Whatever Happened to Amanda Bynes?

Kevthewriter wonders whatever happened to Amanda Bynes.

I’ve got a secret: I’m a millennial. From what I heard, most of the bloggers on here are middle-aged and I’m probably the youngest writer here. As a result, the name Amanda Bynes might not mean much to you besides, I dunno, being just another troubled child star.

But I grew up with her Nickelodeon stuff and saw the lows and highs of her career. Therefore, seeing her life go to hell had a bit more of an impact on me than it probably did for many people on this site. But where did it all go wrong? What made her go from cute kid to another troubled child star?

Whatever happened to Amanda Bynes?

Amanda Bynes was a talented girl. As a pre-teen and teen, she had some good comic timing.

She started off in TV shows aimed at the Nickelodeon demographic, including All That (also known as the show that introduced the world to Kenan Thompson, a.k.a. “The Man who will never leave SNL”) and, later, her own show, The Amanda Show.

When The Amanda Show was cancelled in 2002, she starred in the sitcom, What I Like About You, which was also aimed at the pre-teen demographic.

In this show, she moved away from the goofy, over the top characters she played on All That and The Amanda Show and played more of an average teenage girl who was a little quirky and klutzy. She’d end up playing this character in her movies. Over and over again.

And most of the movies she starred in (Big Fat Liar, What a Girl Wants, Lovewrecked, She’s the Man, and Sydney White) got mixed to negative reviews and were only modestly successful at the box office (except for Sydney White, which bombed but the reviews were more or less the same).

Considering her movies were considered “meh” by both audiences over the age of 13 and critics, as a movie star, she didn’t really stick out from the Hilary Duffs of the world and her movie star career was cut short.

Problem is, she grew up playing larger than life crazy characters yet she was always cast as the average, relatable teen when she was seemingly more suited to playing crazy characters than she was normal characters. Need proof? In one of the movies she made that was successful and did make an impression was Easy A, where she basically played a crazy Christian stereotype (granted, she wasn’t really the reason most people were seeing the movie but still…).

It seems like movie executives were trying to make her the next Hilary Duff or the next Lindsay Lohan when she wasn’t really like that. It didn’t really help that she was given roles that were rather forgettable and generic.

But what else hurt her career is that she was stuck in being in stuff made for the preteen demographic for over 10 years. From 1996-2007, she was basically in movies and TV shows aimed at the Nickelodeon demographic, even when she left Nickelodeon, as she was doing movies set at the preteen demographic from 2003-2007 and had done shows aimed at a similar demographic from 1996-2006.

Unlike Lindsay Lohan, who might still have a career if it wasn’t for her personal life, she didn’t really make a movie that showed audiences she could act and take her seriously as an actress. Instead, she was stuck in one genre from when she was a kid to when she was in her 20’s.

Now was this the only reason for her meltdown a few years ago? Of course not. There were probably multiple factors that led to her infamous meltdown. But one of them might have been that she felt like her parents and PR people were controlling her life.

One thing that showed this is that she actually wanted to branch out and do other things besides tween comedies. In 2008, she said, “I’d love to do something that would shock people, something that’s against type”. An insider who knew her also said, “Everybody had Amanda as a goody-goody. She couldn’t break out of that genre. Her frustration was, ‘I could have played this role; I could have played that role. I’m not getting the Lindsay Lohan roles.”

This frustration might have, if not led her to having said public meltdown, caused her to quit acting in the first place. After all, she did say she didn’t find it fun anymore and she might not have found it fun because she wasn’t getting the roles she wanted. As for what led her to then have that huge meltdown she had in 2013, my best guess is, seeing as she had people controlling what jobs she could and could not take, she probably still had people controlling her even after she quit acting and she couldn’t take it anymore, which led her to flip out and get out of control.

Since 2014, thankfully she seems to have gotten the help she needed and even announced a few months ago she was interested in getting back to acting. If she does act again, I hope she does do that shocking role she’s always wanted to do, if she’s still interested in doing it.


Posted on September 23, 2017, in Movies, TV and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 28 Comments.

  1. Celebrities who changed their reputations overnight

    Amanda Bynes

    For years, Amanda Bynes was known for being that young, quirky, and vaguely awkward teenage star from Nickelodeon’s All That (1994-2005) and The Amanda Show (1999-2002). Then, starting in 2013, the former child star shocked her fans when she made headlines for her increasingly erratic behavior both in public and in private. During the peak of the drama, she became known for posting bizarre, often offensive Tweets online, some of which targeted high-profile figures, including Drake, Rihanna, and the president of the United States.

    Following a series of arrests and involuntary hospitalizations, Bynes was placed under the temporary conservatorship of her parents in 2014, which seems to have worked. In 2016, on the heels of her 30th birthday, People reported that the former child star was “healthier than ever.”

    In 2017, Bynes gave her first interview in years and talked about getting sober, enjoying classes at the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM), and wanting to pursue acting again. Sure, the interview was awkward as hell, but hey, nothing will ever be as uncomfortable as the time she said she wanted Drake to murder her vagina.


  2. I grew up watching Amanda Bynes during her Nickelodeon days and saw quite a bit of her films like “Big Fat Liar”, “She’s the Man” and “Hairspray”. Like most people I was quite shocked when she started getting into huge amounts of trouble in 2012 ranging from DUIs, her Twitter rants, throwing a bong out of a window and being held in psychiatric care, worrying that she may not get her life back together. But judging from a recent interview Bynes had just done a few months ago, it seems that she’s keeping her cool and hope she’s getting the best care she needs.


  3. Amanda Bynes Was ‘Cold’ and ‘Self-Conscious’ Says Former Co-Star Chelsea Brummet

    Amanda Bynes’ former All That co-star, Chelsea Brummet, is revealing what it was like to work with her many years ago.

    Brummet and Bynes worked on All That together from 2000 to 2002, when Amanda started What I Like About You. Brummet even appeared on What I Like About You with Bynes during the show’s first season. Speaking with Radar Online, Brummet recalls the troubled star as being “cold” and “always self-conscious.” Brummet also talks about Bynes’ relationship with her father, Rick Bynes.

    After showing some very bizarre behavior, Bynes is currently in the hospital being treated. One of the Bynes’ former co-stars is now speaking up about working with the actress. Brummet revealed, “I found her to be cold. I think, maybe she felt like, ‘Who are these people? This is MY legacy.’”

    Brummet even revealed the star, “was always self-conscious.” When Bynes was, “on red carpets, if there was Lindsay Lohan or someone else, she would always look at herself and fix her hair. You could just tell she was self-conscious once her career started not being so great. I don’t think she liked not being in the spotlight and not being number one. I think she became so addicted to it, it became a lifestyle.”

    The former All That actress also discussed Bynes’ father. Saying he, “was controlling from the stories I heard on set.” Brummet added, “She was always defiant with her dad, but she tried to hide things from her dad — she always seemed like she was trying to hide things.”

    Apparently, Bynes’ dad didn’t approve of his daughter dating her The Amanda Show co-star Taran Killam, because of he was four years older. “But it didn’t stop her from dating him,” Brummet revealed.

    It seems like Bynes and her father’s relationship has had its ups and downs. Just before entering treatment Bynes made some troubling allegations against her father, and then took back her statements. This story is just so sad.

    What do you think about Brummet’s interview? Sound off in the comments! Plus, read the rest of the interview over at Radar Online.

    For those of you who were fans of The Amanda Show, today marks the show’s 15th anniversary. The show premiered on Oct. 16, 1999!


  4. As WWE Hall of Famer “The Heartbreak Kid” Shawn Michaels famously said in 2005: STOP COMPLAINING ABOUT THE PAST AND LOOK TO THE FUTURE. I mean, we should forget both LiLo and Amanda’s dark pasts and move on.

    P.S. LiLo was f**ked up by her parents.


    • To be fair, this is hardly the only article on here talking about a celebrity’s dark past years after the fact

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s a correct thought, I believe, but still, I feel that it stinks to be in pain. To me, it seems like Amanda Bynes stopped being Amanda Bynes, and I have a problem with that.


    • I found his article to be surprisingly light on her issues. You can’t do an retrospective article on a celebrity’s career and look into why they aren’t that active in the industry anymore without touching on their personal problems if it is a primary reason for their lack of current roles.


      • I have no idea how that link ended up at the end of my comment. I sure wish LeBeau would allow us to delete or edit comments!


        • Well, Lebeau is giving it his best shot here; there is only so much one can control at times, I suppose. I blame Terrence actually 🙂


      • I’m guessing that why the full extent of Amanda Bynes’ personal issues was so lightly touched upon here is because A) This isn’t a full blown “What the Hell Happened to…” (when compared to other actresses who have publicly struggled with their mental health like Anne Heche and Sean Young). B) We kind of “been there and then that” when tying in Amanda’s mental health problems for why her acting career bottomed out. It’s kind of a too obvious or base of a premise (like simply suggesting that Jennifer Grey’s career “ended” when she got a nose job).

        Liked by 1 person

        • I never saw Sean Young as “crazy”; more like someone who walked a thin line, and occasionally crossed it. Anne Heche, yeah, I think she went full out. I’m very sorry for Amanda Bynes though. Poor lady.


        • Actually, this started off as a full fledged WTHH article that even included pages upon pages of talk about her personal issues but it was taking a long time to get published because Lebeau didn’t have any time to work on it so I re-wrote it to be about pretty much why her movie career failed and then talked a little about how that may have led to her issues, because it was easier and quicker to write about (believe me, this article has been sitting on the shelf for a few months now).


        • To summarize what apparently happened to Amanda Bynes outside of her personal problems, it seems apparent that after she left Nickelodeon, she never really properly or fully utilized her talents as a comedienne. Amanda in theory, should’ve aimed to be more of a quirky character actress than a generic, average teenage girl in the Lindsay Lohan/Hilary Duff model.

          Amanda unlike Lindsay Lohan, never had a “Mean Girls” (a kind of transcendent, “make or break” role that could serve as a bridge to more adult-oriented material). I can’t help but think what was said regarding Rachael Leigh Cook:

          Just as those young actors learned in the 80’s, teenage audiences are a fickle lot. Each new class brings along a new batch of high school crushes. If an actress like Cook makes the transition to adult roles too soon, she runs the risk of alienating her fan base. Wait too long and you will be typecast as a teen dream girl.

          Liked by 2 people

        • Exactly


  5. She has been diagnosed with schizophrenia.


  6. 7 Actors Who Lost Their Chance To Become A-Listers (And 8 Who Rose To Stardom)


    Believe it or not, there was a time when Amanda Bynes was on the rise to becoming an A-lister. Bynes started her career on Nickelodeon’s All That and eventually became popular enough to receive her own show (aptly named The Amanda Show). Bynes then seamlessly transitioned into film with starring roles in What a Girl Wants, She’s the Man, and Sydney White.

    Bynes seemed primed to break out and become one of Hollywood’s hottest starlets… before a series of personal issues derailed her career.

    She was charged with DUI in 2012 and was hospitalized under a 72-hour mental-health evaluation after starting a fire in a stranger’s driveway in 2013. Bynes has kept largely quiet since then.

    Bynes last appeared on screen in 2010’s Easy A, and although she says she hasn’t retired from acting, her opportunity to become an A-lister has certainly passed her by.


    • I feel bad for Amanda Bynes; I’ve had some mental health issues myself (like a nervous breakdown in 1996), studied psychology (byproduct of the nervous breakdown), and have met my fair share of people who struggle with themselves on a daily basis, so I understand her plight, and hope she manages the best she can. I think once you’re self-aware about where your mind can go, you have a better handle on things.

      Liked by 1 person



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