Even though this may not be at the forefront of your mind, homelessness is a very real problem in America. According to the National Student Campaign Against Hunger and Homelessness, more than 3.5 million people in the U.S. become homeless every year. That’s a whole lot of people, and many of them are children. Some people who have been homeless are now huge celebrities who have worked hard to overcome financial hardship.
Of course, there are plenty of reasons why a person or family can become homeless. Some people fall behind on their rent or mortgages due to job loss or reduced hours. Others are not able to find jobs due to limited skill sets or a struggling economy. There are also instances in which families have to pay out large sums of money for medical bills or caring for a loved one, which can have dire financial consequences. In most cases, a combination of situations can lead to homelessness, and it is devastating for everyone involved.
There are some instances in which teenagers and young people become homeless as well. Some run away from home in order to live life on their own terms, and others feel that living on their own will provide personal and emotional safety. Here are 10 well-known celebrities who were homeless at one point.
10 Hilary Swank
9 Jim Carrey
8 Sylvester Stallone
The man known as the Italian Stallion is best known for his main role in the Rocky movies. You may also recognize Stallone as the rogue military hero Rambo. However, there was a time when Sylvester Stallone wasn’t so lucky. The actor was homeless briefly, and had to sleep in the Port Authority bus station in New York City. Shortly after making the bus station his home, he saw a casting notice for the soft-core adult film The Party at Kitty and Stud’s. He got the job in the film and was paid $200, which helped him get back on his feet.
7 Kelly Clarkson
6 William Shatner
5 Halle Berry
The stunning actress got her start in the late 1980s and 1990s, when she was cast in projects such as Living Dolls, Jungle Fever and Boomerang. Before she started acting, Halle Berry was the winner of the Miss Teen All-American Pageant, where she represented her home state of Ohio. When she decided that she wanted to pursue acting, she lived in several homeless shelters until she was able to afford an apartment. Her mother, of course, disapproved of this choice, but it’s pretty safe to say that Berry’s mom is glad the actress continued to pursue her dreams. Halle Berry can now be seen in the TV sci-fi drama Extant.
4 Jennifer Lopez
3 Sam Worthington
The English-born actor who lived in Australia for most of his life is perhaps best known for his role in Avatar. He auditioned for the role when he was living out of his car. He purchased the vehicle for $2,000, and sold all his possessions in order to get the money. Sam Worthington had worked in Australian movies and on stage before landing his role in Avatar. He starred in the 2000’s Bootmen and earned a role in the movie A Matter of Life, a year later. In 2003, Sam Worthington was cast as the main character in the movie Gettin’ Square, even though the movie’s executives were originally looking for a lead who was about eight years older than Worthington, who was 27 at the time. After his Avatar success, Sam Worthington went on to star in films such as Clash of the Titans and Man On a Ledge.
2 Dr. Phil
Talented singer Jewel spent quite a bit of time living out of her van and traveling the country. She sang and played her guitar wherever she could in order to make money before she achieved success in the music industry. Both of Jewel’s parents were also singers and songwriters, and she began performing with them when she was just six years old. Her 1995 album Pieces of You went multi-platinum. This was also the album that contained the hit single Who Will Save Your Souls, so it’s safe to say that all her hard work paid off. Jewel also released a country album entitled Perfectly Clear in 2008, which reached number one on the Billboard Country Album Chart.