Hollywood thrives on glitz, glamour, and box-office hits. In an industry where stars rise and fall, Hollywood’s doors have swung wide for many talents, but for a select few, they’ve swung firmly shut. Among those on the outside is John Cusack, a once-acclaimed actor who gradually found himself on Hollywood’s fringes. Why did such an actor find himself in such a predicament? The reasons vary, falling into three primary categories: his criticism of Hollywood, his political stance, and his personal relationships that attracted critique.
Public Criticism of Hollywood
Known for his roles in such films as ‘High Fidelity’ and ‘Say Anything,’ Cusack was never one to hold his tongue when it came to his views of Hollywood. He expressed dissatisfaction with the industry’s inner workings, frequently questioning its priorities and practices. Speaking to The Guardian in 2014, he said the following:
“The culture just eats young actors up and spits them out. It’s a hard thing to survive without finding a safe harbor. It’s a whorehouse, and people go mad.”
He also expressed concern over Hollywood’s reliance on big-budget franchises, arguing that this model stifles creativity and discourages original, thought-provoking storytelling:
“There is no Hollywood anymore — there’s just a bunch of banks… Hollywood is just a bunch of people going around in Learjets to other people, asking them if they’ve got any money.”
With these statements, it’s safe to say Cusack has indicated that he has lost trust in the Hollywood system and is not willing to fight for stardom in it.
His Political Stance
Cusack’s political views have also drawn attention and stirred controversy. An outspoken critic of certain governmental policies, his assertive stance often positioned him in direct opposition to some of his fans.
He is a strong political activist and a co-founder of the Freedom of the Press Foundation, created in response to Visa, MasterCard, and PayPal’s decision to stop accepting payments from Wikileaks. He also has written over 20 articles for the Huffington Post on political topics.
The actor was outspoken in his opposition to wars in the Middle East and to certain domestic policies, aligning himself firmly with the political left. Cusack’s political views and activities, particularly his criticism of President Donald Trump, have led to controversy and may have alienated some fans.
Personal Relationships Under Scrutiny
Cusack’s personal life, specifically his romantic relationships, was another source of controversy. His string of high-profile romances drew significant media attention and criticism. Despite having a lengthy dating history, he has remained unmarried and expressed resistance to societal expectations about marriage.
So, Cusack’s ostracization from Hollywood is a complex issue rooted in his outspoken criticism of the industry, his political leanings, and the media’s focus on his personal relationships. While these factors led to him being cast out from the inner circle of Hollywood, they paint a picture of an individual who refuses to compromise his values, both in his career and personal life. As the actor puts it, “Maybe being outspoken hurts your career — I’m just aware it helps me sleep better at night, knowing that I wasn’t being passive during this time.”