Anyone can be an actor, but being a movie star takes something special.
It’s an unquantifiable “je ne sais quoi” that turns talent, looks, physicality and screen presence into something marketable, something that can sell a movie ticket, something to put on a poster or a trailer or on a chat show that makes the casual punter say “I want to see that movie”.
Unfortunately for Hollywood though not everyone has the same taste in celebrities. Some stars can be so amiably charming and middle of the road, they have legions of fans (Tom Hanks, we’re looking at you), but others are like Marmite – you either love them or hate them.
Shining a light on this phenomenon, a movie fan on Reddit posed the question: “What actor makes you instantly not want to watch a movie if you see them in it?”
People have been naming and shaming the actors they find to be an instant turn off, and it’s not pretty. Apologies in advance to the undoubtedly talented, hard-working craftspeople named below... please don’t shoot the messenger.
Fresh from being the butt of Ricky Gervais’ jibes at the Golden Globes for starring in mega-flop Cats, British export James Corden has the ignominious honour of being the most upvoted name on the AskReddit thread.
“James Corden... I thought we'd gotten rid of him to America but the bastards just weaponised him,” the top comment reads. “I guess England didn’t learn after the first few times they sent their undesirables elsewhere?” another commenter responded.
Despite a brief appearance as a Manson acolyte in the Oscar-nominated Once Upon A Time... In Hollywood, outspoken Girls creator Lena Dunham also proved to be a popular suggestion on the thread of unpopular actors.
“Luckily she doesn't tend to show up in too many productions. And we're all better for it,” one wag commented.
US comedian Amy Schumer made the leap from stand up to silver screen by starring in and writing the Judd Apatow-directed 2015 comedy Trainwreck.
She’s since only made a handful of movie appearances since (Snatched, I Feel Pretty), but for some that’s already too many.
One person stood up for her though, saying she’s “a low hanging fruit for up votes”.
In a bizarre twist of fate, Under Siege star Steven Seagal made the list thanks to someone who claims to be related to the 67-year-old martial arts actor.
“Steven Seagal, he's my uncle and nobody in the family will have anything to do with him,” they wrote.
“He is just a showoff,” they added. “But so are a lot of the people in the family. He has just made it big and is able to be a bigger showoff than anyone else.”
He’s starred in some of the highest-grossing movies of the past few years, so Jumanji star Kevin Hart must be doing something right, but for some people he’s a cinema deterrent.
“He pretty much just plays himself in every movie and it’s gets really boring seeing the same character over and over,” complains the top comment.
Her Goop lifestyle brand and Hollywood-friendly pseudoscience make her an easy target, but even starring in the most successful movie franchise of all time isn’t enough to win some over to Oscar-winner Gwyneth Paltrow’s side.
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“She was the worst part of Iron Man, hated seeing her in the End Game movies,” one commenter moaned.
Jared Leto’s much-publicised on-set weirdness while playing Joker in Suicide Squad seems to have turned many people sour to the Oscar-winning rock star’s appeal.
Many found space to praise the actor’s performances in Dallas Buyers Club, Requiem for a Dream and American Psycho, but a lot thought he’d taken his methods too far.
“Remember kids: "method acting" is not an excuse to acting like a t***”, one Redditor explained.
It seems unlikely that an actor as wholesomely charming and upbeat as Will Smith could appear on this list, but many commenters seemed annoyed by the actor’s limited repertoire on screen.
“I’m just so tired of seeing Will Smith playing Will Smith,” one person who had two good reasons to skip Gemini Man wrote.
“He's also still playing himself as he was in the 90s when he first got popular, which makes a lot of his performances feel dated and out-of-touch,” another added.
Another star who seems too likeable to dislike purely for their onscreen presence is Anchorman’s Will Ferrell, but many felt that his shtick just wasn’t for them.
“I love his SNL sketches and other comedy work, but find his brand of humour to be “too much” for the length of an entire film,” one person explained.
Some of his fans jumped in to suggest his haters watch Stranger Than Fiction or Everything Must Go for a taste of what the funnyman can do when he plays straight.
Adam Sandler threatened to make a movie “that is so bad on purpose just to make you all pay” if he didn’t get an Oscar nomination for Uncut Gems, so he’s clearly aware of his own reputation.
While he enjoyed some early success with The Waterboy, The Wedding Singer and Big Daddy, his films have got progressively worse, and his name has become a seal of disapproval for some.
As the comments on his name suggest though, he is capable of greatness with many recommending Punch Drunk Love, Spanglish, Funny People, Meyerowitz Stories and Uncut Gems (in cinemas now) as Sandler gems that buck the trend.