Fred Willard and Other Stars Caught With Their Pants Down (PHOTOS)

He reportedly pulled a Pee-Wee Herman and was arrested in an adult theater. But from Hugh Grant’s exploits to Brett Favre’s sexting, the Best in Show actor is in good company.  

Getty Images (1); AP Photos (3)

Getty Images (1); AP Photos (3)

Stars Caught With Their Pants Down

Veteran comic actor Fred Willard, best known for his roles in Christopher Guest films like Waiting for Guffman and Best in Show, was arrested in Hollywood Wednesday night when police allegedly caught him with his pants down—and penis out—at an adult-movie theater. The 78-year-old isn’t the only star to face legal trouble and humiliating headlines after reports of lewd conduct. Take a look at other public figures busted for rocking out with their … well, for similarly embarrassing acts.

Michael Buckner / Getty Images

Fred Willard

The funnyman known for roles on Fernwood 2 Night and Everybody Loves Raymond was arrested after police claimed he was masturbating at a Hollywood porn theater on Wednesday, according to TMZ. (Willard claims he did nothing unlawful.) Police who were doing a routine check on the adult establishment say they discovered Willard with his penis exposed in his hand and arrested him on charges of lewd conduct. It’s unclear what movie Willard was watching—TMZ reports that Follow Me 2, a XXX parody of The Client List, and Stepdad No. 2—were playing in rotation that night. Industry website IMDB lists Willard’s next role in a movie unfortunately titled The Yank. It’s about an Irish American looking for love on the Emerald Isle, making it unlikely that Willard was conducting research.

AP Photos (left); Charles Sykes / AP Photos

Pee-Wee Herman

Comedy icon Pee-Wee Herman, real name Paul Reubens, saw his career crumble after a 1991 arrest for lewd conduct when police said they discovered him exposing himself and masturbating in a Florida adult-movie theater. His hit television show was taken off the air, his toys were yanked from store shelves, and the incident dominated late-night comedy monologues. Pee-Wee rebutted all the criticism with an appearance at the 1991 MTV Video Music Awards, asking the audience, “Heard any good jokes lately?” After a standing ovation, he responded with his catchphrase: “Ha, that’s so funny I forgot to laugh!” Perhaps Willard’s reps should put a call into MTV’s bookers …

AP Photos

Hugh Grant

For Hugh Grant, the mid-’90s were defined by four weddings, a funeral, and an arrest. The British actor earned heartthrob status with the summer 1994 release of the hit rom-com Four Weddings and a Funeral, but followed up that success with an arrest for lewd conduct, after police said they caught him receiving oral sex from prostitute in a parked car in Hollywood. Grant dealt with the matter with dashing charm, appearing just over a week later on The Tonight Show With Jay Leno. When Leno famously chided him, “What the hell were you thinking?” Grant, who was dating buxom actress Elizabeth Hurley at the time, coolly admitted, “I did a bad thing. And there you have it.” After his refreshing candor, Grant’s skyrocketing career didn’t skip a beat.

Matt Sayles / AP Photos

George Michael

British singer George Michael’s indecent public exposure in 1998 didn’t just lead to his arrest, it led to his publicly coming out of the closet. Rumors about the former Wham! member’s sexuality persisted for years, but came to a head after he was arrested for revealing himself to an unidentified police officer in a public restroom at a park in Beverly Hills. “I got followed into the restroom and then this cop—I didn’t know it was a cop, obviously—he started playing this game, which I think is called, ‘I’ll show you mine, you show me yours, and then when you show me yours, I’m going to nick you!” Michaels told MTV News after the incident.

Craig Barritt / Getty Images

Rob Lowe

Not all the action at the Democratic National Convention is reserved for politicians. Brat Pack hunk Rob Lowe sparked controversy in 1988 over a sex tape the then–24-year-old filmed with two women during that year’s convention in Atlanta. One of the women turned out to be just 16 years old, and a copy of the tape was leaked to the media. Lowe ended up not being prosecuted for taping a sexual encounter with a minor, and settled a civil suit filed by the teen’s mother out of court. Speaking about what amounted to the first celebrity sex tape, Lowe told Oprah Winfrey in 2011, “Let me just say this—sometimes being a trailblazer is highly overrated.”

Dimitrios Kambouris / Getty Images

Eddie Murphy

When Eddie Murphy was pulled over by police in 1997 and officers arrested a transsexual prostitute who was in the car with him, he had trouble convincing skeptics of his claim that the circumstances were misconstrued and he was just being a “good Samaritan.” According to People magazine, Murphy said he knew he was picking up a prostitute, but was merely offering her a ride to get her off the streets. Still, says People, “not everyone accepts Murphy’s story at face value.” He was stopped by police “some distance” past the prostitute’s reported residence, and those familiar with the area said she was picked up in an area known for hooking. Murphy denied any wrongdoing and was never charged with a crime.


Larry Craig

Former senator Larry Craig (R-Idaho) was arrested at a Minnesota airport in 2007 and subsequently pleaded guilty to charges of lewd conduct. He was reportedly peeping through a bathroom stall at a disguised officer and then propositioned him using foot signals, which the police report stated are typically “used by persons wishing to engage in lewd conduct.” He later filed a motion to withdraw his guilty plea. The charges were particularly damning for the staunch conservative who had voted against same-sex marriage rights and was also plagued by prior allegations of gay sexual misconduct. The scandal forced Craig to retire from the Senate, though he served out the remainder of his term.

Chris Pizzello / AP Photos

Charlie Sheen

The media might have been captivated by Charlie Sheen’s tiger-blood-fueled meltdown last year, but it’s hardly the first time the star’s scandals made national news. In 1995 he was one of the major stars implicated in “Hollywood Madam” Heidi Fleiss’s prostitution ring—and was completely forthcoming with his involvement. He admitted to using Fleiss’s call-girl service 27 times, estimating that he ran up a tab of more than $50,000. Much like his current comeback on the FX comedy Anger Management, Sheen’s career was hardly nicked by the scandal—a role on Friends quickly followed, as well as a string of high-profile movies.

Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images

Matthew McConaughey

Rehearsal for Magic Mike? Before impressing with his stripping moves in the R-rated hit, Matthew McConaughey was arrested in 1999 after being confronted by police at his home while naked, dancing, and playing the bongo drums. The official charges were possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia and resisting arrest, but the detail of the police report that grabbed headlines was the arresting officer’s description a “nude, white male dancing and playing bongo drums” when he showed up at McConaughey’s house to investigate a noise complaint.

Paul Sancya / AP Photos

Brett Favre

NFL star Brett Favre may have thrown his historic 500th touchdown pass for the Minnesota Vikings in October 2010, but all anyone wanted to talk about was his penis. At the time, the quarterback was under investigation by the NFL after a report on the website Deadspin alleged that Favre sent lewd voicemails and pictures to reporter Jenn Sterger. The embarrassment for Favre continued when pictures were eventually leaked.

Richard Drew / AP Photos

Anthony Weiner

From “Weiner Roast” to “Weiner: I’ll Stick It Out” to “Hung Out to Dry,” former New York congressman Anthony Weiner’s sexting scandal—dubbed “Weinergate”—proved a bonanza for New York City’s tabloid headline writers. The disgraced politician tweeted a photo of his erect penis to a 21-year-old college student, which leaked online last year. After a week of vehement denials that the photo was of his unmentionables, Weiner finally admitted his transgressions and resigned his seat in Congress.

Arlington County Police / AP Photos

Marv Albert

When Marv Albert celebrated his 70th birthday and announced a new gig as an NFL commentator for CBS in 2011, the painfully humiliating sexual-assault case 14 years earlier that charged the anchor with forcible sodomy of a longtime acquaintance and exposed fetishes for biting, threesomes, and ladies’ underwear was a distant memory. (Albert pleaded guilty to misdemeanor assault and battery, but the sodomy charge was dropped.) Albert was fired in disgrace from his job at NBC, where he worked for two decades, but was brought back just two years later.

Ray Tamarra, FilmMagic / Getty Images

David Letterman

After an alleged $2 million extortion plot against David Letterman threatened to surface embarrassing details of the late-night host’s sexual past, the comedian was forced to admit on air: “I have had sex with women who work for me on this show.” The frank admission was deemed “refreshing for Americans used to being lied to by Bill Clinton, Sen. Larry (Wide Stance) Craig, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford and John Edwards,” said Joanna Molloy at New York’s Daily News. But Letterman was undoubtedly still wishing he “had kept it in his Worldwide Pants.”