Have we ever told you about our prior business venture, the Top 10 arrrrchive? It turns out people weren't too keen on me narrating every video like a pirate - but we don’t feel too bad about it bombing anymore. At least our failure was on the down low, unlike these 10 celebrities who bombed their attempts at a new career path in the public eye.
Celebrities have been running for political offices for quite some time, but none was as shocking as when Donald Trump finally stepped forward after years of deliberation as a viable presidential candidate. Before Trump, however, another familiar face had vied for the title of Mrs. President – foul-mouthed and controversial former sitcom star Roseanne Barr. In late 2011, Roseanne had appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and announced that she was throwing her name into the 2012 presidential election, running under a party she made up known as the “Green Tea Party”. Though she lost the nomination for the Green Party, Barr later returned and ran on the Peace and Freedom Party ticket. By the close of the election, the actress had performed as expected, earning less than .1% of the popular vote, or nearly 50,000 votes.
After landing a role as Captain James T. Kirk on the sci-fi television series Star Trek, William Shatner became an icon of Hollywood. His successful acting career is marked with many high points, but there is another side to the star that many people may not know. From as early as 1968, Shatner had tried launching himself into a rather strange musical career. Rather than actually singing, the extent of Shatner’s musical talents was to provide dramatic readings of a song’s lyrics and literary works like the Old Testament and Sonnet 129 set to music. Despite his musical career never really taking off, Shatner continues to plug away here and there, generally on TV commercials.
To her fans, Beyoncé can do no wrong, but in the business world, nobody is immune from failure. Cue House of Dereon, a ready-to-wear clothing line conceived by the Queen B and her mother, Tina Knowles. Launched in 2006, the line featured casual wear imbued with a hint of a hip-hop influence and was featured on The Oprah Winfrey Show and The Tyra Banks Show. Despite celebrity support, by 2012, declining sales forced the line to be discontinued or, as it was relayed to the public, underwent a reshuffle for an expected relaunch later that year. As it turns out, House of Dereon never resurfaced, though Beyoncé decided to try her luck again, this time partnering with London-based fashion label Topshop for a collection of athletic streetwear.
What does one do with their time when they’re a fairly successful baseball player and have just started a career as an even better football star? They could just focus on the game and perfect their position or they could try and add something new to their repertoire. The latter is precisely what NFL Hall of Famer Deion Sanders did, but it had absolutely nothing to do with sports. On December 26th, 1994, Deion gave the world a Christmas present in the form of a debut album named Prime Time. The G-Funk album featured songs like “Must Be The Money” and “Heidi Heidi Hey” and somehow made its way to #70 on the Top R&B/Hip-Hop Albums and #14 on the Top Heatseekers. Overall, though, Deion’s attempt at a musical career was very short-lived and he quickly went back to focusing solely on sports.
The towering basketball player is sitting comfortably thanks to his successful NBA career, but his athleticism wasn’t the only thing he had tried to bank on to bring in some cash. During the course of his NBA career, Shaquille tried his hand at acting and rapping, though neither path led to anything more than laughter and worldwide face-palming. During the early 90s, Shaq had partnered with a slew of real rappers to release four studio albums. His music career never took off, but thankfully he had Hollywood to fall back on. The basketball player starred in a series of critically panned movies, including Kazaam, Steel, and Blue Chips. He’ll pop up here and there, typically playing himself, but it’s pretty obvious that acting wasn’t quite his forte either.
After rising to wrestling fame, Hulk Hogan was in dire need of something else to fulfill him, and what is more filling than a great big bowl of pasta? In 1995, the subject of the Hulkamania movement decides to bring his fame out of the ring to a restaurant in the Mall of America in Bloomington, Minnesota. Dubbed Pastamania, the eatery featured menu items like Hulkaroni & Cheese and Hulk’s Power Pasta and offered a “special menu for the little Pastamaniancs.” Bright yellow menu and Hulk-puns aside, the concept of a pasta place created by a world-famous wrestler is pretty strange and off-putting, which explains why Pastamania closed within the first year of business.
Jordan may have been revered as one of the greatest basketball players of all time, but that doesn’t quite mean he has the talent to tackle other fields. You probably already know where we’re going with this as Jordan became an athletic laughing stock when he returned to baseball after a near 13-year hiatus from his high school heyday. During the one year he played for the Minor League under the Chicago White Sox, Jordan racked up a batting average of .202, with 114 strikeouts, 3 home runs, and 11 errors on defense. Watching him return to the outfield was adorable, like an infant learning to walk. Jordan’s baseball career allegedly ended on his own accord when the strike of 1995 threatened to add him as a potential replacement player.
When your affordable clothing line winds up being mostly available on eBay and online discount trading stores, you know things took a wrong turn - just ask Sarah Jessica Parker and Amanda Bynes. The biggest difference in Miley Cyrus’ line is that she had partnered with two major powerhouses – Wal-Mart and Max Azria. Her affordable clothing, which was priced under $20, was designed in collaboration with the fashion mogul behind BCBGMaxazria and placed on the shelves of one of the world’s largest retailers. Despite the incredible backing the starlet had, her fashion line flopped, forcing her to rely on the millions she was making off of Hannah Montana. Chances are, it had something to do with the toxic levels of lead found in the line’s purses, wallets, necklaces, and bracelets.
In 2004, Tyra Banks, tired of being little more than a pretty face, decided to try and make a career change. The host of “America’s Next Top Model” followed in the footsteps of many celebrities before her and released her first single, “Shake Ya Body”, apparently forgetting to ask anybody if she had the right voice for singing. As you may have guessed, she most certainly did not and, after the single dropped, so, too, did Banks’ desire to be a singer. She does, at least, have a good sense of humor about it as she lambasted herself a decade later and doled out sage advice on Bravo TV’s talk show, “Watch What Happens Live."
In an almost too-perfect business pairing, former musical artist Flavor Flav tried his hand at a series of fried chicken restaurants. Flav's Fried Chicken, or FFC, in Clinton, Iowa, House of Flavor in Las Vegas, Nevada, and Flavor Flav's Chicken & Ribs all have one incredible feat in common, and it has nothing to do with the chicken! All three of the tiny rapper's restaurants closed within a year of opening, with Flav's Fried Chicken lasting only 4 months in 2011. From money troubles with landlords to disputes with co-founders over who the worst restaurant manager is, Flav's attempts at dishing out delectable fried chicken seemed to be doomed from the start, proving to be just as stable as the relationships he formed on Flavor of Love.