A-List Actors’ Most Embarrassing Movie Flops

Source: Courtesy of Warner Bros.

11. John Travolta
> Biggest flop: Battlefield Earth (2000)
> Rotten Tomatoes critics rating: 3%
> Domestic box office gross: $21.5 million

John Travolta has forged a strong cinematic career based on such hits as “Saturday Night Fever,” “Grease” and “Pulp Fiction,” and his films have grossed more than $2 billion domestically.

Unfortunately for Travolta, the 2000 film “Battlefield Earth” was not one of his career milestones. The Critics Consensus on Rotten Tomatoes blasted the film, calling it a “stunningly misguided, aggressively bad sci-fi folly,” with Steve Persall of the Tampa Bay Times saying “a performance by John Travolta in which he abandons everything that ever made him cool.” The movie — which Travolta co-produced — was also a box-office dud, failing to recoup its $73 million budget. The Oscar-nominated Travolta received the 2001 Razzie for Worst Actor for “Battlefield Earth.”

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

12. Keanu Reeves
> Biggest flop: 47 Ronin (2013)
> Rotten Tomatoes critics rating: 16%
> Domestic box office gross: $38.4 million

Keanu Reeves is generally a reliable leading man, starring in blockbusters such as “Speed,” “The Matrix,” and, more recently, “John Wick.” Prior to his success with the Wick franchise, Reeves appeared in the big budget flop “47 Ronin” about a group of samurai seeking revenge for the murder of their master. The 3D fantasy adventure cost $175 million to make and earned just over $38 million at the domestic box office. Worldwide, it grossed slightly less than $152 million. Critics found it dull, dour, and tedious.

Source: Courtesy of Universal Pictures

13. Kevin Costner
> Biggest flop: Waterworld (1995)
> Rotten Tomatoes critics rating: 46%
> Domestic box office gross: $88.2 million

The summit of Kevin Costner’s film career, so far, was in 1991 when he won the Best Director Oscar for “Dances With Wolves,” which also took the Best Picture statue.

“Waterworld,” a dystopian sci-fi movie about a world overwhelmed by water from melting polar ice caps, did not achieve that level of glory. The film was called by the Critics Consensus on Rotten Tomatoes “an ambitious misfire: an extravagant sci-fi flick with some decent moments and a lot of silly ones.” Costner starred in and was also a producer of the movie, which sank at the domestic office, failing to cover its steep $175 million budget.

Source: Courtesy of RLJE Films

14. Margot Robbie
> Biggest flop: Terminal (2018)
> Rotten Tomatoes critics rating: 21%
> Domestic box office gross: N/A

Two-time Oscar-nominee Margot Robbie has quickly become a giant in the industry since her performance alongside Leonardo DiCaprio in “The Wolf of Wall Street” (2013). Among her mostly well-liked filmography is “Terminal,” which impressed only 21% of critics on Rotten Tomatoes — the lowest share of any of her movies. The stylized noir in which a cast of mysterious characters cross paths in a train terminal not only stars Robbie, but was produced by her. It grossed less than $1 million worldwide.

Source: Courtesy of Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer

15. Meryl Streep
> Biggest flop: Lions for Lambs (2007)
> Rotten Tomatoes critics rating: 27%
> Domestic box office gross: $15.0 million

No actor has received more acclaim than Meryl Streep. Director Sydney Pollack once called her the most gifted film actress of the late 20th century. Streep has been nominated for an Academy Award a record 21 times, and has won the Best Actress Oscar three times for “Kramer vs. Kramer,” “Sophie’s Choice,” and “The Iron Lady.”

“Lions for Lambs,” starring and directed by Robert Redford, was meant to encourage dialogue about America’s role in the fight against terrorism. The Critics Consensus on Rotten Tomatoes found the film disjointed. Despite a heavyweight cast that included Redford, Streep, and Tom Cruise, it only posted a Freshness score of 27% on Rotten Tomatoes, the lowest-rated film in Streep’s career, and it failed to recoup its estimated $35 million budget in domestic gross.