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Filmmakers and Actors Who Apologized for Their Movies

Updated May 21, 2020 93.3k views22 items

Considering how many movies get made across the globe each year, there are surprisingly few directors, actors, and screenwriters willing to publicly apologize for putting out poor quality films. Of the rare directors who apologized for their films in recent years, some blame studio meddling (Josh Trank and Fantastic Four) while others just don't seem to get the hate (Joel Schumacher and Batman & Robin). Actors who apologized for their movies range from Shia LaBeouf to Tim Roth, who said he did United Passions to help put his kids through college.

Writers who apologized for movies are a lot easier to come by, considering how easy it is for scripts to get re-worked. But not every writer is a victim of studio interference: Dragonball Evolution scribe Ben Ramsey admitted recently that he wasn't even a fan of the material and was simply "chasing after a big payday." 

Here's a look at films the director regretted making, writers who felt that their original vision was robbed, and actors embarrassed by their lackluster performances. 

  • Michael Bay
    Video: YouTube

    Considering how often critics tend to hate his films, you'd think Michael Bay would have apologized for at least one of them based on their merits by now. In 2015 he apologized for Project Almanac, but only because footage that some believe shows a real plane going down accidentally made the final cut, offending the victims' families.


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  • George Clooney
    Video: YouTube

    The 1997's sequel flick  Batman & Robin was panned, even by the man paid handsomely to wear the batsuit: George Clooney. Clooney has issued apologies for the flick a few times, including on TV in the UK on The Graham Norton Show. At the 2014 San Diego Comic Con, Clooney told fans, "Sorry for the nipples on the suit" and apologized for the pun-heavy dialogue.

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  • Bruce Willis
    Video: YouTube

    Most critics would agree that Bruce Willis has plenty to apologize for (North? The Color of Night?), but, to his credit, Willis has openly apologized for 1993's Striking Distance. He admitted on a 2004 episode of On the Record With Bob Costas that the action flick simply "sucked."


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  • J.D. Shapiro

    J.D. Shapiro
    Video: YouTube

    Not only did Battlefield Earth scribe J.D. Shapiro apologize for the 2000 sci-fi stinker (based on Scientology founder L. Ron Hubbard's novel), he wrote an article-length apology and got it published in the New York Post. Choice quote: "No one sets out to make a train wreck. Actually, comparing it to a train wreck isn’t really fair to train wrecks, because people actually want to watch those."