10 worst actresses playing actresses
Who's saying what
While starring in a biopic is generally seen as a shortcut to a shelf full of awards—did anyone not win an award for The King’s Speech?—there is one notable exception: playing an actress.
There is simply no reason why anyone would make a movie about the life and times of an actress, unless they wanted to either harp on about the tragic nature of their life—hello, every single film made about Marilyn Monroe, many of which you’ll find below—or go hell-for-leather on the way their private life involved more trips to the sin bin than a professional rugby player.
Neither of which is exactly up there with saving Europe from fascism/being the first gay city councillor in San Francisco/inventing Facebook.
10: Faye Dunaway is Joan Crawford in Mommie Dearest.
Hang on, isn’t this a camp classic much loved by all and sundry? Well, yes… unless you’re a Joan Crawford fan. Come on, Dunaway doesn’t so much chew the scenery here as open up an all-scenery restaurant then book every seat in the place for herself and order every item on the menu.
While her work here is certainly memorable, if you want to start calling it “good’ then to qualify for an Academy Award, all you need to do is to slap on a blonde wig and jump around shouting “I’m Marilyn Monroe, derp derp derp LOL”. Which would be an improvement on some of the performances we’ll be looking at here.
9: Carol Lynley is Jean Harlow in Harlow.
Not to be confused with Carroll Baker is Jean Harlow in Harlow, despite having the exact same title and coming out in the same year (1965). Were either of these actresses any good at playing Jean Harlow?
Let’s do the maths: number of movies about Jean Harlow in 1965: two. Number of films made about Jean Harlow 1966 - 2012: zero. Though she was played by Gwen Stefani in The Aviator, which kind of counts. Except for the fact that Stefani isn’t an actor and so was cast entirely because she looked like Harlow. Man, Harlow just can’t get a break.