Easy & Difficult Actors To Work With According To Their Co-StarsPublished on August 13, 2019. Updated November 13, 2019
Over the years, it has become clear that some stars in Hollywood are the most highly sought after, but being one of the top stars doesn’t always translate to being one of the most popular to work with. Bad behavior on-set has caused major feuds between costars and between stars and their directors, and has even gotten some stars fired from big roles. When the behavior happens enough times it isn’t surprising that word starts to get around, and a bad reputation begins to define them. On the flip side, there are always stars that costars can’t stop gushing about because of their work ethic and how easy it is to work with them. Here are some of the easiest and most difficult actors to work with according to their co-stars:
16. Difficult: Johnny Depp
For a very long time in his career, Johnny Depp was one of the most revered actors in the industry. He took on any eccentric role and brought it to life with such talent that he truly seemed to be everywhere. Unfortunately for the beloved star, more recent years haven’t been so kind to him and as his personal turmoil has been dragged through the spotlight, it seems he has changed quite a bit from the actor many were used to working with. After it was reported that Depp was in financial ruin, it was added that he no longer had a choice but to continue portraying Captain Jack Sparrow because he needed the paycheck seemingly suggesting he no longer enjoyed being there. In 2018 Depp was actually sued after a crew member on his film City of Lies alleged that Depp punched him. The man, Gregg Brooks, claimed that Depp reeked of alcohol and became angry when Brooks told him that they only had one more attempt at a shot after many failed attempts by the actor. As the star became angry, Brooks sought out an LAPD officer for protection but Depp followed him and then allegedly punched him twice in the ribs while yelling, “Who the f— are you? You have no right to tell me what to do.” After Depp hit him, Brooks says that Depp then said he would give him “$100,000 to punch me in the face right now” and Brooks refused to engage in the fight. He added that Depp eventually had to be removed from the set by bodyguards. Meanwhile Depp claimed self-defense. More reports of Depp not learning scripts and needing an earpiece to be fed lines have also surfaced, and it seems he is not someone that many want to work with anymore.
15. Easy: Dwayne Johnson
Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson has made the transition from WWE superstar to Hollywood’s highest paid actor with incredible ease, and you don’t become the highest paid actor in the industry without people wanting to work with you. Zac Efron, who worked with Johnson on Baywatch, praised his costar, saying, “He’s always expanding, and he just gets better as he goes, like a flower that never stops blooming.” Of course, Johnson did have some issues when it came to his famous feud with his Fast & Furious costar Vin Diesel while Tyrese Gibson claimed that Johnson had taken over the franchise and his spinoff Hobbs & Shaw was delaying the release of Fast 9. Johnson however had called out some of his male costars for being “candy-asses” so it is hard to discern who the real problem on-set was.
14. Difficult: Bruce Willis
Like Johnny Depp, it seems Bruce Willis’ reputation has changed slightly over the years and he is now considered one of the more difficult Hollywood stars to work with. One of the first times that Willis was called out for his on-set behavior was by Kevin Smith who directed the actor in 2010’s Cop Out. He called the experience “soul crushing” and allegedly said at the wrap party “I want to thank everyone who worked on the film, except for Bruce Willis, who is a f*cking dick.” Three years later, Sylvester Stallone spoke out about dropping Willis from Expendables 3, tweeting, “GREEDY AND LAZY . . . A SURE FORMULA FOR CAREER FAILURE,” after it was revealed that Willis demanded a pay increase despite a very minimal role in the film. On top of all of these reactions from stars who have worked with Willis, it has been well noted that he is a notoriously poor interview subject and his bad attitude is now well known.
13. Easy: Sterling K. Brown
Actor Sterling K. Brown really began to turn heads with his standout role in the popular NBC drama This Is Us, but he has been one of the most respected men in the industry for many years. While the cast of This Is Us can’t stop gushing about each other, it seems that Brown is often the one talked about the most. Mandy Moore admitted that Brown is the one member of the cast and crew that everyone “could (and do) gush about endlessly.” Iconic writer/director/creator Ryan Murphy also said, “I’m not surprised at all at his success, because once we started working together, I was like, ‘Oh. This guy is, like, Marlon Brando good.’ …I think Sterling is also somebody who can do anything.” With so much work left ahead of him, it is clear Sterling K. Brown has quite the impeccable reputation to keep up.
12. Difficult: Alec Baldwin
Alec Baldwin doesn’t have the best reputation when it comes to those who have worked with him on various projects. Baldwin has become known as a “nightmare” to work with going back several years, but many of the stories came from his time on NBC’s 30 Rock. There were many reports that Baldwin was constantly yelling at the cast and crew, often held up production because he was late and complained quite often for things as ridiculous as the air being “too dry.” Cheyenne Jackson who had worked with Baldwin on 30 Rock said, “What I learned from him was really good comedic timing and don’t get in his light.” Of course, his poor reputation on-set is equally matched by the numerous stories of Baldwin losing his temper, throwing tantrums and being blatantly rude in public.
11. Easy: George Clooney
George Clooney is one of the most iconic actors of his generation, and while some would assume that he would be the classic “jerk” because of his fame and worth, it turns out he has never let being at the top of the A-list change his demeanor, passion and professionalism. Many stars have sung Clooney’s praises as an actor and a director. “George is amazing. He’s generous. He’s smart. He’s funny. He’s an actor, so he knows how to work with actors. He speaks the same language, so there’s no running around trying to get on the same page. It’s like we had known each other for years,” Evan Rachel Wood said of working with Clooney on The Ides of March. Praises much like Evan Rachel Wood’s have echoed throughout Hollywood over Clooney’s many years in the industry.
10. Difficult: Kiefer Sutherland
While some have been vocal about enjoying their time working with actor Kiefer Sutherland, others have been even more vocal about how difficult he is to work with. One of the most shocking who spoke out was actor Freddie Prinze Jr. The notoriously private and quiet star said, “I did 24, it was terrible. I hated every moment of it. Kiefer was the most unprofessional dude in the world. That’s not me talking trash, I’d say it to his face, everybody that’s worked with him has said that. And I just wanted to quit the business after that. So, I just sort of stopped.” He didn’t stop there either, Prinze Jr. continued, “I went and worked for Vince McMahon at the WWE…and it was a crazier job than working with Kiefer. But, at least he was cool and tall. I didn’t have to take my shoes off to do scenes with him, which they made me do. Just put the guy on an apple box or don’t hire me next time. You know I’m six feet and he’s five-four.” Additionally, actress Shohreh Aghdashloo said that Sutherland was not only hard to work with but even accused him of getting her fired.
9. Easy: Jim Parsons
Actor Jim Parsons stole the show as Dr. Sheldon Cooper on The Big Bang Theory and while he may play an insufferable albeit funny know-it-all for the show, off-screen Parsons is nothing but loved. Parsons has been called a “comic genius” while his on-screen love interest Mayim Bialik said, “He’s fantastic. He’s very professional. He gives a lot of room for trying new things.” Along with his costars, Parsons has been praised by creators and directors in the industry including Ryan Murphy who worked with the actor on The Normal Heart, saying, “Jim as a person, an artist, and an actor has a really rare gift. He has a real purity and simplicity. …There’s never a false note with Jim.”
8. Difficult: Chevy Chase
Chevy Chase has had a fairly dramatic fall from grace in recent years. The once revered actor has become known for his often offensive comments, but as it turns out this attitude is nothing new for the actor. Although he became a comedy legend during his one season of Saturday Night Live back in 1975, it was revealed that he lasted only one season because it was so difficult for the rest of the cast to get along with him. He was known for verbally abusing the cast members during his appearances and in 1997 he hit Chery Oteri in the back of the head while rehearsing which caused Will Ferrell to complain and Chevy Chase is now the only SNL cast member to ever be banned from the show. He didn’t change his ways however and had a very contentious run on the hit series Community, where he was again reportedly verbally abusing everyone on set and continuously threw around racial slurs. He then openly criticized the show, saying, “It’s just a f***ing mediocre sitcom! I want people to laugh, and this isn’t funny,” which led to a public feud with creator Dan Harmon. Community star Joel McHale has been open about Chase’s behavior on set and said “He didn’t want to be there,” adding, “when I would try [to calm him down], he would just try to fight me, physically fight me.”
7. Easy: Paul Rudd
Paul Rudd seems like one of the most down-to-earth and humble stars in Hollywood, and apparently that isn’t an act! For years, Paul Rudd has been regarded as one of the easiest and nicest men to work with in the industry. Jennifer Aniston has always been there to gush about Rudd especially after working together on Friends, The Object of My Affection and Wanderlust. “I love him. He is a dear friend,” Aniston said of working with Rudd. “We just have a true affection for each other and I just feel honored any time I get to work with him.” Director David Wain has also said, “He genuinely makes me laugh all the time and he’ll take material that I’ve written or co-written and make it twice as funny just by viewing it with his personality and his acting.”
6. Difficult: William Shatner
William Shatner is one of the most iconic men in Hollywood thanks to his time as Captain James T. Kirk in the original Star Trek series and its consequent films, but unfortunately he has a very poor reputation. Shatner has reportedly upset many costars over the years and even created some pretty notable feuds including with Leonard Nimoy, although the two reportedly reconciled before Nimoy’s death. Additionally, Star Trek‘s George Takei and Shatner have been feuding for more than 40 years, and Takei has not held back on how difficult it was to work with Shatner because of his ego. “He is Canadian. And Canadians have a certain image of being even-tempered and friendly and all that,” Takei said of Shatner. “Well, he is a person who is that way … with himself. He is very self-centered.”
5. Easy: Keanu Reeves
Canadian actor Keanu Reeves has had a strange trajectory in Hollywood, and while he may be introverted and at times aloof when it comes to his fame, it seems to be common knowledge that he is fantastic to work with, no matter what project he is on. It is known that for most of his career Reeves has donated a good portion of his salaries to charities and does not live the same luxurious lifestyle as most celebrities. Back when he was filming The Matrix it was reported that after he heard about a crew member’s family struggles, he gave the crew member his $20,000 bonus. More recently, Reeves’ John Wick costar Alfie Allen said, “He’s amazing. He’s such a great guy. He’s a very giving, generous actor as well and just kind of relaxes you on set.”
4. Difficult: Steven Seagal
Even before the numerous reports that Steven Seagal had sexually harassed multiple women on-set for years, it was known that he was a bit of a nightmare. There are many rumors that Seagal’s ego and temper has led to him physically abusing costars and crew members on set, and actor John Leguizamo was one of the stars who opened up about his experience working with the star. “I’m playing his Master Sargeant, and we come in for rehearsals and he says, ‘I’m in command. Everything I say is law. Anybody doesn’t agree?’ I was like, ‘Bwahahaha.’ I started cracking up because he sounded like a retard … He came up and he Taekwondo’ed my ass against the brick and he [hit me with his elbow] … He’s six-foot-five and he caught me off guard and knocked all of the air out of me and I was like, ‘Why?! Why?!’ I really wanted to say how big and fat he was and that he runs like a girl, but I didn’t because all I could say was, ‘Why?!’ Why’d he slam me against the wall? We were rehearsing,” Leguizamo shared.
3. Easy: Hugh Jackman
Hugh Jackman is one man that everyone just can’t get enough of. He has been one of the biggest chameleons in Hollywood, going from starring as tough comic book hero Logan/The Wolverine in the X-Men franchise to singing his heart out in Les Miserables and The Greatest Showman, and along the way he has become known as one of the best men in Hollywood to work with. Jackman has received major praise from actors across the industry including iconic actor Patrick Stewart who starred along side Jackman in the X-men movies. “He is sweet-natured, lovely, and funny every day,” Stewart said. Meanwhile Eddie Redmayne said that Jackman is”incredibly talented, ridiculously hardworking, and unbelievably generous.”
2. Difficult: Charlie Sheen
It is no secret that Charlie Sheen has a really bad reputation. Sheen is notorious for his partying lifestyle, and outbursts, and he doesn’t hide it when he is on set either. It was widely reported when a feud between Sheen and Two and a Half Men’s creator Chuck Lorre led to Sheen’s removal from the series which included “a series of well-chronicled and increasingly erratic outbursts,” and his behavior didn’t change when he went on to star in Anger Management. According to reports, Sheen was so difficult to work with that Selma Blair eventually complained and when she did Sheen “went full throttle into getting her off the show immediately.”
1. Easy: Tom Hanks
When one celebrity is in the spotlight for decades, it isn’t uncommon for their attitude and how others perceive them to change, much like what happened to Johnny Depp, but then there are others who are unfaltering no matter how many years go by and one of those stars is Tom Hanks. The beloved actor has been in some of the industry’s biggest movies spanning multiple decades, and no matter his role or the project he is regarded as an absolute treasure to work with. Actress Emma Watson who starred with Hanks in 2017’s The Circle commented on working with an actor with such a legendary reputation. “I’m like, ‘There’s no way this guy is going to live up to his reputation,’ right?” she told E! News at the film’s premiere. Fortunately, she added, “He’s so generous and funny and easy-going and he’s all the things you would want him to be. So I’m very happy to be able to report that to you sincerely because it would have broken my heart, I think, if Tom wasn’t Tom.” She went on, “He’s like a hero, you know?”