These 28 Celebrities Had The Worst Jobs Before Becoming Famous

What’s the first thing that comes to mind whenever anyone takes a look at an A-list celebrity? That they have a dream job, right? Hey, even if you don’t think that at first, this is still one of the main thoughts people have about them. What we tend to forget, however, is that their jobs have not always been so dreamy. Some of these A-listers had to go through some of the most awful experiences before landing the gig of their lives. 

Photo: Courtesy of El País

#28. Warren Beatty

Let’s begin our list with this legendary star, who once had what could be one of the worst jobs ever. At 17, Warren Beatty would often wander the alleys surrounding the National Theatre in Washington, D.C., catching rats.

Photo: Courtesy of Matt Baron/Shutterstock

He didn’t do that just for fun. Of course not. But, hey, even though he was getting paid, there’s not a single nice thing about having to catch rats, right? It’s lucky that he gave the acting world a try!

#27. George Clooney

When he dropped out of college, George Clooney moved to Los Angeles to pursue a career in acting. Before making his big debut as a star, he took up a number of odd jobs such as cutting tobacco, working at a ladies shoe store, and selling insurance door to door.

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He was fired from that last job, though, According to what he told David Letterman, Clooney was fired after selling one policy to a guy who ended up dying. Ouch! Tough luck!

#26. Geena Davis

Geena Davis will always be remembered for her amazing career, and for the time she landed her first role in Tootsie, right? But did you know that before that she used to make a living by modeling clothing alongside the mannequins at Ann Taylor?


Can you believe it was her own idea to sit there next to the other mannequins? She got the idea when she saw that there was an empty space in that part of the store. Soon, people gathered to see if the beautiful lady was real or simply another mannequin. Cool, right?

#25. Sean Connery

Here’s something you most definitely did not see coming… Long before he became James Bond, Sean Connery used to work as a coffin polisher! Apparently, his job was to bleach mahogany coffins in order to make them look like oak. That’s not all, there’s this rumor that Connery even slept in a coffin once, for a bet.

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Apart from that creepy job, the actor held a number of not so glamorous jobs, such as milkman, a lorry driver, a lifeguard at Portobello swimming baths, a laborer, and even an artist’s model for the Edinburgh College of Art.

Slide to see the weird job this next actor had before becoming an Academy Award Winner.

#24. Matthew McConaughey

What’s the first thing that comes to your mind when you think about Matthew McConaughey’s career? Oscar, great actor, Dallas Buyers Club, Mud, and Interstellar among others, right? Well, here are some other words to add to that list…

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Chicken coop cleaner. Yes, you’ve read it correctly. Chicken coop cleaner. There was a time when McCounaghey spent a semester abroad in Australia and had to work cleaning chicken coops. Not all right, not all right, not all right… right?

#23. Ellen Degeneres

You may not know this, but Ellen Degeneres was the first female comedian to ever appear on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, back in 1986, when she got her big break. From that moment on, everything started to fall into place so that Ellen could become the well-known comedian she is today.

Photo: Courtesy of Andrew Harnik

But things weren’t always like that, though. Before her big break, Ellen had to work a series of random gigs. She was a house painter, a vacuum salesperson, and even an oyster shucker! Not weird at all, right?

#22. Barack Obama

The former president of the United States of America used to scoop ice cream in Honolulu Baskin Robbins in the mid-’70s, for a living. Can you think of a president having a more random job?

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We bet you’re thinking the same thing we are: Being able to eat all the ice cream you want and getting paid for it must be awesome. Obama thought so at first, but he eventually grew tired of the same meaningless activity. What did he do after that? Well, we think there’s no need to keep on telling you what his final job was, we’re pretty sure you already know.

#21. Victoria Beckham

Don’t say we didn’t try to warn you, some of the jobs on this list are particularly weird, and Victoria Beckham is not the exception here. Can you guess what job she had before becoming a famous pop star in the girl-band The Spice Girls?

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The year was 1986, and the BBC used to air a sex-ed show called Body Matters. So far, so normal, right? Well, normality ends here, as we unveil that Posh Spice used to dress up as a human-sized sperm, and would often twirl around on roller skates.

#20. Rihanna

Our favorite bad gal is also included on the list. Before becoming the music sensation and fashion icon she is today, Rihanna once served as an army cadet in a sub-military program, in Barbados.

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At this time, Rihanna was under the guidance of singer-songwriter Shontelle. Oh, the irony! After her time at the army was over, she was able to build a career and become the music sensation and businesswoman we know today.

#19. Queen Latifah

She might seem a woman who can keep calm in any situation, right? Well, that might be the case now, however, Queen Latifah wasn’t always like that, and that led to her losing her temper and getting fired from Burger King.

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It seems that Latifah got intro trouble after arguing with the manager. Apparently, sometime after being fired, the star returned to the place she used to call her job, to confront the manager who had fired her. It wasn’t her lucky day, as he had previously quit.

#18. John Legend

Everybody loves John Legend. He’s funny and talented. But did you know that he is also quite smart? That’s correct. Before becoming the music sensation he is today, the singer graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and proceeded to work at a consulting group for three years.


As you might have already imagined, his passion for music was much stronger than his love for numbers. And that’s how John Legend decided to dedicate his life to serenade girls all over the globe.

#17. Madonna

The now worldly famous material girl used to be a cashier at Dunkin’ Donuts. Yes, before becoming the undeniable star she is today, Madonna dropped out of college and moved to New York.

Photo: Courtesy of El Universo

It is no secret that she didn’t last at that job. In fact, she was fired after her first day! The star squirted a jelly-filled donut all over a customer. Can you imagine being that costumer and telling the story of how you got Madonna fired?

#16. Jon Hamm

What happens when a young Jon Hamm is in between jobs and down on his luck? He gets introduced to what most of us would call the epitome of an odd job. Apparently, when he was looking for a job, a friend told him that he could have his job doing set dressing.

Photo: Courtesy of Gammer Style

Hamm was feeling quite nervous about the job until his friend told him that it wasn’t that demanding because it was for an adult film. Luckily for him, he eventually abandoned that job and landed his breakout role in Mad Men.

#15. Hugh Jackman

Many years ago, before being one of Holywood’s most talented and successful actors, Hugh Jackman was committed to being in good shape. Little did he know that this would eventually help him land the role of Wolverine, right?

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You may ask yourself why he wanted to get buff, right? Well, perhaps his obsession had something to do with the fact that before acting, Jackman used to work as a P. E. teacher. And he still remembers his students’ names!

#14. Gwen Stefani

We all know her for rocking the stage with No Doubt and later on, as a solo artist. However, being a singer wasn’t Gwen Stefani’s first job.

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When she was asked about her first paycheck, the singer and fashion designer revealed that the very first check she ever earned came from Dairy Queen, where she was quite popular for making Blizzards. Who would’ve thought?

#13. Eva Mendes

Before stepping into Hollywood, Eva Mendes was a regular girl who used to wear a brightly colored uniform and dip hot dogs at Hot Dog on a Stick. Can you imagine buying a hot dog from such an A-list star?

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She didn’t last much at that job and was eventually fired. Luckily for her, this marked the beginning of her new life. She later went on to pursue acting, and we’re lucky she made that choice!

#12. Brad Pitt

What is it with hot actors and dressing up as animals or fruits? When he was not even near to becoming a huge box office draw, Brad Pitt would spend his days dressed as a chicken. It sounds like a joke!

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The Academy Award nominee used to work for El Pollo Loco chain and would chase people on the street trying to get them to eat chicken.

Slide to see which film star used to dress as a giant banana for a living!

#11. Megan Fox

Who would have thought that Megan Fox’s first acting job would be that of a banana? Yes, people, you are reading this correctly! The star used to wear a big yellow suit to promote a local smoothie shop.

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As you may already know, her gig as a giant fruit didn’t last, and Megan went on to star Transformers, Jennifer’s Body, and several other films.

#10. Chace Crawford

For some of us, this handsome man will always have a place in our hearts as our beloved Nate Archibald. However, before stealing our hearts at the small screen, Chace Crawford used to work as a shirtless host at Abercrombie and Fitch.

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How sorry are you for missing that day at the mall? We sure would have loved to see those cheekbones (and washboard abs) greeting us at the mall.

Slide to see what our favorite big-screen agent was up to before fame!

#9. Tom Cruise

Before he became an accomplished actor with films such as Jerry Maguire, Magnolia, or Mission Impossible, Tom Cruise used to work as a bellhop at a hotel. Shocking, right?

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Can you imagine arriving at a hotel and realizing that the man who’s carrying your luggage is Tom Cruise? Well, even though this would often happen when he wasn’t famous yet, some people got to experience this.

#8. Johnny Depp

You may say that Johny Depp had some previous acting experience before becoming a famous actor. The star used to put his acting talents to the test by pretending to be a pen salesman.

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The actor said that it was an awful job because he had to promise people a lot of things if they bought a gross of pens. However, he feels thankful for that job and considers it his first acting experience.

#7. Beyonce

Our Queen B was born to be a big hit and nobody would ever dare deny that. However, before becoming the star she is today, and even before Destiny’s Child, Beyonce had a regular job just like the rest of us mortals.

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When she was only a child, her mother Tina owned a hair salon, where Beyonce would often help by swiping up hair in order to get some cash. What an unusual way of earning your first bucks, don’t you think?

#6. Meghan Markle

Oh, how things have changed for Meghan Markle! One day she was teaching calligraphy and writing wedding invitations, and the next one she was sending her own invitations to her fairytale-like wedding.

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The Duchess of Sussex was later quite famous for her job as an actress. She used to star in the American legal drama, Suits. She also appeared in several movies and shows such as Fringe, Castle, and CSI: Miami.

#5. Rachel McAdams

Long before stealing everyone’s hearts on The Notebook playing the role of Allie, Rachel McAdams used to serve ice creams at McDonald’s. It kind of reminds me of Jennifer Anniston’s first job in Friends, right?

Photo: Courtesy of Tara Ziemba/WireImage

The now successful actress wasn’t too happy when she had to hit up the soft serving machine. In fact, she kinda hated her job! Rachel now recalls that she would often spend more time on her shift washing her hands in the bathroom than serving customers.

#4. Channing Tatum

Some of us were quite amazed when we saw Channing Tatum’s moves on Magic Mike, right? Well, that might have been due to the fact that he had been practicing his moves long before landing that role.

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When he was only 19, Tatum dropped out of the University of South Florida and his stripping career began. However, he soon realized that this was a dangerous lifestyle, so he pursued a career in acting instead.

#3. Miley Cyrus

Long before Hannah Montana existed, there was this young little girl who was in charge of removing from the stage the different type of objects that was thrown at her father from the stage.

Photo: Courtesy of El País

According to Miley, her father wanted her not only to be accustomed to the life of a rock star but also to know all about the perils of the entertainment industry.

#2. Fetty Wap

Ever since he decided to earn a quick buck, Fetty Wap was determined to land any possible job. Such were his dreams of success, that he landed a job wrapping packages at Fed-Ex.

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Even though he might have been excited about his job, he only lasted two days there. Fetty Wap left his job at Fed-Ex and became a cashier at Popeye’s. Which job do you think is worse? That’s a tough one!

#1. Nicki Minaj

Now, she dominates the music charts and goes by Nicki Minaj, but before any of this was nothing but an idea in the back of her mind, Onika Maraj was a regular waitress at Red Lobster, in New York City.

Photo: Courtesy of Yahoo

Whenever she reflects on her waitressing days, Nicki admits that she was never the employee of the month, if you know what I mean. In fact, she was always looking for a way out. Luckily, she found one and went on to become the rap goddess we all love.

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