5 Celebrities You Had No Idea Quit Fame For Normal Jobs
Great celebrities are able to pull off their particular brand of charm forever. But always being "that person" from "that thing" can become grating. What good are universal attention and swimming pools filled with money if all you want to do is juggle? That's why some celebs take brave steps to break out of their molds and pursue other passions. Though the smart ones wait until their career is close to over, because as it turns out, your secret passion tends to make you look a bit weird. For example ...
Tom Selleck Has Been Quietly Farming (And Hating) Avocados
Tom Selleck had a huge run in the '80s and '90s as the epically mustachioed investigator Magnum, and later as the OG Dr. McSteamy in Friends. But make-believe is hard, so the actor turned to something that's notoriously less time-consuming and work-intensive: farming.
In the late 1980s, at the height of his Magnum P.I. fame, Selleck used his professional mustache money to purchase a secluded 63-acre ranch. After installing the standard celebrity tennis court and helicopter pad, Selleck cut out a little patch of land for his secret passion project: becoming an avocado farmer. He tends to the 20-acre avocado farm in his backyard himself, and cultivating avocados from flower to disappointing fruit is a point of pride for Selleck, who had commented how "sexual" the process of seeing the flowers and bees getting all freaky is. He'll also let anyone know that his anti-pears are much better than those of Jamie Foxx, who's his next-acre neighbor and chief avocado rival.
So when California was hit with a miserable drought in recent years, Selleck had to make sure it didn't affect his precious, precious avocados. In order to bypass water use limits, he had a tanker truck drive to a fire hydrant in another district and steal water from the town. This happened over a dozen times before anyone noticed. Ultimately, his wretched water thievery was found out by the townsfolk, and Selleck was fined $21,000 for the contraband liquid -- which is still a good deal, considering what LA people pay for bottled water. That money was immediately put to good use paying the private investigator they hired for this whodunit, whom they owed a whopping $22,000 for figuring out it was Magnum on the farm with the avocados.
That seems like a lot of hassle for a bunch of weird fruit. But here's the kicker: Tom Selleck doesn't even like avocados. "They don't look right," he said in an interview, adding that "honesty, they make me gag." He doesn't even sample the literal fruits of his labor, adding "why eat them when I could sell them." That might be the avocado bitterness talking, though, as the actor has often admitted that he hasn't really made any money after nearly 30 years of plowing away. "It's hard to make a living, let alone a profit," he admitted. His only reward is that Jamie Foxx lies awake at night jealously wishing he could get his hands on Selleck's low-hanging fruit.
We hear there's still good money in P.I. work, Mr. Selleck. Maybe it's time to dust off the old Hawaiian shirt again.
John Carpenter Went From Master Of Horror To Slacker God
You roll out of bed at noon and shuffle off to the kitchen in search of a Hot Pocket or two. You sit down in your favorite recliner and settle in for a solid eight hours of shooting some alien heads off their putrid green necks. Come evening, you pull on your dirty jeans and head out to the garage to jam with your totally-about-to-make-it-big-band. Yeah, it's a chill gig, being a legendary horror filmmaker.
John Carpenter, of Halloween and The Thing fame, has largely given up the directorial game. Now in his late 60s, Carpenter mostly wants to be a hardcore gamer. He's properly old-school too, having run the gamut from Sonic The Hedgehog to Borderlands 2. Carpenter bleeds pixels, citing his son as the impetus for his gaming habit. He would even like to make his own games. Not that he's eager to pick up the horror mantle again. "I don't think about the mechanics of horror games. I just immerse myself," he said in an interview with Polygon. Yeah, horror games wish they could teach John Carpenter something about fear.
But that's only how the granddaddy of the slasher film spends his free time. His real passion now lies in being a bedroom musician. Having always been involved in scoring his own movies, Carpenter has taken the next logical step and become a full-time musician. With his son and young grandson helping via webcam, Carpenter's carving out his own slice of the resurging '80s synth scene (which he himself helped create). The songs are fantastic to boot, only making us long even more for the kind of awesomely creepy films he could score them with.
Alas, his movie-making career is firmly in the rear view mirror, with no chance of suddenly appearing right behind us with a machete. Carpenter's on the brink of making it big, having released two albums and going on his first tour in 2016. So if you've ever wanted to go to a dimly lit club to watch John Carpenter himself play the theme from Halloween, now is your chance.
Rick Moranis Became A Hermit Singer
Rick Moranis was the quintessential actor for '80s dweebs throughout the world. After finding major success in a slew of great comedies like Little Shop Of Horrors, Honey, I Shrunk The Kids, Ghostbusters, and Spaceballs, he was pretty much a household name. But after saying goodbye to his acting career under tragic circumstances, Moranis found a new calling as the world's most secluded musician.
In 1997, Moranis left his film career behind to care for his children after losing his wife to breast cancer. After years of dedicating himself to being a kick-ass dad, his children grew up, leaving Moranis with a serious case of empty nest syndrome and some mild agoraphobia. He has, of course, attempted to date during his nearly 20 years as a single man, but he admits that isn't easy when you rarely leave your own house. The mere thought of a dating website also makes him scoff. As he told Heeb magazine, "What picture would I use? The guy from Ghostbusters?"
Instead, Moranis doubled down on his two new passions: not going outside and making music. Any kind of music. He had released his first album, You, Me, The Music And Me, at the height of his career in 1987, and it showcased his ... uniquely diverse music tastes. Moranis proved that he's equally at home doing a rap version of "The Girl From Ipanema" as he is singing a Kermit / Eddy Grant mashup of "Light My Fire." That diversity came back with a vengeance by the time he released The Agoraphobic Cowboy in 2005. In the album, he takes on the persona of a fast-talkin' country singer unwilling to leave his own homestead -- and his drawl is on point. But Moranis' genius knows no genre. This asocial chameleon would reinvent himself yet again in 2013 as an old-school Jewish crooner for his third album, My Mother's Brisket And Other Love Songs. At this rate, in a few years' time, we'll be feasting our ears on Moranis' fourth album, which could be him doing whale songs in a Yiddish accent, for all we know.
Freddie Prinze Jr. Became A Writer/Producer For The WWE
Actor Freddie Prinze Jr. has had a life most pre-millennial teenage boys would die for. Not only was he a teenage heartthrob in the '90s (when heartthrob stock was at a post-Beatles high), starring in movies like She's All That, I Know What You Did Last Summer, and in the live-action Scooby-Doo movies ascot-loving Fred, but he even got to see Buffy naked (by marrying Sarah Michelle Gellar). However, Prinze Jr. gave put it all aside to chase the greatest pubescent dream of all: getting to write shitty B-plots for World Wrestling Entertainment.
Temporarily between projects, huge wrestling fan Freddie attended a match one night in 2007 which forever changed his life. After dicking around with the microphone, he caught the attention of the WWE staff, who were rather hard up for celebrity endorsements at that point. The then-31-year-old millionaire took the next logical step toward his dream job and started a wrestling blog. Impressed by his scholarly analysis of wrestlemania, Stephanie McMahon, daughter of infamous WWE showrunner and all-around "jerk" Vince McMahon, met with the actor. After being introduced to her dad, he was given the opportunity to become like a true wrestling god and determine the destiny of mortal wrestlers. Prinze Jr. said yes and became the new rookie writer for the TV show Smackdown.
Prinze Jr. would go on to ever-so-slightly change WWE history, using his Hollywood gifts of "writing dialogue" and "scripting scenes" to enlighten the world of wrestling. The crowning glory of his career came when he convinced Vince McMahon to allow Jeff Hardy, a very popular wrestler / drugged-out loner, to become World Heavyweight Champion. However, after only a year on the payroll, Prinze Jr. and the WWE parted ways. As the legend goes (that he made up), when Freddie heard a speech by Stone Cold Steve Austin about how working for the WWE turns you into a shitty dad, the former actor gave his two week's notice and never looked back. Prinze Jr. went on to win several Dad of the Year mugs in his wife's kitchen.
However, in 2009, Prinze Jr. did briefly return to the word of bad dad wrestling, first as an on-camera personality, and eventually as a director and segment producer. As the guest host and part of the never-ending circus, he showed the world why the WWE had decided to keep him in the writers' room: so that he could be beaten into oblivion by Randy Orton.
Rick Santorum Is Making Movies
Former Republican Senator of Pennsylvania and disgusting sexual residue Rick Santorum was at one point the golden child of the kind of politics that really doesn't like gay people. But after being humiliated during his presidential run in 2012, he decided to pull a reverse Reagan and bail out of politics straight into the soft embrace of Hollywood -- albeit so far quite unsuccessfully.
Santorum is making movies now as the CEO of EchoLight Studios, a "faith-based film company" whose premieres take places in churches instead of theaters, in the same way your dumps premier in your toilet rather than on the jumbotron at a Kansas City Royals game. Santorum's first major release was Hoovey, a biopic about Eric "Hoovey" Elliott's struggle with a brain tumor, which opened in 650 churches across the country. Santorum had great faith in Hoovey, believing the $2 million film would become successful enough to be shown in secular theaters. Hoovey went on to make precisely zero dollars at the box office.
Other less-inspiring films tied to Santorum's company predictably contain a much harder slant toward his right-wing politics, such as the documentary One Generation Away: The Erosion Of Religious Liberty, which ironically sports a title too long to fit on a protest sign. As bombastic as it sounds, it's just a spiteful movie about the notorious Hobby Lobby v. All Women contraception case, featuring a gaggle of Republican politicians discussing "The tension created by a desire to stand for Truth while communicating in love." At least he has the "Hollywood gibberish" vernacular down. Once again, Santorum planned on giving America's churches the first go at the film, because he apparently hates Christianity more than the alleged subjects of his movie.
After constantly failing to make it as a movie producer, Santorum resurfaced in politics for the 2016 election -- only to once again find himself quickly drummed out of the race. After all, Americans aren't easily fooled by a washed-up homophobe running for the highest office in the country as a ploy to boost his entertainment career.
Carolyn plans to retire to a life of chai tea and cat picture tweets.
Follow us on Facebook, and we'll follow you everywhere.
And to further expand your noggin, check out Cracked's De-Textbook: The Stuff You Didn't Know About the Stuff You Thought You Knew.
It's loaded with facts about history, your body, and the world around you that your teachers didn't want you to know. And as a bonus? We've also included the kinkiest sex acts ever described in the Bible.