Celebrities Who Violently Flipped Out In Public

Being a celebrity has obvious perks, like money, access to luxury items, and doing interesting creative work. But fame also comes with a price in the form of intense pressure — pressure to perform at the top of one's game; pressure to conform to Hollywood's insane standards of beauty; or just plain pressure to be in the spotlight 24/7. Everyone, even celebs, have their boiling points. 

Unfortunately for the residents of Hollywood, there is an entire tabloid industry built around waiting for those boiling points to occur. From attacks on paparazzi, to unfortunate pub brawls, to an alleged murder, we've seen our fair share of celebrity freakouts over the years. 

We've pulled together some of the most memorable and infamous incidents ever to occur in public — incidents that made headlines, derailed careers, and in some cases, landed a celeb in court. These are the times celebrities violently flipped out in public.

Bjork went bjonkers

In 1996, Icelandic singer Björk pummeled a female reporter to the ground at a Bangkok airport after the reporter allegedly tried to question her then 10-year-old son, Sindri. The Oscar- and Grammy-nominee reacted so violently to the alleged journalistic overreach that she ultimately had to be pulled away by security, all of which was caught on camera. Björk, who apologized for the incident, attacked a second journalist at the Auckland International Airport in 2008 after a photojournalist refused to acknowledge her companion's request for no photographs, according to Reuters. Lesson learned: never approach Bjork at an airport. Good luck, limo drivers of the world.

Shia LaBeouf has made public freakouts an art unto itself

Troubled actor Shia LaBeouf has been in more violent public altercations than there have been sequels in the seemingly unending Transformers franchise that made him famous. In 2011, he was involved in not one, but two physical dust-ups in bars. In 2014, he was at it again, this time got caught on video head-butting a patron at a London pub. After yet another public drunkenness arrest for interrupting a Broadway performance of Cabaret, LaBeouf appeared on Ellen and apologized for his drunken antics, chalking everything up to an "existential crisis."

But by 2017, he generated more violent headlines when he allegedly got rough with folks at several anti-Trump protests, then had two back-to-back drunken tirades: one in the bar of a Los Angeles bowling alley in which he flipped out on the bartender, calling him a "f***ing racist," and another in Savannah where he was caught on tape making racially charged comments and threatening to kill the police officers who arrested him.

It's a lot, and LaBeouf knows it. Once again, he apologized for his behavior, this time on Twitter where he wrote that he was "deeply ashamed" of his behavior and apologized to the police. He also admitted that he was struggling with sobriety and "actively taking steps" to "secure" it.

Try to act surprised: Chris Brown's had several public meltdowns

Chris Brown's public woes can basically all be traced back to the vicious beating he gave Rihanna on the night of The Grammys in 2009. Since then, he's apologized, on more than one occasion, but his subsequent behavior prove that his angry, violent streak certainly wasn't gone forever.

In fact, it was after one of those public apologies—his 2011 Good Morning America appearance—that Brown flipped out after interviewer Robin Roberts repeatedly probed him about assaulting Rihanna. According to inside sources, Brown reportedly threw a fit inside his dressing room, going so far as to throw a chair against a window that shattered onto Times Square. Brown was also said to have ripped off his shirt as he stormed out of the building.

In the ensuing years, Brown was reportedly involved in physical altercations with fellow recording artists Drake and Frank Ocean, as well as a valet driver, a man outside a hotel he was staying at, a rehab worker, a woman at one of his concerts, and even his own mother, according to Billboard. And that's all without even mentioning the hours-long standoff he had with LAPD which was reportedly triggered by yet another accusation from a woman who said Brown "pointed a gun at her during a violent rage" while she was a guest at his home. Yeesh. Brown is known affectionately to fans as "Breezy," but it sure sounds like "Stormy" would be a more appropriate nickname.

Another shocker: Kanye West has flipped out in public too

It would almost be easier to report on all of the times rapper Kanye West hasn't had an outburst while in public but for now, we'll focus ones in which he actual put his hands on people, namely two shutterbugs at Los Angeles International Airport.

First, Yeezy went ballistic on a TMZ photographer in July 2013, after the overzealous pap failed to heed his request to never talk to him or anyone he knows. Just one week later, the "Famous" rapper geeked out at LAX again on another photographer for breaking the same rule. In both instances, West lunged at the paps and attempted to confiscate their cameras.

A little less than a year later, West was sentenced to two years' probation after pleading no contest to a charge of misdemeanor battery, according to TMZ. He was also ordered to attend 24 anger management sessions, perform 250 hours of community service, and pay restitution fees to the photographer, whose name was Daniel Ramos.

Vince Vaughn's violent life imitates his art

Actors Vince Vaughn and Steve Buscemi as well as screenwriter Scott Rosenberg, took part in a bloody and violent brawl with a few patrons outside of a bar in Wilmington, North Carolina in 2001. According to ABC News, the conflict reportedly began after a patron's girlfriend started talking to Vaughn. The brawl got so heated that Buscemi was actually stabbed in the face, throat, and arm by one of the patrons, and subsequently and to be rushed to the emergency room. Vaughn, meanwhile, was sent to the slammer along with Rosenberg and two other men.

As for how this counts as a celeb violently flipping out, some reports of the incident allege the whole thing was escalated by Vaughn being "rude" and "a jerk," according to E! News. The Hollywood stars were in Wilmington to film the 2001 flop Domestic Disturbance. At least the title was sort of accurate.

Alec Baldwin's freakout led to him losing a TV show gig

It's no secret that Alec Baldwin holds no affection for the paparazzi, and his ire with the tabloid press has even gotten physical on more than one occasion. But the true boiling point for the SNL star came when he was caught raging on a photographer outside his New York City apartment in 2013. The Emmy-winning actor allegedly fired off a number of anti-gay slurs at the photog, according to Page Six, which ultimately led MSNBC to fire Baldwin from his weekly show, Up Late with Alec Baldwin.

Baldwin later denied using one of the slurs, then claimed that he wasn't even aware that the other, c***sucker, was similarly offensive, according to E! News.

Britney Spears umbrella meltdown was all...method acting?

Britney Spears' shocking meltdown in 2007 and 2008 featured a whole lot of erratic behavior. To this day, however, no other incident proved quite as scandalous as the time Spears attacked a paparazzo's car with an umbrella. (Warning: That vid contains some spicy language and a disturbingly creepy shaved head.)

Months later, in an equally bizarre twist of events, Spears apologized for the incident on her website (via People) by claiming it all had to do with method acting. "I was preparing my character for a role in a movie where the husband never plays his part so they switch places accidentally," she said. "I take all my roles very seriously and got a little carried away. Unfortunately I didn't get the part." Um, sure.

Keep your phone away from Russell Crowe

Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe was arrested in New York City in 2005 after throwing a phone at a Mercer Hotel employee during a heated argument that left the employee with "a laceration and substantial pain," according to CBS News. Months after the alleged phone-throwing, Crowe pleaded guilty to third-degree assault charges and was sentenced to a conditional charge that required him to avoid getting cuffed again for a full year.

"This is possibly the most shameful situation I've ever gotten myself in in my life, and I've done some pretty dumb things in my life," Crowe told David Letterman (via EW), apparently referencing past public rage incidents, like the heated fight he'd gotten into with a BAFTA TV executive after his acceptance speech was cut short on television in 2003, and an alleged bar brawl the year before. "I'm at the bottom of a well. I can't communicate how dark my life is right now," Crowe told The Daily Telegraph (via EW), adding. "I'm in a lot of trouble. I'll do my best to solve the situation in an honorable way."

Naomi Campbell should also join the no-phone club

As bizarre at the whole phone-throwing incident was with Russell Crowe, it turned out he was just taking a page out of Naomi Campbell's playbook, since the supermodel was accused of doing the very same thing to her personal assistant seven years prior. In fact, Campbell is another superstar with a long list of public brutality, including attacks on many other assistants and former employees (some with phones—her apparent weapon of choice—as well), a photographer, and two housemaids, according to Fox News.

For her part, Campbell has admitted to some wrongdoing, paid fines, and performed community service, according to The Guardian, but she also ultimately excused herself by saying that the constant stories about her alleged abuses were "very hurtful and blown out of proportion." And that may be so, but the UK paper also took the time to point out that in 1993, Campbell's former modeling agency, Elite, sent out a fax that read: "To whom it may concern: please be informed that we do not wish to represent Naomi Campbell any longer. No amount of money or prestige could further justify the abuse that has been imposed on our staff and clients." Awkward.

Sean Penn hates having his photo taken...and photographers

Like Alec Baldwin and Kanye West, noted rage monster, Sean Penn, has found himself at odds with the pesky paparazzi on more than one occasion. But in 2009, the Oscar-winning actor was videotaped in broad daylight kicking and attacking a photographer outside his home in Brentwood, California, leading to assault and vandalism charges. According to The Daily Mail, the Mystic River star was able to plea down to just the vandalism charge for which he was ultimately sentenced to three years probation and 36 hours of anger management.

Penn must have snoozed through those anger management sessions, however, because in November 2013—literally months after his probation ended—he was again caught on video, flipping out on a guy who allegedly tried to take his photo at The St. Regis Hotel in San Francisco. "I'll make you eat the phone...get the f**k out of here!" Penn can be heard screaming in the hotel's lobby bar. Call us crazy, but that's probably not one of the anger management class approved responses to a stressful situation.

Orlando Bloom belted Bieber

In July 2014, TMZ obtained an exclusive video of an argument between actor Orlando Bloom and singer Justin Bieber amid reports that Bieber had hooked up with Bloom's ex-wife, supermodel Miranda Kerr. The exchange, which took place in a swanky Ibiza restaurant, grew so heated that Bloom eventually appears to take a swing a punch at Bieber.

While the videos of the not-quite brawl only show the missed haymaker and the moments after, other eyewitnesses reported that Bloom actually leapt over a couch to lunge at Bieber while Leonardo DiCaprio and several other well-heeled guests applauded and cheered Bloom on. The incident didn't result in any legal ramifications, but it did turn Bloom into a sort of anti-Bieber folk hero. And look, as much as we don't condone violence, we have to say that if we'd been there, we know exactly whose side we also would have been on.

Martin Lawrence screamed Fight the establishment!

The late nineties were something of an emotional rollercoaster for comedian and actor Martin Lawrence. On one hand, he was the toast of the entertainment biz, with the smash box office hit, Bad Boys (1995), and his eponymous sitcom, Martin (1992 – 1997). But on the other hand, he was also arrested in a bizarre incident in 1996 in which police detained him after he was found wandering into a busy LA intersection while screaming "Fight the establishment!" at passerby, and all with an unpermitted handgun concealed in his pocket, according to The LA Times.

The Big Momma's House star was also arrested the following year for "punching a nightclub patron," according to ABC News. It was a period in Lawrence's life that he says culminated with him collapsing into a three-day coma while jogging, which resulted in a life-changing epiphany. "I felt like, in the coma, God laid me down and woke me up to be able to see a lot more clearer, and it's humbled me a great deal, you know?" he said, adding, "We fall down, but we get back up." Yep, and hopefully without punching anyone and having acquired the proper firearms documentation this time.

Suge Knight's legendary flipouts resulted in a murder trial

Stop us if this is starting to sound familiar: Infamous rap producer, Suge Knight, actually has a pretty long and terrifying history of violent public behavior. His rap sheet literally includes violent acts committed every year but two from 1986 to 1997, when he was incarcerated for a probation violation for participating in a brawl the night Tupac Shakur was killed in Las Vegas, according to Uproxx. Upon his 2001 release from prison, he was right back at it, with additional assault charges in 2003, 2008, and 2014.

Most recently, as of this writing, the Death Row Records founder stands accused of running over two men, one of whom died, in a hit-and-run in January 2015 that was actually caught on camera. In the grisly footage (Warning: it literally shows a man dying.), Knight runs over Cle "Bone" Sloan while backing up, then puts the truck in drive and hits him again, also striking and fatally wounding Terry Carter this time as well. Knight claims he was acting in self defense, alleging that both Sloan and Crews had guns, and were confronting him. 

Knight now faces murder charges, and is awaiting trial. That wait keeps growing, as Knight cycled through 15 defense attorneys as of March 2018...and the trial hadn't even begun yet.

Johnny Depp's meltdowns led to the end of his marriage

During his ugly and bitterly public divorce from actress Amber Heard, Pirates of the Caribbean star, Johnny Depp, suffered the embarrassment of having a ton of his dirty laundry aired in the press. Not only did Heard accuse him of being an abusive alcoholic, she did so with a staggering amount of receipts, like text messages supposedly from Depp's assistant in which he acknowledges Depp kicking Heard, as well as a particularly disturbing video in which Depp can be seen drunkenly yelling, bashing up his kitchen, and throwing a wine glass. It was a pretty significant departure from Depp's previously private life, and a shocking insight into the popular and seemingly affable star's darker side.

Depsite the evidence to the contrary, Depp denied any and all forms of abuse, and eventually agreed to pay Heard just under $7 million dollars as part of their divorce settlement.

Diddy's dirty deed with a kettlebell

Aside from his alleged involvement with the murder of Tupac Shakur, and a 1997 assault on an Interscope Records executive, Sean "Diddy" Combs kept his nose relatively clean in the decades leading up to the reason he's on this list. But in 2015, TMZ reported a strange altercation between the Bad Boy Records founder and his son's college football coach.

Sources told the tabloid that Combs apparently felt that UCLA Bruins coach, Sal Alosi, was being too hard on his son, Justin Combs, when he allegedly banned the young baller from practicing with the team that summer. Daddy Combs later allegedly showed up on campus to confront Alosi, and after a brief verbal altercation, supposedly swung a kettlebell at him. Combs was arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon, which was later dropped for possible misdemeanor charges, which, according to ESPN, would at most would require him to "undergo anger-management counseling or make a restitution payment."

Solange Knowles probably should've taken the stairs

In what was probably the most talked about incident in the entertainment world in 2014, Solange Knowles was caught on a security camera absolutely freaking out on her brother-in-law, rapper Jay Z, following a Met Gala after-party. With the way she spastically kicked and punched the "4:44" rapper, everyone automatically assumed it had something to do with Jay-Z cheating on Beyonce, but the family of musical royalty has never specifically stated the reason for the elevator escalation. Instead, they've issued multiple statements of solidarity, repeating the vague justification that this is just the kind of thing that happens in every family dynamic.

Years later, Jay Z even defended Solange, telling Rap Radar, "We've always had a great relationship...We had one disagreement ever. Before and after we've been cool. She's like my sister. I will protect her. That's my sister, not my sister-in-law. My sister. Period." Seriously, Jay, what did you do? What. Did. You. Do?

Johnny Lewis's shocking and tragic murder suicide

The untimely 2012 death of 28-year-old actor, Johnny Lewis, would have been shocking no matter the circumstances, considering his extremely young age. But then the details came out, all of which seemed to indicate that he had committed one of the most bizarre murder suicides in Hollywood history.

According to The New York Daily News, Lewis was found dead in the driveway of the Loz Feliz home where he was renting a room. Inside the house, police found the body of Lewis' 81-year-old landlady, Catherine Davis, as well as a dead cat which had been dismembered. Apparently, Lewis, who just days before plead no contest to a seperate charge of assault the a deadly weapon, had attacked and killed Davis and the cat, then left the house and had another violent altercation with a neighbor. Sometime afterwards, he returned to Davis' home where he appeared to have leapt to his death.

But instead of the autopsy proving his suicide via a drug-addled toxicology report, it was revealed that Lewis was stone sober when he died, which, by the way, was ruled as an accident since there was no "definitive evidence that the decedent intended to kill himself," according to L.A. County Senior Deputy Medical Examiner James K. Ribe (via E! News). He did, however, have scratches on his neck, which were interpreted as wounds he possibly got from Davis fighting for her life. It was later revealed that Lewis was struggling with "psychopathy or bipolar disorder," and had recently gone off his medication because he couldn't afford it. Just an absolute awful tragedy all around.

Katt Williams punched a 7th grader in the face

Comedian Katt Williams has had so many viral violent moments, he's almost become more well known for them than he is for his stand-up comedy. Like Suge Knight, Williams' rap sheet contains enough assault charges, it could have kept an entire police precinct busy all on its own. And perhaps not coincidentally, Williams and Knight were even accused in a public altercation together, in which a photographer claims Williams and an unidentified women physically accosted her while Knight threatened her life.

So, instead of trying to track Williams' entire history of violence, we're focusing on one particularly disturbing example: the time he sucker-punched a 7th grader in the face. Yep, you read that right. According to TMZ, Williams was in Gainsville, GA "handing out cash," when for some reason he got surrounded by children, one of whom he punched in the face. Awful, right? Well, the good news is the kid was some kind of sleeper MMA champ, who quickly threw a "rear naked choke" on Williams and subdued him on the ground. For real though, a grown man—and a celebrity, no less—physically attacking a kid? It doesn't get any more pathetic than that.

Blac Chyna used a stroller as a weapon

Stripper turned Rob Kardashian baby mama Blac Chyna has a long history of public drama. Her tumultuous relationship with the reality TV star was enough to garner its own ill-fated spinoff series, not to mention their absolute trainwreck of a breakup was so bad, it could easily inspire an entire series of how-not-to books on celebrity relationships. But one of Chyna's most high-profile violent outbursts came long after split from the designer sock king of Calabasas.

According to TMZ, Chyna was caught on camera (above) attempting wield her daughter Dream's baby stroller during a confrontation at Six Flags Magic Mountain amusement park on April 1, 2018. No, it wasn't an April Fools' joke — Chyna issued a statement claiming another park guest touched her daughter, and that's what set her off. "I do not condone violence nor am I a violent person but shout out to all of the amazing mothers out there that will protect their children at all cost," she said.

Other sources told TMZ in a separate report that the alleged child-toucher also called Chyna a "hood rat," and "ended up pushing one of Chyna's friends," which resulted in a fist fight. The good news out of all of this — amazingly, yes there is some — is that both of Chyna's kids, Dream and King, were allegedly "whisked away by their nanny before all the mayhem." Kudos the nanny whose Spidey-sense somehow knew her boss was about to Hulk out and transform Dream's stroller into a weapon. She deserves some hazard pay for that one.