Mid-Week Poll: Which Disgraced Star Deserves a Comeback?

Celebrities and scandal go together like Jack and Coke. Yes, it’s possible for them to function separately, but the combination is so much more delicious when you put them together. For this week’s poll, we’d like to know which recently-disgraced movie star you think is worthy of a career comeback. Vote after the break.

It’s possible for a celebrity to survive and even thrive after weathering a scandal. Hugh Grant, Rob Lowe and Robert Downey, Jr. are proof of that. But can any of our recently-troubled stars manage the same feat?

Of the five options below, I’m pretty sure that Arnold Schwarzenegger will ride out his scandal soon enough. Of all the terrible things that celebrities are prone to doing, infidelity seems to be one that the public is most willing to forgive. However, I’m not so sure that he’ll ever have a movie career again, but that would probably have been the case anyway. He’s too old to do action movies, and doesn’t have the acting chops to do much of anything else.

I feel most sorry for Mel Gibson, because I believe that he’s mentally ill and isn’t getting the help he really needs. Looking back at his famous roles such as the ‘Lethal Weapon’ series reminds me that he used to be a hell of a movie star. He’s also proven to be talented as a director. Perhaps with enough time out of the limelight, proper medication, and copious apologies, he could eventually reassemble some semblance of a career as a character actor.

Tom Cruise never really stopped being a movie star, but the public has decidedly soured on him. His last couple of movies, ‘Valkyrie’ and ‘Knight and Day’, were both big box office disappointments, and everyone in Hollywood attributes that to the actor’s unlikability. He’s got a lot riding on ‘Mission: Impossible – Ghost Protocol’ this fall. If he can’t pull this off, he’ll be in really bad shape. I think Cruise is an obnoxious ass whenever he’s interviewed, but I still like him as a movie star. In fact, I rather enjoyed ‘Knight and Day’.

Charlie Sheen was never much of an actor, and he’s just insufferable now. Even if he sobers up, I think he’s done.

Lindsay Lohan… What a trainwreck. Even when she was sober, she was a shitty actress. I say to hell with her. Let her spend some time in prison and never be heard from again.

How about you? Where do your sympathies lie? Vote for as many options as you’d like.

Which Disgraced Star Deserves a Comeback?

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If I’ve forgotten someone obvious, please tell me in the Comments.


  1. i went with lohan because the others had their day. shes still young like downey and lowe were. if she got those god awful parents and gets the partying out of her system she’ll be fine.

  2. I’m a Cruise fan. I liked ‘Knight and Day’ more than most.

    I don’t feel bad for Gibson however. I don’t know if he’s mentally ill. He could be, but he’s a hate monger and an anti-Semite. There’s just no getting around some of the crazy, insensitive things he’s said and done.

  3. lordbowler

    Have to go with Mel… Best actor of all of them.

    Arnold never was a great actor and will do just fine.

    Charlie Sheen is done as is Lindsey Lohan. Have you seen her in Machete?

    As for Cruise, I enjoyed both Valkyrie and Knight and Day and look forward to MI4.

  4. paramedic0112

    Mel Gibson is a tragic case because he’s talented. I was blown away by Apocalypto. The guy could have a great directing career. I heard DiCaprio wanted to work with him but decided against it because of Gibson’s behavior. So he seems to be screwing himself in the career dept. I like Tom Cruise as well. It’s hard for me to just dismiss Charlie Sheen because I love Wall Street and Platoon. I think he’s charismatic on screen but he’s probably gone too crazy to ever be taken seriously again. I agree with Josh about Lohan.

  5. I voted Tom Cruise, although I don’t see him as a “disgraced” star at all. People like to make fun of him because of his beliefs…but has he ever cheated on his wife? Made racist comments? Have a record of unprofessionalism? No – by all accounts he’s an upstanding guy, and I, for one, like him quite a bit.

    As for his last two movies being “disappointments”, they both turned signficant profits, with Valkyrie making $200 million worldwide, and Knight and Day making $275 million worldwide. I’m sure they did quite well in the home video market as well, as both were well-made movies.

    I think Tom’s fanbase is just as strong as ever overseas, where people don’t take the religion thing so seriously.

    • “I think Tom’s fanbase is just as strong as ever overseas, where people don’t take the religion thing so seriously.”
      Well, the funny thing is, in certain overseas countries, Scientology is classified as a sect. Which is worse than its reputation in the USA.

      Cruise is still a fine actor.

      Mel Gibson’s career resurgence will be more difficult. Hollywood is, after all, rules by Jews and Italians. If you insult 50% of your potential backers, you’re in bad shape.

  6. Jane Morgan

    I love Mel Gibson on a chemical level. I wish they could cram him into ‘Expendables 2.’

  7. Agreed about Mel Gibson. I think he has one of Khan’s ear slugs (that’s a Star Trek II joke folks) roaming around his brain eating away the parts that keep him from saying stupid shit.

  8. besch64

    Considering Tom Cruise is easily the best actor of the bunch and is more strange than he is malicious, he gets my vote. I never stopped enjoying his performances. I was blown away when I recently watched Magnolia for the first time. What a gem from Cruise.

    And who the hell voted for Lohan?

  9. We should do a poll on the other end of the spectrum – actors/actresses who has a “squeaky clean” rep, but are rumored to be jerks by those “in the know”. I have a few good nominees, but I’ll wait for an official thread. 🙂

  10. Boss voted Cruise. his place in his religion is what has many people against him. sorry, but this country isn’t all that accepting of “others.”

    Blohan, may she never act again. she/her publicist went on record saying she won’t do b-movie nudity. that’s all she deserves, show up a day, get DP’d, go do coke. she’s shown she is too unstable to be a lead in films; i know who killed me was marred by her inability to SHOW UP and do the fucking job. the reason her life is shit is her own fucking fault. no sympathy. her celebrity justice-getting ass is only famous now for her massive implosion, and no insurance company would ever let her on a set. no fucking way.

    • Josh Zyber

      It isn’t just Cruise’s religion that people don’t like about him. The public can still tolerate John Travolta, Kirstie Alley, Will Smith and other notable Scientologists. The problem is that Cruise constantly acts like such a smug douchebag that people just can’t stand him anymore.

      There’s also the way he kidnapped and brainwashed poor little Katie Holmes. That whole relationship is just plain creepy.

      • Completely agree. Well, about most of those people, I never did like Travolta – I always thought he was too smug, and just want to knock the grin off his face.

        Just because I do not agree with someone’s religion doesn’t mean that I am going to dislike a person for it. Shoot, I wouldn’t have half my friends if that was the case. I’m Christian, but have friends who are Buddaist, Mormons and Athiests.

        My vote was for Gibson. He flies off the handle, what, once every few years? Or maybe I just don’t follow it like I used to. I also voted for Arnold, but he is getting up in age. I would like to see one last GREAT Arnold movie (he did a few BAD ones, and many mediocore ones). But Gibson… I want something back along the lines of Braveheart or The Patriot. And his directing is wonderful (Passion of the Christ was genius).

        Lohan on the other hand, if she keeps her nose clean for the next 20 years, people might then be willing to accept her back. Her problem is that she is consistant – consistantly a train wreak. The other people on this list made a couple of whoppers here and there, but Lohan is just, well, consistantly getting into trouble. And I really didn’t like her BEFORE all the negative publicity started coming out about her. I will be perfectly happy if I never hear about her again.

  11. Jane Morgan

    Cruise was fine until he tried to argue in the media that postpartum depression isn’t a real health issue.

    As long as he keeps working with great directors, making movies for male-skewed audiences, his career should have a successful trajectory.

    • paramedic0112

      Yeah, Cruise made some stupid comments on the Today show but Matt Lauer is the real douche bag in that situation. He did the same thing to Kanye West. Both artists were trying to give an honest interview and Lauer was being a complete asshole about it.

    • paramedic0112

      Some of these people might have to. Nah, Lohan would probably live off her parents if she had to. Hell, she probably does now.

  12. Josh Zyber

    Mrs. Z has been recording Drew Carrey’s Improv-a-ganza on the Game Show Network, which is basically his revival of Whose Line Is It Anyway? under a new title. I mention this because we were burning through a few episodes last night and came across one where Charlie Sheen was in the audience. Of course, Drew pulled him up onto the stage to perform in one bit.

    It was a really simple skit. Several people were on stage, and they had to make up a story. One person would make up a sentence or two, then the next person would pick up where he left off, etc. The subject was to make it a fairy tale.

    Sheen was ATROCIOUSLY unfunny. Every single time it was his turn, he said the same thing: “Charlie Sheen f***ed a dead hooker!” Every. Single. Time. No matter what the last person had said. No matter what the story was about. “Charlie Sheen f***ed a dead hooker!” Over and over again. He seemed to think this was hilarious. I beg to differ.

    The really sad part is that I doubt Sheen is quick enough in his wits anymore to make up something like that. He probably really did just have sex with a dead hooker before the show, and that’s all he could think to talk about.

  13. ML

    I think Mel Gibson should make a comeback by playing the bad guy…Cruise also. They aren’t getting anywhere doing the same roles they used to do. They are older and their image is different.

    Cruise played a jerk in a couple of movies, Rain Man and Magnolia come to mind. Tropic Thunder. He was really great in them.

    • Josh Zyber

      Interesting idea. The danger, however, is turning into John Travolta – getting stuck in a rut playing hammy over-the-top villains.

      (Cruise did play a bad guy in Collateral, incidentally.)

      • EM

        If only we had a standard venue for Special Guest Villains, like the Adam West Batman series of the 1960s…