Ever wondered what the real life action and drama behind the scenes is like? Die hard tv fans are often left wondering what happened to characters from their favorite tv shows. It’s pretty shocking to tune in to watch a new season and see a new actor playing a character you love or a new character all together. Everyday somewhere in the world someone is being fired or replaced. It might be a bummer, but it’s a reality of the working world. While we are familiar with the typical reasons people might be let go, these tv star’s stories are far from ordinary.
You’ll probably be wondering how in the world these notable entertainers end up in these situations. Can you imagine getting fired for being too funny? Or what about for telling a dark, inappropriate joke? We’ll get to those details soon. In showbiz, you can even be fired for being too attractive. Now, to be fair, there are a few of our favorites who totally deserved the boot. Let’s take a closer look and dive in!
Here are 10 TV Stars Fired For Stupid Reasons And 5 Who Needed To Go.
15. Fired For A Dumb Reason: John Amos (Good Times)
I’m sure J.J’s infamous “dynamite” catch phrase comes to mind whenever this hit show from the 70’s is mentioned. Ironically enough, things sure were blowing up off screen between the cast and crew. The show wasn’t afraid to deal with real life topics such as poverty and racism in Baltimore.
A few seasons in to production, and with new writers on board, the show decided to steer away from the original themes. During a radio interview, Amos says, “I guess they got tired of having their lives threatened every week over jokes”.
14. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Lisa Kudrow (Frasier)
Before her legendary performance as Phoebe on Friends, Lisa auditioned for the role of Roz Doyle on Frasier. Roz was Frasier’s strong willed producer and friend. Although we love her for her quirkiness, it didn’t exactly fit well with what director Peter Casey was looking for.
After doing read throughs with Lisa and the other cast members, the team felt something was off. Writers reportedly had to rewrite lines for Roz that were more fitting after each rehearsal. Lines that were meant to be serious ended up being hilarious, it was a different direction then the crew had in mind.
They eventually made a collective decision to replace Kudrow with Peri Gilpin, who was actually the runner-up for the role. The producers called shortly before the first pilot aired and broke the bad news.
13. Needed To Go: Thomas Gibson (Criminal Minds)
Special agent Aaron Hotchnor was part of one of the most popular FBI shows on television. His personality on the show was always stern and a bit monotone, but he was still a fan favorite.
There were apparently some behind the scenes feuds over creative differences of Hotchnor’s character. His temper got the best of him one day when he kicked one of the writer-producers during an altercation. Gibson had already had an argument with an assistant director that required him to take anger management classes. The combined incidents led to him being written off the show.
12. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Kathy Griffin (CNN)
Kathy went from being a two-time Emmy award winning comedian and host at CNN, to the focus of a serious investigation. The red headed jokester decided to do a shoot with Tyler Shields, a known “shock” photographer.
The photos depicted Griffin holding a bloody, decapitated head of President Trump. The photo was seen as a threat to Trump, leading to a federal investigation by the Justice Department. Outrage and controversy broke the internet after the photos were released, which lead to her being laid off indefinitely from the network.
11. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Erinn Hayes (Kevin Can Wait)
Fans were not too happy to hear about Erinn Hayes being fired in October from the new sitcom Kevin Can Wait. After the show made its debut in May, Erinn captured the hearts of many viewers who went as far as boycotting when they learned of her departure.
The network received a lot of backlash from people demanding answers, so CBS made a public statement saying they were just simply “moving in a new creative direction” and the decision had nothing to do with her performance.
We later discovered her replacement would be Leah Remini, who you likely remember from Kings of Queens. Well, fans were not too happy about that either. Some felt that the show was being pushed in the direction of a Kings of Queens remake that no one asked for. Erinn took to Twitter to announce she would no longer be a part of the show and thanked her fans for their support.
10. Needed To Go: Charlie Sheen (Two and a half men)
Charlie Sheen has admitted to struggling with addiction and the impact Hollywood has had on him over the past few years. While working on the hit show Two and a Half Men, he checked himself in to a rehabilitation center three times during the production of the seventh season.
Sheen would come to set on drugs, forget his lines, and was reportedly a complete jerk to everyone around him. Warner Brothers fired him after he trash talked both Chuck Lorre and CBS describing his actions as “self-destructive”. They claimed he was deteriorating both mentally and physically, lashing out at anyone who tried to help him.
9. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Steve Whitmire (The Muppets)
Steve Whitmore is one of the greatest puppeteers of all time. He made his legendary debut in 1978 as the voice of Kermit on The Muppets. Steve spent 27 years working on Muppet productions, including classic cult films The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth. Steve eventually took over for creator Jim Henson after his death in 1990.
It was important to Steve to protect the image of the beloved frog. New creative clashes quickly occurred once Steve was informed that Kermit would have to tell a lie to Ms. Piggy. He felt this compromised the integrity of the character and refused to negotiate.
Disney called his actions “overly hostile and unproductive” which delayed the production process. Wittmore spent years battling over lines and contracts before he got the boot. Aw, we’ll miss you Steve!
8. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Brett Butler (Grace Under fire)
Fans who loved Grace Under Fire were shocked to know that Brett Butler struggled with addiction in her personal life as well as on set. “I did pretty much everything but crack and needles” she said during an ABC interview. Brett would show up to work on drugs and exhibited disturbing behavior, that made it nearly impossible to perform.
She was asked to leave in 1998 after five seasons on the show, which was cancelled soon after. Brett took some time away from L.A after being dismissed and moved to a farm in Georgia. She reportedly lived with fifteen animals, including cows and chickens. Unfortunately, she had more rough times ahead as she ran out of money and the former golden globe nominee announced she was homeless in 2011.
7. Needed To Go: Gilbert Gottfried (Aflac)
This outspoken comedian says he was born without a censor. He seemed to be right. Shortly after the tragic earthquake that took place in Japan in 2011, Gilbert tweeted a series of jokes about the disaster. One in particular goes on to say “Japan called me. They said maybe those jokes are a hit in the US, but over here they’re sinking”.
Not only should Gottfried have known better, especially since he had already received backlash for his 9/11 jokes, but he should have done a little research. Japan is a massive client for Aflac, as they handle approximately 75% of foreign insurance in Japan.
6. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Lynn Redgrave (House Calls)
The two-time Golden Globe award winning series House Calls hit television screens in 1979. Lynn Redgrave played Ann Anderson, a charming hospital administrator surrounded by difficult doctors. Behind the scenes, Redgrave was married to John Clark, who was co-producer of the show. After the birth of their third child, things took a turn, as Redgrave was fired for breastfeeding her newborn baby during production hours. She felt this decision was unfair and hired an attorney to defend her position. A lawsuit was pursued in court against Universal which took six years for a settlement to be reached.
The network had a very different side to the story. Universal made a public statement claiming Redgrave was fired because of her salary demands. They also filed a countersuit for breach of contract and illegally recording a phone conversation that was presented in court. Despite that, Redgrave expressed how she was treated unfairly when asked about being fired publicly. The actress said she “felt dumped on” and was shocked at the system. She returned to films in the early 90s, making movies such as Shine and What Ever Happened To Baby Jane? Although her life was cut short in 2010, Redgrave made a memorable mark in Hollywood.
5. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Leah Remini (The Talk)
When it started out, The Talk featured Leah Remini, Sharon Osbourne, and Holly Robinson Pete. The show had over 2 million dedicated viewers tuning in at home, but after just one season, Leah and Holly were fired.
From there, Leah took to Twitter and blamed her for being fired! The actress claimed Osbourne thought she was ghetto and awkward. Osbourne responded and denied any involvement with the decision to replace her. Interestingly enough, Leah found herself on the other side of the coin following the firing and replacement of Erinn Hayes from Kevin Can Wait.
Holly also spoke out years later about losing her job on The Talk. She claimed the network let her go under unprofessional circumstances that left her confused. Do you think Sharon had anything to do with this?
4. Needed To Go: Matt Lauer (Today Show)
There’s a mass uncovering of creeps in Hollywood lately, who have been accused of inappropriate behavior in the workplace. Matt was a familiar face in our homes for 20 years on NBC’s Today Show, and the next to have his true colors exposed.
After several women came forward to report sexual misconduct and harassment, it was announced that Mr. Lauer was being let go. These reports included claims of him giving sex toys to colleagues as presents, sending sexual text messages, and exposing himself in private offices. Matt took the time to say “some of what is being said about me is untrue or mischaracterized, but there’s enough truth in these stories to make me feel embarrassed”.
3. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Damon Wayans (Saturday Night Live)
Mr. Wayans comes from a family of hilarious siblings who all made their mark on Hollywood together. In the 1980’s, as a struggling comedian, Wayans decided to take a job on Saturday Night Live after Eddie Murphy went on to do bigger and better things.
They gave him a few lines, but he craved the spotlight and wanted to be more of a stand-out performer. Lorne Michaels, creator of the hit show, saw things a little differently, and wouldn’t give Wayans the freedom that he wanted. During what was suppose to be a sketch between a straight cop and a man, Damon improvised and decided it would be funnier if he played a flamboyantly gay man. The audience loved it, but Michaels was not happy and fired Wayans after the episode.
2. Fired For A Dumb Reason: Robert Downey Jr. (Ally McBeal)
Imagine you’re a cop and you get a call saying there’s a guy roaming the street, barefoot and seemingly under the influence. Welcome to the train-wreck that was Robert Downey Jr. pre-Iron Man.
Downey struggled with addiction for a chunk of his career, and the decision to let him go after numerous drug related charges was pretty necessary. The bad boy actor was arrested with charges of drug possession in 2001 and the incident ended up being the straw that broke the camel’s back. The producers of Ally McBeal fired him soon after.
1. Needed To Go: Katie Redford (Coronation Street)
While it is not a big deal if a woman lies about her age in her daily life, it’s a different issue when the lie is being told to the producers of a series. Redford auditioned for the role of Sarah Platt’s 14 year old daughter on the soap opera Coronation Street. She claimed to be 19 at the time, which nobody questioned due to her innocent looks and baby face.
While this might have worked in an earlier decade, the social media age would not accept this deception. Fans of the show knew her real age and began angrily tweeting about it. Katie was actually 25 at the time, which was only two years younger than her on-screen mother. To clarify, she wanted a part as a 14 year old, said she was 19, but was really 25.
Her agents tried shifting the blame, stating that she was advised to fabricate her age because people do it all of time.
Did we miss any of your favorite behind the scene meltdowns? Let us know in the comments!
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