Rejecting Missy Elliott

Missy Elliott is the reigning Queen of Rap, credited with changing the face of hip-hop with her debut album Supa Dupa Fly and five consecutive platinum albums that followed. But before selling 30 million records, Elliott was rejected by producers, dropped by a major label and told she didn’t fit the “image” the industry was looking for. Join us this week as we tell Elliott’s story, from quitting the music business altogether to becoming the first female rapper nominated to the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame.

Rejecting Milton Hershey (Hershey’s Chocolates)

The Hershey Company has the largest market share of any chocolate brand in North America. But before its founder Milton Hershey sold his first milk chocolate bar, he filed for bankruptcy – twice. By his 30th birthday, the struggling entrepreneur had lost two candy companies, and the faith of his family. Join us as we kick off Season 4 with the inspiring story of a man rejected by bankers for a $700 loan, who went on to build a $50 billion business.

Short Stories: John Krasinski & Uzo Aduba

We regret to inform you, this week marks the final episode of our 2022 season. Over the past three years – and 60 episodes – we’ve come across so many incredible rejection stories that weren’t long enough to fill a full episode. But that doesn’t mean they’re any less packed with insight. Join us this week for Short Stories in Television, Part 2 – the inspiring pint-sized rejection stories of John Krasinski & Uzo Aduba.

Rejecting Airbnb

Airbnb is worth more than the world’s top three hotel chains combined, with over 150 million users spanning 200 countries. But before the company made its three founders the first-ever sharing economy billionaires, they were broke. Weathering rejections from investors and narrowly avoiding eviction.

Rejecting Fritz Pollard

If you don’t recognize the name Fritz Pollard, you’re not alone. Pollard was the first Black player in the NFL, the first Black quarterback in the NFL and the first Black head coach of an NFL team. And yet, in 2020 – the NFL’s 100th birthday – the league referred to Pollard as “A Forgotten Man.”

Rejecting Jesus Christ Superstar

Jesus Christ Superstar is one of the most successful musicals of all time, grossing over $230M worldwide. But before composer Andrew Lloyd Webber and lyricist Tim Rice launched their technicolour dream careers, the pair was told their proposal of a Christ-themed musical was “the worst idea in history.”

Rejecting Mad Men, Part 2

In Part Two of Rejecting Mad Men, the series finds a home that can’t find financing. A struggling unknown actor named Jon Hamm auditions for the lead – and goes to the bottom of the list. Christina Hendricks’ agent drops her for accepting the pilot. And Matthew Weiner writes a whole new story.

Rejecting Mad Men

According to Rolling Stone, Mad Men is the fourth-greatest television show of all time – bested only by Breaking Bad, The Wire and The Sopranos. But before Sterling Cooper ever opened its doors, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner was rejected by every major network. Including HBO, FX and Showtime.