"I thought I’d never work again”: 12 movie stars on the films they think they sucked in.

People love bagging actors. Every year, the Razzie Awards, honouring truly awful performances, get almost as much publicity as awards for outstanding performances. But actors don’t normally bag their own work. That’s why, when they do, it’s so endearing. 

Here are 12 actors who admit they were terrible in a role. Some of them were just being a little hard on themselves. But others… well… they said it.

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1. Megan Fox

The 2007 action movie Transformers made Megan Fox into a star. When she looked back on it, two years afterwards, her assessment was pretty brutal.  

“I’m terrible in it,” she told Entertainment Weekly. “It’s my first real movie and it’s not honest and not realistic. The movie wasn’t bad, I just wasn’t proud about what I did.”

It’s only been in recent years that Fox has taken a new look at her early roles and realised she was “actually pretty decent” at acting.  

Image: DreamWorks Pictures


2. Daniel Radcliffe

Millions of people have got a lot of joy out of watching every Harry Potter movie. Harry himself, Daniel Radcliffe, isn’t one of them. He told the Daily Mail in 2014 that it was hard to watch a film like Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince, “because I’m just not very good in it”.

“I hate it,” he added. “My acting is very one-note and I can see I got complacent and what I was trying to do just didn’t come across.”

Radcliffe said his best Harry Potter film was Order of The Phoenix “because I can see a progression”.

Image: Warner Bros. Pictures

3. Anya Taylor-Joy

When Anya Taylor-Joy was 18, she took on her first starring role in 17th century horror film The Witch. Watching it before it was shown to a wider audience, she thought she was so bad that her career was over. 

“I was devastated,” she told The Hollywood Reporter last year. “I thought I’d never work again. I still get shivers thinking about it. It was just the worst feeling of, ‘I have let down the people I love most in the world. I didn’t do it right.’” 

Critics disagreed. Taylor-Joy won the Empire Award for Best Newcomer for the role, and went on to star in The Queen’s Gambit.  


Image: Parts and Labor RT Features Rooks Nest Entertainment Maiden Voyage Pictures

4. Pierce Brosnan

Coming into the role of James Bond after Sean Connery and Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan was feeling the pressure. He starred in four Bond movies, from Goldeneye in 1995 to Die Another Day in 2002, but doesn’t think he did justice to the role. 

“I have no desire to watch myself as James Bond, ’cause it’s just never good enough,” he told the Telegraph in 2014. “It’s a horrible feeling.”

Brosnan said he found it very hard to “grasp the meaning” of the role, admitting it might have had something to do with his own “insecurities” in playing Bond.

Image: MGM Distribution Co./20th Century Fox Film Corporation


5. Meryl Streep

Has screen legend Meryl Streep ever been anything less than brilliant in a movie? Maybe. When Graham Norton had her on his talk show and asked her if there were any performances where she thought, “Actually, I was a bit pants in that,” she immediately replied, “Oh yeah.”

It took a bit of coaxing, but eventually she revealed it was the 1981 film The French Lieutenant’s Woman, which saw her nominated for an Oscar.

“I was young and new at this,” Streep said. “I wasn’t as pleased as I could… I didn’t feel like I was living it.”

Image: United Artists Corporation/United Artists Digital Studios

6. Ewan McGregor

When Ewan McGregor was asked back in 2003 to name the worst thing he’d ever done, he immediately said it was his character, Frank Churchill, in the Jane Austen adaptation Emma

“I made the decision to do that film because I thought I should be seen to be doing something different from Trainspotting,” he told The Guardian. “My decision-making was wrong. 


“It's a good film, Emma, but I'm just... not very good in it. I'm not helped because I'm also wearing the world's worst wig.”

Image: Matchmaker Films Haft Entertainment

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7. Colin Farrell

Miami Vice, the 2006 big-screen adaptation of the hit 1980s series, was a bit of a fizzer. Colin Farrell, who starred as Sonny Crockett, was quick to take the blame. 

“I didn’t like it so much – I thought it was style over substance and I accept a good bit of the responsibility,” he told Total Film in 2010.

A few years later, he opened up to the Irish Mirror, revealing he was high on drugs throughout the shoot and was put on a plane for rehab as soon as it wrapped. 

“I couldn’t remember a single frame of doing it. I was at the premiere and I didn’t know what was happening next. But it was strange because I was in it.” 

Image: Forward Pass Productions/Universal Studios/Motion Picture ETA ProduktionsgesellschaftmbH & C


8. Halle Berry

Halle Berry will always be celebrated as the first African-American woman to win an Oscar. But it wasn’t for Catwoman. The 2004 superhero film was a bomb. Pretty much everything about it was awful, including Berry’s performance, which she acknowledged when she accepted the Razzie for Worst Actress. In a long, rambling speech, dripping with fake emotion and greeted with wild cheers, she thanked Warner Brothers for putting her in a “piece of s--t”, before going on to thank her fellow cast members. 

“In order to give a really bad performance like I did, you need a lot of bad actors around you,” she explained. “So I want to thank all of them for being bad right along with me.”

Image: Warner Bros. Pictures


9. Sam Worthington

If you’ve ever wondered whether actors read what’s being said about them online, you should know that Sam Worthington does. His 2010 blockbuster Clash of The Titans made nearly $US500 million at the box office, but he felt it “kind of let down some people”, and he wanted to do better. 

“I think I can act f--king better, to be honest,” he told Moviefone. “Just take all the notes from people that I have been reading about on the Net and give them a movie they f--king want.”

Worthington got the chance he wanted with the sequel, Wrath of The Titans. Of course, Australians already knew he could act, having seen him in Love My Way years earlier.

Image: Warner Bros. Pictures

10. Josh Brolin

Everybody raved about Josh Brolin’s performance in Deadpool 2 except Josh Brolin. Brolin liked the 2018 superhero film, which made $US785 million at the box office, just not the way he played Cable. 

“I thought I could have been better," Brolin told USA Today.

He says he really “clicked” with Ryan Reynolds, who plays Deadpool, when they were doing the Deadpool 2 press tour. He’s hoping to show how good the two of them can be together in their next movie. 


"Thank God. Man. I literally want to redeem myself to myself.”

Image: 20th Century Fox Marvel Entertainment

11. Jean-Claude Van Damme

There’s a reason why action star Jean-Claude Van Damme was nicknamed “The Muscles From Brussels” and not “The Thespian From Brussels”. In his breakthrough role in the 1988 martial arts flick Bloodsport, his acting ability wasn’t his strong suit. At least he admits it. 

"I was a bad actor, man, but the heart was there," he said in 2012, while promoting The Expendables 2

"It was Bruce Lee, then it was Chuck Norris, then suddenly Jean-Claude Van Damme came in as a white guy, so... I guess it's due to my destiny more than my acting at the time.”

Image: Cannon Films/Warner Bros. Pictures


12. Kate Winslet

Titanic is the movie that Kate Winslet can’t forget about, even if she wants to. And she really does want to. The disaster epic was released back in 1997, and in 2012, when Winslet was promoting the 3D re-release, she admitted to the Telegraph that she hadn’t seen it in a very long time. 

“But it's a whole different me and we look much younger and our acting was different, hopefully not as good as now."

She said she “can’t listen” to her attempt at an American accent.

"It's awful. Hopefully it's so much better now. 

“I have a hard time watching any of my performances, but watching Titanic I was just like, 'Oh God, I want to do that again.'"

Image: Paramount Pictures/20th Century Fox Film Corporation

Feature Image: Getty/Mamamia