15 Celebrities Who Became Famous by Accident
It’s hard to imagine Brad Pitt wearing a chicken costume instead of being filmed in another blockbuster, it’s also hard to imagine Pamela Anderson as a fitness instructor at the gym instead of doing commercial photo sessions. However, these scenarios could’ve been true if these and some other celebrities were not lucky enough to turn up in the right place at the right time.
We at Bright Side were impressed by the mind-blowing stories of celebrities who became famous by accident. Some of them could easily compete with the fairy tale about Cinderella.
Jennifer Aniston was gassing up her car when she met the president of the largest TV company.
Before becoming a world-famous actress, Jennifer Aniston tried herself in many roles on projects that were not very successful. Once, the actress ran into the former president of NBC Entertainment, Warren Littlefield, at a gas station on Sunset Boulevard in Hollywood. When he finished gassing up his car, Aniston asked him, “Will it ever happen for me?” Littlefield thought for a while and answered, “I wanted it to.” Soon after, she was invited for the audition for the Friends series, where the actress got the cult role of Rachel Green.
Sharlto Copley was a TV producer.
Sharlto Copley became the co-founder of Channel 69 Studios media company at the age of 19. At the same time, he met his future mentor for the big screen, Neill Blomkamp, who he hired for the position of computer graphic designer.
Several years later, Blomkamp unfolded his director talent and invited his former employer to film District 9. After his debut, Sharlto played in a bunch of other bright roles together with Jodie Foster, Matt Damon, Angelina Jolie, and other giants in Hollywood.
Chloë Sevigny was skateboarding when she was noticed by a fashion photographer.
17-year-old Chloë Sevigny was skateboarding with her friends in the East Village in New York when she accidentally met a photographer from a magazine about music and fashion, i-D. The latter offered her a photoshoot, and Chloë didn’t miss her chance. Now the world-famous model and actress considers this photoshoot the best one in her career.
David Boreanaz got his fateful role while walking his dog.
David Boreanaz had been trying to get on the big screen for years by taking part in many auditions but his dream came true thanks to an accidental meeting. In 1996, Marcia Shulman, the casting director of the cult series Buffy The Vampire Slayer, was looking for a handsome guy to fill the role of Angel — a tortured vampire with a soul. But all was in vain.
That’s when her friend, who noticed Boreanaz while walking her dog, came to the rescue. The actor was approved for the role and he remained the star of the TV series for the next 25 years.
Brad Pitt was working odd jobs.
In his student years, Brad Pitt was studying journalism but dropped out of college 2 weeks before graduation. World fame didn’t come to him all at once. Pitt had to agree to take any job to be able to pay the bills. He worked as a mascot at a cafe wearing a chicken costume and gave rides to female dancers to bachelor parties.
According to the actor, these jobs gave him a chance to find the right contacts and brought him to acting teacher, Roy London, who helped him unfold his talent and get his first roles in movies.
Lana Turner found the right contacts by going to a cafe for a soda.
Lana Turner or Julia Jean Milfred Frances Turner (her name before the start of her career in Hollywood) owes her career to William R. Wilkerson, founder of the leading American magazine about the movie industry The Hollywood Reporter.
The businessman first saw the future icon of the 1940s and 1950s in a cafe when she was drinking soda with her friends and instantly realized that he was looking at the future star. Wilkerson introduced 16-year-old Turner to talent agent, Zeppo Marx, who helped her get a small role in the movie They Won’t Forget. Soon afterward, her great career on the big screen started.
John Wayne was an American football player.
Before becoming a superstar, John Wayne went by the name Marion Morrison and played as a forward for the University of Southern California. But after a serious injury, he lost his sports scholarship and was forced to look for work elsewhere. Wayne started his career on the big screen playing football players in a couple of movies (including The Drop Kick). Afterward, he gradually switched to more iconic roles and even won an Oscar in 1970.
Justin Bieber was posting covers on YouTube and was noticed by a producer.
Justin Bieber has been into music from early childhood — he played drums, piano, guitar, and trumpet. At the age of 12, he took part in a singing contest in the Canadian city, Stratford, where he took second place. The mother of the young artist posted his video on YouTube to help other members of their family and their friends watch it who were not able to attend the performance. Afterward, she uploaded several videos where Justin was singing popular song covers in a rhythm and blues style.
The audience of the channel was gradually increasing, and his videos started to gain upwards of 60,000 views. Among those who listened to his songs, there was music producer Scott Brown, who invited the 13-year-old singer to record his first demo in a studio in Atlanta.
Ellen Pompeo was bartending.
Ellen Pompeo got famous by playing Meredith Grey in Grey’s Anatomy, which remained on the big screen for 17 years. Before getting that iconic role, the future actress worked in a restaurant in New York’s Soho area.
Everything changed when a talent agent who was spending an evening in the restaurant paid attention to Pompeo. Soon, Ellen was taking part in TV commercials and debuted as an actress in the movie Do You Have the Time?
Kate Moss met a modeling scout in an airport lounge.
Being a young girl, Kate Moss would never have even thought that she would become one of the iconic supermodels in the 1990s and 2000s. She confessed that she never admired her appearance — she was shy about her smile and her height.
Everything changed when model scout, Sarah Doukas, believed in her. Moss ran into Doukas’ brother in a New York airport. The 14-year-old girl was roaming around waiting for boarding when he came up to her and asked, “Have you ever thought about being a model?” Later on, at the age of 16, Kate had already had her first photoshoot for the cover of The Face.
Oprah Winfrey worked at a radio station after winning a beauty contest.
When Oprah Winfrey was 17 the local radio station of Nashville invited her to take part in a beauty contest. The winner was promised the title Miss Fire Prevention. There were only red-headed girls among the participants, so it seemed Oprah had no chance to win.
But then she heard the question, “How would you spend one million dollars?” While the other participants were competing in their generosity, Winfrey honestly answered, “If I had a million dollars, I would be a spending fool. I’m not quite sure what I would spend it on, but I would spend, spend, spend. Spending fool.” Her sincerity and sense of humor conquered the jury and she got the crown. Moreover, Oprah got a job offer at that very radio station and started her successful career in the media world.
Bill Cosby was working in a cafe warming up the audience.
In his student years, Bill Cosby was worked as a barman and was warming up the audience in a New York café. The visitors liked his sense of humor, and soon Bill started to give stand-up performances all over the US. The comic was noticed on television and in 1965, he went on The Tonight Show. Soon after the on-screen debut, he got hooked up with Warner Brothers. Together they created several successful comedy projects.
Pamela Anderson was “found” at a football game.
Pamela Anderson worked as a fitness instructor until she was “found” at a football game in Canada. She came to the game in a tight-fitting t-shirt with a logo depicted on it and was broadcast on the stadium’s giant screen. The unexpected advertisement pleased the representatives of the company, and Anderson was offered a contract. Soon afterward, she was doing photoshoots for magazines and then got her iconic role on Baywatch.
Gisele Bündchen was having lunch at McDonald’s.
Gisele Bündchen was born and raised in a small city in the south of Brazil called Horizontina, which could offer her almost nothing. At the age of 13, the future star of world runways signed up for modeling courses — not because she had ambitions in this profession, but because of the promised trip to São Paulo after the finish of her studies.
When Gisele finally arrived at the capital of the state, she went to McDonald’s for the first time. There, a modeling agent came up to her and asked whether she was interested in the modeling business. “I had never seen fashion magazines,” she replied. But later, after having consulted with her mom, Gisele agreed, and it opened the door to a successful future for her.
Eva Mendes was simply helping her neighbor.
The career of Eva Mendes started when she was helping her neighbor. He asked her to be a model for his portfolio and took several photos. An agent, who later saw the photos, was astonished by her beauty and started to search for a contract for Eva. After having contacted Mendes, the recruiter signed a contract for a couple of supporting roles with her right away. That’s when the bright on-screen future of the actress started.
What amazing turns has your career taken? Please share your stories in the comments.