28 Celebrities Who Had Normal Jobs Before Fame

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28 Celebrities Who Had Normal Jobs Before Fame
28 Celebrities Who Had Normal Jobs Before Fame

Although it might seem like every famous person was always in the limelight, many celebrities had standard jobs before the world recognized them for their talent. 

If you’re interested in learning more about celebrities who had normal jobs before fame, you’re in the right place. Take a seat and see if you can relate to any of these pre-fame celebrity jobs.

1. Beyonce

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It might seem like Beyonce has been the queen of music her entire life, but there was a time before she achieved fame as a singer and performer. In her younger years, she worked at her mother’s hair salon, sweeping cut hair off the floor between customers. 

Related: Is Beyonce a Billionaire?

2. Warren Buffett

warren buffet in a suit speaking into a microphone
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Warren Buffett is one of the wealthiest men in the world, investing and spending his funds wisely. But what did Warren Buffett do before he was famous? Unsurprisingly, Buffett’s first job was as an investment salesman at Buffett-Falk & Co.

3. Adele

adele on the red carpet in a black dress
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Adele is a famous singer who never had a job before she skyrocketed. One might consider herself a full-time student before she rose to stardom, as she earned a record deal at 18 right out of the BRIT School in London.

Related: 20 Best Adele Songs

4. Morgan Wallen

morgan wallen on stage singing in a blue shirt
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Country singer Morgan Wallen is next on our list of celebrities who had normal jobs before fame. Before reaching celebrity status with his unique voice and catchy lyrics, Wallen worked in landscaping and attempted to pursue a baseball career before giving up and taking up guitar and song once again. 

5. Madonna

madonna on stage singing in a white outfit
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Madonna is an iconic singer and performer known for her powerhouse stage presence. Before fame, Madonna worked as a waitress while pursuing a modern dance career in New York City. 

6. Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson

dwayne the rock johnson in a purple shirt in front of a sign
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Everyone has a first job, even famous wrestler and actor The Rock. So what did Dwayne Johnson do before he was famous? Although he spent much of his life as a wrestler and actor, Johnson’s first job was as a dishwasher for Emilio’s Pizza in Honolulu.

7. Oprah

oprah winfrey in a black shirt in front of a purple background
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Oprah Winfrey is a household name now, but it took her a while to elevate herself to that point. Before she became famous and earned her iconic talk show, Winfrey served as a reporter and anchor for a television station in her area.

8. Taylor Swift

Taylor swift quotes. taylor swift on stage in 2012 in a red dress holding a microphone
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Taylor Swift is another artist who has been famous for most of her life, but she did get her hands dirty and work additional jobs before fame. One of her positions was at her family’s local Christmas Tree Farm, though it wasn’t long before she signed her first record deal in Nashville.

Related: 27 Awesome Taylor Swift Quotes

9. Johnny Depp

johnny depp in a white suit wearing glasses
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Next on our list of celebrities who had normal jobs before fame is Johnny Depp, actor extraordinaire. The first real job he took to support his wife as a young man was as a ballpoint-pen salesman. 

10. Machine Gun Kelly

jack harlow rapper
Jack Harlow and Machine Gun Kelly on February 18th, 2022. Photo by Erik Drost.

Machine Gun Kelly’s troubled childhood led to many struggles before he garnered fame. One of his first jobs was making burritos at Chipotle to pay for his rent.

11. Tom Cruise

tom cruise on the red carpet with long hair
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Tom Cruise has been a famous actor for decades now, but there was a time when he was unknown. So, what did Tom Cruise do before he was famous? One of his first jobs was as a busboy in New York, which he soon left behind to pursue acting on television in Los Angeles.

12. Nicki Minaj

nicki minaj on stage in a sparkly dress singing
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Nicki Minaj worked alongside the rest of the world before she became a famous rapper and singer, taking on a position as a waitress at Red Lobster at 19. She was eventually fired for ‘discourtesy to customers,’ apparently a common act from her.

13. Brad Pitt

brad pitt in a suit in front of a crowd
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Brad Pitt is another on our list of celebrities who had normal jobs before fame, acting in fraternity shows while in college. When he left college two credits before graduation to pursue performance in Los Angeles, he drove strippers, dressed as a chicken for El Pollo Loco, and even transported refrigerators. 

14. Eminem

eminem wearing a hat in front of a gray background
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Eminem is one of the biggest names in rap history, but he had to work to where he is now. Before fame, Eminem worked in a machinery factory as a cook and dishwasher before landing his first hit.

Related: Eminem’s Net Worth

15. Megan Fox

MGK and megan fox on set walking hand in hand
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Although most of Megan Fox’s life has been spent acting, she had one normal job before she became famous. Fox reports dressing up as a banana for a smoothie shop in Florida to promote their business.

16. Barack Obama

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Former president Barack Obama had perhaps one of the most impressive jobs before he became famous. He was a constitutional law teacher at the University of Chicago Law School, diving through legal cases with interested students.

Related: 19 Famous Musicians Who Are Democrats

17. Kelly Clarkson

kelly clarkson's net worth. kelly clarkson in a purple and pink sequin dress
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Kelly Clarkson is one of the most well-known singers from American Idol, making quite the name for herself as one of the first winners. Before she made it big, Clarkson made a living working behind the counter at Papa John’s as an expert in the pizza business.

Related: Kelly Clarkson’s Net Worth

18. Matthew McConaughey 

kate hudson and matthew mcconaughey on the red carpet
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Matthew McConaughey has had a backward experience with the “normal” job. His first jobs were acting in music videos and movies, but today he works as a professor at the Moody College of Communication in Texas, where he goes over “Script to Screen” with interested students. 

19. Jay-Z

facts about jay z. rapper jay z rapping on stage
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Next on our list of celebrities who had normal jobs before fame is Jay-Z, who had a troubling start before his career took off. He was a drug dealer before fame, eventually leaving that past behind when he became famous.

Related: 21 Best Rap Songs

20. Margot Robbie

margot robbie on the red carpet in a black dress
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Margot Robbie has had an astounding decade in the film industry, appearing as iconic characters like Harley Quinn and Barbie. Before her big break, Robbie spent her days working as a sandwich artist at her local Subway restaurant, filming a commercial for the company only a few months after quitting.

21. Lewis Capaldi

lewis capaldi singing on stage in a black shirt
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Lewis Capaldi is another newcomer on the scene, breaking through musical boundaries and creating songs everyone loves – though he didn’t always have these options. When Capaldi was younger, he was a bartender, writing music on his breaks. This paid off in the end, as he used his melodies to draw in fans and success.

22. Lady Gaga

lady gaga in a pink and fluffy dress
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Lady Gaga has made a name for herself in the music world, whether you’re talking about her clothes or voice. But what did Lady Gaga do before she was famous? When the singer was much younger, she worked as a waitress to make ends meet, like many other talents of her time.

23. Jake Gyllenhaal 

jake gyllenhall wearing a t shirt and jacket on the red carpet
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Jake Gyllenhaal has made it big as an actor over the past few years. Before Gyllenhaal established himself, he worked as a lifeguard and a busboy at a restaurant his friends’ parents owned, where he collected dishes and cleaned tables.

24. Jennifer Aniston

jennifer anniston in a strapless black dress on the red carpet
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When you think of Friends, you can’t help but think of Jennifer Aniston’s short laugh – but what did Jennifer Aniston do before she was famous? As she pursued her career, Aniston worked as a waitress, bike messenger, and telemarketer to make enough money to survive before she made it big.

25. Harry Styles

harry styles wearing all black on the red carpet
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Harry Styles is a mega-superstar, but he once had a quaint life before heading on The X Factor. The singer and actor worked at a bakery on Saturdays to make spare money in his free time, though that was one of his only jobs before hitting the jackpot.

26. Timothy Olyphant

timothy olyphant walking in a suit looking to the side
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Timothy Olyphant has had an extensive career, sharing the spotlight with massive stars like Leonardo Dicaprio and John Krasinksi. Before Olyphant became famous, he was an assistant swim coach at Irvine Novaquatics in California.  

27. Zendaya

zendaya in a red dress looking at the camer
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Zendaya is a massive star. She has modeled and appeared in several huge films like Dune and Spider-Man. What did Zendaya do before she was famous? Zendaya modeled for Macy’s and Old Navy as a child before she got her breakthrough. 

28. Emma Stone

emma stone close up image
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Last on our list of celebrities who had normal jobs before fame is Emma Stone, a powerhouse in the film world over the past decade. Before she earned her leading role in several movies, Stone worked in a bakery meant exclusively for dogs.

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