Some people gain and maintain success by playing it safe, saying and doing what is sure to please the masses. They avoid controversy and work hard to stay away from situations that could threaten their sympathy. Often these people rank among the most popular and attract many dedicated and like-minded fans. The strategy is working; there is certainly no shortage of famous and beloved figures who have achieved extraordinary success this way.
Other people, however, take a less conventional route. They are generally independent by nature, walk at their own pace, and are generally unbothered by the opinions of others. They are not afraid to speak their mind at all times, sometimes to their detriment. These individuals have no filter and there is no neutral sentiment among the public – people either love them or hate them. Despite the criticism that comes with such success, they have a way of connecting with their followers in ways others don’t understand.
It’s hard to define what makes someone controversial, but something about them lurks under the skin, dividing public opinion and fueling fierce debate. Perhaps they have been embroiled in too many scandals to fall back into our good graces; maybe it was all part of their plan all along: to live a life of dissent.
To better understand why the world’s most infamous (and successful) troublemakers are so captivating, Stacker has put together a list of celebrities who emerged on the other side of scandal and where they land on the ladder of sympathy.
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