Fame and money usually go hand in hand. In fact, we know for a fact that you can make money just by being famous nowadays. But brains and intelligence? That’s a different story.
Some of the celebs made our list with a consistent output of vacuousness and inanity, dropping bombs of poorly thought-out life choices wherever they go. Others may seem all right on the surface, but reveal their lack of brain cells whenever they open their mouths in an interview or go on social media. Some of the rich and famous may even sound reasonably intelligent, but their actions tell a different story — like throwing away their fortunes on ridiculous purchases. For some, it was one big act of resounding dumbness that stained everything else in their lives.
Parents everywhere have been trying to tell their kids to stay in school so that they’ll get good jobs, and presumably make decent money, for generations. However, based on our research, we have some bad news for those parents: Money and brains don’t come in the same package. Our list is proof.
25 Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goopy Advice
Gwyneth Paltrow, as we know, is an actress. We love her as Pepper Potts in the MCU. Playing someone who is smart and highly competent, however, doesn’t actually make you into that person. A lack of science or medical degree, and some would argue, plain common sense, hasn’t prevented the lifestyle social media maven from dispensing advice on everything from diet to much more.
“I'll never forget it. I was starting to hike up the Red Rocks, and honestly, it was as if I heard the rock say: 'You have the answers. You are your teacher.' I thought I was having an auditory hallucination.”
In 2011, she told a UK TV audience that she’d rather do substance "than eat cheese from a tin." Then, there was, "I am convinced that by eating biological foods it is possible to avoid a tumor." Lately, she’s been selling an at-home coffee enema kit. We rest our case.
24 Jessica Simpson Thought Tuna Is Chicken
These days, Jessica Simpson claims that the dumb-blonde persona she portrayed on the reality show Newlyweds: Nick and Jessica way back when was an act created by the show’s producers. Yeah right. On the very first episode, she was in a scene that people talk about to this day. Sitting on the couch, she asked hubby Nick,
“Is this chicken that I have, or is this fish?” As he hesitated, she continued, “I know it’s tuna, but it says chicken by the sea,” she continued. “Is that stupid? What is it called — chicken by the sea or in the sea?”
We’re not even sure what the correct answer to that question is. It’s not the only meme-worthy moment of her career. In May 2017, she puzzled Ellen deGeneres and her audience with a bizarre and rambling interview where she talked about IUDs, not being pregnant, mermaids for rent, and couldn’t figure out the math of how long she’d been her her husband Eric Johnson.
23 Tyrese Gibson Been Doing Dumb
"I been doing dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb..." It’s part of the lyrics to Tyrese Gibson’s song from the 2015 album Black Rose (featuring Snoop Dogg). It could also be a confession of sorts. Tyrese is best known for his role as Roman Pearce in the Fast and Furious franchise, but a close second is his growing infamy as a poster of questionable rants on social media.
In 2011, Tyrese posted a Tweet where he thanked Pandora for playing his music “all the time,” seemingly unaware that Pandora is a streaming service and not a fan.
He also went public with his thoughts on female sexuality, saying that women who have a man who is not “a minute man” need to “get your life together.” According to Tyrese logic, if it takes longer, she’s doing something wrong. And sure, Tyrese has a career in music too, but we all know Fast is a goldmine for anyone’s career. Yet, it’s one that he was prepared to throw away based on a feud with Dwayne The Rock Johnson, according to his post on Instagram in late 2017. Dumb, dumb, dumb.
22 Britney Spears Is Geography Challenged
We’re guessing that all those "Mouseketeer" rehearsals must have cut into Britney Spears’ geography classes, because she sure doesn’t have a good grasp of very much in that field, apparently. We’ll just quote some of her memorable gaffes.
“The cool thing about being famous is traveling. I have always wanted to travel across seas, like to Canada and stuff.” And, then, “I’ve never really wanted to go to Japan. Simply because I don’t like eating fish. And I know that’s very popular out there in Africa.”
We’ll add this one just in case you weren’t convinced. “I always listen to 'NSYNC's 'Tearin' Up My Heart.' It reminds me to wear a bra.” Wait, what? We’ll also add this one, which explains Brit’s approach to her art. “Sundance is weird. The movies are weird — you actually have to think about them when you watch them.”
21 Jaden Smith’s Social Media Gems
We have social media to blame for exposing all of us to the inane, sometimes pseudo-profound teenage pearls of wisdom of Jaden Smith. Perhaps it’s unfair to judge someone based on their teenage wisdom. Let’s consider the evidence from 2013 when he wrote,
“How can mirrors be real if our eyes aren't real?” And, this pithy comment, “Most trees Are Blue.” Then, there are the big questions in life, such as, “If a bookstore never runs out of a certain book, does that mean that nobody reads it, or everybody reads it?”
He’s also turned his Tweets towards big issues like food production. “There Is No Nutrients In Our Food Anymore Or In Our Soil OR IN OUR WATER.” At least, he’s unapologetic about...whatever it is he thinks he’s doing. “I encourage you all to unfollow me so I can be left with the people who actually appreciate philosophy and poetry. #CoolTapeVol2.” He also once accused a Toronto hotel of “spiking” his pancakes with cheese, (they included ricotta).
20 Shaquille O'Neal’s Selective Smarts
Like many talented players, Shaquille O’Neal left college top pursue a career in the NBA. But, while still in mid-career, he went back to complete his degree at Louisiana State in 2000. He then went on to get an MBA in 2005, and an EdD from Miami Shores’ Barry University in 2012. So, he can obviously hit the books when he needs to. But, it seems to be a talent he only uses selectively. Once, in an interview, he was asked about winning an NBA title. "I've won at every level, except college and pro." After a visit to Greece, he was asked whether he’d visited the Parthenon, one of its most famous ancient monuments. "I can't really remember the names of the clubs that we went to." He’s also waxed poetic on his basketball game.
"My game is like the Pythagorean theorem, no one has an answer."
The Pythagorean theorem is something taught in most eighth grade math classes. “The people that know me, they know what time it is and they know what The Diesel is coming to do. Period. P-U-R-E-D. Period.”
19 Paris Hilton Wasn’t An Act
These days, Paris Hilton is trying to plug her business ventures and claims that the dumb blonde act was the idea of Simple Life producers, and a complete fabrication. Of course, it was just an act... like the time she was introduced to the concept of department stores.
"What's Walmart? Do they sell like wall stuff?" she pondered.
We’ll also note that, back in 2006, intrepid reporters located tapes of an interview that Paris had with Los Angeles cops. They were questioning her about a burglary that had occurred at the home of Jose Francis, the founder of the defunct Girls Gone Wild videos — this is the guy, mind you, who has since been convicted of multiple crimes, including tax evasion, false imprisonment, and more. Paris had apparently told Francis she’d heard a rumor about the theft. But, when the cops asked her about it, she said, “Like I really, I don't remember. I'm not, like, that smart. I forget stuff all the time.”
18 Christina Aguilera Cannes Confusion
“So, where's the Cannes Film Festival being held this year?” It was one of Xtina’s more memorable comments on the record. It’s a funny thing that IQ and ego seem to go in opposite directions. The smartest people are often the most humble, while the dumbest…“I'm not really religious but very spiritual. I give money to this company that manufactures hearing aids on a regular basis. More people should really hear me sing. I have a gift from God.” Uh, sure. Some of her comments are just puzzling. “Call me a slag. If it means being a strong woman, I'll gladly be that.” Or, how about, “I wouldn't feel right wearing clothes covering my body.” We’re not really sure how to respond.
17 David Beckham Doesn’t Need Brains
David Beckham’s God given talent led to a long and successful career as a footballer, and it’s no secret he’s very popular with the ladies. So, the steady stream of fatuous comments hasn’t done his career or his image any harm. And, there’s no shortage of examples. In 2004, when son Brooklyn was born, he was sure of one thing — but it wasn’t really the nature of a religious christening.
“I definitely want Brooklyn to be christened, but I don't know into what religion yet.”
In another interview, he reflected on his childhood and family support. “My parents have been there for me, ever since I was about seven.” In another interview, he was effusive in his praise for his manager. “Alex Ferguson is the best manager I’ve ever had at this level. Well, he’s the only manager I’ve actually had at this level. But he’s the best manager I’ve ever had.” His vocabulistics could use a little work, it seems. When asked if he was a volatile player, Becks replied, “Well, I can play in the center, on the right and occasionally on the left side.”
16 Kim Kardashian’s Talent
“What is my talent? Well, a bear can juggle and stand on a ball, and he's talented, but he's not famous.” Genius or somewhere down at the opposite end of the stick? When it comes to Kim K, it’s sometimes hard to tell. Let’s look at the case logically. Natural curiosity and far ranging interests are often seen as signs of intelligence, right?
“Stretch marks are my biggest fear of life.” Then there was the time she said, “I just feel like I can't function in the real world with long nails.”
Her summation of important issues, “I hate it when women wear the wrong foundation color. It might be the worst thing on the planet when they wear their makeup too light.” Insights on life inside the fishbowl of reality TV; “I'll cry at the end of the day, not with fresh makeup.” Is she dumb? Or are we dumb? Are we all dumber now? We’re so confused.
15 Cameron Diaz Knows All
According to Thomas Jefferson, “The wisest man is he who does not believe he is wise.” Now, we’ll forget for a moment that Jefferson also appears on our list, and consider what he’s saying — a truly wise person knows the limits of their own knowledge. We’ll just put it out there that Cameron Diaz seems to be one of those people who believes in her own wisdom. Once, in an interview, she told a journalist that she had been noticing gravity since she was very young. Yeah right. In 2013, she published The Body Book, a book for women and their bodies. It included this bit of advice. “Hair serves as a pretty draping that makes it a little mysterious to the one who might be courting your s*xiness. They keep the goods private, which can entice a lover to come and take a closer look at what you have to offer.” Um, sure.
14 Nicolas Cage Blew $150 Million
You may love Nicolas Cage and his kinetic style of acting and screen presence, or hate him for the very same reasons. Enough people have liked his work to make him about $150 million. And, he’s blown just about all of it, much of it on completely insane purchases that make your last guilty buy seem like child’s play. He’s bought albino king cobras — two of them— pygmy shrunken heads, a comic book collection worth more than $1.6 million, and a menagerie that has included, at various times, a crocodile, shark, and an octopus.
The single most ridiculous buy may be the $276,000 he spent on a Tyrannosaurus Rex skull that was 67 million years old. It turns out that the skull was stolen, and Cage had to return it to Mongolia where it had been originally found.
Now, we totally understand blowing your cash on cool stuff, but you do have to set a limit. That’s the part Mr. Cage had trouble with. He declared bankruptcy in 2009, and in case you haven’t noticed, has been taking on every D-list script that comes his way ever since to stay ahead of his debtors.
13 Heidi Montag Spent $10 Million On The Mayan Apocalypse
In case she and husband Spencer Pratt have fallen off your radar, as well they might have, Heidi Montag starred on The Hills, an early reality TV success. She and Spencer were the villains of the series, and for years after the show ended, the two kept themselves in the headlines with Heidi's adventures in plastic surgery and Spencer's crackpot theories about 9/11. They continued to make money with public appearances and residuals, amassing about $10 million. Then came the Mayan apocalypse. Or, it was supposed to come, that is. In an interview with a British magazine in 2013, Spencer admitted that he and Heidi had become convinced of the so-called Mayan "apocalypse" urban legend, which said the world would end on December 31, 2012.
So, the pair began spending all their money on just about anything, including giving people a $200 tip for opening the door.When the world didn’t end, they were so broke they had to move back into the Pratt parents’ basement.
These days, the couple appear on a podcast called Make Speidi Famous Again.
12 The Mystery That Is Shia LaBeouf
You could say that the career arc of Shia LaBeouf is a curious one. His acting career got started with a bang on the Disney Channel as a child actor, graduating to movies by the time he was 12. He struck commercial gold with the role of Sam Witwicky in the Transformers franchise. Just as he gained fame, however, his career began to unravel, and in a very deliberate way. He feuded with Harrison Ford on the set of Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and began to rack up a reputation as difficult. In 2014, he decided he didn't like being famous and participated in a series of performance art projects under the moniker LaBeouf, Rönkkö & Turner.
They consisted of wearing a paper bag with the words “I am not famous anymore” over his head at the Berlin Film Festival that year. (We’ll note that he was on the red carpet at the time.) He skipped rope for an hour on a Skype livestream.
He also got kicked out of a Broadway show for yelling during the performance. There have been multiple incidents involving bar fights, drunken arrests, and the like. His descent into irrelevance seems nearly complete.
11 Mariah Carey’s Out Of Touch
Mariah Carey is said to have had a difficult childhood for various reasons. Maybe that's why, when she got to the top of the music biz, she turned into a diva, and one whose grasp of everyday reality seems a little tenuous at best. On October 2, 2017, she was doing an interview on British TV with Piers Morgan when the news of the Las Vegas shooting broke. Viewers were baffled when Mariah continued to do the interview for a few minutes, talking about the shootings a the Route 91 Harvest Music Festival as she reclined on the feed from her Beverly Hills home, half lying on a chaise lounge wearing a red gown. Her diva-ish demands got her cameo in the Will Ferrell movie The House scrapped. She went from the top of the charts for decades to a career dominated by gossip about her boyfriends. That alone makes our case for putting her on the list.
10 Terrell Owens’ Road To Humility
Terrell Owens — or T.O. — was a genuine superstar in the NFL. As a wide receiver, he was a six-time Pro Bowl selection, and to this day he holds several NFL records. He was a fan favorite and became renowned for his touchdown celebrations. He made more than $80 million in a career that lasted 16 years, although it wasn't without controversy. Outside of the game, though, his decision-making capabilities seem to be distinctly impaired.
There was a series of relationships with four women that resulted in four children and child support payments that at one time topped $45,000 per month.
Then there were costly fines levied by the NFL for bad behavior, including the 2006 game where he allegedly spit in another player's face. That cost him $35,000. The worst lapse in judgment, however, had to be investing in an entertainment complex in Alabama that was not only illegal in that state, but violated NFL policy on players investing in gambling venues. He was cleaned out.
9 Thomas Jefferson’s Presidential Tastes
Thomas Jefferson, Founding Father and third President of the United States, has a complicated history these days. While we’re not suggesting he was lacking in intellect or overall intelligence, he made some incredibly dumb decisions that resulted in his dying poor and in dire circumstances. Before the Declaration of Independence and the presidency, Jefferson was made a minister to France from 1784 to 1789 and sent there to help negotiate trade deals. It was there that he developed a taste for French wines, a love that was to lead him to ruin. There were no American wines in those days, so when Jefferson went back home, could only satiate his love by importing the vino directly from France. The man who declared all men equal loved the high life, and was also said to be obsessed with renovating his home. One day, the money dried up, and he died $100,000 in debt.
8 Janice Dickinson's Plastic Surgery Obsession
Celebrity is a fickle thing, and it’s probably at its most fickle for models. After all, it’s the profession where you’re over the hill at 30, and that can be hard to take. Janice Dickinson was dubbed the first supermodel. She was a huge success in the 1980s and showed up on the cover of every magazine. But, the hands of time were ticking, and Janice did what most rich people in the public eye do — she had plastic surgery.
And then again. And again. And again, and, at some point, she completely lost any ability to see what was actually happening.
Her face took on that bizarre, stretched, cat-eye look, and she ended up $1 million in debt to her plastic surgery obsession along with unpaid taxes. She declared bankruptcy in 2013.
7 Scott Storch Blows His Fortune
You may not know Scott Storch's name, but you've heard the music he's produced, including Beyoncé's "Baby Boy", Christina Aguilera's "Fighter", Justin Timberlake’s “Cry Me A River” and many more. He came up with that piano riff on Dr. Dre’s “Still D.R.E” and had a string of hits from 1999 till about 2008. He was said to be worth about $70 million in his heyday. So what happened? Substance and a lot of bad decisions. We’re not just talking your average nonsense. We’re talking $30 million in six months kind of nonsense.
He blew through his entire fortune and those bad decisions just kept piling on.
There was that time he gave Lindsay Lohan $1 million in jewelry in a PR stunt that fell flat. After declaring bankruptcy and a few stints in rehab, he’s back in the game, albeit at a much lower rung – and hopefully older and wiser.
6 Courtney Love’s Expensive Mouth
When Kurt Cobain passed in 1994, Courtney Love was left with a stake in Nirvana that was worth about $150 million. She didn’t go through it all, but she did end up having to sell $27 million worth of Kurt’s publishing rights that she’d inherited to cover her damages from a series of ruinous lawsuits. If you’ve ever followed her career and life, even in passing, you won’t be surprised to learn that it was her inability to keep a filter on her words that cost her so dearly. It all started in 2009 with a feud with a fashion designer over clothing that cost about $4,000. The battle took over her Twitter feed, including a rant against the designer that brought on a lawsuit and a $430,000 out of court settlement.
She went on to another rant about the case on the Howard Stern Show. That one cost her $350,000 in another defamation lawsuit.
Still not having learned her lesson, she went back on Twitter, this time to rant about her lawyer and accuse him of being bought off. She was sued for several million by the lawyer, who of course won.
5 Dennis Rodman’s Jewels And Curious Friends
Dennis Rodman is like many professional athletes and celebrities — he spent a lot of money on a flashy lifestyle, gambling, and multiple divorces and child support payments. That’s not a surprise. When it came to the bling, however, Dennis went above and beyond. He’s well known for his multiple piercings all over his body. What not many people realize, though, is that all the jewelry he wore in those many piercings was genuine high carat weight gold and silver, and real gemstones. It all added up.
Even during his playing days, he lost millions to fines levied by the NBA for bad behavior on the court.
Nowadays, after all the lawsuits and money troubles, his new cause is North Korea and Kim Jong Un — who, like Rodman, is also not renowned for his mental stability. That one has plenty of people calling Rodman “stupid”.
4 Pamela Anderson Is The Queen Of Bad Choices
She won our hearts as CJ Parker in Baywatch years ago, but Pammy sure wouldn't win any awards for most of her life choices. We could discuss her marriage history, which includes tying the knot with Tommy Lee in 1995 after knowing him for about 96 hours. Then there was that 4 month marriage to Kid Rock, and a two month marriage to Hollywood playboy Rick Salomon. Even aside from questionable life partners, Pam's money management dysfunction is enough to put her on this list. At one point, she was renovating a home and the project turned into a disaster.
It was $3 million over budget, largely because of features like a platinum-lined swimming pool. In the end, she had to move into a trailer to escape the disaster and never did move into the house.
Pamela also forgot to pay her taxes, and in 2009 was ordered to pay nearly $1 million to the taxman. She didn't learn her lesson, either, and had another run-in with the IRS in 2012 to the tune of more than $200,000. Because of her money woes, Pammy has had to do pretty much any work that has come her way.
3 Allen Iverson’s Hatred Of Luggage
Allen Iverson was an NBA all-star 11 times over in a storied career. He earned about $160 million from basketball and millions more from endorsements like the sweet deal with Reebok that netted him $50 million. It was all good while he was still in the game and the cash was flowing, but even then it flowed out of his pocket as fast as it came in.
Allen hated carrying luggage, so anywhere he went, he bought everything he needed, not just for himself, but his entire entourage, wherever they ended up. His grocery bills came to $10,000 per month, with another $10,000 on restaurants.
That’s a big entourage. He had a troubled history with relationships, including many accusations of domestic violence. Then there was the substance abuse and the strip clubs. He once left his young kids in a hotel room alone so he could spend the night at a bar. It’s too bad that great players don’t always translate into great people — or at least a mind great enough to figure out when the well had run dry.
2 Mike Tyson Threw Away The Dream
There are few rags to riches to rags stories more dramatic than that of Mike Tyson. He grew up in poverty in the ghettos of New York City and became the world’s youngest heavyweight champ at the age of only 20. He also became one of the world’s most famous boxers, and made a fortune in prize fighting to the tune of about $400 million. But, Mike found a way to sabotage his success. In the two decades from 1986 to 2006, he was arrested more than 38 times. There was the rape trial and conviction that saw him go to prison for three years in 1992. Once out, he mounted an impressive comeback in the ring, only to end it horribly with that career damaging bite out of Evander Holyfield’s ear fiasco in 1997. He went for another kick at the can in 2002, at the age of 35, but lost out to Lennox Lewis and then retired in 2006. As his career unraveled, so did his finances, and he declared bankruptcy in 2003 with an estimated $23 million of debt. His legal fees alone were said to amount to $20 million.
1 Justin Bieber Didn't Know What Germany Was
The Biebs has been a superstar since he was in his early teens, so maybe that’s the explanation for certain gaps in basic knowledge that come out at times when he opens his mouth. There was that time in 2010 during an interview in New Zealand where he seemed not to really understand where Germany was. Or maybe, what Germany was. That, obviously, was before he abandoned his pet monkey there. For additional evidence of a little extra space between his ears, we offer inane social media musings like
“dont know what it was about tonight, but I just felt like a baby bunny smelling a spring flower. felt good. like salt and freshly baked bread.”
On tour in Europe in 2013, he visited the Anne Frank House in the Netherlands, and seemed not to really understand the significance of the place. Writing in their guestbook: “Truly inspiring to be able to come here. Anne was a great girl. Hopefully she would have been a belieber.”