At this point, there isn’t much that Kelly Clarkson hasn’t accomplished. She’s sold millions of albums, won Grammys, and with stints on The Voice and her own talk show, she’s cemented her position as a pop icon. Kelly Clarkson is even a movie star -- though that’s something she’d rather not talk about. In fact, her experience making 2003’s ill-fated From Justin to Kelly was so bad, she was sure the movie would ruin her career before it really even started.
From Justin to Kelly was released just months after Kelly Clarkson bested Justin Guarini for the inaugural American Idol crown. It was the first (and only) film made to capitalize on the singing competition’s enormous popularity -- because the romantic movie-musical was universally panned and bombed at the box office. And Kelly Clarkson told Yahoo! News that the whole process was horrifying for her:
I mean, I cried. I tried so hard to get out of that film. When we all made the [American Idol Season 1] top 10, they informed us that whoever won the show had to do this movie musical. And I was like, 'I don't really want to be an actor.' Like, that's not a dream of mine. I came on a singing competition, and I was already worried about it. And then when it came down to the top two, Justin really wanted to do the movie and I didn't, so we were kind of hoping he’d win so I didn't have to! And then he loved it, so they were like, 'Well, why don't we just make it the two of y'all?'
According to Kelly Clarkson, there was no way for the American Idol alums to avoid making From Justin to Kelly, despite her reservations:
I cried so hard to get out of that. But in the contract I had to, because I won. And I love movie musicals — I have such an amazing amount appreciation for that kind of talent — but I don't feel like that's my talent, necessarily. So, you know, I was miserable shooting it, and I didn't want to do it. I thought it was going to ruin my singing career.
Even though From Justin to Kelly was as bad as she expected it to be, the movie didn’t ruin her singing career. And now, more than 15 years later, Kelly Clarkson knows From Justin to Kelly has become a part of the so-bad-it’s-good canon -- she told Yahoo! News that even her nanny is a fan. But making the film caused her so much stress, she still can’t get in on the joke. So, it’s safe to say she probably won’t be setting foot on a movie set any time soon.