10 Famous Celebrities Who Ruined Their Career

Fame is a powerful metric for determining celebrity status, but it is also one of the best teachers of life. If what comes with fame doesn’t destroy you then you have mastered the craft of staying grounded despite being famous. Sometimes fame and money drive people in a direction so dangerous that it starts becoming the reason for their career dwindling significantly. This article will be about celebrities who went in a downward spiral because of some decisions they made in life.

Here are 10 such famous celebrities who ruined their career with their act:

10. Ben Johnson, Canadian Sprinter

Ben Johnson

Ben Johnson hit the pinnacle of his career when he set two consecutive records: 100 meters world records at the 1987 World Championships in Athletics and the 1988 Summer Olympics. He was caught for doping and that lead to him losing the Olympic title and both the records. He set the Olympic record during the 1988 summer Olympics in Seoul but was disqualified after three days when the Olympic doping control center found that Johnson’s urine sample contained a banned substance. He attempted a comeback in 1991 by participating in the Hamilton indoor games and came second in the race. In 1993, he won a 50m race but was later found guilty of doping and it consequently left him being banned for life by IAAF.

9. Jordan Belfort, Author

Jordan Belfort

Jordan Belfort is a former stockbroker who was found guilty in 1999 for fraud and related crimes in connection with manipulating the stock market and running a penny stock scam. Jordan was extremely smart with respect to understanding the nuances of the stock market and was quite successful in cashing in on the insights he had about the stock market. As money started flowing in, he was involved in a lot of debaucheries and began to find solace in using drugs. At one point of time, Belfort was married to Bay Ridge model Nadine Caridi and later she divorced him citing extreme drug addiction and extramarital affairs with other women. Despite him making it a point to donate to restitution payment and becoming a motivational speaker, Jordan hasn’t been able to jump back to his days of glory as a stockbroker.

8. Lance Armstrong, Cyclist

Lance Armstrong

In the world of cycling, nobody has ever enjoyed so much fame as Lance Armstrong. At the same time, there is no other cyclist that has garnered so much notoriety when his entire career came crashing down when he confessed of doping. Lance was a subject of doping allegations ever since he won the 1999 Tour De France. In 2012, the United States Anti-Doping Agency concluded that he had been using performance-enhancing drugs and it led to him being stripped of every achievement he was awarded since August 1998. Not only was he banned from professionally competing in cycling, but he received a lifelong ban from all sports that follow the World Anti-Doping Agency. His public image took another plunge when he confessed in a 2013 interview about using performance-enhancing drugs.

7. O. J. Simpson, Actor & Football Player

O. J. Simpson had a very successful professional football career and was doing well as an actor when he completely ruined his career. Simpson had just finished with an A-Team like TV series by Warner Bros. Television which was known as Frogmen in 1994. The two-hour-long adventure series was never aired after he was convicted and arrested for murdering his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend. The project was canceled.

Simpson didn’t turn up at the police station as he was the matter of interest in the case. But, it ended up as a low-speed pursuit in a Ford car that was aired live on televisions. An estimated 95 million people viewed the pursuit live. The pursuit, arrest, and trail have been described as America’s one of the most widely publicized events. After the international publicity of the trial, the trail was termed as the trial of the century.

6. Oscar Pistorius, South African Runner

Oscar Pistorius is extremely famous in the world of athletics, especially in the field of Paralympic athletics. He was considered a Paralympic champion because of the fame and recognition he had amassed in a short period of time and was considered to break a few more records until he was convicted for murdering his girlfriend. On 14th February 2013, he fatally shot his girlfriend and was later arrested for murder. During his trial, he was found not guilty of murder but was charged with culpable homicide and was sent to prison for 5 years. On appeal by the state for a longer prison sentence, Oscar’s prison sentence was extended to 13 years and 5 months.

5. Charlie Sheen, Actor

Charlie Sheen

Charlie Sheen was most popularly known for his role as Charlier Harper in the TV series Two and a Half Men. The series made him the highest paid actor on television. He was paid a whopping $1.8 Million dollars for every episode of Two and a Half Men. All of this came crashing when he made derogatory comments about the creator of Two and a Half Men and was eventually thrown out of the show. In the wake of the dismissal, he had a highly dramatic and publicized meltdown. In interviews, he had suggested that he was a “warlock” with “tiger blood” and was winning. In the midst of all this, his personal life had also made headlines. He was reportedly accused of drug & alcohol abuse, marital problems, and domestic violence. All of this took a major blow on his career and consequently his public image.

4. Mel Gibson, Actor

Mel Gibson

Mel Gibson has always enjoyed the status of being one among the top action stars in Hollywood. His popularity began to plummet when he made crass and racial comments. Gibson’s comments were so controversial that it resulted in him being blacklisted in Hollywood for close to a decade. He also faced a lot of flak when he made derogatory comments about homosexuals. His career suffered largely and only after few actors and journalists intervened, was Gibson publicly forgiven. He is also a famous filmmaker who made a comeback after 10 years with the hit movie Hacksaw Ridge (2016) that won the Academy Awards.

3. Anna Nicole Smith, Model

Anna Nicole Smith

Anna Nicole Smith could have become a more successful model and actress but she died a tragic death by a drug overdose. She became famous after winning the title “Playmate of the Year” by Playboy magazine in 1993. Soon she signed with big fashion brands such as Guess, H&M, Heatherette and Lane Bryant. In 1994, she married an 89-year old J. Howard Marshall, a billionaire. She turned out to be a gold-digger which was denied by her. Her marriage was highly publicized. After Marshall’s death, she fought a legal and financial battle for a share of his estate. It was challenged by Marshall’s two sons. The complex legal case went on for years without any results. She was under pressure from media coverage of her personal life and legal battle. In 2007, she died of a drug overdose in a Hollywood, Florida hotel room.

2. Michael Jackson, Singer

Michael Jackson

Jackson had a splendid voice, and that is what undoubtedly made him the king of pop. As he was garnering fame at an astronomical rate, in the summer of 1993, he was accused of child abuse by a 13-year-old boy by the name Jordan Chandler. Jackson began taking drugs during this time to combat the pressure of the allegations and by the fall of 1993, Jackson was heavily addicted to drugs. After a long court battle, Jackson agreed for an out of court settlement in the Jordan case for settlement money of 22 million dollars. This was also the time when Michael got married. Due to his habits and declining popularity, he and his wife separated in 1996. Years later, Jackson was arrested for child abuse and counts of administering intoxicants in 2003. All of this collectively affected his image and popularity.

1. Tiger Woods, Golfer

Tiger Woods


According to fans and critics, the game of golf is yet to have a player like Tiger Woods. The clean swings and the intense focus and dedication for the game have always been the reason as to why Woods was placed in a pedestal in the world of golf. His image started tarnishing when the famous American supermarket tabloid; National Enquirer published a story about Tiger Woods’ suspected affair with a New York City nightclub manager. A couple of weeks later, there were allegations from multiple women in the media about them having affairs with Woods. With pressure mounting on him from the media, he released a statement admitting to adultery and announced an indefinite break from golf. Months later, Woods and his wife divorced.