ByEmily Browne, writer at
Twitter: @emrbrowne
Emily Browne

Every A-lister on Hollywood's roster had to get their start somewhere. Whether it's TV comedy sketch shows like SNL, TV gems like The '70s Show or horrendous B-list horror, most celebs look fondly on the gigs they did before they were household names — but not all. A surprising number of today's biggest celebs got their start in horror, or made some questionable decisions when funds were low — and deeply regretted every second of it.

1. Rooney Mara Really Hated Her Role In 'Nightmare on Elm Street'

Nightmare on Elm Street [Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]
Nightmare on Elm Street [Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and Carol star learned the hard way that to get ahead in Hollywood, you might have to take on roles you really don't want — which is what happened when she starred in the 2010 remake of the iconic Nightmare on Elm Street. Yeah, I don't remember it either. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Rooney said of the role:

"You kind of learn to self-sabotage with things you don’t want to get. Sometimes you don’t want to get something but you do a really good job and you get in anyway. That’s kind of [what happened] with A Nightmare on Elm Street-I didn’t even really want it. And then I went in [to audition] and I was like, [whispering] “F— I definitely got that.”

2. Matthew McConaughey Jokes About His Role 'Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation'

Not only did Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation help launch Matthew McConaughey's career, but also starred future Bridget Jones Renée Zellweger. While Zellweger has come to terms with her role in the movie, calling it an "experience," McConaughey had a cheeky dig to his past role on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, and sort of forgets which Texas Chainsaw he was in at around the 5 minute mark on the video above.

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3. Mark Wahlberg Regrets 'The Happening' As Much as the Rest of Us

The Happening [Credit: 20th Century Fox]
The Happening [Credit: 20th Century Fox]

Of all of M. Night Shymalan's stinkers, The Happening is probably the most cited. What began with a promising premise and serious star power in the form of Mark Wahlberg and Zooey Deschanel ended in disappointment and regret. Speaking at a press conference for his 2010 movie The Fighter, Wahlberg describes a conversation he had with a fellow actor:

We had actually had the luxury of having lunch before to talk about another movie, and it was a bad movie that I did. She dodged the bullet. And then I was still able to … I don’t want to tell you what movie … alright 'The Happening.' F*** it. It is what it is. F***ing trees, man. The plants. F*** it. You can’t blame me for not wanting to try to play a science teacher. At least I wasn’t playing a cop or a crook.

4. Daniel Craig and Rachel Weiss Refused to Do Any Press For 'Dream House'

Dream House [Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]
Dream House [Credit: Warner Bros. Pictures]

Even thought it was the movie that brought them together, Daniel Craig and Rachel Weiss were so unhappy with the final cut of Dream House that they refused to do any promotion for it. The film was so atrocious that it received a pathetic 6% on Rotten Tomatoes and released a trailer so spoiler-ific that its stars thought: Why bother? Craig and Weiss have not commented on how terrible the movie was, but their refusal to do any press and the fact the movie got dumped into theaters without any press screenings speaks for itself, really.

5. Jennifer Aniston is Still Mortified by 'Leprechaun'

Leprechaun [Credit: Trimark Pictures]
Leprechaun [Credit: Trimark Pictures]

Just when Jennifer Aniston thinks she's escaped, Leprechaun comes back to remind her that as much as she wants to forget, the rest of the world won't let her. Jennifer's role as Tory Redding in the 1993 movie Leprechaun has become the benchmark for A-list actors in bad horror movies. Speaking on The Graham Norton Show while promoting Horrible Bosses 2, Aniston recounted the time her husband-to-be Justin Theroux stumbled across her early work while channel surfing:

“Actually, it was a mortifying moment when Justin (Theroux) and I had just started to date. About a year into it, he was flipping through the channels and he stumbled upon that, right at the beginning turned out! And that was our next two hours much to my embarrassment.”

She then went on to say how proud she was of that movie at the time of its release. 1993 was a simple time.

So there we are, struggling actors of the world, even if you feel like you have to take on a role you don't want — like Mara — or star in a movie you deeply regret later on — like Jen — you never know, you might be recounting those terrible choice to a live TV audience a little further down the line.


Which horror do you think it most worthy of regret?


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