10 Shocking Stars Who Were Once HomelessPublished on August 2, 2013. Updated March 12, 2014
While it may seem inconceivable to us that some of these celebrities were at one point homeless, according to them it’s true. At certain early points in their careers, even the rich and famous managed to run into some tough times that found them sleeping in cars, shelters, or park benches. Some of the now famous stars on this list may shock you.
10. Shania Twain
Around the age of fourteen, country music singer and star Shania Twain was forced to live in a homeless shelter in the Toronto area in the late nineteen seventies and early eighties during a period of financial trouble and marital tension between her mother and father. Eventually, her two parents reconciled and the family got back together, but the period made a lasting impact on Shania’s later life and outlook.
9. William Shatner
In the early to mid nineteen seventies, actor William Shatner was forced to do live in his pickup truck in the San Fernando Valley of Los Angeles. Shatner had divorced his wife in 1969 and was unable to find quality high paying work due to his unfortunate typecasting as Captain Kirk from Star Trek. This “period,” as he called it, led him to the US east coast and back performing small private parties, theatre shows, and making token media appearances in order to support himself and help his family.
8. Hilary Swank
Oscar award winning actress Hilary Swank spent her childhood in a trailer park before relocating with her mother to Los Angeles, CA as a teenager in the late nineteen eighties to pursue her passion for acting. In the beginning, Swank and her mother lived in their car for several weeks until they had saved enough money to rent an apartment. Eventually, Swank would go on to win the Academy Award for Best Actress in the Hollywood films Boy’s Don’t Cry and Million Dollar Baby.
7. Kelly Clarkson
Pop singer Kelly Clarkson was forced to live out of her car while living in Los Angeles, CA in the years before her discovery on the TV talent show American Idol. According to Clarkson, her apartment building had been severely damaged in a fire leaving her effectively homeless, and was a big factor in her eventual return to her hometown of Burleson, TX, as well as her ultimate decision to audition for American Idol soon after.
6. David Letterman
At one point before he became a famous celebrity, TV host and comedian David Letterman supposedly lived in his pickup truck while saving up money for a small apartment.
5. Tyler Perry
Actor and director Tyler Perry also lived out of his car for sometime in Atlanta after suffering a temporary career setback.
4. Carmen Electra
“You know, I had a couple of years of being homeless in Hollywood,” Electra told the Review Journal. “A lot of people don’t even know this.” She was in her early 20s when her boyfriend stole all of her savings and left her stranded. “I remember sitting on a park bench in the valley,” she says. “I was crying because I was stranded. It was over 100 degrees outside.”
3. Halle Berry
Actress and model Halle Berry was briefly homeless in the late nineteen eighties when she moved to New York City at age twenty one and was forced to live in homeless shelters in for several months. Throughout the nineteen nineties and after she became a famous and sought after actress appearing in numerous popular and critically praised Hollywood films.
2. Dr. Phil
TV personality Dr. Phil McGraw claimed to have been homeless with his father for a period while living in a car before finding cheap lodging for $10 a night. Dr. Phil would eventually become one of highest earning television personalities during the late nineteen nineties.
1. Jennifer Lopez
Actress, singer, and dancer Jennifer Lopez was briefly homeless during a year long period in the late nineteen eighties between moving out of her parent’s home and the actual beginning of her dancing career. In the years that followed, Lopez would eventually develop into one of the world’s wealthiest and most famous celebrities.