With the exception of a few Hollywood lifers, most celebrities see their star power fade after a while. But despite what the "where are they now" shows would have you believe, not every Tinseltown career ends after being busted for having a cocaine-snorting contest with an aardvark. Sometimes, their lives take a somewhat unexpected turn.
OK, some more unexpected than others ...
(Cracked recently took an unexpected turn towards making a Star Wars: Adventures in Jedi School mini-series.)
6 Thora Birch Stops Getting Work Because of Her Creepy Dad
Most of you remember Thora Birch from American Beauty, but she was already kind of a big deal by age 8, winning the Best Young Actress Under Nine Years of Age award (yes, that exists) for a movie called Purple People Eater. Then her stardom peaked as a teenager with those breakthrough performances in American Beauty and Ghost World. In other words, she made the oh-so-rare jump from "cute kid" roles to "serious Oscar-winning dramas" and was set to become the go-to sexy-yet-comically-sullen-and-stoic girl of her generation.
Like the rich man's Aubrey Plaza.
But Then ...
She has appeared in virtually nothing of note since 2001. And the cause appears to be her ex-porn star father.
Yes, Jack Birch was a 1970s porn star, most famous for appearing in Deep Throat. He functions as Thora's manager, although not a very good one, since all he seems to do is cause trouble and get her fired.
He couldn't even manage to grow a mustache. In porn. In the 1970s.
Jack's background might help explain his rather bizarre behavior, particularly when it involves his daughter's body. For instance, during the filming of Winter of Frozen Dreams, Jack insisted on being present for her adult scenes. Now, this was understandable with American Beauty, because she was underage and parental supervision was required for anything involving nudity. But she was now 26, and Dad was still hanging around, giving the crew instructions on how to make his baby girl look like a good lay.
He even threatened to pull her off the movie and kill the assistant directors because they weren't shooting the sex scenes the way he wanted. At one point, he gave the actor playing Thora's lover a "thumbs up," while he was having sex with her.
"Daddy says you gave it to me pretty good, but he thinks you should try a donkey punch on the next take."
But at least Thora got to finish the film -- in 2010, he got her fired from an off-Broadway production of Dracula because Jack apparently physically threatened another actor for rubbing Thora's back during a scene (we don't get it, either). Jack's bullshit cost his daughter a job again less than a month later, when she was fired from Manson Girls. Are you noticing a theme here? The jobs keep getting worse, and her dad keeps getting her dropped from them.
Of course, it's hard to fire your own parents (it makes Thanksgiving awkward as hell), so what can she do? At this point Hollywood has apparently decided that Birch isn't worth the trouble she brings with her (and be warned, if you ever get cast to have sex with her, make sure you do it right. He's watching you).