In the glittering world of Hollywood, even the most esteemed celebrities encounter a challenging predicament: whether to embrace a disliked movie role that contradicts their artistic inclinations, all in pursuit of an irresistible pay check.
Channing Tatum in G.I Joe : The Rise of Cobra: Earnings – $8 million
The Hollywood star hated the movie and revealed that he was contractually obligated to take the role just after filming ‘Coach Carter’. Tatum wasn’t given an option as if he were to refuse, Paramount would have sued him because he signed a three picture contract making him obligated to take the movie. He practically begged writers and producers to kill him off in the movies sequel and he got his wish as in the first act of ‘Retaliation’ he collected another huge paycheck and ensured a quick exit from any new movies sequels.
Emily Blunt in Gulliver’s Travels: Earnings – $500,000- $1,000,000
A young Emily Blunt had just gained massive recognition for her role in ‘The Devil Wear Prada’ and was, (like our previous entry), bound to a three picture contract that saw the actress forced into a starring role in Gulliver’s Travels. Blunt had to turn down a massive role as Black Widow in ‘Iron Man II’ to keep 20th Century Fox happy, which she still regrets today. Although her salary isn’t very well known many speculate her pay check was anywhere between half a million to $1.2 million, which is nothing compared to how much she would have earned had she become part of the Marvel Universe.
Eddy Murphy in Best Defense: Earnings- $1 million
In 1984, Eddie Murphy had reached peak stardom and was by far one of the most sought after actors in Hollywood. Because of this he had refused roles in many movies, one being Dudley Moore’s production ‘Best Defence’. However the undeniably large paycheck of $1 million changed his mind as he only needed to film for 2 weeks. The movie wasn’t a massive success and has been called a chop job by many critics. Despite this Eddy made a quick buck for relatively little work.
Mike Myers in The Cat In the Hat: Earnings- $20 million
Dr Seuss and his iconic Cat In the Hat character gained a movie adaptation when Mike Myers cancelled the 2002 production of Dieters Day. He was threatened with a $30 million lawsuit for its cancellation and was forced to finish yet another three picture contract. He made a crazy $20 million for all three movies and avoided a lawsuit in the process. Unfortunately this movie marked the start of a run of movie duds for Mike Myers and paired with his abysmal attitude while filming ensured the slow demise of this beloved actor.
Michael Caine, Jaws: The Revenge: Earnings- $1.5 million
For only seven days work in the tropical Bahamas Michael Caine earnt a whopping $1.5 million. He essentially treated the shoot as a brief holiday but missed out on collecting an Academy Award because of the filming. He jokingly stated that he has never seen Jaws 4 but has seen the house it bought his mum. He explained that one of the only reasons he took the role was because he and his family were moving from Los Angeles to Oxfordshire, England and needed money for the house he was having built.
Halle Berry in Catwoman: Earnings- $14 million
An absolutely phenomenal paycheck of $14 million saw that Halle Berry became amongst the highest paid actors in 2006. Although she did gain a small fortune for this movie she also had to walk up on stage and claim the worst actress award for the year but did so proudly. She stated that this was what her career needed as she was once at the top but is now at the very bottom. She believed it would give a new found drive to get the top again. I wouldn’t care what award I was given if I was paid $14 million to do it!
Blake Lively in Gossip Girl: Earnings- $7.3 million
The launch of the beloved television series Gossip Girl saw Blake lively take to the stage as reformed party girl Serena Van Der Woodsen. It was reported she banked around $60,000 per episode and as the series ran for 6 seasons and had 121 episodes, she earned close to $7.3 million in just her salary. With the multiple re-runs and popularity it still faces today the actress must have gone a ways past that initial figure by now. Despite this she explained that it was one of her least favorite roles to play as she found it unstimulating and she had hated the message her character portrayed.
Cher in Burlesque: Earnings- Unknown
In this 2010 musical Cher played a motherly figure who ran the burlesque bar. Although the movie was a massive success, it was labelled a critical flop and was vocally disliked by actress and singer, Cher. She stated that both the script and director were terrible and her character didn’t have any development or love interest. It was sad this movie wasn’t made with more care as it could have been a lot better than it was. Cher’s salary was never revealed but it’s safe to say that she earned a hefty sum with her role in this movie.
Roy Scheider in Jaws 2: Earnings- $400,000- $500,000
After the famous complications actor Roy Scheider faced in the first production of Jaws, he was not happy to return for the movie’s sequel. Universal offered him $500,000 which was 4 times what he earned for the previous movie and also threatened him to sue for not completing his contractual obligations. After returning to set he faced even more issues as he didn’t agree with the new director and often butted heads with him. All in all he believed the hassle wasn’t worth it and would not return for any of the other movies.
Marlon Brando in Superman the Movie: Earnings $24 million
After Marlon Brando’s award winning performance in ‘The Godfather’, he was offered the role as Superman’s father in this new movie. He earned a shocking $3.7 million dollars as a salary and signed a contract that gave him 12% of box office profits which puts him at a grand total of $24 million. The actor cared so little about the role that he tried to convince producers to put him in as an object like a suitcase so he would only need to provide his voice and not physically act.
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