What Celebrities Were Really Like Before They Were Famous According To Their Friends

Woman gazing at the Hollywood sign
Vitaly Sacred/Unsplash

Many of your favorite film celebrities you adore and worship after watching them for years are still human beings... who can be a contradiction of how they're depicted in Hollywood.

While fame can certainly go to a once-aspiring actor's head, there are surprisingly plenty of luminaries that haven't forgotten where they came from.

Curious to hear of celebrities prior to their world-renowned status, Redditor RogueWolf300 asked:

"People of Reddit who knew celebrities before they were famous, how different do they act now?"

These actors haven't forgotten their humble beginnings.

Clumsy Drama Student

"I went to high school with Sandra Oh. She was funny, dynamic, smart, outgoing, and very into drama. In one school play, she played what I will call sort of a mime character - she didn’t have lines but was still a big part of the action, commenting on what was going on through her actions. Anyhow, in one scene as she was exiting the stage she banged her head on one of the props - you could hear the loud bang- but she was a pro and just carried on. It has been great to see her have such success, and I love that she has kept in touch with her close friends from high school (you can spot them at awards show sometimes)."

– mgov999

Restaurant Server

"Work in a restaurant about 15 years ago as a manager. Rachel McAdams walked in for an interview. She was still in acting school and serving table to pay for it. She worked at my restaurant over the course of the next 2 summers, serving on our patio. Still friends to this day. She hasnt changed a bit. Still bikes to get groceries."

– Pymm

Fantastic anecdotes continued being shared.

"Genius Dude"

"My Grandpa(RIP) owned a grocery store in Miami in the late 70s. Wesley Snipes and his friends once stole some candy from his store and when he caught them he let them have it. Since then Wesley and his friends were regulars. Once, Wesley left his bike in front of the store and it got stolen (was a pretty bad area). My grandpa gave him his old bike that he kept in the back of the store. My uncle took over in 2001 when my grandpa died. In 2007 he came back to the store while my uncle and cousin were there, to ask about my grandpa."

"My uncle said they talked for a little over an hour about how he my grandpa treated him like a son. When he found out my grandpa passed he felt guilty he didn’t visit sooner. He embraced my uncle and cousin and left. My uncle said he told him they plan on having the building repainted while they talked. About a week later a crew of painters arrived and told my uncle they were already paid to have the building repainted. Such a genuine dude."

– Shaka-Zulu1

A Much Sweeter Side

"My aunt used to work with Gordon Ramsay’s mother but never made the connection. Once they were out for lunch and he ended up coming in to see his mum and met my aunt in the process. She said he was so lovely and polite!! Plus my dad has a bunch of Gordon’s old jumpers he didn’t want anymore. Not signed or anything like that, it’s just a fun family story now."

– BaffledAndBemused

Successful Slacker

"This is real late and second hand but I knew someone who went to ACM with Ed Sheeran. He said he was lazy in class, skipped classes and just wanted to smoke weed, and my acquaintance was mad when Ed started getting more and more famous when Ed didn’t even bother with his music courses. I thought that was funny."

– lizziexo

Attractive And Shy​

"Went to middle school with Meagan fox for a bit. She rode my bus and she mostly kept to herself. Most of the guys would fight over who was going to sit next to her but she was very shy and didn't really have much to say."

– binnygeo

Politeness goes a long way, and these actors never lost sight of that.

A Class Act

"I was local Production contact on Hugh Jackman’s touring theatre production where he sang his favourite numbers from various musicals. Usually when a show comes in with big name stars, the star usually has a bunch of assistants and they do the job they are paid to do and that’s it. The actor come on stage when needed then back to their dressing room and if you need anything or if they need anything you talk to the assistant. Prior to the first performance, I am on stage dealing with a few little issues, trying to stay on schedule when Mr. Jackman walks out on stage and my first thought was that he was going to be angry that we have kept him waiting to do his sound check. Instead he walks directly over to me, introduces himself asks me my name and asks a couple of questions and doesn’t even mention the delays."

"So we spoke for a few minutes and then he went around and introduced himself to more of the local crew. I was a little blown away by meeting him as I am a fan and thought that was really cool of him. Fast forward a week and I am backstage after the performance and I bump into Mr.Jackman in the hall, I say hi but don’t want to bother him but he stops me, he remembers my name (after meeting 100’s of people that week) and asks a few questions that related to our first conversation."

"Here’s the thing though. The guy just did a two hour performance and Instead of just politely returning my greeting he stopped and talked for a few moments with no false sincerity. To this day I am still blown away by how genuinely nice he was and always wondered what he was like before he became famous. He would also spend a huge amount of time after the show signing autographs and answering questions at stage door."

– Enrobg

Dreamy Hair

"I went to college with Joe Keery aka Steve Harrington in Stranger Things. He was my college boyfriend’s suite mate and just the nicest guy. His hair has always been dreamy and amazing. Last time I saw him was at a viewing of the Hateful Eight after we graduated and he still made a point to come over and say hi!"

– piggieees

Unforgettable Prom Date

"Friend of mine was friends with Tom Hanks in high school and went to prom with him. He still writes her personalized BDay cards on one of his typewriters."

– ScottishHeat

These celebrities managed to avoid having success go to their heads.

Still Sincere And Serene

"I went to Junior High with Norah Jones. She was the most sincere and serene person. She was fun to talk to and she never gave a hint of who her father was. The night she won all those Grammys was very telling that she hadn't changed a bit."

– anon

The Good Guy

"I went to high school with Mark Ruffalo. He was nice. He was 'one of those thespians.' Our high school had an acting group that challenged the students to get out of their shell and do things in front of strangers like introducing yourself as the wild fairy of the woods and presenting them with a flower."

"We didn’t talk much, but like I said, he was a good guy."

– vman4402

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So when you hear stories of them doing normal, everyday things, it can be a jarring contradiction to the image of them you've had in your head.

That's Hollywood for ya.

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