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Actors Who Were Fired Because Of Their Co-Stars

Sometimes co-stars don't get along during filming and it can make everyone working on the project miserable. Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams reportedly fought like crazy while making "The Notebook," with McAdams at one point the only cast member that Gosling actually wanted fired from the movie. Thankfully, he wasn't successful and we all have "The Notebook" to enjoy. Gosling and McAdams put their frustrations while working together into their performances, making Noah and Allie's arguments, and love, truly explosive. Usually, people simply suffer through and put the experience behind them, but sometimes tension on set can lead to someone getting the axe.

It has long been rumored that the feud between Will Smith and Janet Hubert, who was originally cast as Aunt Viv on "The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air," led to Hubert leaving the hit series. Although Smith and Hubert made peace during the 30th-anniversary special on HBO, the rumors followed both actors for decades and cast a shadow over Hubert's career. While it's usually a director's or producer's call if someone gets fired, there have been a number of actors who got their co-stars canned as well. Stick with us as we uncover all the juicy behind-the-scenes details about these Hollywood feuds.

Sylvester Stallone got Richard Gere fired from The Lords of Flatbush

Richard Gere was the first actor cast as Chico in "The Lords of Flatbush," but he was replaced by Perry King after tension on set led to Sylvester Stallone giving the director an ultimatum: either Gere went or he did. Despite being a relative newcomer, Stallone had more clout with the director than Gere, who was also just starting out. Gere was fired from the movie and a Hollywood feud was born.

"[Gere] would strut around in his oversized motorcycle jacket like he was the baddest knight at the round table. One day, during an improv, he grabbed me (we were simulating a fight scene) and got a little carried away. I told him in a gentle fashion to lighten up, but he was completely in character and impossible to deal with," Stallone told Ain't It Cool, adding that an incident involving some chicken covered in grease and mustard was the last straw.

"The director had to make a choice: one of us had to go, one of us had to stay. Richard was given his walking papers and to this day seriously dislikes me," Stallone recalled, adding, "He even thinks I'm the individual responsible for the gerbil rumor." Although Gere has never talked about being fired from the movie, he has addressed the rumor. "I stopped reading the press a long time ago," Gere told Metro. "There is an infamous, Gere stuck a hamster up his bum urban myth."

John Stamos had the Olsen twins fired from Full House

John Stamos admits it. "I did it. I didn't try," Stamos revealed on Josh Peck's "Good Guys" podcast. Stamos tried and succeeded — albeit temporarily — in getting twins Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen fired from "Full House" before America ever saw the series and fell in love with them as Michelle Tanner. Stamos explained that while filming the pilot, the twins, who were only 11 months old, cried a lot. "They wanted to be anywhere else but there, and so did I," Stamos told Peck. "I couldn't deal with it and I said this is not gonna work, guys." Stamos insisted that they get rid of the twins.

"They brought in a couple of unattractive redheaded kids. We tried that for a while and that didn't work," Stamos told critics at the Television Critics Association's press tour in Beverly Hills (per EW). The replacements didn't work out and the tiny tots were brought back within days to star in the family-friendly sitcom. The Olsen twins became incredibly famous, so famous that they fled Hollywood and lucrative acting careers for fashion design in New York City. "Full House" became an '80s and '90s television staple, with enough staying power and generational nostalgia to warrant a reboot on Netflix.

Warren Beatty fired Sean Young from Dick Tracy

Sean Young was cast as Tess Truheart in Disney's "Dick Tracy," but she was fired by Warren Beatty after one week of shooting. Young paints a lurid, #MeToo tale about Beatty making unwanted sexual advances on the set; Beatty denies her claims. "It was not a decision made unilaterally by [Beatty]. He sought our input," Jeffrey Katzenberg, former chairman of Walt Disney Studios, told The Los Angeles Times. "Sometimes a person isn't perfectly suited to a role."

Still, rumors about Beatty's prolific sexual exploits during production are in line with Young's sexual harassment claims. "It was a very unpleasant experience," Young told The Los Angeles Times, adding, "It was just a lot of sexual politics and crazy stuff. To be released from that situation ended up being a blessing in the end, because I don't think I could have survived working with Warren Beatty."

Young believes her acting career and reputation were destroyed by a small group of influential actors and directors who essentially blacklisted her and branded her difficult and crazy. Young admits Beatty wasn't the worst. "It's not just Warren — it's across the board. Ever since the movie business began, women have been treated as a commodity. There was always someone grabbing you, and I just ignored it," Young told The Daily Beast

Bill Cosby fired Lisa Bonet from The Cosby Show and A Different World

"The Cosby Show" made Lisa Bonet, who played Denise Huxtable, famous. But Bill Cosby and Bonet reportedly clashed so much on the set that Bonet got her own spin-off series, "A Different World," set at the fictional Hillman College. Bonet was the star of the series during Season 1. Although Bonet starred in the racy film "Angel Heart" with Mickey Rourke and posed topless for Interview magazine, getting married to rock star Lenny Kravitz and pregnant with her first child at 20 was apparently the final straw for Cosby.

Cosby thought Denise Huxtable getting pregnant would tarnish the image of the Huxtable family and "The Cosby Show." Debbie Allen, the producer-director of "A Different World," wanted to write the pregnancy into the series, but Cosby nixed it, saying, (via Emmy TV Legends), "Denise Huxtable is not pregnant. Lisa Bonet is pregnant." So Bonet's character dropped out of college and was written out of "A Different World."

After her pregnancy, Bonet temporarily returned to "The Cosby Show," where we found Denise married to a military man with a young daughter. But in 1991, Denise was written out of "The Cosby Show" and Bonet was fired because of ongoing tensions with Cosby. Cosby said he fired Bonet for outgrowing the material, but Kravitz expressed a different opinion in his memoir, "Let Love Rule," writing (via Movieweb) that Bonet's "relationship with Bill was tense and eventually untenable."

Tori Spelling got Shannen Doherty fired from 90210

Some actors are known for being difficult. Unfortunately, Shannen Doherty developed this reputation on the set of "Beverly Hills 90210." Doherty recently opened up on her podcast, "Let's Be Clear With Shannen Doherty," about how struggles in her personal life affected her behavior on the set of the series, and how she wishes someone would have impressed upon her what was going to happen if she kept arriving late and fighting with co-stars.

The behind-the-scenes drama on "90210," often between Doherty and Jennie Garth, who played Kelly, was disruptive to the set. Garth wrote about an argument that turned physical in her memoir, "Deep Thoughts From a Hollywood Blonde," explaining how their on-set argument was taken outside: "Before we could kill each other, Luke [Perry] and Jason [Priestly] dived into the middle of it and pulled us apart. It was ridiculous" (per Yahoo!).

After this incident, Tori Spelling went to her father, executive producer Aaron Spelling, and their conversation ultimately led to Doherty being fired from the hit show. Spelling still feels guilty. On the Lifetime special, "Tori Spelling: Celebrity Lie Detector," Spelling talked about getting Doherty fired. "I felt like I was a part of something, a movement, that cost someone their livelihood," Spelling confessed (per Us magazine). "Was she a horrible person? No. She was one of the best friends I ever had."

Seinfeld's core cast axed a couple of actors from the show 

Jerry (Jerry Seinfeld), George (Jason Alexander), Kramer (Michael Richards), and Elaine (Julia Louis-Dreyfus) were a tight-knit foursome who didn't accept others into their inner circle on "Seinfeld." Apparently, the actors who played these characters were also unified in how they felt about certain guest stars, leading to these actors no longer appearing in the series. Considering how much time actors spend with their co-stars during the production of a television series, you can't really blame them for having an opinion.

Heidi Swedberg's character, Susan, who had the unfortunate luck to be engaged to George in Season 7, was killed off because everyone found her acting style tedious and difficult to work with. During an interview with Howard Stern, Alexander let it slip that Larry David wrote Susan out of the series because of an off-hand comment: "And Julia actually said, 'Don't you want to just kill her?' And Larry went, 'Ka-bang!'" (per The Hollywood Reporter).

Lawrence Tierney, who played Elaine's father in one episode, was originally intended to have a small recurring role, but didn't return after freaking the entire cast out with his antics while filming "The Jacket." In a behind-the-scenes look at the episode, the cast shared a story about Tierney stealing a knife from the set and brandishing it, while making "Psycho" sound effects, when Seinfeld confronted him. "Lawrence Tierney, I think, scared the living crap out of all of us," Alexander recalled.

Alyssa Milano allegedly got Shannen Doherty fired from Charmed

"I was very trepidatious of working with Aaron Spelling again and getting involved because they burned me really badly on '90210,'" Doherty said on her podcast "Let's Be Clear With Shannen Doherty" (per People). Despite her fears, Doherty joined the cast of "Charmed," becoming one-third of a powerful trio of sisters exploring their witch powers after their mother's unexpected death.

For years Doherty claimed she left "Charmed" after three seasons, but she recently revealed on her podcast that she was encouraged to lean into that story to protect her career. Doherty believes Alyssa Milano was responsible for Doherty being fired from the series. Doherty's "Charmed" co-star Holly Marie Combs backed up Doherty's claims, recalling that a producer, Jonathan Levin, said (per The Hollywood Reporter), "We were told that it's her or me. Alyssa has threatened to sue us for a hostile workplace environment."

When Milano first addressed these accusations, she didn't confirm or deny Doherty's claims. "I want to be very thoughtful in how I respond to any of this, and I will just say that I'm sad," Milano said on a MegaCon panel (per Deadline). Milano followed up her statement on Instagram, writing something more definitive. "The studio, Aaron Spelling, and network made the decision to protect the international hit that was 'Charmed,'" she stated. "I did not have the power to get anyone fired." Looks like these former co-stars will have to agree to disagree.

Lisa Raye McCoy allegedly got Stacey Dash fired from Single Ladies

Everyone who grew up in the '90s (or loves '90s cinema) recognizes Stacey Dash as Dion, Cher's best friend in "Clueless," while younger viewers may recognize Dash from VH1's "Single Ladies." But after just one season, Dash announced her exit. "I truly enjoyed playing Val on 'Single Ladies,' but I have decided to leave the show. I have to be back in L.A. with my children right now and the 'Single Ladies' shooting location makes that impossible," Dash said in a statement (per Global Grind).

When Dash announced her exit from the Atlanta-based series, people wondered what happened behind the scenes. In a Jet cover story (per Vibe), co-star LisaRaye McCoy admitted, "Yes, there was a disagreement over a scene. And it really wasn't with me. It was with the director. I think it was about 2 or 3 a.m., and we'd been shooting all damn day. Stacey tried to argue with the director about a line," leading to words between the two co-stars.

In a promo video for the TV series "Being," McCoy admitted (per Huffington Post) that their altercation led to Dash being fired from the series. "I had to say to Stacey Dash, 'If you don't get your motherf****** finger out of my face...'" she recalled. "So for our second season of 'Single Ladies,' there was a replacement for Stacey Dash." But McCoy amended her earlier statement in 2023, telling Atlanta Black Star, "I don't have that much power. That was the network's decision."

Alec Baldwin got Shia LaBeouf fired from Orphans

Alec Baldwin and Shia LaBeouf were set to co-star in a played called "Orphans," which would have been the young actor's Broadway debut. "I loved Lyle Kessler's play and was anxious to work with director Dan Sullivan. Then Shia LaBeouf showed up," Baldwin wrote in New York magazine. "I'd heard from other people that he was potentially very difficult to work with, but I always ignore that because people say the same thing about me." But Baldwin found the rumors to be true: "There was friction between us from the beginning."

Weeks into rehearsals, LaBeouf was axed, with the producers citing (via Playbill) "creative differences." In his New York magazine essay, Baldwin revealed that an argument during rehearsal led to him telling the director, "One of us is going to go," which resulted in LaBeouf being fired from the production and taking to Twitter to share emails between himself, Sullivan, and Baldwin.

LaBeouf then made light of the situation. "I'm pretty passionate and impulsive, and he's a very passionate individual as well and I think that impulsiveness and passion make for some fireworks," LaBeouf told David Letterman. LaBeouf later admitted that being fired was heartbreaking, telling Interview magazine, "Baldwin and I butted heads hard ... I was so desperate to be good in that play that I overdid it. It became competitive in the wrong way." LaBeouf added that he and Baldwin have since made peace.

Charlie Sheen fired Selma Blair from Anger Management

Charlie Sheen reportedly fired Selma Blair, his co-star on "Anger Management," after she questioned his work ethic on-set. Lionsgate, which produced the series, stated to TMZ, "We are confirming that Selma Blair will not be returning to 'Anger Management' and we wish her the very best." After the news spread, Blair tweeted (via E! Online), "I thank you for support and love," but the tweet was later removed from X, formerly known as Twitter.

Sheen apparently went to the mat for Blair to be cast in the series and said nice things about her in the media before their falling out, which made the rift surprising. Sheen later claimed that writing Blair's character out of the series was a creative decision. Sheen said on "The Tonight Show" that the audience found his character boring, but Blair's character leaving the series was a vast improvement, because "her character leaves, and I start circling the drain. So it's really fun to watch and hella fun to play" (per The Hollywood Reporter).

No one likes being fired, but on some level, it must have been a relief. Blair was suffering immensely from physical pain and other symptoms of an illness — multiple sclerosis — that she wouldn't be diagnosed with until 2018. "I was forcing myself on a plane, and I was getting vertigo. I would wake up, and I couldn't move," Blair told Glamour. "It was a very hard time in my life."

Sylvester Stallone fired Bruce Willis from The Expendables franchise

Sylvester Stallone may have not had much clout when he got Richard Gere fired from a movie in the '70s, but he was calling the shots when he fired Bruce Willis from "The Expendables" franchise before the third movie in the series was made. Stallone took to Twitter (now X) to announce that Willis wouldn't be in the third film in the series, writing, "WILLIS OUT ... HARRISON FORD IN!!!! GREAT NEWS!!!!! Been waiting years for this!!!!" But Stallone didn't leave it there. He made it personal when he further disparaged Willis in another tweet, calling the action star, "GREEDY AND LAZY ...... A SURE FORMULA FOR CAREER FAILURE."

A salary dispute, with Willis allegedly requesting $4 million for four days of work — after being offered $3 million — led to Willis being fired. An anonymous insider told The Hollywood Reporter, "I think [Willis] was pretty surprised he was replaced in 72 hours by Harrison Ford — a better actor, a much nicer person, and a more interesting direction for the film." This seems like an unnecessarily harsh thing to say about the popular "Die Hard" and "The Sixth Sense" star. Since Willis' aphasia diagnosis and retirement, Stallone's attitude toward his old friend has softened considerably. "Bruce is going through some really, really difficult times," Stallone told The Hollywood Reporter. "So he's been sort of incommunicado. That kills me. It's so sad."