20 Rich Celebrities You Never Knew Were Once Homeless

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Not everyone who is a millionaire today was born with a silver spoon, in fact statistic reveals that more than a handful of today’s rich individuals rose to fame from nothing. Today, we all love them for their spectacular talents but it was their bravery, determination, hard work all coupled up with a bit of luck that brought them to where they are now. And we can’t help but appreciate that these stars have not only become rich but also a source of inspiration to low-class and homeless people out there providing them with hope that their dream of making something out of themselves someday, as hard as it may seem can become a reality. It can be hard to imagine, but these are among the rich and famous people who at some point in their lives could not only afford life’s basic needs but were also homeless. I bet some names would be shocking to you.

20. Ella Fitzgerald

Net worth: $10 million

Queen of Jazz, First Lady of Song, Lady Ella- those were the names given to arguably one of the finest jazz songstress that ever lived. Ella climbed to fame when she made her debut to the Apollo theatre in 1934, she later won 13 Grammy’s and received medals from US presidents Ronald Regan and George H.W. Bush. Long before this time, Ella was a victim of abuse by the hands of her own stepfather, she dropped out of school and worked as a lookout for a mafia-affiliated Brothel, authorities caught up with her and she was placed in an asylum and later a school in NYC, she later escaped and became homeless until she gained fame with her voice.

19. Sam Worthington

Net worth: $12 million

Though the 2009 blockbuster movie Avatar seemed to be his break-out role, Sam had appeared in various other movies including Bootsmen, Hart’s War, and Somersault for which he won an award for the best leading actor. He was doing very well as an upcoming actor until 2009 when he had to sell all of his possessions for $2000. With the money he bought a car which was his home until he successfully auditioned for Avatar and was selected to portray Jake Sulley in the movie which grossed $3 billion at the box office making it the highest grossing movie of all time.

18. Djimon Hounsou

Net worth: $12 million

Djimon Hounsou


At the age of 13 alongside his brother, he was a Benin immigrant to Lyon, France. He later dropped out of school and became homeless for a while. During these periods he became fortunate when he met with a photographer who introduced him to fashion designer Thierry Mugler who encouraged him to take up a career in modelling. Hounsou became a model and was successful in Paris, he later moved to the US to establish himself as not only a model but as an actor.

17. Michael Oher

Net worth: $15 million

Oher was born to parents who couldn’t care less about him, his mom was a crack and alcohol addict while his dad had got arrested more often than not. Left alone to cater for himself, Oher shuffled between various foster homes and sometimes slept on the streets but his life took a different turn when a wealthy family adopted him and put him through school. While in the University of Mississippi, he played college football and was later drafted in 2009 NFL to play for Baltimore Ravens. The story of his life was penned in the book The Blind Side: Evolution of the Game by Michael Lewis which was later adapted in the Academy award-winning movie “The Blind Side” starring Sandra Bullock. Thanks to a single act of kindness, Oher is now worth more than $15 million.

16. Jewel Kilcher

Net worth: $30 million

Jewel Kilcher

Before she became a multiple Grammy nominee and award-winning singer/songwriter, Jewel had a taste of what life could be without money. A victim of sexual harassment, her boss fired her and denied her of her paycheck for refusing to sleep with him. With no cash, she was unable to pay her rent and got kicked out, she resorted to her car for shelter and couldn’t land a new job because of her ill-health, at some point, the star almost died in her car in a hospital parking lot as she didn’t have health insurance. Jewel lived in her car for almost a month doing small gigs and street performances until she gained recognition by singing at Java Joe’s in San Diego California.

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