Tomorrow morning, the Academy will reveal the nominees for this year's Oscars, but this morning, a very different set of nominees was announced: The 34th annual Razzie Awards, which "honors" the worst films and performances of the year. The Razzies aren't exactly the most reputable of sources — this is, after all, an "awards show" that used most of its 2004 ceremony to mock President Bush — but they do offer a much-needed break from the self-congratulatory tone of awards season.
This year's list includes more than a few high-profile targets, including Worst Actor nominees Johnny Depp (The Lone Ranger) and Ashton Kutcher (Jobs), and Worst Actress nominees Lindsay Lohan (The Canyons) and Selena Gomez (Getaway). But any actor or filmmaker who despairs to see their name on the list shouldn't sweat it — history shows that some of the world's most acclaimed actors have also earned Razzies of their very own:
1. Laurence Olivier
Between 1939 and 1978, Laurence Olivier was nominated for 10 Oscars, with a Best Actor win for the title role in 1948's Hamlet and a Lifetime Achievement Award at the ceremony in 1979. Just two years later, he won a Razzie for playing General MacArthur in the critically maligned Inchon, beating out the likes of Willie Aames in Zapped! and Arnold Schwarzenegger in Conan the Barbarian. When asked why he had agreed to star in a film like Inchon in the first place, Olivier gave this now-legendary response: "Money, dear boy. I'm like a vintage wine. You have to drink me quickly before I turn sour."
2. Liza Minelli
(Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images For Tribeca Film Festival)
Liza Minelli earned a Best Actress Oscar relatively early in her career for her performance as Sally Bowles in 1972's Cabaret. Though she was able to parlay that success into acclaimed performances in New York, New York and Arthur, she probably should have turned the critically maligned sequel down; in 1988, she was awarded the Worst Actress Razzie for her dual performances in Rent-A-Cop and Arthur 2: On the Rocks. But don't feel too bad for Minelli; another Oscar win has eluded her, but if you count her four Tonys and the special award she received from the Grammys, she's one of the only people in the world to earn an EGOT.
3. Faye Dunaway
(Kurt Vinion/Getty Images)
In 1976, Faye Dunaway won Best Actress for her brilliant turn in the prescient media satire Network. But just five years later, she was up for Worst Actress at the Razzies for one of her most polarizing roles: Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest. Though Dunaway's hysterical performance earned praise from the National Society of Film Critics and the New York Film Critics Circle, it also netted her the Worst Actress Razzie (in a tie with her "co-winner," Bo Derek from Tarzan, the Ape Man).
4. Kevin Costner
(Dominique Charriau/Getty Images)
In 1991, Kevin Costner won a pair of Oscars for directing and producing Dances with Wolves (though he lost Best Actor to Jeremy Irons in Reversal of Fortune). But any disappointment about missing out on the acting prize can be weighed against the three Worst Actor trophies he has since earned from the Razzies: 1991's Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, 1994's Wyatt Earp, and 1997's The Postman.
5. Roberto Benigni
(Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images)
After winning Best Actor for Life is Beautiful in 1999, Roberto Benigni had the power to make pretty much any film he wanted. Unfortunately, the film he decided to make was Pinocchio, in which the 50-year-old actor cast himself as a boy puppet. Critically, Pinocchio was one of the worst-received movies of the decade, though the film did manage to net six Razzie nominations, including Benigni's win for Worst Actor.
6. Ben Affleck
(Theo Wargo/Getty Images)
If you need any evidence for how tumultuous a Hollywood career can be, look no further than Ben Affleck, who won the Worst Actor Razzie for three separate movies — Daredevil, Gigli, and Paycheck — in 2003. It was a disappointing turn for a man who won his first Oscar all the way back in 1997 for co-writing Good Will Hunting, but Affleck managed to dig himself out of the hole, netting a Best Picture win for last year's Argo, which he also directed and starred in.
7. Halle Berry
Just a few years after winning an Oscar for Best Actress for her performance in Monster's Ball, Halle Berry was named Worst Actress for her starring turn in the ridiculous Catwoman. Unlike most "winners," Berry herself turned up to claim the award, delivering an acceptance speech with her Razzie in her right hand and her Oscar in her left. "First of all, I want to thank Warner Bros.," said Berry. "Thank you for putting me in a piece-of-shit, god-awful movie."
8. Sandra Bullock
(Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Like Halle Berry, Sandra Bullock decided to take her 2009 Razzie nomination for All About Steve in stride. Bullock showed up to accept her Worst Actress trophy with a wagon full of DVDs, asking attendees to re-watch the film and rethink their votes. "I will come back next year. I will give back the Razzie," said Bullock. Anyone who doubted Bullock's acting chops needed only to tune into the following night's Oscar ceremony, where the newly-minted Worst Actress earned the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in The Blind Side.
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How academia's liberal bias is killing social science
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Dick Cheney's America is an ugly place
- The Hobbit: A disappointing set of movies, but a worthy set of prequels
- America is building a Sunni army in Iraq to take on the Islamic State
- How to make the ultimate grilled cheese
- The age of miracles is over — even for the religious
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- The liberation of Barack Obama
- What the media gets wrong about Jeb Bush
Subscribe to the Week