Embarrassment usually comes when we are at our most vulnerable, our most insecure. By that reasoning, actors probably get embarrassed far less than any of us regular people. They’re the kings and queens of the world; why in the world would they ever be insecure? Plus, they’re so used to putting themselves out there that they likely enjoy feeling vulnerable. That doesn’t mean that they never get embarrassed though. They do. It just tends to happen when the stars are less clothed than usual or around bigger stars than themselves. It’s a weird trend we’ve noticed. Seriously, whenever a star is asked what their most embarrassing moment on set has been, most have an answer from when they were young and impressionable or when they were naked.
As they’ve become rich megastars, an actor’s embarrassment seems to slide by the wayside. When they’re legends, not one thing can bother them. So, we’ve sent out our probes to dig for the best stories from famous actors. What was your most embarrassing moment? Here’s what they had to say. 15 stars relive their most humiliating experiences on set.
15. Jake Gyllenhaal – Kissing His Crush, Aniston
For Jake Gyllenhaal, it wasn’t necessarily one embarrassing moment in particular that he remembers, but an entire shoot. He mentions the set of The Good Girl, where he worked with his childhood crush, none other than Jennifer Aniston. He doesn’t give many specifics, but we can put our best guess forward. It was the sex scene. Guaranteed. “I had a crush on her for years,” Gyllenhaal explained. “And working with her was not easy… I was—um, yeah. That’s all I’m going to say. It was lovely. It wasn’t hard, that’s what I would say.” Ironically, Gyllenhaal says it wasn’t hard, but we can imagine that the energetic lovemaking scene with the insanely beautiful Aniston probably got him more worked up than he had anticipated.
14. Kristen Schaal – Farted On Forte
Kristen Schaal is a hilarious actress that you’ve almost definitely seen but maybe didn’t know her name. She’s been in Flight of the Conchords, voices Louise in Bob’s Burgers and now stars in Last Man on Earth. Even though Schaal brushes off her most embarrassing experience as something that barely bothered her, make no mistake, this was a horrifying and scarring thing. Even reading it is difficult. She can pretend all she wants, but there’s no way that she wasn’t humiliated when it happened. It was during a sex scene with Will Forte and Schaal was sitting on her co-star. As she was talking dirty, something dirty happened. “Carol is aggressively and sexually talking to Phil – that’s a lot of diaphragm work, which is also in the danger zone of where the beans are,” said Schaal, with the kind of elegance only she can. “Finally, I just looked at Will and I was like, ‘I’m gonna fart on you.’ And I did. If you fart on your scene partner, it’s the most intimate you can get.” You might say that sex is not her strength. Or. Wait?
13. Kiera Knightley – Golf Cart Peep Show
Kiera Knightley looked back in her film past for her most embarrassing moment, a moment which came on the set of Star Wars: The Phantom Menace, in which a young Knightley played a stand-in for Queen Amidala (Natalie Portman). The young actress said that people would be shuttled to different places on set in golf carts. She had to be taken to wardrobe one particular day, so she climbed aboard a golf cart in her robe, naked underneath. Ewan McGregor, she said, had jumped on the back of the cart to come along for the ride. Apparently, the driver of the cart was all chummy with McGregor and had started to rock the cart, swerving from side to side trying to make McGregor fall off the back as a joke, but the actor was too wise; he held on. Unfortunately, for Knightley, she forgot to hold on and was sent tumbling off the side of the cart, robe flying everywhere.
12. Jesse Metcalfe – “Hots” For Longoria
Eva Longoria is a beautiful woman and beautiful women have an effect on most men. Even when an actor is acting, true excitement can be difficult to contain for the male gender. That’s how it went down with Jesse Metcalfe when he first had to film a sex scene with Longoria on the set of Desperate Housewives. “It happens. It doesn’t happen that frequently because there are a lot of people on set, and it can be very technical, but it happens from time to time. Yeah! As a matter of fact, in the first scene we ever had, where Gabriella and John first had sex, we were rehearsing and then the director was like, ‘OK, get out of bed, we have to reset the set’, and I was like, ‘I need a minute.‘” You get it, right?
11. Oscar Isaac – Awkward Hello Nods
Oscar Isaac’s name is becoming more and more recognizable with each passing week it seems. Back in the mid 90s, though, he was a complete unknown. Playing in his first movie, Illtown, Isaac was a young teenager just looking to fit in. He tells a story about how on the set, he was trying to be as friendly as he could. Every time the director looked his way, Isaac would raise his chin and his eyebrows, essentially saying “hi” to his boss. This happened a few times and everything appeared to be going well for the eager young man. But it wasn’t that great in reality. The director was weirded out by Oscar’s gestures. The next time he looked over at Isaac and saw that unwanted hello, the director made a scene. “Every time! This kid,” the director shouted. “I look at this kid and he goes,” mocking young Isaac’s response. “Why do you do that?” Well, Mr. Director, it’s safe to say that Isaac no longer does this. You’ve scarred him for life.
10. Andy Serkis – Broadcast A Potty Break
Andy Serkis has done a ton of motion capture work, likely more than any other actor in the world, so he’s a certified professional, but even professionals make mistakes. On one film, likely Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit or Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Serkis was doing his regular motion capturing. On his head, during these performances, is a camera that is connected to a monitor, so everything that Serkis sees the monitor shows. This turned embarrassing for the actor when “cut” was yelled and the shoot had finished. Serkis, still in his gear, walked to his trailer to relieve himself before the next shoot. He went to pee and came back. It was then that he realized that he had left his camera on and whatever he just did was on the monitor for everyone to see.
9. Henry Cavill – Superman, Hard As Steel
Though he doesn’t reveal what movie shoot it happened on, Henry Cavill relived a moment from set that sounds about as embarrassing as it gets for a guy at work. “It’s only happened to me once, and it was very embarrassing,” said Cavill. “A girl had to be on top of me, she had spectacular breasts, and I hadn’t rearranged my – stuff – into a harmless position. She’s basically rubbing herself all over me and, um, it got a bit hard.” Now, if this doesn’t appear to be that bad to you at first thought, remember that this is work for Cavill. Like the actor reminds us, “It’s not great when you’re in a professional acting environment and somebody gets a b*ner, is it?”
8. Jennifer Lawrence – Drunk Love With Pratt
In her new film Passengers with Chris Pratt, Jennifer Lawrence was required to shoot a sex scene with the married actor. She tells that she was so nervous and feeling so guilty about the scene that she went out and got super drunk to ease her nerves. This helped, for a while, but then a bigger issue came about when, by the end of the day and the shoot, the actress was completely hungover. Even worse, the drinking only blurred the event for her so when she sobered up, she wondered what all drunk people wonder after a night out. “Did I really say that?” “Oh god, do I do that?” When the liquid courage melts away, all were left with is dehydrated pain. Still worth it.
7. Dave Franco – The Butt Pimple
Dave Franco relives his first sex scene to tell us about his biggest embarrassment as an actor. It was while filming Neighbors and he had to shoot a sex scene. “It was my first real sex scene where I show my butt,” he said. “I was pretty nervous for the scene… I met the girl the day before and she was beautiful and very sweet, but it’s awkward. You meet each other and then you’re grinding—you don’t even know her name, barely. You have 20 crew members who are also watching you do it. And then, of course, for me, I woke up that morning and I had a giant pimple on my ass…It sucks, right? I had to go to the makeup artist who I had also met that week and be like, ‘Can we go in the other room and you’ll put makeup literally on my ass?’ So that was that.”
6. Julia Louis-Dreyfus – Distracted By Woody
Julia Louis-Dreyfus tells a hilarious story about one of her first films. It was a Woody Allen film, Hannah and Her Sisters. Julia describes that it was essentially a bit part but she was hopeful. This is Woody Allen in the 80s after all. “I was incredibly nervous and excited,” she said. “I was in this scene where (Allen’s) character is producing a show and he thinks he has a brain tumor, thinks he hears ringing. He’s supposed to say: ‘Wait, stop. Do you hear that ringing?’ I’m his assistant. And so we start to shoot. He says, ‘Wait, stop …’ and I say, ‘What?’ He goes, ‘No, no, that’s the line.’ So we go back to the line, start to roll camera. He says, ‘Wait, stop …’ and I say, ‘What?’ again.”
5. McLovin – Mom Watched Him Do It Firsthand
Shooting any “intimate” scene surrounded by other cast and crew would be pretty embarrassing for an actor, especially a young one, but when Christopher Mintz-Plasse shot his first sex scene on the set of Superbad, it must have been horrible. Since the actor was only 17 years old at the time, a minor by law, he needed parental supervision on the set during this intimate moment. That means that while McLovin was getting down for the first time, his mom was in the room. It doesn’t matter if this is just fake sex or not, the fact that he’s grinding away on a young woman while his mom looks on is one of the most frightening images ever concocted.
4. Anne Hathaway – Undressed At Rehearsal
Actress Anne Hathaway‘s most embarrassing moment came on the set of Love & Other Drugs when she thought that the cast and crew were ready for her big nude scene. The scene asked for her to be completely naked underneath a trench coat, so she got into her birthday suit, put her coat on and made her way onto the set. Once there, Hathaway was under the impression that she had to “remove my trench coat and be nude underneath” right away. So, she did. She was right, she just had the timing a bit mixed up. “I thought we were filming,” she said. “But it turned out we were just rehearsing and I got unnecessarily naked in front of a lot of people.”
3. Christian Bale – The Ultimate Meltdown
Even if we don’t believe that Christian Bale is embarrassed or sorry about what happened on the set of Terminator Salvation, he sure sounds like he is. After a recording of Bale freaking out on a crew member on set leaked onto the Internet, everyone was kind of shocked and even appalled at how emotionally violent Bale was. Afterward the actor tried to fix the situation, apologizing profusely for his actions. “There is nobody who has heard that tape who has been hit harder than me,” he said. “The one thing that disturbs me so much is that I’ve heard a lot of people saying that I seem to think that I’m better than anybody else… Nothing could be farther from the truth. I am a lucky man, I never forget that and that is why I put so much into what I do, and why I care so much about it and why sometimes that enthusiasm just goes awry.” He later added, “I know some people are thinking, ‘I’m not going to see this movie’ because they think I’m a prima donna. Everybody worked so hard on this movie. Please, don’t allow my incredibly embarrassing meltdown to overshadow this movie and to have all of those people’s hard work go to waste.”
2. Laura Dern – Dern Dog Destroys Scott Baio
While it wasn’t on the set of a film, this story is too awful not to include on this list. Now, Laura Dern‘s been in the film industry a long time, but in 1980, she was getting her first big break. The film was Foxes and it was starring teen idol Scott Baio. Dern was in love with Baio, so she was excited to get to know him. Her mother, knowing this, invited Baio over to their house for dinner. Baio came over to the Dern’s wearing a white leisure suit, looking fly, and sat down. Dern’s pet dog, went over to greet their new guest and promptly had her period on his white pant suit. Talk about bad first impressions.
1. Martin Short – Martin Junior Slips Out
Martin Short has done plenty of embarrassing things on set, both intentionally and unintentionally, but his experience while making Clifford tops them all. The movie Clifford is a bit embarrassing for the actor as it is, but he shouldn’t be too hard on himself, It’s truly a beautiful movie. Still, Short was 40-years old at the time and the role required him to play a 10-year old boy. The director asked that Short arrive on set with no hair on his legs, to get into character of course. Use Nair they said. In his excitement the night before, Short forgot. When he got to the set, not wanting to waste time, Short suggested they just do the Nair there while they applied his makeup. So, he stripped down his boxers, sat in the chair, put his legs up and started talking to the makeup guy behind him, while two female hairstylists Naired his legs. “These women are rubbing cream on my legs, and then they get claws, and in a coupe of minutes, they rub the hair off,” Short explained. “I haven’t moved one inch. I’m still talking to [the makeup man]. Now [The hairstylists] are at the back of the trailer washing out the cloths. Then I’m finished, and I look back, and I realize that my pen*s is hanging out of my boxers.” When he asked the lady a few weeks later, she confirmed that it had been out the entire time.