The entertainment industry is a cruel business. One moment, you could be on top of the world with more contacts than anyone in the business, and in the next, you’re being blacklisted by every movie studio in the country. All it takes is one slip up, a string of bad movies, or a drunken mistake, and you could end up being ousted by your peers. That’s just the way the business goes. There’s a certain level of professionalism that’s expected of celebrities.
We’ve all heard about Mel Gibson‘s anti-Semitic rant or the time that Michael Richards ruined a stand-up set by shouting racial slurs at the audience, but what about the celebrities who ruined their careers over time? Most of the celebrities on this list didn’t just make one mistake; they made a string of mistakes that ruined their career. Spokesmen, actors, athletes, and even an NFL coach — here are 15 celebrities who destroyed their own careers.
15. Mark Salling
Mark Salling is almost entirely known for his role as Noah “Puck” Puckerman on the comedy musical television series Glee. He was a main character for the first four seasons of the show and was bumped to a recurring role for seasons 5-6 and appeared in a total of 81 episodes. For his performance in the show, Salling was nominated for numerous Screen Actors Guild Awards and two Teen Choice Awards.
In 2013, around the time he was bumped to a recurring role on Glee, Salling was accused of committing sexual battery. According to the victim, Salling had unprotected sex with her without her giving him permission to do so. The case was settled out of court, and nobody could’ve suspected what was going to follow. In 2015, Salling was arrested for possessing several thousand images of child pornography. He was immediately removed from the cast of Adi Shankar’s Gods and Secrets. On October 4, 2017, Salling pleaded guilty to possessing child pornography. He currently faces four to seven years in jail. Additionally, he’ll have to register as a sex offender and have no verbal or electronic contact with anyone under the age of 18.
14. Mitchel Musso
Mitchel Musso had a promising career at Disney ahead of him. He had grown somewhat of a following after starring in Hannah Montana alongside Miley Cyrus and Emily Osment. He was sort of the goofy friend-zoned guy for most of the show, and he did an alright job. It wasn’t a groundbreaking performance, but if it launched Emily Osment’s Disney career, it was definitely going to launch Mitchel Musso’s. And it did. Following his role on Hannah Montana, Musso found voice-acting work on Disney’s Phineas and Ferb. He also starred in a Disney show called Pair of Kings and hosted another show called PrankStars. He was really working toward being a Disney superstar — until he ended up drunk behind the wheel of a car.
In 2011, Musso was arrested at 3:43 in the morning and charged with driving under impairment after he was pulled over and blew over the legal limit. Following his arrest, Musso was written out of Pair of Kings, and his show PrankStars was almost immediately canceled. Oops! I hope that night out was worth it, Musso.
13. Ryan Lochte
For most of his competitive career, Lochte was living in the shadow of Michael Phelps. The two were the stars of the American Olympic swim team, but Phelps was Batman, and Lochte was Robin. It would’ve been hard for Lochte, who holds the world record in the 4×200-meter freestyle and 4×100-meter freestyle relay, to not have been recognized for his own achievements.
After competing at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Lochte claimed that he and his teammates Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, and Jimmy Feigen had been robbed after a night out. Lochte claimed that a man had forced him and his teammates out of a taxi at gunpoint in the early hours of the morning. There was somewhat of a media frenzy while investigators tried to figure out who mugged the American Olympians. That was, of course, until the truth emerged. As it turns out, Lochte had lied about the ordeal. Security footage emerged that revealed Lochte had vandalized a gas station bathroom and was made to pay for the damages by someone working that night. He was suspended from swimming for 10 months, and he became a laughing stock.
12. Cee Lo Green
For a few years, Cee Lo Green was one of the most irresponsible celebrities on Twitter. I think that he thought he was more famous than he actually was. After all, he was a judge on The Voice and had released two universally loved singles: ‘Crazy’ and ‘F**k You (Forget You).’ Due to his seemingly overnight success, Cee Lo Green started acting like a total jackass.
In 2012, Cee Lo Green was accused of r—-g an intoxicated woman. Due to a lack of evidence, the District Attorney’s Office was unable to press charges against Green. He was accused of drugging the woman and was charged with possession of a controlled substance. He took his frustrations out on Twitter, where he tweeted, “People who have really been r—d REMEMBER” and also “If someone is passed out they’re not even WITH you consciously! so WITH implies consent.” Basically, Green was insinuating that it doesn’t count as rape if the woman is unconscious. As you can imagine, this lost him a ton of fans. He ruined his reputation further when he tweeted a number of homophobic comments about a reviewer that had criticized one of his concerts.
11. Chris Foerster
The most recent case of a celebrity destroying his career happened earlier this week. Chris Foerster was an offensive line coach that had worked for a number of football organizations since 1983. He had coached players on the Vikings, the Buccaneers, the Colts, the Ravens, the 49ers, the Redskins, and, most recently, the Miami Dolphins. Well, that was until his scandal came out.
A model living in Las Vegas named “Kijuana Nige” leaked a video of Chris Foerster snorting a line of powder before entering a meeting. Foerster allegedly recorded the video himself and sent it to Nige. In the video, Foerster makes numerous references to getting high with a woman and how he wishes he was doing drugs with her instead of going to a meeting. Just a few hours after the video was posted, Chris Foerster resigned from his job at the Miami Dolphins. Nige says she released the video because of the criticism many black football players were facing for sitting during the national anthem.
10. Tonya Harding
Tonya Harding is proof that professional ice skaters are some of the most intense competitors of all time. Harding was a two-time Olympian and star of the American ice skating team when she decided to do something drastic to make herself look better. It was a conspiracy against another skater on the American ice skating team, and it was a desperate attempt to boost her own career.
According to reports, Tonya Harding’s ex-husband, Jeff Gillooly, conspired to break the leg of a skater named “Nancy Kerrigan” so that she wouldn’t be able to compete at the upcoming Olympic Games. The man hired to break Kerrigan’s leg only managed to bruise her, and she was still fit to compete in the Olympics after the ordeal. In fact, Kerrigan was fit enough that she finished second, while Harding finished eighth. It didn’t take long for people to piece together what had happened, and Jeff Gillooly’s confession in exchange for a plea bargain made it that much easier to convict her. Harding was banned from professional ice skating and ordered to pay a fine of $160,000 and complete 500 hours of community service.
9. Jared Fogle
The story of Jared Fogle is well known at this point because of how insane the whole thing is. For those who are unaware, Jared Fogle was a spokesman for Subway after he had lost over 200 pounds on the Subway diet. From 2000 to 2015, Fogle appeared in numerous Subway commercials and was regularly used in marketing campaigns. That is, of course, until Fogle’s terrible secret came to light.
After an associate of Fogle’s was arrested for possession of child p*rnography, investigators were able to track some of the images to Fogle’s computer. As it turns out, Fogle had thousands of photos and videos of child pornography on his computer and had even traveled around to pay to have sex with minors. Some of the images found on Fogle’s computer contained children as young as six. Numerous people accused Fogle of trying to have sex with their underage relatives over the years, but Subway turned a blind eye.
Jared Fogle was sentenced to over 15 years in prison. He isn’t eligible for parole until he serves 13 years of his sentence. I’m sure there are a few people in the federal penitentiary who are going to give him a footlong or two.
8. Tatum O’Neal
Tatum O’Neal started off in Hollywood with one hell of a career. In 1974, O’Neal became the youngest person to ever win an Academy Award for her performance as Addie Loggins in Paper Moon, a film she starred in with her father, Ryan O’Neal. She appeared in a number of movies over the years and became such a celebrity that she was Michael Jackson‘s first girlfriend. After her relationship with Jackson ended, she married tennis star John McEnroe.
While O’Neal was living the high life, she was literally living the high life. Through the ’80s and the ’90s, O’Neal was falling down the rabbit hole of drug use. This led to her arrest in 2008, when she was arrested for buying crack cocaine near her Manhattan apartment. In addition to an addiction to cocaine, O’Neal says that she struggled with a heroin addiction for a large portion of her adult life. It’s a shame that someone with so much talent can throw her life away and succumb to addiction.
7. Manny Pacquiao
Manny Pacquiao is one of the greatest boxers of all time. The eight-time world champion has battled some of the best in the boxing ring, including a controversial fight with Floyd Mayweather. In addition to his boxing career, Pacquiao tried to launch a political career in his home country of the Philippines, a very Catholic country.
During his political career, Pacquiao made a number of homophobic comments that turned many boxing fans against him. When speaking out against homosexuality, Pacquiao said, “It’s common sense … Do you see animals mating with the same sex? Animals are better because they can distinguish male from female. If men mate with men and women mate with women, they are worse than animals.” Later, Pacquiao showed no remorse for his comments and took to Instagram to say that he was “just telling the truth of what the Bible says.” In response to his comments, Pacquiao lost his contract with Nike and tarnished his reputation.
6. Lindsay Lohan
Lindsay Lohan is everyone’s favorite example of how fast a life in show business can get destroyed. Lohan made her debut in The Parent Trap at age 11, but by the time she was 20, her life was falling apart. In 2007, Lohan was arrested for driving under the influence twice. For the following years, she was bouncing in and out of rehab as she struggled with her addictions.
In 2013, Lindsay Lohan was finally able to put her past behind her and was slowly on her way to starting her career again. Sadly, her addictions had lost her a lot of movie deals, and almost nobody wanted to hire her. That’s the case today, too. Lohan hasn’t been in anything notable since The Canyons in 2013. She made a brief appearance in 2 Broke Girls as well, but other than that, Lohan wasted her opportunity to become one of the most successful women in Hollywood.
5. Katherine Heigl
Katherine Heigl had a promising career ahead of her after she was cast as Isobel Stevens in Grey’s Anatomy. She worked on the show for five years and won a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Actress in a Drama series in 2007. Following her Emmy win, Heigl appeared in movies like Knocked Up, 27 Dresses, The Ugly Truth, Life As We Know It, and New Year’s Eve.
Following the submission of her name for a second Emmy nomination in 2008, Heigl made negative comments about the show that made her famous. She told reporters that she wanted to withdraw her nomination because she felt that the quality of writing given to her by Shonda Rhimes was sub-par. Additionally, Heigl made comments that she thought Judd Apatow‘s film, Knocked Up, which she starred in, was sexist. In her own words, ” It paints the women as shrews, as humorless and uptight, and it paints the men as lovable, goofy, fun-loving guys. It exaggerated the characters, and I had a hard time with it, on some days. I’m playing such a bitch; why is she being such a killjoy? Why is this how you’re portraying women? Ninety-eight percent of the time, it was an amazing experience, but it was hard for me to love the movie.”
After these comments, Heigl was labeled as hard to work with by the media, and her career faltered because of it. She recently opened up on The Howard Stern Show and said that she wished she had just kept her mouth shut!
4. OJ Simpson
O.J. Simpson had it all. He had retired after an incredible career with the NFL and had his sights set on the future. He was considered one of the best running backs of all time, and played for the Buffalo Bills (1969-1977) and later, the 49ers (1978-1979). He was awarded the Heisman trophy, was put on the NFL 75th Anniversary All-Time Team, and received countless accolades throughout his career. But nobody remembers O.J. Simpson for his football career.
In 1994, O.J. Simpson was arrested for the murder of Nicole Simpson and Ron Goldman. After one of the most famous court cases of all time, O.J. Simpson was found not guilty of the murder. Despite his not guilty verdict, Simpson was ordered to pay $33.5 million to the victims’ families, as they considered him responsible for the deaths of their loved ones. In 2007, O.J. Simpson was charged with armed robbery and kidnapping. He was sentenced to 33 years in jail but was able to apply for parole after 9 years. On October 1, 2017, Simpson was released from prison after being granted parole.
3. Harvey Weinstein
Harvey Weinstein co-founded the company Miramax, which published a number of popular independent films like Pulp Fiction, Clerks, and Sex, Lies, And Video Tape. He also sat on the board of directors of The Weinstein Company for 12 years. The company was responsible for publishing Django Unchained, Silver Linings Playbook, The Butler, and 1408. In other words, Weinstein was a very powerful figure in Hollywood. Or, at least, he was.
On October 5, 2017, an article was published in The New York Times that accused Weinstein of sexually harassing a number of women, including actress Ashley Judd. Harvey Weinstein originally released a statement apologizing for his actions, but after speaking to his lawyer, Weinstein claimed that many of the accusations were untrue. Nonetheless, he was quickly removed from The Weinstein Company, and it’s only a matter of time before more accusations come out. That’s what happened with Bill Cosby, and that’s probably what’s going to happen to Weinstein. Many celebrities, including President Trump, said that they weren’t surprised that Harvey Weinstein was being accused of sexual harassment.
2. Lance Armstrong
For years, Lance Armstrong was the golden boy of cycling. Among all the athletes that had been caught doping, Armstrong had a clean record. He was diagnosed with testicular cancer and only came back stronger after the treatment. He won 7 Tour de France titles and an Olympic bronze medal when he returned to the sport. People had suspicions that Armstrong was doping, but he maintained his innocence for years.
In 2012, Armstrong’s world came crashing down when the United States Anti-Doping Agency published a 1,000-page document that highlighted their investigation into Lance Armstrong. According to the document, Armstrong had used performance-enhancing drugs countless times throughout his career. The report called him a ringleader in the “most sophisticated, professionalized, and successful doping program that the sport has ever seen.” Armstrong was banned from competing in all sports that follow the World Anti-Doping Code and was stripped of all his achievements after 1998. This includes 7 Tour de France titles and an Olympic bronze medal. Armstrong has since admitted that some of the allegations are true but refuses to explain the extent of his doping scheme.
B.o.B. used to be a popular radio rapper a little over five years ago. His hits included ‘Airplanes’ and ‘Magic’ and are songs that everyone heard over a thousand times on the radio. His albums were selling well even when he dropped them out of nowhere without any publicity. But over these past few years, B.o.B. has fallen off the face of the Earth, which is ironic because he probably believes that’s actually possible. That’s right; B.o.B. believes the Earth is flat.
There’s a growing group of conspiracy theorists called “flat-earthers” who believe NASA is lying about the shape of the Earth. Why? Who knows? But B.o.B. genuinely believes that the Earth is flat. He’s promoted his beliefs on Instagram and Twitter and refuses to believe whatever evidence you throw at him. Even Neil deGrasse Tyson tried to reason with B.o.B., but instead of listening, the rapper wrote a diss track about Tyson called ‘Flatline.’ Recently, B.o.B. has tried to raise $1,000,000 so he can launch drones, weather balloons, and satellites, to prove to everyone that the Earth is flat.
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