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10 Celebrity Siblings That Sucked At Stardom
By: Mickael
Nepotism in the workplace can lead formerly interested star employees to actively disengage, become disgruntled, and harbor resentment. When you see someone get ahead merely by virtue of their connections instead of their merit, it’s frustrating. In many lines of work, “who you know” trumps things like “ability”, “work ethic”, and “reliability”. When the boss’ nephew, who’s 20 minutes late every day and needs help to make a cup of coffee, is getting paid the same as the tenured workhorse, who’s the first one in the building and the last one to leave every night, the whole staff can become demoralized. It makes you question if hard work matters at all. Why invest all of your blood, sweat, and tears into being the best worker you can, when all you needed was the right bloodline in the first place? This issue is prevalent far beyond your dead end job. It even happens to famous people...
Basketball legend Glenn “Doc” Rivers, currently the head coach and President of Basketball Operations for the Los Angeles Clippers, faced accusations of nepotism when he signed his own son, Austin Rivers, to a $6.4 million contract. This makes him the first father to coach his son (knowingly) in NBA history. The thing is, Austin was a top 10 draft pick by a team Doc had no affiliation with, The New Orleans Pelicans. And Doc Rivers himself is the nephew of NBA player Jim Brewer, who ended his NBA stint the year before Doc was drafted. With all 3 of these men being at least 6’4” tall and growing up surrounded by athletes, it’s very likely that genetics and talent, moreso than nepotism, is responsible for their success. The same can’t necessarily be said for J.R. Smith’s brother, Chris Smith, who was clearly given a contract on the New York Knicks merely to placate their more talented star.
Genetic predisposition may help your athleticism, but there is no gene for acting talent. In Hollywood, a passion for the biz and an empathetic eye goes a long way to making you a star. Good looks matter, too, but let’s be honest: makeup can make anybody. For some celebrities, being cast merely because of their relationships is a blow to their ego, and they don’t want heat with their co-stars, so they forego their famous names to make it on their own. For one Nicolas Coppola trying to break into acting in the early 1980s, the shadow cast by his uncle, Francis Ford Coppola, was too large to escape. In an effort to earn stardom on his own, he changed his name to Nicolas Cage. Jason Schwartzmann is also related to Cage and Coppola, being the son of Coppola’s sister, actress Talia Shire. Working hard to be successful on your own merit is all too rare in Hollywood, however, as we’ll show with our list of these 10 Celebrity Siblings that wanted to be famous:
#10: Joey Travolta, brother of John Travolta
Joey Travolta has tried for more than 35 years to ride his brother’s coattails, but often found them so crowded with oiled-up young men that it was difficult to hang on. His younger brother, famed pilot and father-of-the-year John Travolta, isn’t even all that good at his own job, let alone making his brother famous. He sucks at pronouncing Idina Menzel, sucks at finding his car in a parking lot, sucks at finding doctors for his son, but mostly he sucks in gyms and locker rooms and massage parlors. Anywhere there’s a penis available, really. But this isn’t about him, this is about Joey Travolta. Joey Travolta was in the 1989 film Ghost Writer, where he played Bee-Jay, aptly named for how he got the part. In 1993, he co-starred in Beach Babes From Beyond alongside the all-star cast of Emilio Estevez’s uncle, Patrick Swayze’s brother, and Sylvester Stallone’s pro wrestling mother. That cast is so adjacent to stars, they may as well be called planets. Here’s a clip of Joey Travolta singing his “soon to be hit” song on The Michael Douglas Show in 1979. Joey now runs a film school for the developmentally disabled, because you’d have to be completely retarded to think Joey Travolta could teach you anything about movies.
#9: Don Swayze, brother of Patrick Swayze
Patrick Swayze’s younger brother Don was also in Beach Babes From Beyond, but I actually like him. He often shows up as a “crazy redneck” type on various TV shows, is featured on a couple corny daytime soap operas, and played supporting roles in a few direct-to-video flicks. He’s got the same blue collar charm as his brother, and he seems like the kind of guy you’d want to have a beer with. Check out Don Swayze in Evasive Action (1998), Digital Man (1995), and Body Of Influence (1993). Death Ring from 1992 is like a star sibling version of Expendables, so check that one out too if you feel that your time isn’t valuable and you enjoy wasting your life.
#8: Chris Penn, brother of Sean Penn
Chris Penn looks like the bloated, waterlogged corpse of Sean Penn after a mortician did “the best he could” to make it look remotely human for the funeral. The family would assuredly opt for a closed casket. Were he not in Reservoir Dogs, his life would have been a fucking waste. I’m sure Chris was fun to party with but let’s be honest, the best part of Chris Penn ran down his mother’s leg at conception. Check him out in Best Of The Best (1989), Future Kick (1991), Fist Of The North Star (1995), and To Wong Foo (1995). Feel free to get blitzed before watching, because even Chris Penn had to be high to stand being around Chris Penn.
#7: Michael Buscemi, brother of Steve Buscemi
What can I say about Michael Buscemi’s career, that hasn't already been summed up by the question, "Who the hell is Michael Buscemi?" At least if your famous sibling is a sex symbol like Patrick Swayze or an Oscar-winner like Sean Penn, you can count on their appeal and clout affording you a certain status in Hollywood. But, when your ticket to fame and stardom looks like a lemur with a cocaine addiction and a chicken neck, you’re lucky to be an extra in whatever film he’s shooting this month. Maybe you’ll get paid to scale if he’s the actual director, too. Check him out in Animal Factory (2000), Trees Lounge (1996), or Replay (2003).
#6: Jim Hanks, brother of Tom Hanks
Thanks to the fact that there are only 24 hours in a day, Jim Hanks gets to survive on the projects that Tom is too good to waste his time on. He played his brother’s stunt double for all the running scenes in Forrest Gump. Jim Hanks feeds on day old leftovers in the soup kitchen of Hollywood. He did the voice of “Woody” in every Toy Story tie-in video game and cheap trinket that’s been released over the last 20 years. Jim Hanks gets sloppier seconds than Kanye West or Ashton Kutcher. See him in Purgatory House from 2004, Fatal Passion and Xtro 3: Watch The Skies, both from 1995.
#5: Steven Baio, brother of Scott Baio
Imagine how shitty at everything you would have to be, to be considered less talented than Scott Baio. I’ve had two failed suicide attempts, lost my fiancee to a ginger, and shit my pants at a job interview; and even I pity Steven Baio. Hobos see Steve Baio on the street, give him money, and say “Geez I’m glad I’m not that guy.” What’s the difference between an Islamic terrorist and Scott Baio’s brother? One has a purpose in life, and the other is Steven Baio. If you have no self esteem whatsoever, see him in Evil Laugh (1986), Hard Rock Nightmare (1988), and that one episode of Joanie Loves Chachi that fulfilled a totally unscrupulous contract condition.
#4: Chad Lowe, brother of Rob Lowe
Chad Lowe acts a lot. He acts in TV shows that apparently don’t require auditions. He acts in low budget movies that need a name which screams “THIS is worth $4.99” when they debut in the bargain bin. He acts like he’s as famous as his brother Rob. He acts like the kind of guy that edits his own Wikipedia entry. He acts like he deserved to get thanked in his wife’s Oscar speech. He acts like somebody else listed all those items on his IMDb “Trivia” page. Chad, please! We know you ain’t got no fans, motherfucker. However, if any of you want to join the Legion of Chad, catch him in Target Earth (1998), Apprentice To Murder (1988), and Nobody’s Perfect (1990).
#3: Eric Roberts, brother of Julia Roberts
Eric Roberts is unique to this list in that he started acting well more than a decade before his famous younger sister, the remarkable and fucking intolerable Julia Roberts, broke into Hollywood. He also has a rare disorder than doesn’t allow him to utter the word “no” in the presence of his agent, as evidenced by his 402 film & TV credits. Witness his greatness in such highly regarded material as “The Coca-Cola Kid", “Miss Castaway And The Island Girls”, and “Chicks Dig Gay Guys”. And coming soon, catch him in an Oscar-worthy turn as Mall Santa in “Santa’s Boot Camp”! I wish I was making any of that up. If you actually want to see him in something awesome, then watch The Ambulance (1990), where he co-stars with James Earl Jones and Stan Lee!
#2: Clint Howard, brother of Ron Howard
Clint Howard differs from everyone else on this list in that he is a fucking legend. He only gets stuck with these losers because of the sheer genius of his brother, Ron Howard, who went from child stardom on The Andy Griffith Show and Happy Days to directing timeless classics like Apollo 13, A Beautiful Mind, and The Da Vinci Code. Clint could have been the Fonz and he still would have been considered “less than” his elder brother. His face doesn’t serve him well, either. Sure, he looks like his first starring role was as the aborted fetus in The Silent Scream. But, his unique look is what happens when a pregnant mother has a few too many drinks celebrating her oldest son’s success and achievements. We know this now, but fetal alcohol syndrome didn’t have a name until Clint Howard invented it. Just like Lou Gehrig’s disease wasn’t really a thing until, you know, Lou Gehrig got it. You’ve already seen hundreds of Clint’s films, whether you realize it or not.
#1: Frank Stallone, brother of Sylvester Stallone
Sly Stallone’s younger brother fancies himself a singer and guitarist, but the universe understands that he exists only to be a human punching bag. On Saturday Night Live, Norm MacDonald used his name as a non sequitur ending for any Weekend Update stories that were going nowhere. Just like-- YOU GUESSED IT, Frank Stallone. The biggest difference between Frank Stallone and The Home Depot is that The Home Depot has fans. The most notable difference between Frank Stallone and gay marriage is that gay marriage is recognized in the United States. The most obvious difference between Frank Stallone and a convicted criminal is that somebody’s gonna pay when a jailbird sings. See Frankie act in Hudson Hawk (1991), The Roller Blade Seven (1991), and Return Of The Roller Blade Seven (1992).
None of these siblings are ever going to elevate their family name to the Hollywood royalty status of the Coppolas. They’re not even cohesive enough to match the Baldwins in terms of brotherhood. Hell, most of them are less successful than the lowliest of the Kardashian sisters! At least the Carradine clan had multiple generations of notable actors, despite their legendary run as icons of the cheesiest b-movies. These 10 D-List douchebags have renewed my faith that who you know isn’t always a guarantee of success. Sometimes, celebrity can be a meritocracy and talent can trump all else!
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