George Clooney is a penitent man. That much is clear. Ever since 1997's Batman and Robin hit theaters, he's been on a one man pilgrimage of apology.
He has travelled the world, appearing on chat shows and in press interviews, and every time Batman and Robin is mentioned, he issues another sincere apology for what he has previously termed a "really shit" film. In fact, in a new chat with Britain's Graham Norton, Clooney reveals how he once thought he had destroyed one of the most beloved superhero franchises of all time. He explained:
I always apologise for ‘Batman and Robin’. I actually thought I’d destroyed the franchise until they brought it back! I thought at the time this was going to be a very good career move. It wasn’t!
Check out the full interview below:
Of course, Clooney isn't the only big name star to subsequently bad-mouth one of their own movies - although he might be the most apologetic. Here are some other stars who've delivered bad reviews of their own work.
Mark Wahlberg - The Happening
Prior to the release of The Happening, Wahlberg was eager to promote the horrific potential of M. Night Shyamalan horror. He claimed:
Night does an amazing job of creating the tension and it was amazing because I thought - with my being in 90 percent of the movie - that I wouldn't be affected by it when I saw it. But it was the complete opposite because the way he did was really terrifying.
The film didn't exactly receive great reviews and now Mark Wahlberg seems slightly less enthusiastic about the project. Indeed, his opinion on the whole venture can be summed up in a simple, expletive phrase:
Fuck it. It is what it is. Fucking trees, man. The plants. Fuck 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!
So that's "Fuck it" then?
James Franco - Your Highness
When appearing in pre-release press junkets (and sitting beside writer Danny McBride), James Franco claimed he 'loved' Your Highness. Afterwards, he changed his tune somewhat, stating:
Your Highness? That movie sucks. You can’t get around that.
Halle Berry - Catwoman
Halle Berry also had a hard time with a DC comicbook character. When promoting her solo superhero movie back in 2004, Halle Berry stated:
It’s a visual spectacle. It’s a summer, popcorny, fun-ride movie. Nothing more, nothing less. I believe it delivers that. It’s a great ride, it’s fun, it’s tongue-in-cheek. And it’s perfect for kids. The suit is the sexiest thing about the whole movie. There’s not too much violence, there’s no blood, there’s no sex, there’s no harsh language. We made sure of all of that when we were shooting to make this accessible to 9-year-olds and 29-year-olds.
However, following its release, it seems Berry was quick to change her mind. She even went in person to accept her Razzie Award for Worst Actress, and with her Best Actress Oscar for Monster's Ball in hand, she said:
First of all, I want to thank Warner Brothers. Thank you for putting me in a piece of shit, god-awful movie... It was just what my career needed.
Ben Affleck - Daredevil
Although not as seemingly universally hated as Batman and Robin, Ben Affleck also felt the need to repent after appearing in Mark Steven Johnson's Daredevil. Following the release and reaction, he said:
I have regrets about all the movies that I don't think were executed properly. Look, if I thought we were remaking Daredevil, I'd be out there picketing myself.
I'm hard on myself, and I have exacting standards and I want to do excellent work and I don't always succeed, but I think you have to start out with that drive.
Let's just hope he doesn't have to 'do a Clooney' after playing Batman in the upcoming Batman v. Superman: Dawn of Justice.
Do you forgive George Clooney for Batman and Robin?