Entertainment properties are supposed to find a way to connect with the audience and take them on a journey that makes them feel a wide array of emotions. Not all succeed, but those that do so on a higher level than most earn the love and respect of audiences worldwide who fell in love with the world, plot, and characters. Once these properties grow to the level of cultural phenomenon, their characters begin to become even more iconic and loved than the franchise that they’re in. Therefore, it may be easy to assume that the actors who portray these characters love them the same way we do.
However, though audiences may have fallen in love with certain character, that doesn’t guarantee that the actors portraying them feel the same way. There are a bevy of things going on behind the scene that factors into an actor’s opinions on their iconic characters. Maybe they don’t like the character because it clashes with their principles or because the movie wasn’t what they thought it was going to be or because portraying that person put a great strain on their life or career. With that in mind, here are 15 Big Movie Franchise Actors Who Hated Their Character.
15. HARRISON FORD – HAN SOLO
Even though he’s easy to hate, everybody loves Han Solo. He’s a scoundrel through and through when audiences first meet him, but throughout the series, he proves himself to have a little more heart than he let on and, though he can be a jerk, he actually cares about people enough to become a general in the Rebellion. Through this process, everybody grew to love him…except the actor who played him.
It’s a well known fact that Harrison Ford was not a fan of playing Han Solo.
He lobbied to be killed off from the series. He was actually frozen in carbonite because nobody knew if he was going to return to the series. He finally got his wish to be killed off in a gut wrenching scene during Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens.
14. JENNIFER GARNER – ELEKTRA
Nothing good came out of 2003’s Daredevil except Michael Clarke-Duncan’s Kingpin who still had to battle a terrible script and characterization. Besides Kingpin, Bullseye was annoying, you wondered how Matt Murdock ever survived vigilantism, and Elektra behaved like no human being ever. Nobody deserved a spinoff. But the potential for money ensured that we got one, despite the studio’s clear ignorance of the source material.
People suspected that Jennifer Garner phoned in her performance during the 2005 spinoff, but she remained tight lipped about the property. This did not apply to her ex-boyfriend, however, who revealed that she had no desire to perform in the movie but was forced to because of contractual obligations. But her ex-boyfriend made it clear that she found the movie to be awful.
13. MEGAN FOX – MIKAELA
Transformers is the epitome of style over substance. Ever since Michael Bay took over the franchise, plot and character got pushed aside in the name of flashiness…and explosions. This is a very specific vision that seems to be prevalent in every one of his films.
However, sometimes this brand of entertainment grows tiresome to the actors on set.
This was the case for Megan Fox who played Shia LaBeouf’s love interest, Mikaela, in the first two Transformers movie. She was quoted in interviews as saying “…people are well aware that this is not a movie about acting.” She also did not like working on a movie set under the direction of Michael Bay, comparing him to Hitler. This is somewhat odd, however, considering that the two worked together again during the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles series.
12. JESSICA ALBA – SUSAN STORM
The Fantastic Four franchise seems like it just may be a cursed property. Everybody who touches it seems to fail spectacularly and put their career at risk. The most recent incarnation of the iconic superhero team, Fant4stic was a dreary slog through a film that strove to be different rather than entertaining. The first Fantastic Four movie and its sequel Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer were made in the mold of campy ’80s cartoons and featured caricatures instead of characters.
The only people to make it out of these movies relatively unscathed were Chris Evans and Michael B. Jordan, but only one actor actually aimed criticisms at their role in the movie. Jessica Alba reportedly almost quit acting because Tim Story, the director of Fantastic Four told her to “cry pretty”. That’s when she knew that her character had no substance.
11. SHIA LABEOUF – MUTT WILLIAMS
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull was a huge disappointment to the majority of Indiana Jones fans. A nonsensical plot that shoehorned in aliens was capped off with the realization that Shia LaBeouf’s character is Indy’s long lost son…oh, what a twist. The characterization and subsequent reveal were so bad that even Shia LaBeouf has expressed regret over it.
LaBeouf was upset with both the direction of the film under Steven Spielberg and his performance as the temperamental Mutt Williams.
He feels like he “dropped the ball on the legacy that people loved and cherished,”. Though he leveled criticism at Steven Spielberg and the writing team, he took full responsibility for the performance and role that he wasn’t proud of. According to him, “the actor’s job is to make it come alive and make it work, and I couldn’t do it.”
10. SALLY FIELD – AUNT MAY
The Amazing Spider-Man may have been similar to Sam Raimi’s Spider-Man series, but the reboot was not totally without its merits. It was an acceptable beginning to a brand new franchise for a familiar character. Unfortunately, The Amazing Spider-Man 2 fell into the same trap that the DCEU did: they both tried to catch up with Marvel far too quickly. Both of the series seeded their movies with far too much world building instead of focusing on actually making a good movie.
Aunt May actress Sally Field, noticed the shift in focus and the resulting lack of characterization. During an interview with Howard Stern, Field made her feelings about the movie clear, saying that “It’s really hard to find a three-dimensional character in it, and you work it as much as you can, but you can’t put ten pounds of BLEEP in a five-pound bag.”
9. BEN AFFLECK – DAREDEVIL
This was the role that made Ben Affleck swear off of superhero roles forever…or at least for 13 years. Mark Steven Johnson’s 2003 movie was a trainwreck consisting of an asinine plot, characters that don’t act like any human being would and far too much of the molded clay-looking CGI that was everywhere those days.
People may argue that the Extended Director’s Cut isn’t bad, but the version that was put out into theaters was undoubtedly terrible.
Ben Affleck knows this to be true as well and that’s why he hated the role so much after the movie released. Affleck revealed himself to be a Daredevil fan, so the failure to translate the property into a recognizable on-screen version hit him even harder than it hit Daredevil fans who only watched the movie. He was so disappointed that, as stated previously, he swore off of superhero roles.
8. GEORGE CLOONEY – BATMAN
We think everyone regrets Batman and Robin. The attempt to invoke the spirit of the 1960’s Batman series failed spectacularly and became a cringeworthy cinematic experience instead of a fun loving nod back to simpler times. The script and direction may have been the main cause of the flop, but the performances add on another layer of terrible. Some actors are simply bad in their role, some fight to out-act everyone else in the movie, and some are just there for the paycheck.
George Clooney was firmly in the last category during this movie. Clooney had the not-so-good fortune of starring in the role that Val Kilmer had the good sense to get out of after one performance. During this film, he was the avatar of apathy. And if his phoned-in performance didn’t convince you that he hated the role, his constant apologies for the film will.
7. DANIEL CRAIG – JAMES BOND
The James Bond Franchise has been one of the longest-lasting cinematic franchises of all time. Based on a series of spy novels by Ian Fleming, they follow the exploits of MI6 agent James Bond as he battles worldwide threats. The agent has gone through a great deal of actors and being among their number is seen as a great number. However, not everybody appreciates the role as much as you would think.
If you read between the lines during Daniel Craig’s numerous interviews while he was reigning as the famous Agent 007, you can see that the movies took a toll on him.
He went so far as to joke that he’d rather kill himself than do another Bond movie. In the end, he got roped into doing one last Bond movie (maybe). His indifference to the role comes through more than once during Spectre.
6. CHANNING TATUM – DUKE
A G.I Joe movie shouldn’t be hard to adapt to the big screen. It’s essentially a war movie with a few fantastical elements mixed in. All you have to do it establish it as a PMC drawn from the armed forces, endear us to a few characters, and send them on missions with cool gadgets. However, it wasn’t meant to be. The movie we ended up getting was a forgettable mess of a film that relegated its one cool thing (the Accelerator Suit) to a single sequence.
Channing Tatum, who played Duke, shared audiences’ disdain for the franchise. He only took the role in the first place because of contractual obligations by Paramount. And afterward, on Howard Stern’s show, he revealed that he hated the movie because he thought the script was bad and he grew up on the cartoon.
5. GEORGE REEVES – SUPERMAN
Don’t confuse him with Christopher Reeves. George Reeves (no relation) played Superman in the very first theatrical film featuring a DC Comics character: Superman and the Mole Men. As one of the very first superhero films, it was, understandably, very rough around the edges but it did portray Superman as a benevolent being with a powerful drive to do what’s right.
Sometimes, however, a role is so iconic that it affects people’s’ perception of you forever.
George Reeves happily took the role in the movie which led to him starring in the beloved Adventures of Superman television show. But Reeves didn’t realize that this meant that people would always see him as Superman. He soon considered the part “beneath his dignity” but found that he couldn’t get roles in other films because audiences associated him with Superman only.
4. SEAN CONNERY – JAMES BOND
The role of James Bond must be a demanding one because another fan favorite Bond hated performing as the suave secret agent. Sean Connery was one of the most recognizable iterations of James Bond. He played the agent during the ’60s and ’70s. During this era, Bond faced off against SPECTRE and a number of iconic Bond baddies such as Blofeld, Dr. No, and Goldfinger. The success of James Bond catapulted Connery into a rare level of superstardom. But he was one of the only people in the world who hated the character.
Though he was grateful for what James Bond did for his career, he wasn’t a fan of the character. He openly stated his desire to kill the character if he was real. He also made it known that he did not approve of Bond’s womanizing ways and found them to be “cruel”.
3. ROBERT PATTINSON – EDWARD CULLEN
There aren’t many more properties in popular media more divisive than the Twilight series. Fans of the fantasy/romance series are madly in love with the series and are staunchly defensive of the property. Meanwhile, opponents of the series hate it with a burning passion. You may be shocked to hear that Robert Pattinson counts himself with those that hate it with a passion.
There have been numerous instances of Robert Pattinson expressing his disdain for the series and the character once the movie ended.
In a number of interviews, Pattinson attacked plot points, requested his dignity back, and revealed just how much he hated the character of Edward Cullen, even going so far as to say “…he’s an 108 year-old virgin, so he’s obviously got some issues there.”
2. SIR ALEC GUINNESS – OBI-WAN KENOBI
Some actors consider themselves purists and dislike properties that distract too much from the art of the performance. The big budget space opera phenomenon that was Star Wars certainly counts in this category. Star Wars is a massive universe with an eclectic group of characters taking part in a massive galactic conflict; meanwhile, a mystical energy is accessible by a select few and its mysteries have to be unlocked in order to oppose the forces of evil in the universe.
The sheer amount of fantastical elements present in Star Wars was enough for Sir Alec Guinness to quickly sour on the property. Guinness, who played Obi-Wan “Old Ben” Kenobi, referred to Star Wars as “fairy tail rubbish”. A recently published letter to a friend revealed that he hated the script and his character and didn’t even care to learn Harrison Ford’s name.
1. HARRISON FORD – RICK DECKARD
Blade Runner is one of the most beloved science fiction franchises of all time. The first film helped popularize the concept of neo-noir and had a unique aesthetic that made revisiting the world in the sequel Blade Runner: 2049, all the more inviting. The franchise takes place in a world where synthetic humans can be created on command and programmed to do whatever the evil Tyrell Corporation wants.
Most people love Rick Deckard who is another confident yet jaded Harrison Ford character with a complicated past and see-sawing morals.
Harrison Ford, however, holds no special place in his heart for Deckard. In fact, he couldn’t relate to him at all and summed up the role as “a detective who did not have any detecting to do.”
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