10 People Who Accepted Their Razzie Awards
Each year, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences honors the very best in film achievements and cinema. But the night before the Academy names its winners, another ceremony takes place, one that awards the worst that cinema has offered that year: the Golden Raspberry Awards. Although most people wouldn’t be happy to be considered the worst at something, there are a few actors, writers, and directors who have a sense of humor about themselves—and will show up to accept their awards.
1. Bill Cosby for Leonard Part 6
In 1988—at the height of the success of NBC's The Cosby Show—Bill Cosby wrote and starred in one of the worst films of the year. Leonard Part 6 featured Cosby as a former CIA agent forced out of retirement to hunt down an evil vegetarian hell bent on taking over the world.
Leonard Part 6 received three Golden Raspberry Awards—or Razzies—for Worst Picture, Worst Screenplay, and Worst Actor. When a somewhat miffed Cosby found out about the "honor," he contacted John J.B. Wilson, the founder of the Razzies, and demanded that the organization give him an actual trophy. Displeased with the makeshift $1.97 statue he received, Cosby told his publicist “I want my Golden Raspberry and if it isn’t golden, I’m going to the press.” His publicist explained that Wilson was a one-man outfit operating out of his living room, but Cosby was adamant. “That’s a cop-out. If you’re going to take a big name and declare it ‘the worst’, you have to perform." Luckily Fox’s Late Show stepped in and paid for marble and gold trophies (at a cost of $30,000) and hosted a mini-Razzies presentation ceremony on the show.
2. Brian Helgeland for The Postman
Screenwriter Brian Helgeland was awarded the Worst Screenplay Golden Raspberry in 1998 for The Postman, directed by and starring Kevin Costner. Helgeland received the Razzie from John Wilson at the writer’s office on the Warner Bros lot in Los Angeles and even prepared a speech for the occasion, owning up to his part in making one of the worst films of the year. A few days later, Helgeland was awarded an Academy Award for Best Adapted Screenplay for L.A. Confidential. He currently keeps his Razzie and Oscar together side-by-side as a way to remember “the quixotic nature of Hollywood."
3. J. David Shapiro for Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000
In 2001, screenwriter J. David Shapiro received a Golden Raspberry for Worst Screenplay for the science fiction film Battlefield Earth: A Saga of the Year 3000. Wilson delivered the Razzie on radio personality Mark Ebner’s show in Los Angeles. While Shapiro was more than happy to receive the Razzie, he later recalled the film’s star John Travolta’s comments after reading the film’s script. Apparently, Travolta called Battlefield Earth "the Schindler's List of science fiction."
Ten years later, during the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards in 2010, J. David Shapiro also accepted the Razzie Award for Worst Picture of the Decade for Battlefield Earth.
4. Tom Green for Freddy Got Fingered
During the 22nd Golden Raspberry Awards in 2002, Tom Green received five Razzie Awards—including Worst Actor, Worst Director, Worst Picture, Worst Screen Couple (with any animal Green abused in the film), and Worst Screenplay—for the film Freddy Got Fingered. Tom Green attended the ceremony at the Abracadabra Theater at Magicopolis in Santa Monica, California, where he was dragged off stage while accepting one of his awards because he wouldn’t stop obnoxiously playing the harmonica.
5. Tom Selleck for Christopher Columbus: The Discovery
In 1993, actor Tom Selleck received the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Supporting Actor for his performance as King Ferdinand of Spain in the film Christopher Columbus: The Discovery. Selleck gladly accepted the award while he was making a guest appearance on the short-lived Chevy Chase Show on Fox.
6. Halle Berry for Catwoman
Halle Berry accepted the Golden Raspberry Award for Worst Actress for her work in Catwoman at the Ivar Theatre in Hollywood, California. While giving her speech during the 25th Golden Raspberry Awards, Berry held the Razzie Award in one hand and her Academy Award for Best Female Actor in a Leading Role for her performance in the film Monster’s Ball in the other. Berry thanked the film’s director and her manager in a parody of her Oscar acceptance speech a few years earlier.
7. Michael Ferris for Catwoman
Halle Berry wasn't the only one who won a Razzie for Catwoman: Michael Ferris, who penned the script, accepted the Razzie Award for Worst Screenplay for the film. During his acceptance speech, Ferris thanked the Golden Raspberry Award Foundation for increasing the film's DVD sales.
8. David Eigenberg for Sex and the City 2
In 2011, actor David Eigenberg accepted the Golden Raspberry for Worst Screen Couple/Screen Ensemble on behalf of the entire cast of Sex in the City 2. He worked with Razzie founder John Wilson on creating an acceptance video that was later posted on the organization’s official YouTube channel.
9. Paul Verhoeven for Showgirls
Director Paul Verhoeven is mostly known for making sleazy, yet thoughtful, pulpy genre movies, including RoboCop, Total Recall, and Basic Instinct. While many of his films are critically acclaimed, his 1995 film Showgirls was definitely not. To no one’s surprise, Showgirls received six Golden Raspberry Awards, including Worst Actress for Elizabeth Berkley, Worst Screenplay for screenwriter Joe Eszterhas, and Worst Picture and Worst Director for Paul Verhoeven, who was the first person in Razzie history to attend the ceremony and accept the awards. “I got seven awards for being the worst, and it was more fun than reading the reviews (for Showgirls) in September,” said the Dutch-born director.
10. Sandra Bullock for All About Steve
In 2010, Sandra Bullock received the Golden Raspberry Award for her performance in the movie All About Steve. While Bullock was happy enough to appear at the ceremony itself, she was not pleased to receive the award for Worst Actress. Sandra Bullock gave everyone attending the 30th Golden Raspberry Awards a DVD copy of All About Steve. She also brought a copy of the film’s final shooting script and playfully threatened the audience with a line reading of the entire movie. The day after the awards ceremony, Bullock won the Academy Award for Best Female Actor in a Leading Role for her performance in the film The Blind Side.
BONUS: Ben Affleck for Paycheck, Daredevil, and Gigli
Before he was an Academy Award-winning director, Ben Affleck received a Golden Raspberry for his leading performances in the films Paycheck, Daredevil, and Gigli, which all hit theaters in 2004. While Affleck didn’t attend the ceremony to receive the award, he was presented with the Golden Raspberry during his appearance on Larry King Live, where he proceeded to call the trophy cheap, began to pull it apart, and ultimately refused the award.
The Golden Raspberry Award Foundation later put the award up for bid on eBay; it sold for $1375. The money earned from the sale was used in part to rent the Ivar Theatre in Hollywood, California for the 25th Golden Raspberry Awards the following year.