Actors Who Hate The Reason They Became Famous

When you write or draw anything now, it's probably at least slightly better quality than something that you wrote or drew in, say, third grade, right? So imagine how some stars feel re-watching the roles that broke them into the big time once they're already established — and in some cases — highly decorated for their later work.

Whether it's personal values not aligning with the messages their professional work is sending to the world (in the cases of Crispin Glover and Back To The Future, Blake Lively and Gossip Girl, and Shailene Woodley and The Secret Life Of The American Teenager), disagreements over scripts (Robert Pattinson with Twilight), or just cringing at their own performances later on (Christian Bale with Newsies, and Kate Winslet with Titanic), these celebrities all became famous for roles and projects that they either hated immediately or gradually grew disdain for over time. Here's hoping they at least cried all the way to the bank.

Penn Badgley has no xoxos for 'Gossip Girl'

Penn Badgley hit the big time in 2009 with Gossip Girl. He played Dan Humphrey, who would later be revealed as (spoiler alert) the Gossip Girl, in a twist that baffled the world. In 2015, Badgley admitted to People that the ending of Gossip Girl was bogus, telling the mag, "It doesn't make sense at all. It wouldn't have made sense for anybody. Gossip Girl doesn't make sense ... But no, it made enough sense. He was a writer." He also poked fun the show's portrayal of "white privilege."

That said, the show ended in 2012. It's important to remember that fact, because in spring 2013, when Badgley promoted Greetings From Tim Buckley, he told Salon, "To be proud of something is a really nice feeling. And it's a new feeling, and it's something that I wanna keep going with. I can walk a little taller feeling that I don't have to be constantly apologizing for the work that I've done in the past." We see what you did there, guy. 

Blake Lively isn't too serene about playing Serena

Like ex Penn Badgley, Blake Lively made efforts to distance herself from Gossip Girl, the series that made her a household name. She told Allure in 2015 (via Hollywood Life) that she prefers at least somewhat more wholesome, or at least more artistic, fare.

"It's a weird thing when people feel like they know you really well, and they don't. I would not be proud to be the person who gave someone the cocaine that made them overdose and then shot someone and slept with someone else's boyfriend." She added, "People loved it, but it always felt a little personally compromising — you want to be putting a better message out there."

She also hinted that her personal past — she dated Badgley from 2007 to 2010 — may have colored her vision of the series and caused audiences to confuse Lively with Serena Van Der Woodsen.

"The lines become blurred," she griped. "It doesn't help when everybody is dating who they're dating on the show, and you're also saying to the costume designer, 'Hey, can I take that home?'" 

Mark Wahlberg's bad vibrations

Before Mark Wahlberg was known as Mark Wahlberg, he was known as Marky Mark, Calvin Klein underwear model and leader of The Funky Bunch, who brought us the non-Beach Boys version of "Good Vibrations." He's almost as humiliated by his musical ambitions as he is by his past as a violent and extremely misguided young man. He told Sports Illustrated in 2010 (via The New York Daily News), "I thought I was so cool back then, but when I see the footage, I was such an a**."

Years later, Wahlberg's skivvies successor Justin Bieber strapped on some Calvins for a very similar campaign, and he was so excited about it, he sent the pics to the Transformers star. Supportive as he was of the Canadian crooner, Wahlberg felt about as warmly toward his own experience with the brand as he did about his singing career, which he revealed during an interview on Conan

"I was the biggest punk in the world," he said of his attitude his modeling days, adding "I can't say I've done worse things, but yeah, that was not one of my proudest moments."   

Shailene Woodley didn't want her 'Secret Life' exposed to the world

Though Shailene Woodley had been a working kid actor for nearly a decade, her big break was on The Secret Life Of The American Teenager, in which she starred as Amy Juergen, a high schooler who has an unplanned pregnancy. She later told Flaunt that she didn't love the series because it didn't align with her values, which may or may not involve eating clay and weird methods of obtaining the daily value of vitamin D.

"I'm extremely grateful for it; it was a fantastic five years of my life, but towards the end, morally, the things that we were preaching on that show weren't really aligned with my own integrity," she said of the ABC Family series. "So that was a bit hard to show up to work every day knowing that we were going to project all of these themes to thousands — millions — of young adults across the country, when in fact they weren't what I would like to be sending out."

Why didn't she just quit, you may rightfully, if not a bit cynically asking? Maybe she would have, except "when you're in a contract, unfortunately, you can't do that."

Zac Efron: We're not all in this together anymore

Zac Efron loves the fans and opportunities he got from starring as Troy Bolton in High School Musical (2006) and its sequels, but boy, does he hate those movies — in part because he feels like they make it hard to be taken seriously as an adult actor now.

"I step back and look at myself and I still want to kick that guy's a** sometimes," he told Men's Fitness (via The Independent) in 2016. "Like, f**k that guy. He's done some kind of cool things with some cool people, he did that one thing [Neighbors (2014)] that was funny, but I mean, he's still just that f**king kid from High School Musical." He added that the fame he got from the tween Disney Channel series was "not a real thing ... I try not to look at all of it. You can't enjoy or celebrate it, it's not a real thing. The face on the lunchbox and s**t — you can't share that with your friends."

Given the context of Efron's Disney past, his casting as a jarringly convincing Ted Bundy in Extremely Wicked, Shockingly Evil And Vile (2019) starts to make a lot more sense in terms of where he wants his career to go from here.

Not even Allison Williams wants to be the Marnie

Allison Williams didn't necessarily hate Girls, but she couldn't stand her character on the show, the narcissistic, insecure and overall annoying Marnie. She explained to BuzzFeed, "I got Marnie on BuzzFeed's 'Which Girls Character Are You?' quiz, and so did Lena [Dunham]. I love that Lena got it the most because I've always suspected she was more like Marnie than she wanted to admit, and this kind of sealed it."

Williams had issues with Marnie's handling of her love life, but says that the character's choice to bed conceptual artist Booth Jonathan (Jorma Taccone) in Season 2 was what really made her hate Marnie. "I was fighting that the whole time as Allison," said. "I did not want her to go down that road. I thought Marnie was better than that, but she wasn't, so I had to be OK with it too. I had to believe Booth was a genius when I walked out of that TV tower, whereas I, as Allison, couldn't stop thinking, 'It puts the lotion on its skin.'"

She later told ABC's Popcorn With Peter Travers that she refused to do any nude scenes on the show — and that actually dyed her hair blond for a magazine cover shoot in an effort to distance herself from the character.

Jake Lloyd quit the business after 'The Phantom Menace'

Jake Lloyd played young Anakin Skywalker in Star Wars: Episode One: The Phantom Menace (1999), and the instant fame wasn't healthy for the then-eight-year-old boy — especially because he didn't even think the movie was that great. Lloyd left the industry after the film, reprising his role only for five video games in the mega franchise. He blamed a combination of George Lucas' poor work on the movie and childhood bullying and exhaustion for his exit.

"When you have something like that there's a lot of expectations for it to meet the standards of the public and I don't think George did that," the reclusive Lloyd told (via The Daily Mail), adding that he "destroyed all of his Star Wars memorabilia" after the fact.

He added, "Other children were really mean to me. They would make the sound of the lightsaber every time they saw me. It was totally mad ... My entire school life was really a living hell — and I had to do up to 60 interviews a day."

Kate Winslet's heart won't go on

Kate Winslet is really sick of Titanic (1997), not because she thinks the movie was bad, but because she hates her own performance in the epic drama. When promoting the 3D re-release of the film, she lamented to press (via The Telegraph), "I haven't seen the whole film 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."

Her biggest beef was with her attempt at an American accent. "I can't listen to it," she said. "It's awful. Hopefully it's so much better now. It sounds terribly self indulgent but actors do tend to be very self-critical. 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.'"

Winslet also revealed to MTV News that she really, really hates Celine Dion's megahit "My Heart Will Go On," admitting that every time she hears it, she has a "massive internal eye roll" and wants to vomit. 

Christian Bale has some bad news

Christian Bale is an Oscar winner now, but when he was just starting out, he was an adorable teenager in Newsies (1992). Speaking with Movieline, Bale admitted that he signed on to the film without realizing it was a musical, and that even after he was convinced to take the plunge on singing and dancing on film, he "knew [he'd] never do anything like that again." The film eventually became one of Disney's worst-grossing movies ever, but he's taken it in stride.

"Well, it's nice that it achieved something," he chuckled to Entertainment Weekly in 2007. "At 17, you want to be taken very seriously — you don't want to be doing a musical ... Time healed those wounds. But it took a while."

He also explained he's not a fan of musicals in general, so he planned on never seeing the Broadway adaptation of the film, though he gamely wished the cast and crew on the Great White Way the best, admitting to Entertainment Weekly (via CNN), "I'm sure the person playing the character I played exceeded whatever I did, and congratulations to them."

Megan Fox doesn't care for what transformed her into a star

Megan Fox appeared in other movies and TV shows before the Transformers franchise, however, the Michael Bay-produced mindless action flicks are what made her a bonafide star ... but that doesn't mean she actually enjoyed being in or watching any of them. 

She told Entertainment Weekly of the first Transformers (2007), "I'm terrible in it. 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. On the new one, I tried. But unless you're a seasoned veteran, working with Michael Bay is not about an acting experience." She added of the sequel, Transformers: Revenge Of The Fallen (2009), "I can't s**t on this movie because it did give me a career and open all these doors for me. But I don't want to blow smoke up people's a**. People are well aware that this is not a movie about acting."

This, of course, was in addition to other comments about the franchise and Bay that included comparing him to Hitler on his sets, so it's safe to say she doesn't look back at her work here very fondly now.

Angus T. Jones hated Two And A Half Men

Two And A Half Men star Angus T. Jones was just 9 years old when he began working on the show, starring as Charlie Sheen's nephew, Jake. He earned $350,000 a week by the time he was in his late teens, but Hollywood's sheen wore off by about 2012, when he was 19. He had a religious awakening and renounced his work on the show. In a video released by the Forerunner Church, Jones asks viewers to "stop filling [their heads] with filth," explaining, "You cannot be a true God-fearing person and be on a television show like [Two And A Half Men]. I know I can't. I'm not okay with what I'm learning, what the Bible says, and being on that television show."

Jones lamented further in a 2014 interview with a local CBS affiliate (via The Washington Post), saying, "[The show] was making light of topics in our world that are really problems for a lot of people. I was a paid hypocrite because I wasn't okay with it, but I was still doing it."

It seems that Jones is a hypocrite no more: Since leaving Chuck Lorre's massive hit show, he has only one acting credit to his name, as of this writing, in a single episode of Louis C.K.'s under-the-radar series Horace And Pete in 2016.

Crispin Glover never went back to 'Back To The Future'

Crispin Glover starred as Marty McFly's dad George in Back To The Future (1985), but he was unhappy with the movie even during the filming process. He explained to The A.V. Club that he wasn't pleased with the family being rich at the end in the screenplay because he believed it sent a poor message.

"There's an understanding that if ... money is going to make you happy, you should borrow money to do things, this serves corporate interests. Whereas being in love with somebody, on a pure level, doesn't necessarily serve corporate interest," he said. "I still believe that that film, if it was just people in love, if it were released as well as it was ... would still have made as much money as it did. But it's more about whether the interests were served by the people that were releasing it would be served." 

Glover was an outspoken advocate against corporate culture, arguing that movies peddled corporate propaganda messages into them to encourage commercialism over substance. He alleged that his voicing of these concerns regarding the ending of the first film led to a beef with producers of the sequels, which he felt resulted in an unfair salary dispute. Ultimately, Glover was replaced by another actor who wore prosthetics to resemble him, which led to him filing — and winning — a groundbreaking lawsuit over the likeness.

Miley Cyrus murdered Hannah Montana

Miley Cyrus became a sensation with Hannah Montana, an image she's desperately tried shedding over the years — even announcing on Saturday Night Live that Hannah Montana was murdered. She secretly hated the experience even as it was happening, she revealed to Marie Claire, explaining that the aesthetics severely hurt her self-esteem.

"From the time I was 11, it was, 'You're a pop star! That means you have to be blonde, and you have to have long hair, and you have to put on some glittery tight thing.' Meanwhile, I'm this fragile little girl playing a 16-year-old in a wig and a ton of makeup. It was like Toddlers & Tiaras," she said. "I was told for so long what a girl is supposed to be from being on that show. I was made to look like someone that I wasn't, which probably caused some body dysmorphia because I had been made pretty every day for so long, and then when I wasn't on that show, it was like, 'Who the f**k am I?'"

She also told CBS Sunday Morning that touring as both herself and as Hannah Montana was difficult, and that it may have led to "extreme damage in [her] psyche as an adult person." While she did laugh off that last part, and acknowledged that she doesn't regret her work for the House of Mouse, she admitted "it's a lot to put on a kid."

Robert Pattinson can't hide his disdain for 'Twilight'

Robert Pattinson hates the Twilight saga so much that there are actual supercuts of him slamming the franchise that made him a star. In one clip, he says of Stephenie Meyer's source material, "When I read it, it seemed like a book that wasn't supposed to be published. I was convinced that Stephenie was convinced she was Bella ... It's like, this woman is mad." In another, he compares his character, Edward Cullen, to an ax murderer, and in another that the pay for the movies could have been better. 

But for as terrible a time as Pattinson seemed to have had making the films, he did still try to put forth his best effort. He even admitted to Howard Stern that he almost got fired, because he brought too much intensity and brooding to the role when everyone on set wanted him to be happy and having fun. He said producers went so far as threaten him to "do the opposite of what you're doing," and gave him a copy of the book that was highlighted with all the times his character smiled. "Now the whole series is known as a brooding thing," he griped. 

Amazingly, Pattinson told Variety that after all of that he wasn't entirely turned off by "massive franchises," and that if he got the call for a Twilight sequel, he would be "ready to play 17 at a moment's notice."

Taran Killam is glad to be off 'Saturday Night Live'

Taran Killam left Saturday Night Live in 2016, explaining on the podcast I Was There Too that a lot of factors played into his exit — but that it was the quality of the show after former head writer Seth Meyers left that ultimately made him walk.

"When Seth Meyers left the show [in 2014], the dynamic changed quite a bit. He was the last person there who I witnessed really collaborate with [SNL creator] Lorne [Michaels], as opposed to just kind of do what Lorne says," Killam said, adding that he thinks Michaels became "impatient" after the 40th anniversary special because the current cast isn't as famous as prior ones that included stars like Chevy Chase, Tina Fey, and Amy Poehler.

Killam also claimed that after Meyers left the show, it was "less of a happy place to be" and more of a "competitive, exhausting environment."