Surely, we place celebrities on pedestals. We celebrate them for their charisma, uniqueness, nerve, and tal–- wait, that’s RuPaul’s line, sorry. But you get the picture. They’re on TV, the radio, the silver screen — it feels like they’re very much a part of our lives.
However, for some people, a few celebs have gotten way too close for comfort. While our pop icons do indeed crave privacy and boundaries more than most people, respect for those things go both ways. Here are some instances where celebrities got into legal trouble for not staying on their side of the picket fence.
Robert Downey, Jr.’s intoxicated mistake
Now here’s an icon who’s worth celebrating beyond his work in pop culture. Before his incredible performance in the movie Tropic Thunder and his studio-catapulting turn as Iron Man, Robert Downey, Jr. suffered from drug addiction.
More than two decades ago, in what appeared to be yet another misadventure highly influenced by narcotics, Downey was taken by the police, away from a house that he mistook as his own.
In his daze, he found his way into a spare bedroom of Bill and Lisa Curtis’ house, tucked himself in, and slept cozily — that is, until he was woken up by the police and paramedics. Though the Curtises did not file trespassing charges for that particular incident, Downey was still ordered to enter a rehabilitation program. After several stints in rehab and jail for other drug-related incidents, the actor sobered up and became the Hollywood A-lister he is today.
Natasha Lyonne’s rage-fueled threat
Many celebrities fall prey to their insecurities and succumb to the escape that drugs provide. This was the case for American Pie actress Natasha Lyonne, who reportedly went into a rampage in December 2004. She allegedly knocked on her neighbor’s door, stormed into the domicile, and pulled a mirror off a wall.
And — get this — she also allegedly threatened to molest her neighbor’s dog. Well, whatever the poor pooch did to deserve such abuse is now moot, because Lyonne went through rehab, became sober, and nursed her career back to health. As of late, she has co-created, written, executive produced, and starred in the Netflix hit, Russian Doll. There, she plays the character Nadia Vulvokov, a woman who dies on her birthday repeatedly in a time loop. It’s only fiction, but that premise sure sounds like perfect karma for an actual animal sex offender.
B!tch, I’m Madonna
One can understand that a pop singer has to rehearse to prepare for live performances, but if you do it in an apartment building, don’t be surprised if you get complaints. And no, being a big star doesn’t give you a free pass — not even if you’re Madonna.
To be fair, the Queen of Pop did try to soundproof her rehearsal studio in her New York city flat. However, her neighbor Karen George claimed that that didn’t work. George filed a lawsuit against Madonna in 2009, and in 2011, a trial would have commenced after evidence backed up the former’s claims had she and Madonna not reached a settlement deal.
Since then, the pop star has never rehearsed in her apartment again, as she had another studio built in a different location. Considering her wealth, it’s a wonder why she never went for that to begin with.
While we are all taught to love thy neighbor, that doesn’t mean that we just roll over and take their abusive behavior. We owe it to ourselves and to them to teach them that we deserve to be treated with respect. Sometimes, that means bringing their behinds to court. For such times, turn to Buckingham, LaGrandeur & Williams. Contact us to learn more about the steps you can take to deal with nuisance neighbors.