Top 10 Most Famous Hollywood Scandals Ever


Scandals are nothing new to Hollywood. You can see hundreds of them happening at frequent intervals. Some of them could be sex scandals whereas some can pertain to mysterious deaths or suicides. If an ordinary citizen dies, it is not news. However, when a Hollywood celebrity does, it generates a great amount of publicity. If the death is a mysterious one, it takes the shape of a scandal.

The most common types of scandals are the affairs and sex scandals. We are not giving much importance to such scandals in this list though we have a couple of them as well. We list herewith the top 10 most famous Hollywood scandals. A couple of them might have been forgotten by now. However, it did raise an ugly storm when it occurred.

10. The Death of Superman – George Reeves

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever 2019

The No 10 spot goes to the death of television’s first superman, George Reeves. One should know the background of this case before proceeding further. Eddie Mannix, an executive at MGM had the job of a fixer. In short, his job was to keep away scandals from the purview of the media. However, he had a murky involvement in the death of his wife’s lover, George Reeves. It happened at a party in his house. Suddenly, in the midst of the party, Reeves went upstairs and shot himself dead. People believed it to be suicide but insiders know that both Eddie and his wife Toni were involved in this murder. People suspected the role of Reeves’ fiancee in the matter.

9. The Drowning of Natalie Wood

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

Natalia Wood had a reputation of being one of the most beautiful actresses in Hollywood. In addition, she was extremely talented as well. By the age of 24, she had three Academy Award nominations. She did have her share of affairs. She had married Robert Wagner, her co-star twice. In between, she had been associated with producer Richard Gregson. The film Brainstorm had some boat sequences. She was around 43 years at that time. One fine morning, the crew found her dead with her face down in the water. Everyone suspected the involvement of Wagner. In fact Wagner admitted to having an argument with her but denied any further involvement. The second inquest resulted in a change in the reason for her death from ‘Accidental drowning’ to ‘Drowning as well as other undisclosed reasons’. Until date nobody except the coroner knows the cause of her death. Someone had ordered the coroner to keep his mouth shut. This scandal ranks at No 9 in this list.

8. Stage managed Abortions

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

Clandestine relations are very common in Hollywood. Such relations do end up with the woman in question becoming pregnant. The heroine might be in a very important stage in her career. Childbirth could affect her chances of stardom a great deal. In addition, there is huge money on stake on these heroines. If they lose the market value, the producer and distributors have to go for a toss, Hence, it is the practice in Hollywood to hush up such unwanted pregnancies by going in for clandestine abortions. These actresses check in at secret hospitals for an appendectomy operation or an ear infection. In reality, they undergo illegal abortions. Many top heroines such as Joan Crawford, Jeannette MacDonald, and Bette Davis have gone in for such “appendicitis operations.” There was the case of Judy Garland who became pregnant at the age of 19 years. She was shooting for the role of an innocent child in a film. Under such circumstances, she had to go for the clandestine abortion as well. This ranks at the eighth spot in the list.

7. The Greystone Mansion Murder Mystery

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

If you think all scandals involve humans, you can be wrong. The Greystone Mansion Murder Mystery is one such scandal that involved a huge mansion. The mansion in question is a palatial one having featured in many Hollywood movies such as ‘The Big Lebowski’, The Bodyguard, The Prestige, Rush Hour, and many others. This building belonged to Ned Doheny. After just four months of moving in to this mansion, both Ned and his secretary, Hugh Plunkett, were found dead in mysterious circumstances. Ned was an influential person. Hence, the blame fell on Plunkett. It did not help matters that he had an unstable mind. They closed the case very quickly without conducting an autopsy. Ned father, Edward Doheny hushed up the matter to save his son’s reputation. There were rumors that Ned’s wife killed them after discovering them as lovers. It will remain a secret forever. This magnificent mansion lies at the seventh spot in this list.

6. The Taylor-Fisher-Reynolds Love Triangle

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

Elizabeth Taylor is the queen of all scandalous affairs in Hollywood. She had a notorious reputation of being a home-wrecker. At one point in time, she was great friends with Debbie Reynolds. Things soured between the two when Taylor started seducing Debbie’s husband Eddie Fisher. Debbie had just given birth to her son at that time. This relationship broke the tremendous friendship between the two. It also justified that Liz was a home-wrecker. Fisher divorced Debbie and married Liz. Now, Liz cannot remain quiet for long. She fell into a relationship with her Cleopatra co-star Richard Burton. After a period of four decades of animosity, Liz and Debbie reconciled and acted together in ‘Those Old Boards’. The irony is that Debbie’s daughter Carrie directed this film. It had innumerable sarcastic references to Eddie Fisher, the common link between the two women. This home-wrecking scandal is at No 5 on this list.

5. The Madam of Hollywood – Heidi Fleiss

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever 2019

Where there is show business, sparks are bound to fly. The casting couch is nothing new to this industry. Similarly, there have always been prostitution rings in Hollywood as well as other film industries. Normally, this news does not come out in the open. Such prostitution rings involve a large number of prominent male and female actors as its clients. They secretly refer to the women who conduct these rings as Madam. One of the most prominent madams has been Heidi Fleiss. She herself started her work under Madam Alex as a prostitute. She had the job of recruiting young girls into the business. Within a year or two, she became the Madam of her own ring. This was the most lucrative business for her at that time. She had a large number of prominent actors and actresses as her clients. These people used to shiver in their boots whenever Heidi was around. However, Heidi used to maintain the secrecy a great deal.

4. The Twilight Zone – Film ending

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

The Twilight Zone is a much acclaimed horror movie. It has been a huge hit. However, there has been a scandal associated with this film. This involves the shooting of the climax scene where veteran actor Vic Morrow’s character rescues two Vietnamese children during the war. There was a huge mix up between the pyrotechnics team on the ground and the helicopter. Having set two crackers very close to each other, one of them hit the helicopter. It resulted in the helicopter losing control and plunging head long into Vic Morrow and the two children killing them instantly. The scandal was that the film should not have used such young child actors especially at night time. The director and other people involved in the shooting pleaded ignorance of the law. The legal proceedings went on for a long time making this scandal rank at No 4 on this list.

3. The Woody Allen Sex Scandal

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

Everyone knows about Woody Allen and his films. He has always been an excellent filmmaker. However, his personal life has always been juicy news for people who love to gossip. He used to become romantically involved with all his co-stars. In 1980, he was in the news for his involvement with Mia Farrow. The couple adopted some children and supposedly had one of their own as well. However, Mia strictly maintains that this child belonged to Frank Sinatra and not Woody Allen. However, Woody did not adopt any of Mia Farrow’s earlier kids including Soon Yi. Woody and Farrow had various arguments following which she ditched him in 1992 stating that he had molested one of her children. In fact, Woody had photographed Soon Yi in her birthday suit when she was about 20 years old. He entered into a scandalous relationship with Soon Yi. Soon Yi settled down with Woody Allen with Woody’s son Satchel celebrating Father’s day as ‘Brother-in-law’s day. This scandal was in the news for a long time in the 1990s. Hence, it is fit to rank at No 3 in this list.

2. The Roman Polanski Sex Scandal

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever

There have been numerous scandals in Hollywood but the sex scandals always seem to take the cake. The Roman Polanski scandal, at No 2 on this list, was one such notorious scandal that rocked Hollywood in 1970s. One of the major allegations against Roman Polanski was that he sexually assaulted an underage girl. He admitted to having molested her sexually as well. Taking the permission of her mother to photograph her, Roman Polanski took photos of the girl in a topless pose. This incident happened in Jack Nicholson’s house. Incidentally, he was not in the house when these incidents happened. Jack’s live-in partner became suspicious that something was wrong. Roman Polanski drugged the girl and had sex in different positions with her. The issue became hot and hence Roman had to flee to France via England. It is very difficult to extradite a person from France to America. Here was one of the finest directors in Hollywood facing scandalous issues and unable to return to the US.

1. The Trial of O J Simpson

Most famous Hollywood scandals ever 2019

Undoubtedly, the trial of O J Simpson should rank at the top of the scandals in Hollywood. A former NFL player, he tried his hand at acting in films like ‘The Towering Inferno’ and ‘The Naked Gun’ series. He married Nicole Brown with whom he had two children. The scandal erupted when Nicole Brown and her friend Ron Goldman were found murdered outside O J Simpson’s house. The police naturally issued an arrest warrant against O J Simpson. The slowest car chase in history between the LAPD and O J Simpson was the subject of great interest to millions of TV viewers. The trial became famous as the ‘The Trial of the Century’. People pronounced O J as not guilty. However, Nicole’s and Goldman’s families were not happy with the verdict. They filed a civil suit against Simpson. The court found him guilty and ordered him to pay a whopping sum of $35,000,000 to the families of the victims. In addition, he was found guilty of drug trafficking and robbery resulting in O J suffering a sentence of 39 years in prison. This scandal was in the public’s eye for a long time.

There have been other sex scandals involving sporting celebrities such as Tiger Woods and his Hollywood girlfriend. These scandals generated huge negative publicity for Tiger Woods and played havoc with his career. You can find many such affairs in Hollywood. However, the above listed 10 scandals can truly claim to the most famous of all.


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