond made some awful acting choices in his day, commenting, "Sean Connery certainly made some interesting choices." What makes Connery's acting choices more interesting is that he turned down so many huge roles in beloved movies.
Connery turned down an offer to play Morpheus in The Matrix simply because he "didn't understand" the story. And this is coming from a man who starred in movies like Zardoz and The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen. The actor was also offered the role of The Architect for The Matrix Reloaded, but he stuck to his guns, and in that instance, he certainly made the right choice.
Ahmadinebro believes Amy Adams has made some detrimental choices when it comes to film roles, and they have a laundry list of movies that she shouldn't have starred in. The Redditor argues, "Amy Adams has made some awful choices in the past couple of years. Hilbilly Elegy, The Woman in the Window, Dear Evan Hansen... all terrible movies."
Adams has been in some great movies, especially in the 2010s, but her recent choices haven't resulted in her best work. However, with Disenchanted, the sequel to Enchanted, being released on Disney+ on Thanksgiving this year, it could be the win she needs.