Actors who were massive divas on set


It’s not easy being an actor. They’ve got to show up to glamorous locations, remember stuff, and eat free food, while being paid exorbitant amounts of money. It’s tough, it’s tough.

So it’s probably not surprising that some of them occasionally kick off on set, make unreasonable demands, or just generally act like proper divas. Here’s our selection of the most memorable / deplorable.

Warning: Don’t try any of the following in your office.

Gary Busey – ‘Quigley’ (2003)

Gary Busey’s heavenly Quigley (credit: Gaiam – Entertainment)

Okay, so this is maybe the most ridiculous entry on this list – and we’re not even talking about the film’s plot (Gary Busey dies and comes back to his family as a dog).

No, it’s the silliest diva strop because it involves Gary Busey angrily trying to convince his coworkers that not only had he been to heaven, he knew exactly what it looked like, down to very specific details. That’s according to his Quigley co-star Curtis Armstrong.

After showing up on a set made to look like heaven, Busey examined the production design and said, “I can’t play this scene,” Armstrong recalled.

According to Armstrong, Busey said: “It’s nothing like this. I’ve been to heaven and it doesn’t look like this. That sofa’s all wrong. That mirror is ridiculous. They don’t even have mirrors!”

Heaven-forbid they get God’s sofas wrong!

Read more: 10 worst movies by Oscar-winning actors

Christian Bale – ‘Terminator Salvation’ (2009)

Christian Bale turned down Terminator Salvation three times

You’ve all heard the tape, Christian Bale’s temper-tantrum on the set of Terminator Salvation has achieved more long-lasting notoriety than anything in the movie.

Annoyed by the fact his director of photography was adjusting lights during a scene (which is a bit unusual, to be fair), Christian Bale unleashed his full Patrick Bateman on the unsuspecting technician.

The exchange was taped, leaked, and Bale’s diva strop became one of the most quoted and parodied quotes of the year.

All together now: “NO! NO!”

Jared Leto – ‘Suicide Squad’ (2016)

Jared Leto’s Joker was annoying in more ways than one (credit: Warner Brothers)

Jared Leto was dedicated to staying in character as the Joker on the set of Suicide Squad to such an extreme extent Will Smith said “I literally have not met him yet,” during the shoot.

Unfortunately, the Joker appears to be a bit of an immature diva, forcing everyone to live in his weird world. Leto used his ‘method’ ‘acting’ as an excuse to bring a dead pig to set to gross out the crew, send Margot Robbie a box containing a live rat, and to make the rest of the cast recieved gifts of anal beads and used condoms, because… Well, who knows. We really don’t remember the ‘used condoms’ episode of Batman: The Animated Series, but maybe it was one we missed.

Leto also insisted on being referred to as ‘Mr J’ on set, and visiting journalists were advised not to look him in the eye or address him directly, because… Again, who knows. Maybe he would have killed us? That probably would have taken him to the top of this list.

Read more: Jared Leto may never play the Joker again

Mike Myers – ‘The Cat In The Hat’ (2003)

In character, sans chocolate (credit: Warner Brothers)

Woah boy. Back in 2016, one of Mike Myers’ Cat In The Hat co-stars Amy Hill described working with the actor as “a horrible, nightmarish experience”, due to the Austin Powers star’s “diva” behaviour.

“It was just a horrible, nightmarish experience” Hill said. “I don’t think [Mike] got to know anybody. He’d just be with his people and walk away. People would come and then he’d stand there. There was a guy who held his chocolates in a little Tupperware. Whenever he needed chocolate, he’d come running over and give him a chocolate. That’s what divas are like, I guess. Or people who need therapy.”


Wesley Snipes – ‘Blade Trinity’ (2004)

Wesley Snipes shortly before composing a Post-it note (credit: Warner Brothers)

Now, we love Wesley Snipes. And we also love the first Blade movie. The third Blade movie, Blade: Trinity, not so much. And it sounds like it was about as much fun to make as it is to watch, mostly because of Wesley Snipes’ diva behaviour, according to Snipes’ co-star Patton Oswalt.

According to Oswalt, Snipes sat down with director David S Goyer and said: “I think you need to quit. You’re detrimental to this movie.”

Apparently, Goyer’s response was “Why don’t you quit? We’ve got all your close-ups and we could shoot the rest with your stand-in”.

“And that freaked Wesley out so much that, for the rest of the production, he would only communicate with the director through Post-it notes. And he would sign each Post-it note ‘From Blade.’”

Read more: Controversial interviews that nearly killed careers

Morgan Freeman – ‘Clean and Sober’ (1988)

Morgan Freeman and Michael Keaton in Clean and Sober (credit: Imagine Entertainment)

When Michael Keaton was cast alongside Morgan Freeman in Glenn Gordon Caron’s 1988 drama Clean and Sober, he probably thought he was going to get to chill out listening to one of the most soothing voices in showbiz during the off-camera moments during the shoot. He was wrong.

“We were in between setups for a scene,” Keaton said years later. “The cast were all laughing and joking together and enjoying themselves, when all of a sudden Morgan gets loud and upset about something. He throws this tantrum and it’s like ‘Whoa, Jesus’.”

“He was sitting there by himself in his chair a bit later on, so I went up to him and said, ‘Hey are you all right, are you upset about anything?’ And he was like, ‘What are you talking about?’ So I just said, ‘You know, the thing earlier?’, and he goes ‘Nahh! I just did it on purpose.’”

“‘I was like, ‘Are you kidding?’, and he just said he thought everybody was getting too comfortable, which you don’t want on a movie like this, you need to have a little bit of edge. So he threw a fake tantrum, which is really cool.”

Really cool? Or a bit weird? You decide! We’re pretty sure pretending to be a diva to get your way, is pretty much the same thing as actually being a diva, but who are we to judge?



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