During his meteoric rise from underground battle rap master to mainstream rap god, Eminem has gone through his fair share of tiffs and beefs. It’s a common play in rap for famous artists to get into verbal disputes with one another, and it often heightens the popularity of both parties. It’s a win-win.
But it’s not always a win-win. A well-timed diss track can end someone’s career just as much as it can help popularize them (look at a few on this list, for instance). And Eminem is the ultimate cutthroat when it comes to ruining people’s images. He’ll always be a battle rapper first, which is where many people think he shines.
Others have taken his brutal words and let it roll off their back like it was nothing. These celebrities like his music and won’t be fazed by his attacks— if anything, they’re flattered that he raps about them at all!
Here are 10 celebrities who got really mad when Eminem dissed them, and 10 who took it in stride.
20 Really Mad: Ja Rule
Eminem was in the middle of Ja Rule and 50 Cent’s beef in 2002 when he signed 50 Cent to Shady Records in 2002. The local beef between Queens natives turned into a war between record labels. Em was only a minor player until Ja Rule mentioned Hailie in “Loose Change,” and then Em went for the kill shot. “Doe Rae Ma (Hailie’s Revenge),” “Bully,” and “Hail Mary” off The Slim Shady LP were aimed at Ja and accelerated the downward trajectory of his career.
19 Took It In Stride: Jessica Alba
Actress Jessica Alba was voted the Hottest Woman in the World in 2007, and in 2016 she sat down with Sway and told him about her first meeting with Eminem, calling him things like “so cute,” and “it was very awkward, but I do like him and his music too.” This comes after Em rapped about Jessica in “My Band,” “We Made You,” and “Evil Twin.” In a 2015 interview with GQ, Alba said, “I have met him, we are not friends, but he is very nice.” She also said she listens to his radio station, Shade45, all the time— so clearly the jabs aimed at her slid right off her back.
18 Really Mad: Limp Bizkit
At one point, Eminem and the members of Limp Bizkit were friends, but then Everlast said that Limp’s DJ, Lethal, would beat Eminem in a fight on MTV’s TRL. Em released “Girls”— a verbal onslaught on every member of Limp Bizkit, rapping about the violent acts he wanted to commit against the band. The animosity between the two heavyweights never settled, despite Fred Durst praising "Recovery" on Twitter.
17 Took It In Stride: ‘NSYNC
Boy band legends, ‘NSYNC, felt the sting of Eminem as a video featured Eminem in a superhero costume hunting down ‘NYSNC lookalikes. Lance Bass told MTV News, “The lyrics sound like it’s not a dis. It’s like he likes us, but then in the video he doesn’t like us.” Joey Fatone added, “In the video, he destroys us.” Timberlake added that it could’ve been worse, saying, “Christina got it the worst. I feel bad for her.”
16 Really Mad: Moby
Moby never really knew why Eminem hated him so much, but at the 2001 Grammys he called Em misogynistic, homophobic, and anti-Semitic. Em dissed Moby on “Without Me,” then challenged him to a fight at the 2002 MTV VMAs. Moby praised Em’s talent, but was shocked about Eminem’s anger, given that they’d never met before the VMAs. The two never resolved their differences, but Moby applauded Eminem for his song “Mosh,” admiring the lyrics and visuals.
15 Took It In Stride: Tyler, The Creator
After the 2017 collaboration between Beyonce and Eminem, “Walk on Water,” Tyler, the Creator summed up the world’s consensus on Twitter with, “This song is horrible sheesh.” A year later, Eminem responded on “Fall” with a homophobic slur aimed at Tyler. But he took it in stride and was unfazed, responding, “Did you ever hear me publicly say anything about that? He [Eminem] felt pressured because people got offended for me. Don’t get offended for me. We were playing Grand Theft Auto when we heard that. We rewound it and were like: “Oh,” and then kept playing.”
14 Really Mad: Joe Budden
Around the time of Eminem’s ninth album, "Revival," he was having problems with Joe Budden. When he was part of Complex’s Everyday Struggle, Budden criticized his album heavily, calling it trash on the Complex show. Eminem dissed Budden on “Fall,” from "Kamikaze." Budden lost his cool on his podcast, saying he’d been a better rapper than Em since the beginning, and that Em raps about nothing. After Em’s response to Machine Gun Kelly’s “KILLSHOT,” Budden tweeted that Eminem was afraid of him.
13 Took It In Stride: Kim Kardashian
In the music video for “We Made You,” from the late 2000s, Eminem joked about Jim Kardashian, rapping, “I think Kim Kardashian’s a man.” Then Kim went on Eminem’s SiriusXM channel, Shade45, and said, “I’m such an Eminem fan… I got an email from my friend, she was like, ‘girl you made it! Eminem is rapping about you.’ And I was like, ‘wow that’s so cool.’ I got it easy.” So it seems that she took the joke for what it was.
12 Really Mad: Machine Gun Kelly
The most recent and headlined feud with Eminem belongs to Machine Gun Kelly, who claimed the rapper played a part in banning his music from certain media outlets. Eminem dissed MGK on “Not Alike,” then MGK released “Rap Devil,” which was a full album worth of disses aimed at the rap king. People were impressed on social media, and not so much with Eminem’s lackluster response. Em told Sway that he was stuck in a position of wanting to destroy MGK, but also not wanting to make him any more popular.
11 Took It In Stride: Lana Del Rey
In an interview for Dazed, Courtney Love asked Lana Del Rey about ever meeting Marshall Mathers. Lana responded with, “No. Sometimes he namechecks me in his songs. I called the head of my label, John Janick, and I was like, ‘OK, in this last song [“No Favors”] when Eminem says, “I’m about to run over a chick, Del Rey CD in,” did he mean he wanted to run me over or was he listening to me while he ran someone over? And John was like, “No, no he was listening to you while he ran someone over.’ And I was like, ‘Ok, cool.’” Being namechecked by Eminem was a “little ruby” in Lana’s crown, she later said.
10 Really Mad: Nick Cannon And Mariah Carey
Eminem has often alleged to a relationship between himself and Mariah Carey in 2001, though Carey has always denied the rumor. When Carey married Nick Cannon, Eminem released “Bagpipes From Baghdad,” which expressed his lust for Carey and dissed her and Cannon. Mariah responded with “Obsessed,” the video of which featured a Slim Shady lookalike stalker, which enraged Em. He released “The Warning,” and Cannon defended his ex-wife on a blog titled “Miss Marshall.”
9 Took It In Stride: Lindsay Lohan
Eminem bashed Lindsay Lohan in “Same Song & Dance,” but Lohan took it in stride, saying, “Where is Eminem? I’m in love with him. Eminem. Couldn’t relate to ‘Talkin to Myself’ more some days.” Then in 2016, Lohan tweeted that she wanted Eminem to come back with new music soon, which was before “Bad Meets Evil.” So, it seems that not only did Lohan take it in stride, but she also encouraged more music from the rap god.
8 Really Mad: Cage
Before The Slim Shady LP was released, underground rapper Cage claimed that Eminem stole everything about him— from his style to his lyrics. Eminem made sure to take shots at the rapper on “Role Model” from The Slim Shady LP, and continued to drag him on “Drastic Measures” and a Tony Touch mixtape freestyle. Cage also kept his insults going for several songs, including “And So Kiddies,” but his career certainly didn’t skyrocket like Eminem’s…
7 Took It In Stride: Christina Aguilera
Everyone remembers the diss to Christina Aguilera that Eminem delivered, rumoring about her trysts with TSL host Carson Daly and Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst. This came after she spilled the beans on Em marrying Kim Mathers in secret in 1999. Aguilera released “The Real Slim Shady (Please Shut Up),” but the two buried the hatchet with a hug backstage at the 2002 MTV VMAs.
6 Really Mad: Everlast
Here’s a petty one: Everlast (of House of Pain) was angry that Eminem ignored him backstage after a concert in 1999, so he dropped some bars on Eminem and his daughter Hailie (always a bad idea) on the “Ear Drums Pop” remix. Eminem launched a torrent of disses, including some lines in “I Remember,” where he took shots at Everlast’s heart troubles and age. Everlast replied with “Whitney’s Revenge," and Eminem answered back with “Quitter,” ridiculing Everlast’s career, of which he never recovered.
5 Took It In Stride: Insane Clown Posse
Back in 1995, Eminem advertised that ICP would show up at The Slim Shady LP release, but they didn’t. Em dissed the duo on several songs, like “Get U Mad,” “’Till Hell Freezes Over,” and “Marshall Mathers.” ICP responded with “Nuttin’ But a B---- Thang” and “Slim Anus.” The beef was resolved in 2005 when Violent J revealed that Proof had squashed the beef over a bowling game between ICP and Em’s crew, D12, though Em wasn’t able to attend the Detroit get-together.
4 Really Mad: Benzino
Eminem had some choice words in the early 2000s regarding The Source magazine and its co-founder, Benzino, who gave The Marshall Mathers LP a bad review. Benzino took things to the next level with a series of diss tracks, which led to Eminem’s “The Sauce.” For much of the early 2000s, these two traded punches, Benzino with “Pull Your Skirt Up,” and Eminem with one of the most memorable diss tracks: “Nail in the Coffin.” More songs were released on both sides, but we know who won this one in the end.
3 Took It In Stride: Will Smith
When Will Smith beat Eminem for best male video at the 1999 MTV VMAs, Smith noted in his acceptance speech that he doesn’t have to use profanity to sell records, and Em took it as a personal dig. He called out Smith’s nice-guy image on “Without Me,” and Smith got him with a low-key diss on “Mr. Nice Guy.” In the song, he took Em’s disses in stride, rapping, “Dissed by Eminem but didn’t bother him/Yup well he classy/Big Will just did another 20 mil, walk right past E/I’m a nice guy, why y’all harrassin’ me, huh?”
2 Really Mad: Canibus
Canibus was big in the early ‘90s, around the same time as Eminem, with Canibus making guest appearances on tracks with Common, The Firm, and Slick Rick. Then he had a beef with LL Cool J, and Canibus got word that Em might have ghostwritten Cool J’s “The Ripper Strikes Back.” Em denied the rumor, but Canibus wasn’t having it and a long feud resulted. Canibus would continue the beef for a while, but they hardly got any attention as his album sales were low.
1 Took It In Stride: Lady Gaga
In the Bad Meets Evil track “A Kiss,” Em referenced Lady Gaga as a ‘male lady,’ which started a bit of a buzz. Eminem then clarified in an interview that the jab was for comedic purposes only, and he respects Lady Gaga as a huge talent. There are no hard feelings between the two superstars, as Em added, “It was just one of them things, man. It’s all in fun; it’s hip-hop. It is what it is, but as far as an artist, she’s dope— she’s an incredible talent.”
References: billboard.com, mtv.com, southpawer.com, popcrush.com