"Are we alone?" Remains one of the fundamentally basic yet, baffling questions in human existence. As society progresses, science and technology advance at rates we could have never before comprehended, bringing us closer than ever before to the possibility of an answer. With telescopes like The Hubble, Kepler, and Spitzer pushing dynamics of interplanetary understandings, we have uncovered literally hundreds of worlds beyond our solar system in recent years. And NASA scientist Kevin Hand is quoted recently as saying that because of the rate at which technology is advancing, the human race should find out whether or not we’re alone within the next 20 years. Everyone’s favorite Science Guy, Bill Nye, puts that same figure around 30 years, but agrees that an answer is looming. Even an astronomer for the Vatican has stated that we will discover intelligent life from other planets, it just won’t disprove the existence of God. And most recently, Blink-182 co-founder Tom DeLonge made some pretty wild claims of his obsession with alien chasing, having his phone tapped by the government, and concerns for his safety for being vocal about his extraterrestrial beliefs.
Some people are much more credible on the subject than others. On one hand, you have the Bill Nyes of the world, keeping a cool head and discussing probabilities on the subject from a scientific standpoint. On the other hand, you have the quacks who spout hasty claims and make statements that are relatively impossible to prove. Those are the ones who have earned people who do believe in aliens, with the reputation for being conspiracy theorists who wear tin foil hats. You know, the Randy Quaid in Independence Day types. But, just remember – the aliens ended up being real in Independence Day and Randy Quaid saved the world. Here are 16 people from both ends of the spectrum who believe like the X-Files said, the truth is out there.
16 Stephen Hawking
It's pretty hard to argue against someone with a brain like Stephen Hawking. The world renowned physicist has long-since said that he believes that intelligent life on other planets exists. But, he doesn't believe that we have made contact. And he's not exactly overjoyed by the idea of doing so any time soon. In fact, when NASA sent the Beatles song Across The Universe, out into the universe as a way of searching for signs of life, he questioned whether or not that was the best idea. "If aliens visit us, the outcome would be much as when Columbus landed in America," he said for a Discovery channel documentary. The end result of Columbus' discovery, he argued, "didn't turn out well for the Native Americans." Hawking believes that interplanetary intelligent life is highly probable but that if humans on Earth know what's good for them, they would do everything they could to avoid making contact.
15 Tom DeLonge
Founder of Blink-182 recently said in an interview that his belief and obsession with aliens led to the government tapping his phones and has caused a lot of people to think that he's cuckoo for cocoa puffs. He also said that because of his digging for information, he has been concerned for his safety due to witnessing things happen to people he knows. DeLonge stated, "At the time I didn't know it, but the person I was dealing with was being awoken in the middle of the night with clicking and buzzing noises and falling on the ground vomiting, every morning at 4 a.m. I know now that those are artifacts from mind-control experiments, where the same technology that we use to find oil underground, we can zap somebody at the same frequency that the brain operates on, and it can cause some really horrific things to happen."
14 William Shatner
The one celebrity who should know more about space than most others also claims to know a thing or two about aliens. The Star Trek star has even claimed to have been abducted by aliens while out on a motorcycle ride in the Mohave desert, but he has since admitted that he lied about that. Despite the fibs, Shatner says he still whole-heartedly believes in alien life form, saying, “There is no doubt that there is life out there; the mathematics of it lead you to that absolute conclusion. In my mind, there is no doubt that the universe teems — teems! — with life in all its forms.”
13 Tom Cruise
This one probably comes as a surprise to no one. Considering that Tom Cruise is a well-known Scientologist, it wouldn't even be surprising if aliens were all that he believed in. But yes, Mr. Cruise is very much a believer. He has said, "Are you really so arrogant as to believe we are alone in this universe? Millions of stars and we're supposed to be the only living creatures? No, there are many things out there, we just don't know." Scientology requires its members to keep relatively hush-hush when it comes to details and beliefs, so there's no telling for sure exactly what Cruise's opinions of what contact with intelligent life would be like. But, in 2007 it was reported that Cruise was actively working on building an $11 million bunker to protect himself and his family against an alien invasion.
12 John Lennon
He was the eggman. He was the walrus. He was the rock-n-roll icon of an entire generation. At one time, there wasn't a woman on Earth that would have passed up an opportunity to meet John Lennon. And apparently, his fans extended well into other planets, too. In 2004, Geller told the story that Lennon told him about his personal encounter with aliens. The story goes that Lennon was woken up by a bright light and when he went outside, he saw four big-like people with bug eyes and bug mouths. Geller says that Lennon was adamant about the fact that he was not experiencing a drug-induced hallucination and that they gave him an egg-shaped metal object that he carried around with him before eventually passing on to Geller.
11 Muhammad Ali
10 Jackie Gleason
This Jackie Gleason anecdote is one merely of speculation based on tabloid reports. There is no one source to this timeline of events and obviously no government confirmation. But, it's worth mentioning just for how bizarre the story is, even if you take it with a grain of salt.
Legend has it that then television star Jackie Gleason was playing a round of golf with then-President Richard Nixon, when the conversation somehow veered into talking about the existence of aliens. That is when Richard Nixon supposedly decided to throw caution to the wind and took the conversation one further - by showing Gleason a room filled with dead aliens that the government was storing, almost as if they were sports cars. Gleason was reportedly extremely shaken up after the extraterrestrial show-and-tell event, that he began drinking heavily to calm his nerves.
9 Jaden Smith
Sometimes it seems as though Jaden Smith's thought process is very much like a lottery drawing: a random selection of ping pong balls that just pop up with no rhyme or reason in order to create a product that only means anything to .001% of the population. His stance on aliens probably alienates an even bigger percentage of people. He has been quoted saying, "I like aliens! I think aliens are really cool, because they exist. I talked to President Obama about extraterrestrials. He said he could neither confirm nor deny the existence of aliens, which means they're real. If people think we're the only people that live in this universe, then something is wrong with them."
At least he still has his sister to give him the thumbs up.
8 Dan Aykroyd
7 Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato has been through a lot in recent years. So, maybe all that time she spent decompressing from the public eye left her with a little extra reading time on her hands. How else does one develop such strong opinions; not only about aliens being real, but that so are mermaids and that they're actually aliens, too? About alien existence, Lovato has said, "I KNOW that they're real. How self-centered would we be, as humans, to believe that we are the only living things in the universe?" That's not all that weird as you can find plenty of people who say the same thing. But then comes the mermaid part. "I believe that there could possibly be mermaids," she said, "which is actually an alien species that live in parts of the Indian Ocean which we have never explored before as human beings. And Christopher Columbus had actually seen three mermaids on his way to America."
6 Ronald Reagan
President Ronald Reagan left a legacy that includes participating in ending the Cold War, Trickle Down Economics, and an unwavering love for jellybeans. But maybe believing in aliens should be added to that list, too. The Gipper claimed that while he was Governor of California, he saw a UFO while he was flying on a private plane with three other guys who all backed up the story. Years later as President, he gave a speech that said humanity should not be surprised if the day were to come when the Soviets and Americans had to put their differences aside and come together to battle against alien invaders.
5 Sammy Hagar
4 Baron Davis
Another celebrity who claims to have legitimately been abducted occurred somewhat recently, when former New York Knicks star Baron Davis, claimed that he was sucked up into the bright lights of an alien spacecraft while on a drive from Las Vegas to Los Angeles. Davis said on The Champs podcast that he ended up in a steel contraption with humanoid aliens poking his nose. His details continued to get increasingly stranger but Davis assured the crew of the podcast that he was not joking. He also told the New York Post that he plans on detailing his experience in a tell-all book.
The King of Pop was also very much the King of Paranoia, in more ways than one. And one of those ways had to do with aliens. And lots of them. Elvis claimed that on the day he was born, there were reports of UFOs hovering in the sky over the hospital he was in. And then on the day of his funeral, many spectators claimed to have spotted a UFO hovering above the ceremony. And to this day, there is a group of people who swear that Elvis didn't die on the toilet in Graceland but that he was, in fact, abducted by aliens. Of course, those stories were only ever reported in hard-hitting news pages next to sightings of Big Foot.
2 Mick Jagger
If the walls of every Rolling Stone party and road trip could talk, they would undoubtedly fill the grand canyon with stories crazier than any of us have ever heard. Mick Jagger's stories, though, really seem to take the cake. He tells one of a time when he went camping with Marianne Faithfull in Glastonbury and they saw a "rare, luminous cigar-shaped mothership." This encounter is what prompted Jagger to install a UFO detector on his estate. Every time he left the property, the alarms reportedly went off, which lead Jagger to believe that the area was filled with electromagnetic energy. Jagger also claimed that aliens visited him again when he saw them hovering over the notorious Altamont concert in which four people died.
1 Fran Drescher
Fran Drescher, known best for her role as The Nanny and that nasal voice, is one of the few celebrities who isn't afraid to openly tell her close encounter stories. But she doesn't just tell her own abduction story, she also tells one of her ex-husband. According to the comedian, her and her ex were both abducted by aliens in unrelated experiences in junior high. "Peter and I both saw aliens before we knew each other, doing the same thing, driving on the road with our dads," she said. She continued her story by saying, "We were both in junior high. A few years later, we met, and we realized that we had the same experience. I think that somehow we were programmed to meet. We both have this scar. It's the exact same scar on the exact same spot."