40 Biggest Celebrity Falls From Grace
Do people ever think about the most prominent celebrity falls from grace? It’s tough to think about, honestly. We know a lot about celebrities – probably more than we ever want or need to know. Heck, some stars even let us know what they had for breakfast in the morning…as if that would be information anyone really has to know. Regardless, this helps us understand famous people and see how they live their lives. At the end of the day, that’s all they really are, anyway. They’re just regular people living lives that are extra lavish.
These celebs earned our trust, and some have kept it—like Hugh Jackman and Neil Patrick Harris. But not every famous person out there has the same belief that you should be a trustworthy, kind, and honest person. In a matter of days, these celebs went from sitting high on a pedestal to falling from grace and being despised by the general public. What do you think about our choices? Did we miss anyone you think should go on the list?
Amanda Bynes was another famous child actress that had issues with drugs and alcohol. Once Nickelodeon's poster child, she ran into legal troubles in 2013 after several DUIs, an arrest for marijuana possession, and starting a fire near a stranger’s house.
She was placed under a psych evaluation, and her parents were forced to look after her at the age of 28.
Tiger Woods made a name for himself by demonstrating his golf prowess. That all changed when he had a public fight with his wife about an alleged affair. While the affair in question was never confirmed, dozens of women came forward claiming to have slept with Tiger Woods.
As a result, Woods lost many of his sponsorships and filed for divorce.
Paul Reubens was loved for his children’s character Pee Wee Herman. However, in 1990 he proved that he was not a suitable role model for youngsters. Reubens was arrested for indecent exposure at a pornographic movie theater in Florida.
Though he plead no contest and maintains to this day that he is innocent, his career was never able to bounce back.
For years, Hollywood seemed to know that Harvey Weinstein was a sexual predator, but the info became public in 2017 when 80 women accused him of sexual assault.
Not only did he fall from public grace, but police also pursued criminal charges against the movie producer.
Know for creating the “Wall of Sound” which became a music-industry standard, Phil Spector was one of the most influential music producers in the 1960s and 1970s.
In 2003, Spector was arrested for the murder of actress Lana Clarkson after the two had an argument in his home. He was convicted and is currently serving a prison sentence of 19 years to life.
After the International Association of Athletics Federation claimed his prosthetic legs gave him an unfair advantage, Oscar Pistorius still went on to be the first ever double amputee to compete in the Olympics.
His praise turned sour when he was charged in 2013 for the murder of his girlfriend. The following year, he was found guilty and sentenced to five years in prison.
Live Strong bracelets were removed so quickly they nearly broke after Lance Armstrong’s betrayal came to light. The world renown cyclist won seven Tour de France races, but they were all voided in 2012 when an investigation discovered he’d been using performance-enhancing drugs.
He received a lifetime ban from sports that would go down in history as one of the worst doping scandals of all time.
One of the most respected football players of his generation, O.J. Simpson destroyed his reputation with his involvement in what would become the “trial of the century.”
In 1994, Simpson was charged with the murder of his ex-wife Nicole Brown and her friend Ronald Goldman. He was found not guilty, but he was later charged with kidnapping and armed robbery. He's out now, and tweeting.
After losing the heavyweight title, Mike Tyson was accused of rape in 1991. Tyson was convicted and sentenced to six years in prison, of which he served three.
Upon his release, Tyson attempted to make a comeback in boxing, but his career suffered greatly, especially after he bit off part of Evander Holyfield’s ear during a match.
Since he gained popularity in the 1960s, Bill Cosby was one of the most respected men in comedy. However, his wholesome brand of humor was not representative of the way he has lived his life.
More than 30 women have come forward to accuse Cosby of sexual assault and/or drugging them. Cosby has been stripped of many of his honors.
Hugh Grant was dating one of the most beautiful women alive, Elizabeth Hurley, but that didn’t stop him from fooling around. He was arrested in 1995 for having oral sex with a prostitute in a public place.
Grant took full responsibility and apologized, but public opinion decided he wasn’t worth being famous anymore. His career never recovered.
Jerry Lee Lewis
Jerry Lee Lewis could have been bigger than Elvis, had he not plummeted from grace in 1958. What made him fall from grace was the fact he married his 13-year-old first cousin when he was in his twenties.
Following this, his performance fees dropped from $10,000 to $250 per night.
Matt Lauer, the Today show anchor, was America’s clean-cut dad, but it all changed in November 2017. Allegations surfaced that he assaulted a female staffer during the 2014 Sochi Olympics.
Less than 30 hours, Lauer was fired, and his predatory deeds became apparent along with others, including sending inappropriate texts to fellow employees and “gifting” coworkers sex toys with explicit notes.
He was once one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, but now Mel Gibson has earned a reputation more for his wacky antics than for his acting chops. In his fits of rage, Gibson has been cause on tape spewing slurs against people who do not share his race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation.
He often blames his remarks on alcohol.
While he’s the unequivocal “King of Pop,” his reputation took a huge hit in 1993 when he was accused of inappropriate and abusive behavior toward children. This case was settled out of court, but another one arose in 2005.
These new charges included sexual abuse allegations after having a sleepover with a 13-year-old boy. He was acquitted, but the damage was done.
Several celebs fell from grace in 2017, but one of the biggest was Kevin Spacey. He was once one of the best actors around, but all that changed when it was revealed that he sexually assaulted another actor when he was 14-years-old.
To make matters worse, he responded that he didn’t remember doing it and used the opportunity to come out as gay rather than show remorse.
Shia LaBeouf is a strange one. He was a young actor that people loved to watch in films, including Disturbia and the Transformers franchise. Then, he had a meltdown and was arrested for anger and alcohol issues.
Then, in 2005, he was charged for assault with a deadly weapon after he confronted his neighbor. Finally, the topper of the cake was when in 2007 he was outed for stealing an indie comic from Daniel Clowes.
Best known as Kramer from the hit show Seinfeld, Michael Richards went from loved to hated in moments. He performed a standup comedy set in November 2006.
During the show, he was filmed screaming racist comments and lynching references to a group of hecklers. He later apologized along with Jerry Seinfeld, but the world didn’t accept it.
Tonya Harding became one of Americas most hated athletes because of one action. In 1994, Tonya Harding’s ex-husband struck Nancy Kerrigan in the knee with a baton to prevent her from going to the Olympics.
The case went to trial, and Harding admitted to conspiring to injure Kerrigan. She received a lifetime ban from all United States Figure Skating Association sponsored events.
Bill Murray isn’t a stranger to controversy. In fact, he almost lives in it constantly. However, he seems to hold a strong fanbase that likes him because he’s so relatable and real. Thanks to recent news, we’re all being reminded about the kind of person Murray is, and this has caused a huge fall from grace.
Press has been buzzing about the $100,000 settlement between Murray and a “much younger” female crewmember of his recent film. The woman claimed Murray straddled her while on set. Murray stated he did “something I thought was funny.” That caused other stars like Geena Davis, Lucy Liu, and Richard Dreyfuss to come out and state how he’s been unpleasant to work with on a regular basis.
Kayne West (Ye)
Once upon a time, Kayne West (or Ye) was hailed as one of the best music producers and artists in the world. He fought tooth and nail to become a top artist, but he’s more or less thrown it all away. At this point, it would be easier to say what Kanye West hasn’t done to offend someone.
Recently, however, he’s really messed up. He commented, saying that he could “say antisemitic things and Adidas can’t drop” him. Turns out, he was wrong. It took Adidas a hot second, but they ultimately decided to cancel their partnership with the artist, costing them approximately $250 million.
Miley Cyrus is another Disney star gone bad. Once the famous Hanna Montana, she changed her appearance that’s nothing like her former self. She started wearing extremely revealing clothing, doing drugs, and performing in a risqué manner on stage.
It alienated the fans that once followed her, causing them to avoid her. Now, she’s changing her image again, but is it too late?
No one expected Martha Stewart to go to jail, but she did in 2004. This was the year that she was convicted of inside trading.
Since then, she’s been working hard to restore her reputation, but it’s just too damaged. The name “Martha Stewart” will now be synonymous with her crimes.
Lindsay Lohan was a young actress many kids watched growing up, but that all changed when she got involved with drugs and alcohol. She had a series of legal issues, and even missed a mandatory DUI in 2010.
Even after mandatory rehab, she violated her prohibition and was sent to jail. This pattern continued for a year, and everyone got tired of hearing about it.
Many people knew that Chris Brown had anger problems before his fall from grace. What sealed his fate was when pictures of Rihanna’s bloody face showed what he’d done to her.
Brown pled guilty to felony assault of his girlfriend, but that was just the beginning. Since then, he’s had several run-ins with the law, including a 2013 assault arrest.
Josh Duggar was the eldest child of the well-known reality TV family, The Duggars. In 2015, Josh Duggar was a part of the Ashley Madison scandal. Not only was his name found on the infamous adultery website, but it was also discovered that he’d molested five girls.
Fast forward to 2021, and now Josh Duggar is being investigated for child pornography. The judge said it was one of the worst cases he's ever seen.
The worst thing you can do is hurt animals, and that’s what Michael Vick did. In 2007, he was arrested on felony charges related to an illegal dogfighting ring and failure to cooperate with police.
He spent 21 months in prison and two months of house arrest, but the public wouldn’t see his return.
Paula Deen was a major celebrity chef, but she fell from grace in 2013 when she was sued for racial and sexual discrimination.
After this, Paula Deen lost public approval as well as contracts with the Food Network and endorsements by several other companies.
Fatty Arbuckle is an old one, but it was easily one of the worst falls from grace. He was once on the track to be just as big as Charlie Chaplin and Buster Keaton – in fact, he mentored and discovered the two!
His name was tarnished when he was the defendant of three widely publicized trials for the rape and manslaughter of actress Virginia Rappe. He was acquitted, but the scandal destroyed his career.
Louis C.K. was one of the most admired stand-up comedians around. He made a name for himself as a comic, actor, and even as a feminist. That was all until five women accused him of sexual misconduct.
His career has since picked back up a bit, but no one will ever look at him the same way again.
Jonah Hill has had a successful ride to the top, often appearing in movies with other big-name actors like Leonardo DiCaprio and Channing Tatum. However, in 2014 the Oscar-nominated actor called a paparazzo a homophobic slur.
He went on The Tonight Show to apologize, but his apology seemed insincere and the damage was already done.
David Letterman has had a long, influential career that ended on his famous talk show when he told the audience about his crimes. After appearing before a grand jury, Letterman decided to beat the news stories and come clean on air.
He admitted to inappropriate relationships with his staff and a $2 million extortion scheme that shocked his fans and ruined his public image.
We’re used to hearing stories about entitled celebrities, but you might not have expected that behavior out of Reese Witherspoon. The A-list actress was arrested for disorderly conduct after her husband had been pulled over for suspicion of driving under the influence.
She asked officers, “Do you know who I am?” and reacted badly when she was cuffed, destroying her image as America's sweetheart.
Jared Fogle used to be the success story and face of Subway—at least before he was arrested for child pornography. Fogle skyrocketed to fame for making the "Subway diet" popular, but that all ended when his secret behavior came to light.
The weight loss hero was charged with multiple sexual misconduct crimes against children and was quickly cut out of the Subway advertisements.
Katherine Heigl used to be a highly sought-after actress in Hollywood and even landed a recurring role on the popular hospital drama Grey’s Anatomy. However, Heigl let the success go to her head and is now well-known for being hard to work with and extremely disrespectful.
After she publicly bashed a film she appeared in with Seth Rogan, Knocked Up, nobody wanted to work with her because of her bad attitude.
To the complete surprise of many, The Wizard of Oz actress Judy Garland died from a drug overdose in 1969 shortly after her 47th birthday. Her death shined a light on a long-time drug habit that Garland had struggled with since childhood.
Workers at MGM studios would supply her with amphetamines and barbiturates to keep her slim and ready to work, leading her down a dark path. Fans were shocked to learn the sad truth about one of Hollywood's greatest actresses.
Rob Lowe is still a successful actor—even if he shouldn’t be. He was in trouble in 1988 for a sex tape scandal with an underage girl. Lowe claimed he didn’t know the girl was underage, but the damage was done.
His career was dead for many years and now he’s slowly working on rebuilding it after the bad publicity from his sexual misconduct scandal.
Roseanne Barr was loved by millions for her depiction of a relatable person on her show Roseanne. The popular show was brought back for a reboot but Barr quickly ruined the debut.
She was slammed for racist tweets that effectively ended her career and led to her being removed as a character from her own show.
Woody Allen was a staple in Hollywood and loved by many people for years. His influence is undeniable, but his past is dubious. He was accused of sexual abuse by his adoptive daughter, Dylan Farrow, but the allegations were never proven.
Perhaps just as scandalous, Allen married his ex-wife’s adopted daughter, Soon-Yi Previn, which led to a series of weird arguments about age, consent, and incest about the pair.
R. Kelly’s career was filled with controversy surrounding his sex life. He married Aaliyah Haughton in 1994 when she was 15 and Kelly was 27.
After this, the next few years were filled with women coming forward about the abuse they’d suffered from R. Kelly, all of which were underage.
Winona Ryder starred in iconic, generation-defining movies like Heathers and Beetlejuice, and seemed unstoppable. She was stylish, funny, and representative of a grunge-loving audience.
However, in 2002, Ryder was found guilty of grand theft and vandalism for stealing more than $5,500 worth of designer gear in Beverly Hills. The arrest led to Ryder leaving the public eye for many years.
Charlie Sheen was a must-have actor in the ‘80s all the way through the early 2000s. He fell out of the limelight for a bit and tried to make a comeback.
Then, he had a series of ranting radio interviews and a TV interview where he said he wasn’t on drugs–sort of. He said, “I am on a drug. It’s called Charlie Sheen. It’s not available ‘cause if you try it once, you’ll die.” Sheen was fired from Two and a Half Men and was replaced with Ashton Kutcher.
For years, Ellen Degeneres was a beloved comedian, actor, and talk show host, but in 2020 all that began to change. Allegations that range from minor (she was rude to a waitress) to severe (turning a blind eye to sexual harassment on her talk show) began to pop up with more frequency around 2020.
However, some of the allegations of her rude behavior go back decades—it's allegedly a well-kept Hollywood secret.
Jerry Falwell Jr.
Jerry Falwell Jr. is the son of famous American evangelical preacher Jerry Falwell Sr., and, until recently, he was the president of Liberty University--a Christian college his father helped found.
However, in the summer of 2020, several public scandals came to light that led him to resign from his position. This included a claim from a man who allegedly had a sexual relationship with Falwell Jr. and his wife.