There has always been a certain understanding in life that with fame comes a certain invasion of your privacy. Even back before there were tabloids or even newspapers if you were a public figure it came with the territory that regular everyday people would likely be discussing your life and relationships. However, the level of thirst for knowledge about what celebrities do behind closed doors seems to have become more ravenous than ever before.
There aren’t too many careers that are so dependent on aspects of the person’s personal life and that should have nothing to do with the business they are taking part in but being a celebrity definitely is one. For instance, the public seems to become invested in the relationships of the rich and famous, especially in the instances where the celebrities in question reveal aspects of them. When these couples then explode some of the people who’ve become interested in them can be very disappointed by that outcome, especially when it seems as though one of the parties is particularly at fault. We aren’t behind closed doors with either of the people in the relationship and for all we know the so-called victim may have cheated again and again in the past but if there is someone to blame, fans will do so. In the case where the person that is seen as the cheater or homewrecker is supposed to be beloved, it can be extremely damaging to their careers, even devastating. That is what inspired us to write this list, of the fifteen celebrity love affairs that destroyed careers.
In order, for a celebrity to be included in this list they, first off, need to have been involved in a publicly disclosed affair, either as a cheater or so-called homewrecker. Secondly, their career needs to have taken a notable nosedive as a result of their inclusion in the controversial relationship. However, we would like our readers to keep in mind that famous people whose career tanked as a result of an affair but eventually rebounded could be in the running.
15. Eric Benét
An R&B and neo-soul singer who has dabbled in acting and received four Grammy nominations, Eric should be known for his various talents but that isn’t the case, as we know him as Halle Berry’s ex. Releasing eight separate albums over the years, when he met and married the world-famous actress his career was definitely on the upswing but by the time his marriage came to an end things had changed. While the album he released that same year, Hurricane, charted, it topped off at one-hundred and thirty-three on the Billboard 200 and in the intervening decade only one of his albums sold that well. We guess making the choice to claim he was a sex addict and then going back on his word while in the midst of a messy divorce isn’t the best PR move. That has to be especially horrible for a career in the soul and R&B genres that are heavily based around seeming deep.
14. Scott Disick
Someone who frankly doesn’t deserve any lofty place in society, the very fact that we even know the name of Scott Disick is disappointing for all of us. Involved with Kourtney Kardashian, he owes his notoriety to the fact that his relationship with a woman who is known for being the sister of the star of a sex tape and the daughter of one of OJ’s lawyer. There are so many tiers of uselessness there that it is awe-inspiring to even consider it a reality. One of the stars of Keeping Up with the Kardashians, Kourtney and Khloe Take Miami, and a bevy of other “reality TV” shows, his bread and butter in the public is coming off like a douchebag. You’d, therefore, think that cheating would just add to his infamous life but when your ex is your key to fame it is a bad move. While he will likely make appearances still, they do share children, after all, the fact that he and Kourtney are separated means he will clearly take a backseat, at least for a while.
13. David Arquette
A member of the famed Arquette acting family, David is one of the most successful members of a competitive family. Best known for playing Deputy Dewey Riley in the Scream franchise, he also appeared in movies like Never Been Kissed, Ravenous, Ready to Rumble, Eight Legged Freaks, and many more major releases. Going on to marry one of his Scream co-stars, Courteney Cox, it seemed like the pair were an unlikely but a happy one until they separated and divorced amid cheating rumors. Not only would David admit to his dalliance with a waitress while married to one of the beloved members of the Friends cast, he seemingly couldn’t stop talking about it. Revealing it made him feel “manly” to have sex outside his marriage, he also claimed to Oprah, of all people, that he thought his wife was cheating but was wrong. Cheating on an incredibly famous woman is never going to be a good career for a famed actor and since his marriage fell apart David’s once promising career has declined. In fact, his last major role as of this writing was in a TV movie in 2014.
12. Rupert Sanders
A former commercial director who won two Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival Golden Lion Awards during the early part of his career, Rupert was eventually given the opportunity of a lifetime. Tapped to direct Snow White and the Huntsman, the film may not have been a critical darling but it did well enough at the box office and on home media to receive a sequel four years later. You’d think that would be a huge stepping stone in the young filmmaker’s career but instead much more attention was placed on his affair with one of his actresses while both were in relationships. Married to model at the time, his now ex-wife and the woman he slept with would both distance themselves from him and seemingly so would Hollywood. In fact, despite his first film succeeding, it would take five years for a film he helmed to be released, 2017’s Ghost in the Shell.
11. John Edwards
A former U.S. Senator for the state of North Carolina, John Edwards seemed to have the world at his fingertips when controversy reared its ugly head. A Vice-Presidential nominee in the 2004 Presidential campaign of John Kerry, John Edwards would put his hat in the race to become President of the United States in 2008. However, amidst what seemed like a promising run for the greatest political office in his country, The National Enquirer revealed to the world that he had an affair with a worker on his campaign. Worse yet, the young woman and he had a child together which he denied was his and convinced one of his aides to pretend was his. The fact that his wife was in the middle of a failing fight with cancer made the depths he sunk to all the worse and ruined any chance he had at receiving political positions. Eventually indicted for his attempts to hide his affair, while the charges were eventually dropped his political career never recovered.
10. Billy Crudup
Don’t get us wrong, Billy Crudup is still a sought after actor who regularly appears in supporting roles or as part of ensemble films like Watchmen but things once looked much more promising than that. At one time the significant other of Mary-Louise Parker who he left while she was seven months pregnant with his child in order to be with a woman he cheated on her with, Claire Daines. Coming shortly after his star-making performance in Almost Famous, Billy seemed poised to have a real shot at superstardom as he had it all, looks, charm, and real acting chops. Instead, he became tabloid fodder and after a short wave of bigger roles was relegated to work as a character actor.
9. Ingrid Bergman
A legendary actress who was the female lead in Casablanca, a film that is regularly in the conversations about the best films of all-time, Ingrid’s legacy may remain but her career was cut short. Also appearing in movies like Notorious, Spellbound, For Whom the Bell Tolls and Gaslight among others, Ingrid’s public persona was damaged due to her relationship with Roberto Rossellini. Both involved at the time they hooked up, her once golden reputation, as she was famed for being gracious and charming to regular people, took a huge hit. Denounced by talk-show host Ed Sullivan and even the U.S. Senate, she spent the rest of her career working in Italy instead of Hollywood.
8. Ryan Phillipe
A good-looking actor who came to prominence after he acted in I Know What You Did Last Summer and Cruel Intentions, it was in the latter film that the world fell for him and his future wife. Embroiled in a love affair with one another on-screen, Ryan and Reese Witherspoon seemed like the perfect couple. Eventually married, they would have two kids together, a son and daughter, and when word got out that Ryan had an extramarital affair it is safe to say the pair’s fans didn’t take it well. Supposedly stepping out with his Stop-Loss co-star, the negative attention he received was too much for him to overcome and his film career has pretty much dried up. Currently starring in a TV adaptation of the movie Shooter, in the intervening years, he mainly starred in movies that were released direct to VOD or made guest appearances on TV shows.
7. Anthony Weiner
At one-time known for serving the interests of New York in congress, Anthony Weiner was able to win seven terms and never received less than fifty-nine percent of the vote during that time period. Known for a pitbull type attitude, he was able to take on the powers-that-be in his district, including Wall Street, and actually affected change that helped people. There is one thing about himself that he seems incapable of changing, however, his desire to have mental affairs with strangers online that he sends inappropriate pictures to. Even though he lost his political position, had his mayoral run torpedoed and made himself look like a total creep, he has still been caught sexting people over a five-year span again and again. In the three most controversial cases, it has been alleged he sexted with a fifteen-year-old, sent a sexual picture of himself when his child was in bed with him and was embroiled in the Hillary email scandal. Frankly, he seems like an unstoppable moron who can’t stop a clearly destructive behavior that has destroyed his life and caused incredible collateral damage.
6. LeAnn Rimes
One of country music’s biggest stars of the last few decades, LeAnn became a gigantic star that was able to cross over into the pop world with songs like “How Do I Live”, and “Written in the Stars”. Blessed with an angelic voice from the start of her career, she was in her teen years and possessed singing skills that far surpassed many respected songstresses decades older than her. Then she cheated on her husband at the time, with actor Eddie Cibrian who was himself married with two sons and the world started to look at her as a home-wrecker and adulteress. Clearly a betrayal of the innocent image she’d built to that point, her career was hugely damaged as a result and it is only because she has such a beautiful voice that she continues to have any success at all.
5. Robin Thicke
Robin Thicke became a huge star after his song “Blurred Lines” became the song of the summer in 2013 and based on the lyrics of it, what happened next shouldn’t have come as a huge surprise. Despite being married to actress Paula Patton, he was caught grabbing a handful of a fan’s bottom while a picture of the pair was being taken in front of a mirror. Amidst that story and a myriad of other claims that he continued to cheat on his wife, she called it quits on their relationship. The fact that Robin then turned his next album into one long attempt to convince his ex to take him back, ensured that nobody could forget how scuzzy he is. Unsurprisingly the record failed to recapture his previous success, selling only 530 copies in the UK, 550 in Canada, and 158 in Australia. Yes, you read that right, it only sold hundreds in those countries, not even thousands.
4. Jesse James
Someone who became famous due to his involvement in a “reality” show focused on his motorcycle shop that is renowned for its unique custom work, Jesse’s initial image wasn’t squeaky clean. Then, he married Sandra Bullock, a beloved actress and was a contestant on Celebrity Apprentice where he came off as a good guy who was far more reasonable than his co-stars. In short, he was perfectly positioned to be the pre-eminent pop culture bad boy everyone loved. Then word broke that he cheated on his wife a lot, including with a woman by the name Michelle “Bombshell” McGee. Someone with White Supremacist tattoos on her body and who’d taken part in Nazi-focused photoshoots, Jesse’s involvement with her and several others destroyed his public career.
3. Kristen Stewart
In our earlier entry on Rupert Sanders, we revealed that he got caught up in a cheating scandal with one of the stars of his movie Snow White and the Huntsman. You may have noticed that we conspicuously left of the identity of that woman, Kristen Stewart, and that is because she is getting an entry all her own. Having become an international star after starring in the Twilight series of films, a lot of people were equally invested in her relationship with her co-star in those films, Robert Pattinson. When it was then discovered that she had stepped out on him, it was seen as a betrayal by legions of fans who had supported her up until that point and her leading roles have mostly disappeared since.
2. Tiger Woods
Of all career choices that make you famous, it seems like being a sports star may be the only one that insulates you against the negative impact a cheating scandal can bring. After all, there is a long list of famous athletes who’ve done things far worse than cheating but still remained stars. However, in the case of Tiger Woods he’d positioned himself as both a golfing star and spokesperson for a multitude of brands due to his incredible skills and clean image. When it was then revealed that he had cheated on his wife with a seemingly never ending list of women, that was largely taken away. In fact, he reportedly lost twenty-two million dollars in endorsements in 2010 alone and on top of that his golf game suffered a lot from the stress too.
1. Meg Ryan
Previously seen as America’s sweetheart, Meg Ryan once upon a time was one of the most bankable stars in all of Hollywood. The star of movies like Sleepless in Seattle, When Harry Met Sally, You’ve Got Mail as well as Kate & Leopold to name just a few, her movies made millions at the box office. Then she took a role in 2000’s Proof of Life alongside respected actor Russell Crowe and word leaked that and her co-star became an item. Married to Dennis Quaid at the time, her image never recovered and in the coming years, her career’s decline was a marked one.
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