Jar Jar Binks became the laughingstock of not just many "Star Wars" fans, but the cinematic world as well in the summer of 1999. Binks is considered to be the most hated character in "Star Wars" history. Not even those damn Ewoks can dethrone the Gungan from "The Phantom Menace". In fact, the hatred directed at the character had such a negative effect on its portrayer, actor Ahmed Best, that he contemplated suicide, “I faced a media backlash that really made me feel like my life was over” the actor said in a recently released video interview, adding, “There was just so much hate and anger and venom directed at me, and I took it personally…I put a lot of me into that work, and if you talk to any artist who really cares about their work, you’re talking about them,” Best says.
And so, it is quite surprising to have George Lucas himself quoted as saying that that "[The Phantom Menace] is one of my favorite movies and of course Jar Jar is my favorite character. Ahmed [Best] did a fantastic job, it was very, very hard."
Binks and Best aren’t the only "Phantom Menace" casualties. I'm sure you all remember 10 year-old Jake Lloyd, who played Anakin Skywalker, and his revelation in a 2012 interview that fan backlash led him to quit acting for good. It didn't stop there, Lloyd also ended up having a short stint at a psychiatric facility. Yikes.