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34 stars who regret famous movie roles, from Kate Winslet to Viola Davis

“What are your biggest regrets?” This might be one of the more obvious questions a journalist can ask an actor, but the answer can often be hugely revealing.

For instance, many actors have spoken negatively about their time spent as a superhero (Ben Affleck, Jessica Alba, Halle Berry), portraying a teenage heartthrob (Robert Pattinson, Zac Efron) or continuing with a long-running franchise (Matt Damon, Daniel Radcliffe).

Others have said they took a job solely on a director’s filmography only to be let down by the final results of their collaboration (Charlize Theron).

Most surprising are those actors who appear in iconic roles, yet look back with disdain (Christopher Plummer, Idris Elba).

Below, The Independent looks at 34 actors who regret some of their biggest roles, from Viola Davis in The Help to Colin Farrell in Miami Vice.

Click through below to see who made the list

34 actors who regret big roles

Viola Davis – The Help: Viola Davis was nominated for an Oscar for The Help. Yet, the actor deeply regretted playing the maid Aibileen Clark, saying her character’s voice is not heard enough in the final film.
Viola Davis – The Help: Viola Davis was nominated for an Oscar for The Help. Yet, the actor deeply regretted playing the maid Aibileen Clark, saying her character’s voice is not heard enough in the final film.
Megan Fox – Transformers: The Transformers franchise may have grossed billions of dollars at the box-office, but critics have never looked kindly upon the films. Neither has Megan Fox, who told Entertainment Weekly that “people are well aware that this is not a movie about acting”. She also previously took aim at director Michael Bay, saying: “He wants to be like Hitler on his sets, and he is, so he's a nightmare to work for.” Fox later retracted the comment, calling it “righteous anger” that should have not been made public. (Paramount)
Katherine Heigl – Knocked Up: Knocked Up remains one of Katherine Heigl’s best-known roles, despite the actor having said she found the whole thing “a little sexist
Katherine Heigl – Knocked Up: Knocked Up remains one of Katherine Heigl’s best-known roles, despite the actor having said she found the whole thing “a little sexist
Idris Elba – The Wire: Few people knew who Idris Elba was before The Wire. Despite the acclaim that came from playing Stringer Bell on the hugely popular crime show, Elba has some regrets.
Idris Elba – The Wire: Few people knew who Idris Elba was before The Wire. Despite the acclaim that came from playing Stringer Bell on the hugely popular crime show, Elba has some regrets.
Harrison Ford – Blade Runner: There are famously seven cuts of Blade Runner. One of those features Harrison Ford’s character, Rick Deckard, narrating scenes. Another – the one director Ridley Scott approves of – is bleaker and does not have Deckard explaining events. Ford does not care for either version.
Harrison Ford – Blade Runner: There are famously seven cuts of Blade Runner. One of those features Harrison Ford’s character, Rick Deckard, narrating scenes. Another – the one director Ridley Scott approves of – is bleaker and does not have Deckard explaining events. Ford does not care for either version.
Daniel Craig – James Bond: For a time, many people were not sure whether Daniel Craig would return as James Bond for the 25th film in the series.
Daniel Craig – James Bond: For a time, many people were not sure whether Daniel Craig would return as James Bond for the 25th film in the series.
Channing Tatum – GI Joe:
Channing Tatum – GI Joe:
Robert Pattinson – Twilight: Most actors who regret taking on roles would wait a few years until publicly bemoaning their experience on set. Not Robert Pattinson. Before the final Twilight film was in cinemas, the actor said of playing the vampire heartthrob Edward Cullen:
Robert Pattinson – Twilight: Most actors who regret taking on roles would wait a few years until publicly bemoaning their experience on set. Not Robert Pattinson. Before the final Twilight film was in cinemas, the actor said of playing the vampire heartthrob Edward Cullen:
Jessica Alba – Fantastic Four: While superhero movies may now be Oscar Best Picture contenders (Black Panther), there was a time when playing a spandex-wearing vigilante was anything but prestigious. Jessica Alba was one of the first people to jump on the superhero boom of the mid-Noughties, playing Invisible Woman in Fantastic Four. The experience, though, left her wanting to quit acting altogether.
Ryan Reynolds – Green Lantern: Ryan Reynolds has never watched Green Lantern all the way through. That has not stopped the actor being highly critical of the superhero role, going as far as having Deadpool – who he later played – shoot a fictional version of himself in the head for taking on the role. Ouch. (Warner Bros)
Ryan Reynolds – Green Lantern: Ryan Reynolds has never watched Green Lantern all the way through. That has not stopped the actor being highly critical of the superhero role, going as far as having Deadpool – who he later played – shoot a fictional version of himself in the head for taking on the role. Ouch. (Warner Bros)
Kate Winslet – Titanic: Kate Winslet does not mind Titanic as a film. Her performance as Rose is a completely different matter.
Kate Winslet – Titanic: Kate Winslet does not mind Titanic as a film. Her performance as Rose is a completely different matter.