Celebrities can sometimes be made overnight, but as you’re going to learn from this list as quickly as they rise, they can fall. And when you consider the title of the list that you’ve opened, can you guess what side of the coin we’re going to focus on today?
Below we have 15 celebrities who were able to cost themselves millions of dollars in as much time as it’s going to take you to finish this list.
Whether it was the celebrities on our list who decided that being racist was awesome, the unfortunate several who turned out to be pedophiles (including an actor from Glee), or Tila Tequila who decided to let the world know why she thought Hitler was a pretty awesome guy. Not even world-class models are exempt, as one former Playboy Playmate of the Year learned when she decided to fat shame a naked elderly woman at the gym.
There’s a reason you don’t hear about these celebrities anymore, but if they could borrow a page from Cher and “turn back time” we’re sure they wish they would have done things differently.
Here are the 15 most prominent examples of celebrities letting it all slip away with one horrific trainwreck of a moment and all the details that you need to know.
20. Jeffrey Jones Arrested For Child “Content” + Solicitation Of Minor
You don’t have to currently be a student to appreciate the outstanding movie Ferris Bueller’s Day Off and while the movie stars Matthew Broderick, it definitely helps that the entire cast is great including Jeffery Jones who plays the dean Edward R. Rooney.
Jones also may be known for his role in Beetlejuice, but don’t expect him back for the upcoming sequel as back in 2002 he was charged with child pornography, as well as soliciting a 14-year-old boy to pose nude which they definitely didn’t teach you in school!
Despite trying to state that he was completely innocent, Jones was charged with 5 years probation and required to register as a sex offender. However perhaps he wasn’t paying attention to the 2nd part of his sentencing because he has since been arrested twice since after failing to properly register.
19. Michael Richards Unloads In Racist Rant
Michael Richards is probably always going to hold a place in my home on a weekly basis because Seinfeld is one of my favorite sitcoms of all-time.
Yet unfortunately for Richards, his life was even more defined by the incredibly racist rant he went on back in 2006.
While performing stand-up, Richards was heckled and immediately started ripping into a black man in the audience with several racist epithets. The event ruined Richards’ career,
“I busted up after that event. It broke me down. It was a selfish response. I took it too personally, and I should have just said, ‘Yeah, you’re absolutely right. I’m not funny. I think I’ll go home and work on my material and I’ll see you tomorrow night.’ And split, or something. Anything. But it’s just one of those nights,” said Richards.
18. Jennifer Grey’s Nose Job Ruins Her Career
Jennifer Grey knew that she wanted to change the shape and appearance of her nose after she had started to gain some recognition as an actress, but it definitely ended up being the decision that ruined her career.
“I went in the operating room a celebrity—and came out anonymous. It was like being in a witness protection program or being invisible,” said Grey when talking about the plastic surgery.
While you can understand the extra pressure to always be looking your best as a celebrity, the last thing you want to do is remove one of your biggest identifying features!
Grey also appeared on the television show It’s Like, You Know…but the show also poked fun at her nose job, which you can imagine made for some really awkward days on-set if Grey wasn’t able to laugh it off.
17. Mark Salling Gets Arrested For Inappropriate Child Content
You definitely would not be alone if one of your favorite actors on the television series Glee was Noah “Puck” Puckerman who was portrayed by Mark Salling. Appearing in 4 seasons, it definitely was a great start to Salling’s career.
Then the legal problems started piling in that completely derailed everything. First, he was accused of assaulting a woman and forcing her to have unprotected sex, but the course was settled outside of court.
Much more seriously, in 2015 Salling was arrested after more than 1,000 photos and videos of child pornography were suspected of being on his computer.
Not long after that, he was fired from his role on Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets which is set to come out in 2017 and stars Denise Richards and RJ Mitte (or as you may know him, Flynn from Breaking Bad!).
16. Amanda Bynes Arrested For DUI And Hit-And-Runs, Lead To Retirement
Amanda Bynes was already starting to get a reputation for her partying ways but back on April 4th, 2012 it all became public knowledge when she was arrested after driving under the influence and hitting a police car (yikes!).
Bynes also got herself in several hit-and-run situations throughout the year, including deciding that driving with a suspended license was a fun thing to do.
That same year she announced her retirement from acting, making it clear she has had enough of the public spotlight. Not telling on if anyone informed her though that just because you’re no longer trying to be famous, doesn’t mean that the general public has forgotten about you; so if Bynes finds herself in cuffs again in the future you can imagine you’ll hear about it.
15. Hulk Hogan Shows Off His Racist Side
Hulk Hogan was used to laying the smackdown in the wrestling ring, but according to remarks he made during a sex tape, it was clear that Hogan was the one who was about to receive a smackdown from the general public.
Several racist comments were heard on the tape, including Hogan referring to the fact that his daughter Brooke was dating a black man,
“I mean, I’d rather if she was going to f*ck some n*gger, I’d rather have her marry an 8-foot-tall n*gger worth a hundred million dollars! Like a basketball player! I guess we’re all a little racist. F**king n*gger,” as well as,
“I mean, I don’t have double standards. I mean, I am a racist, to a point, f*cking n*ggers.”
While Hogan ended up winning a massive lawsuit over the website Gawker illegally posting the video, the reason he earned so much could be because his legacy was forever ruined. What followed for Hogan was a complete removal from all WWE events including their Hall of Fame and a termination notice.
14. Gilbert Gottfried Lost Role As Aflac Duck After Being Insensitive On Twitter
Gilbert Gottfried definitely isn’t the best looking person in Hollywood, but when you consider you probably best recognize him for being the voice of Iago from Aladdin, he’s probably okay with that.
One of the other main ways that you used to be able to hear Gottfried’s voice on a regular basis was when he was the voice of the Aflac Duck, that was until he got fired for joking about the Tsunami that killed thousands of Japanese.
Taking to Twitter, Gottfried said “Japan is really advanced. They don’t go to the beach. The beach comes to them.”
13. Aaron Hernandez – Threw Away Football Career For Murder
Aaron Hernandez could be sitting back with millions of dollars, a super bowl ring on his finger and living a pretty great life as a tight end for the New England Patriots.
But after 2 outstanding years in the NFL, Hernandez was arrested in 2013 in connection with the murder of Odin Lloyd. He was later charged with first-degree murder and perhaps most painstakingly, was sentenced to a jail that was only a stone throw away from Gillette stadium.
Bet he hated going to the yard on Sundays eh? Hernandez was also indicted but later acquitted of a double homicide involving Daniel de Abreu and Sofiro Furtado.
12. Dani Mathers Fat Shamed A Naked Woman At The Gym
As a former Playmate, Dani Mathers is no stranger to people commenting on what she looks like without clothes on. Though in Mathers case, the comments tend to be positive. In fact, she was even named Playboy Playmate of the Year back in 2015!
Mathers, however, was at the center of controversy (including losing her job) after she snapchatted a naked woman who was showering at the gym.
Included with the photo was the caption “If I can’t unsee this then you can’t either.”
Mathers membership to LA Fitness club was immediately revoked, she had a misdemeanor filed against her for body shaming and you can imagine her modelling career is definitely behind her due to the incident.
11. Charlie Admits To Being HIV-Positive
Charlie Sheen had one of the most public meltdowns in Hollywood’s history making it hard to necessarily select “one” moment. It all started when Sheen attended rehab in 2011, but not before insulting the creator of Two and a Half Men Chuck Lorre citing he was underpaid.
They didn’t take too kindly to that and he was fired a few months later. Following this, Sheen started talking about how much he was “winning” in life, showed off that he can smoke cigarettes through his nose and compared himself to a warlock.
The big nail in the coffin, however, came out in 2015 when it was revealed that Sheen was HIV positive. While Sheen said he told all 200+ women he slept with that he was positive, one of his legitimate girlfriends (and former adult star) Bree Olson was adamant that she was never informed which makes his other statements less than trustworthy. She wasn’t the only one, as up to 10 former partners sued Sheen back in 2015 for not properly disclosing his sexual history.
Sheen disappeared from Hollywood after his next sitcom Anger Management failed, but is attempting to restart his career with Nine Eleven; a movie in which he plays someone trapped in an elevator during 9/11.
10. Mike Vick Decides Dog Fights And Executions Are Fun
Now when it comes to Michael Vick, we suppose there are two schools of thought. One is that he was able to serve his time in prison, come back and even found some moderate success as a football player. But there’s just no way we can let a list go about people who self-imploded due to their own actions and not include the infamous dog fighting scandal that for all intents and purposes, should have cost Vick his football career altogether.
He was arguably one of the top players in the league, but in 2006 was arrested, pled guilty and spent 21 months in jail for helping organize a dog fighting ring, including participating in the executions of various dogs.
9. Montana Fishburne Tried To Be The “Other” Type Of Film Star
Montana Fishburne was hoping that she was going to be able to have herself a successful career in Hollywood similar to her father, who we’re sure you know as Morpheus. But her decision wasn’t to try and star in a Matrix movie, instead electing for Montana Fishburne: Makes Her XXX Debut. The movie not only allegedly shafted her on payment but also put a significant rift between her and Laurence.
“I don’t encourage people to go into the porn industry. You’re not going to be famous, or be a movie star. You may end up having a really sucky life.”
Montana went on to say, “If you look at the celebrity sex tape, these girls are not your average girl next door jumping into p*rn and for the average girl to get into p*rn and have those results won’t happen,” when asked about it. It’s clear she tried to use a younger Kim Kardashian as a role model and that’s never going to end well!
8. Tila Tequila Thinks Hitler Was Pretty Awesome
Tila Tequila is no stranger to saying controversial things to try and get attention. The most notable however and the one that really hammered home the end of her career, came in 2013 when she decided that Adolf Hitler was a cool guy to praise.
Included in her rant (that was titled Why I Sympathize With Hitler: Part 1) was
“I learned the truth about the war and what Hitler truly did and he was not a bad person as they have painted him out to be. Here is a man who was not a coward, stood up for his country in a DESPERATE TIME OF NEED (unlike all of our cowardly leaders).”
She also decided that posting photos of her scantily clad in front of Auschwitz was a super appropriate thing to do. Last but not least, she took to Twitter back in 2016 to post herself saluting like a Nazi.
Understandably, her account was suspended not long after. Tequila was also participating on the reality show Celebrity Big Brother but was removed after only 1 day after the public became aware of her pro-Hitler stance.
7. Ryan Lochte’s Rio Story Costs Him Big
If you’re an Olympic athlete, one of the biggest sources of income comes from your sponsors. Ryan Lochte was no exception and going into the 2012 games was earning $2.3 million in endorsements.
You can imagine it was even higher going into the 2016 Olympics, but following the scandal that the media dubbed “Lochtegate”, Lochte lost several of his sponsors including Speedo and Ralph Lauren.
The incident, for those unfamiliar, centers around Lochte lying and saying that he and several of his teammates were held and robbed at gunpoint when attending the games in Rio de Janeiro. He later admitted that he over-exaggerated and was drunk at the time.
6. Josh Duggar Admits To Questionable Interest In Children
Josh Duggar and his family always tried to promote wholesome values on their TLC show 19 Kids and Counting. Which makes it all the more horrifying when it came out that Josh had sexually assaulted multiple women when he was younger, including 4 of his sisters.
His parents shockingly defended his actions, saying,
“He was just curious about girls and he had gone in and just basically touched them under their clothes while they were sleeping. They didn’t even know he had done it.”
Following this revelation, the show was quickly canceled from TLC, but a spin-off (obviously not including Josh) was eventually made. It was reported that they would earn upwards of $45,000 per episode so you can imagine Josh’s actions had quite the ramifications.
Josh also had the brilliant idea to cheat on his wife with women off Ashley Madison and OkCupid. You can expect more headlines about the Duggars to emerge soon as it was reported in April that Duggar will need to list every woman he talked to on the sites under oath.
5. CeeLo Green – Lost Millions + TV Show With Controversial Assault Tweet
CeeLo Green has no shortage of moments in his career in which he clearly looks like he is just out to try and get attention (like the time he dressed as a golden idol, like what?), but in 2014 he decided to gain attention by having a horrible stance on rape
“People who have really been raped REMEMBER!!!…If someone is passed out they’re not even WITH you consciously! so WITH Implies consent,” tweeted out Green.
His unscripted show on TBS entitled The Good Life was canceled before you could blink an eye, concerts dropped him left and right and the whole world gave him one big f*ck you.
Green also left his role as a judge on The Voice, and clearly not by his choosing as in an interview he stated,
“So I just kind of put that out there, wishful thinking, kind of willing it. Because I would love to do it again.”
To make matters worse, back in 2012 Green was accused of sexual battery as well as furnishing a controlled substance.
4. Ian Watkins Receives 29 Years In Jail For Pedo Behavior
Ian Watkins could have had a promising career as a musician. His band, Lostprophets which was founded in 1997 was able to release 5 studio albums before Watkins was arrested.
One thing that’ll derail your career though? Getting arrested on charges of attempted rape and sexual assault on children. Watkins pleaded guilty to three different charges that were related to possessing, taking or making indecent photos of children and one image of extreme bestiality.
In one of the more stomach-churning moments of the trial, an SMS was read out that said: “If you belong to me, so does your baby” referring to the victim’s baby son.
3. Stephen Collins Went From 7th Heaven To Child Abuse
Stephen Collins was fantastic as an actor when appearing on 7th Heaven, but he definitely isn’t the best person off the set. It was reported back in 2014 that the NYPD had acquired a tape of Collins admitting that he had engaged in pedophilic behavior in the past.
One of his victims, a 10-year-old girl at the time, reported that Collins would often expose himself in front of her. When his ex-wife Faye Grant filed for divorce, she also reported,
“In the presence of his therapist, Stephen admitted that he has engaged in a long-term pattern of sexually abusing minor children, including sexually molesting three young girls over a decade ago,”
2. Jerry Lee Lewis Marries A 13-Year-Old
Jerry Lee Lewis was only 23 years old but was already on his way to becoming one of the biggest musicians of all-time when his career took a nosedive after a reporter discovered that his wife was only 13 years old when she married Lewis (who was 22 at the time). To make matters more awkward, she was also Lewis’ first cousin once removed.
Following the break of the news, Lewis’ popularity plummeted and it was reported that he went from earning $10,000 a night to $250. While he did have brief moments of popularity throughout the rest of his career, including exploring his country roots, his legacy was never the same.
1. Jared Fogle Receives 15 Years In Jail For Pedo Behavior
There isn’t a person out there who owned a TV in the 2000s that isn’t aware of the man Jared Fogle, even if you may better recognize him as the guy from the Subway commercials.
Fogle was one of the main faces of the company for over a decade, had a South Park episode centered around him and even appeared in a WWE wrestling ring. It was even reported that he once had a net worth of $15 million!
Yet you won’t be seeing any more of Fogle as in 2015 he was arrested on suspicion of child pornography and the intent to travel and solicit sex from a minor. He was sentenced to 15 years, 8 months in prison and must go a minimum of 13 years before being eligible for parole.
Understandably it did not take long for Subway to sever all ties with Fogle.