Adam Sandler has shared how Kathy Bates helped him after realising “critics hated” his movies.
Throughout his career, the actor’s choices have been regularly ridiculed by reviewers, who have given several of his releases bad write-ups.
Films including Little Nicky, Grown-Ups, The Ridiculous 6 and Sandy Wexler have been torn apart by crtiics, and Sandler has acknowledged that, at first, such a reception came as a shock to him when he started writing and leading his own films in the mid-1990s.
“When Billy Madison came out, me and my friend who wrote it, we were just like, ‘Oh yeah, they’re going to write about this in New York!’” Deadline reports the actor as saying.
“We read the first one and we were like, ‘Oh my god, what happened? They hate us.’ And then we were like, ‘It must have been this paper,’ but then 90 per cent of the papers are going, ‘This is garbage.’
He also told a recent episode of the Happy Sad Confused podcast that Kathy Bates helped him years later when 1998 comedy The Waterboy received a similar reception to the 1995 film.
“I remember Kathy Bates in Waterboy, and I loved her and I loved everything she did. I remember telling her when somebody brought up critics that I was like, ‘They’re probably not gonna like it. They’re probably gonna say bad stuff, maybe don’t read it.’ And she said ‘Well, I like it, so that’s all that matters,’ or something like that. She was cool.”
Reflecting on how he came to terms with the negative press, Sandler said: “When the critics started hating me, I just felt bad for my family and I just felt bad for the people who worked really hard on the movies. I mean, I had so many great actors in the movies.
“When we would get done shooting it, they would say to me ‘I think the critics are really going to like this one.’ And I’d say ‘Oh no, they’re going to say bad things, and they’re probably going to say bad things about you being in it.’”
Despite many of Sandler’s films being critical flops, he has become one of Hollywood’s most bankable actors and has cemented his status as a well-regarded presence in the industry thanks to his nice-guy demeanour.
He has received positive reviews for films including Paul Thomas Anderson’s Punch-Drunk Love, Noah Baumbach’s The Meyerowitz Stories (New and Selected), Uncut Gems by the Safdie brothers, and Netflix film Hustle.
Hustle’s release saw the actor break an impressive Rotten Tomatoes record.