10 Movies That Fired Their Lead Actor During Filming

Since the dawn of the silver screen, Hollywood actors have been placed on such a pedestal that they are commonly referred to as American royalty. The United States may not have our own official monarchy, but thanks to the film industry, we have no shortage of kings and queens to bow down to on the red carpet. With all of the money, fame and fan worship, sometimes comes trouble. Ego trips, bankruptcies, drunken rants, and difficult behaviors have become all-too familiar with our beloved Hollywood stars. Many times, it comes down to a simple matter of height, age, or the whims of fickle movie executives, but whatever the reason, sometimes even the sexiest and most charming A-listers get handed their pink slip. Below are 10 actors that didn’t make the final cut.


10 Melora Hardin - Back to the Future

Fans know and love Melora Hardin from such roles as Jan Levinson in The Office, Trudy in Monk, and from films like 17 Again, The Hot Chick, and 27 Dresses. Long before she became a solid television and film actor, she was hired for what would be her first big screen role. When producers replaced Eric Stoltz in Back to the Future, they decided Hardin was too tall to be Michael J. Fox’s love interest, stating that she would “tower over him.” Hardin was understandably crushed, but went on to star in dozens of film and television roles, win two SAG awards, and has tried her hand at directing, producing and starring as Roxie Hart in Chicago on Broadway.

9 Andrew Garfield - The Amazing Spider-Man


Certain blockbuster franchises never seem to go away, but lay dormant for a few years before exploding back onto the big screen. Spider-Man is one of those franchises that will undoubtedly be around for a long time to come. Peter Parker, played by Tobey Maguire in Sam Raimi’s Spider Man Trilogy made a comeback in 2012 with The Amazing Spiderman, starring Andrew Garfield in the first two installments. When Garfield failed to attend a big event being held by Sony, the actor was abruptly dismissed for a third movie that is slated for release in 2017. Spidey fans will have to wait to see who is replacing Garfield, as no actor has been named to date.

8 Emily Lloyd - Husbands and Wives

London-born actress Emily Lloyd made her big-screen debut in 1987’s Wish You Were Here. The film, set in a fifties seaside town, was well-received and made Lloyd an overnight sensation. Lloyd would go on to star in films with such A-list actors as Bruce Willis (In Country), Brad Pitt (A River Runs Through It) and Faye Dunaway (Scorchers). Bouts with a variety of mental illnesses such as schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, attention deficit disorder, and Tourette’s syndrome, made Lloyd begin to slip into relative obscurity. Rumors of on-set difficulties plagued the actress, who eventually moved back to London and largely stays out of the public eye. Films the actress was reportedly fired from are numerous, including Mermaids, Husbands and Wives and Tank Girl.

7 Rick Moranis - The Breakfast Club

The Breakfast Club was arguably the definitive 80s teen movie, with memorable performances by Molly Ringwald, Emilio Estevez, Ally Sheedy and Anthony Michael Hall. A famous face absent from the original film roster was Rick Moranis, set to play Carl the Janitor. Though the actor went on to find fame in films like Honey I Shrunk the Kids, Spaceballs and Parenthood, the producers of The Breakfast Club were not on board with the overblown Russian accent Moranis adopted for the character. Though screenwriter, John Hughes, felt too uncomfortable to do the firing, producer Ted Nanen had no problem giving Moranis his walking papers. John Kapelos stepped into the small, but memorable role.

6 Richard Gere - The Lords of Flatbush

Most celebrities follow the unspoken code of never speaking unkindly of a fellow performer, but that’s not the case between Richard Gere and Sylvester Stallone. Early in both of their careers, they shared a film set while shooting The Lords of Flatbush. The pair didn’t get along and, after a greasy chicken incident during lunch, some shoving took place and Stallone told directors they had a choice to make. Gere was fired and the two have never mended fences to this day. Stallone has publicly said Gere believes he started the infamous gerbil rumor, but that is not the case. Gere went on to star in hits like Pretty Woman, Unfaithful and Chicago, but a reunion between the two seems unlikely.

5 Rachelle LeFevre - The Twilight Saga: Eclipse


Super fans of the hit film Twilight, were confused with the recasting of the fiery-haired Victoria, in the third installment of the saga, Eclipse. Perhaps no one was more shocked than the actress that played the love-to-hate-her vampire villain, Rachelle LeFevre. In a candid interview in 2010, LaFevre described being “stunned” at Summit Entertainment’s decision to replace her with Bryce Dallas Howard. Summit’s reasons were stated as scheduling conflicts, but the actress maintained that she was fully committed to finishing out the character’s journey.

4 Dudley Moore - The Mirror Has Two Faces

Dudley Moore was a comedic actor, perhaps best known for his roles in 10, Micki & Maude and Arthur. A classically trained pianist, Moore was quoted as saying, “I couldn’t imagine not having music in my life.” Married four times, Moore had two sons, was nominated for an Academy Award (Arthur), and was invested as a Commander of the Order of the British Empire. But it was on the set of The Mirror Has Two Faces, that Moore underwhelmed a director, possibly for the first time in his life. The director in question? None other than Barbra Streisand. She fired Moore for his inability to remember lines, a symptom of Progressive Supranuclear Palsy, a brain disorder that would later lead to the actor’s death. Ironically, Streisand replaced Moore with George Segal, the actor who, years earlier, dropped out of the film 10, allowing Moore to slide into the role that made him a star.


3 Raquel Welch - Cannery Row


Few Hollywood sirens throughout history have maintained their sex appeal well into their senior years like Raquel Welch. First appearing on-screen in 1964, it was the 1966 appearance of Welch in a prehistoric bikini in the film One Million Years B.C. that earned her icon-like status as an international sex symbol, a title many would say she still carries at age 75. But it was on the set of the 1982 film Cannery Row that Welch was unable to charm the studio executives at MGM and was fired for being difficult. Debra Winger stepped into the role and Welch went on to win a $10.8 million lawsuit against the studio.

2 Pierce Brosnan - James Bond Franchise

Irish-American, Pierce Brosnan has been in over 75 television and film roles, but for most, he will always be remembered as James Bond in four 007 films that spanned a decade. It was right before a fifth film was slated to begin that Brosnan was told he had come to the end of the road with the franchise. A clear reason was never given, though Brosnan suspects it had to do with his age. Bond went on to be played by actor Daniel Craig, fifteen years Brosnan’s junior.

1 Lindsay Lohan - The Other Side


Lindsay Lohan may be the best example of a hugely talented star crashing and burning in front of the entire world. Lohan entranced us in her duel role as twin sisters in Disney’s The Parent Trap, and became a teen sensation in films like Freaky Friday, Mean Girls and Confessions of a Teenage Drama Queen, and was nominated for numerous awards, winning two MTV Movie Awards. Unfortunately, it was not Lohan’s talent that garnered the media frenzy, but her downward spiral into theft, drugs, drinking, partying and needless plastic surgeries. After trying to clean up her act and stage a comeback in 2014, Lohan was fired from the set of The Other Side, a movie about a man searching for his daughter at the beginning of a zombie apocalypse. Sources say the buzz behind the scenes was that the makers of the film ultimately decided the star was no longer “bankable."


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