What happens to celebrities when the lights dim, the red carpet rolls up, and the glitz and glamour of Hollywood life fade away? Not all stars remain in their high-flying orbits. Some fizzle out and tumble back to the realm of us mere mortals, swapping their SAG cards for office IDs and rock-and-roll lifestyles for 9-to-5 grinds.
In this piece, we’ll be your tour guide on a unique safari through the world of 17 failed celebs who now clock in and out of ‘normal’ jobs. Prepare yourself for some surprising transformations and a hearty dose of reality!
Geoffrey Owens, known for his role on The Cosby Show, was recently spotted working at Trader Joe’s, bagging groceries. Despite the career change, Owens sees it as a testament to the dignity of work.
If you visit Trader Joe’s, remember this from Geoffrey Owens, “There is no job that’s better than another job. It might pay better, it might have better benefits, and it might look better on a resume and on paper. But actually, it’s not better. Every job is worthwhile and valuable. No one should feel sorry for me. I’ve had a great life. I’ve had a great career. I’ve had a career that most actors would die for. So no one has to feel sorry for me. I’m doing fine!”
The actor who captivated audiences as the protagonist of “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory” has traded his acting career for a veterinarian’s lab coat. Presently, he is diligently engaged in Upstate New York, passionately committed to the well-being of animals.
Famously known as Hilary Banks on “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air,” she now runs the non-profit organization Sweet Blackberry that shares lesser-known stories of African American achievement.
Angus T. Jones
After leaving the spotlight of Hollywood, former child star Angus T. Jones has transitioned into the business world. Now working with multimedia and event production company Tonite, Jones has traded the glitz and glamour for board meetings and business strategies. Quite the plot twist!
After his roles in “American Pie,” the actor currently works as a waiter at a sushi restaurant in California while pursuing acting opportunities.
Remember Nikki Blonsky from the movie Hairspray? She danced and sang her way into our hearts as Tracy Turnblad, but celebrity life is a fickle friend. Today, Blonsky has ditched the silver screen for the strikingly ordinary silver scissors. Yes, she’s a hairstylist now. That’s right, Blonsky’s now delivering those killer trims and color jobs instead of punchy musical numbers.
Danny Lloyd, the child actor who terrified us in “The Shining,” took a different path after his horror debut. Leaving Hollywood behind, he became a biology professor, shaping young minds at a community college. From ‘redrum’ to grading papers, his journey is a fascinating contrast.
Amanda Bynes, a sweetheart of the 2000s with her roles in “What a Girl Wants” and “She’s The Man,” has experienced a roller-coaster career. After several personal issues and legal troubles played out in the public eye, Bynes stepped back from Hollywood’s flashing lights.
The former teen idol turned to fashion design, enrolling in the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) in Los Angeles. It’s quite the switch, but it seems like Bynes is genuinely invested in her new regular job away from the silver screen.
Jonathan Bennett, famous for his role in Mean Girls, has traded the glamorous Hollywood life for the world of cooking. As the host of Food Network’s Halloween Wars, he’s showcasing his culinary skills and surprising everyone with his dramatic shift from teen heartthrob to cooking enthusiast.
From setting trends in the hallways to setting temperatures in the kitchen, Bennett has taken on a new and exciting role.
Known for his catchy 1990s hit “Ice Ice Baby,” Vanilla Ice (real name Robert Van Winkle) had a fleeting brush with fame, only to see it melt away faster than an ice cube on a hot sidewalk. Vanilla Ice, the once famous rapper, has now transitioned into a house flipper and DIY enthusiast.
With his show on the DIY Network, “The Vanilla Ice Project,” he has gone from singing about beachfront properties to renovating them. A new groove, indeed!
Taran Noah Smith
Ah, Taran Noah Smith—the once endearing youngest Taylor brother on the hit ’90s sitcom “Home Improvement.” Taran’s fame flickered out about as fast as you can say, “More power!” After their teens, he left Hollywood’s glitz and glamour quicker than a Tim “The Toolman” Taylor power tool mishap.
Today, he runs Playford, a vegan cheese company. It’s a plot twist even the best TV writers couldn’t have seen coming!
Kevin, the eldest of the Jonas Brothers, took a different path after the band’s split. Swapping music for construction, he co-founded a real estate construction company called Jonas Werner. Now, he’s not only a contractor but also a musical talent.
If you need a home renovation, Kevin might serenade you with a tune or two while getting the job done!
Tony Danza, once a prominent figure on the silver screen, renowned for his work on ‘Who’s the Boss?’ and ‘Taxi,’ now finds satisfaction in a much humbler role. From Hollywood to a Philadelphia high school, Tony Danza’s transition from actor to English teacher shows how even the brightest stars can find their next act in the everyday world.
Keep an eye on your teachers. They may have once served up punchlines instead of pop quizzes!
Freddie Prinze Jr.
In the late ’90s, Freddie Prinze Jr. wooed us with classics like “She’s All That” and “I Know What You Did Last Summer.” But as time ticked on, his limelight dimmed, and he traded in Hollywood glam for culinary adventures. Nowadays, you’ll find him cooking recipes in the kitchen rather than on the red carpet. His cookbook, “Back to the Kitchen,” reflects his passion for cooking.
This heartthrob burned brightly in the 90s, charming audiences in shows like “Beverly Hills, 90210” and belting out hit singles like “Hold On.” However, as the decade waned, so did his celebrity status. This high-profile actor and singer has left Hollywood for heroism as a firefighter. Yes, you read it right! Walters now serves as a firefighter in Los Angeles, tackling natural fires. Impressive pivot, right?
Mackenzie Rosman, former child star of “7th Heaven,” has taken a surprising turn in her acting career. Nowadays, she’s fully immersed in competitive equestrian, trading Hollywood glitz for the tranquility of horse stables. It’s a captivating plot twist! So, if you see Rosman holding a riding crop instead of reciting lines, embrace the unexpected!
Remember Michael Maronna, the freckle-faced redhead who shot to fame as Big Pete in the cult-hit show “Pete & Pete”? While his early brush with celebrity might have suggested a sparkling Hollywood career, fate had other plans. Today, instead of walking red carpets, Maronna walks through sets as an electrician in the film industry.
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