10 Directors Who Drove Their Movie Stars To The Edge

Hollywood actors may be whiny narcissists, but sometimes they have cause.

Don't Worry Darling
Warner Bros. Pictures

Directors are a notoriously hard-headed bunch, while actors are often typified as being flighty and thin-skinned. Although this seems like a match made in heaven for some serious on set conflict, this dynamic only occasionally erupts into something bigger, but when it does it really does.

Tyrannical directors have provided the impetus for some all-time classic actor meltdowns, pressing their buttons, keeping them on tenterhooks and doing whatever they deem necessary to get the shots, sequences and, perhaps most importantly, reactions they really want. But, contrary to popular belief, the outcomes are not all intentional, and the best laid plans don't always work out in the favour of either the director or the film they're making. Nevertheless, it's an awful lot of fun to hear about when the next big A-lister goes postal, gives the director a piece of their mind, or even gets ditched from the movie.

Indulge your schadenfreude, succumb to the gossip and grab your popcorn-munching Michael Jackson meme; these are 10 instances where the director and actor(s) came to loggerheads, got pushed to the edge, and somebody went a little too far.

(And, no, you won't find Stanley Kubrick and Shelley Duvall here.)

10. David Fincher And Ben Affleck - Gone Girl

Don't Worry Darling

Anyone who saw Ben Affleck go off on a baffled Sam Harris back in 2014 knows the Hollywood actor has a temper and is not afraid to use it. Pair that with a typically demanding and full-on director like, say, David Fincher, and you've got a gasket ready to blow.

But while plenty of the actor's lowest moments have become prime memeable content, some of his wildest reactions have managed to fly under the radar -- namely his ludicrous behaviour on the set of Fincher's 2014 thriller Gone Girl. Thanks to the director's commentary, however, we know that it wasn't all sunshine and light on set.

Affleck walked off the set after Fincher tried to force him to wear a Yankees baseball cap for a scene. This shut production down for four whole days while the hot-headed actor and dedicated Boston Red Sox fan stewed over the perceived slight, and Fincher negotiated with the actor's manager on the cap design. Considering Fincher's penchant for perfection, rarely going fewer than double digits on every take, it's surprising this was the thing that tipped his star over the edge.


Writer, editor and lifelong critic of test screenings, money men and films-by-committee.