Nearly everyone, at some point in life, has had a moment where the thought of being rich and famous, and what that would be like, has crossed their minds. On the flip side, many of the rich and famous actually spend time daydreaming about what it would be like to be anonymous again, without the pressure of the media, the pace, the travel.
Kirk Cameron became really quite famous with his role in the hit 80s TV show Growing Pains. In fact, his work was so good he received two Golden Globe nominations for his performance. Since the show, Kirk decided to focus more time on his religion and is extremely active in his evangelical church. Ok, he didn’t completely shy away from the camera as he hosts a show about his beliefs, making the occasional personal appearance.
Richard Corey Harrison, known as “Big Hoss” from the reality TV show “Pawn Stars”. The show turned him into a celebrity, but he still works a normal day job, managing the shop and its’ 30 employees. In season 6 of the show, he presented his father and grandfather an ultimatum; that he is leaving the job if they don’t give him a 10% stake in the company. They agreed on a 5% partnership for now with the promise of more in the future.
Mara Wilson was an extremely talented and successful child actress, giving outstanding performances in well-known films such as Matilda, Mrs. Doubtfire, and A Simple Wish, which were actually filmed within a few months/years of each other. Mara says she loved her time acting but decided pretty early on that she doesn’t want to continue into her adult life as an actor, and became a philanthropist and writer, and published a book about her experiences as a child actor, in 2016. Nowadays she is working for a non-profit organization, Publicolor, which intends to help disadvantaged youth have access to the arts.
Kevin Jonas is the oldest brother of the Jonas Brothers band. After he left the band he launched a food searching app called “Yood” and has plans to continue a career in high-tech.
Frankie Muniz became quite well known with his outstanding performance in Malcolm in the Middle, for which he also received an Emmy Award and two Golden Globe Nominations. Frankie decided to leave the acting world to pursue a career as a race car driver.
George Foreman was a very successful and famous boxer until he retired, after which he began promoting George Foreman Lean Mean Fat-Reducing Grilling Machine, which became very successful, and has sold over 100 million units, earning George over $200 million!
Andrea Barber is in fact still acting, having returned to play Kimmy in the Netflix reboot of the hit show, Full House. But that is after taking quite a break into academia, where she got her B.A in English from Whittier College in California, and later studied at the University of York. She also worked as the director of the international studies program at Whittier’s for a number of years.
Danielle Fishel played Topanga in Boy Meets World, the much-loved 90s show. After the show, Danielle spent time as a reporter for The Dish and Popsugar, until she recently went back to acting in the Disney spin-off series, Girl Meets World.
Freddie Prince Jr.
If you grew up in the late 90s/early 2000s, you definitely remember Freddie Prince Jr. as a heartthrob, having appeared in many ‘teen’ movies like Cruel Intentions and I Know What You Did Last Summer. He and Sarah Michelle Gellar (Buffy!) got married and found they had a joint passion for cooking, and Freddie made that his new career, having published his own recipe book which features many of his original recipes.
Before Tony Danza went into acting, where he is most well-known for his role on Who’s The Boss, he had made a name for himself as a professional boxer. He decided to become an education activist and helped create the reality show Teach: Tony Danza. The show followed his experience as a teacher in a 10th grade English class in Philadelphia, where the aim was to show the state of the American education system, as well as making a point about teachers deserving more respect, from students and the system.
Before Steven Seagal made his acting debut in 1988 with Above the Law, when his acting career took off, he was actually a martial arts instructor in Japan, and the first foreigner to manage an Aikido Dojo in Japan! After acting in quite a number of successful films he retired from acting, and pursued a career in law enforcement, and became a reserve deputy sheriff in Louisiana.
Sarah Michelle Gellar
Just in case you didn’t grow up in the 1990s, Sarah Michelle Geller was Buffy in Buffy The Vampire Slayer, and also starred in a number of “teen” films including Cruel Intentions with her husband Freddy Prince Jr. The couple actually found their new passion together: cooking, and Sarah co-founded a startup, Foodstirs, selling baking kits for kids.
Peter Ostrum actually only had one acting role, but it was an unforgettable one! Peter was spotted by talent agents when he was just 12 and was selected to play the adorable Charlie Bucket in the 1971 feature film Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. After filming, Peter decided not to sign the three-film contract, and later pursued his studies in veterinary medicine at Cornell and became a practicing vet working mostly with horses and cattle.
Helen Hunt has been in the entertainment industry since she was a child, with her first major acting role when she was just 10! Having earned a number of Academy Awards for her acting, these days she prefers to work as a producer and has her own production company, Hunt/Travel Productions.
Nick Offerman as Ron Swanson in the hilarious TV series Parks and Recreation. Although he is still acting he is also a carpenter, and builds all sorts of things – even boats! We think that’s pretty handy Nick!
Lark Voorhies is actually another Saved by the Bell actor (she played Lisa Turtle) who decided writing was her passion, and to date, has published 3 books already!
Jim Carrey is a world-famous actor since the 90s, with memorable roles in films such as Ace Venture: Pet Detective, and The Mask, to name but a few. Recently he decided to take a break from the big screen to pursue his love of painting, and even has his own gallery in Las Vegas.
Vanilla Ice, AKA Robert Matthew Van Winkle, is a rapper who became quite famous following a copyright controversy with David Bowie, over his hit song Ice, Ice, Baby. He appeared on some reality TV shows in the early 2000s, but these days he is in the real estate business and hosts his own show in which he shows home renovations, called The Vanilla Ice Project.
Kevin Costner was actually prompted by the Gulf Oil Spill to take a break from Hollywood and begin his own company called Ocean Therapy Solutions, which does environmental clean-ups.
Tom Selleck has not quit acting for good but is on an extended break, and owns a 60-acre farm where he grows avocados, which is what he fills his time up with at the moment. Pretty cool!
Angus T Jones
Angus T Jones became a star with his role as Jake Harper in the hit US sitcom Two and a Half Men, where we all watched him grow up over his 10 years on the show. Towards the end of the 9th series of the show, Angus found his faith with the Seventh Day Advent Church and decided he no longer wanted to act in the show and wanted to get more involved with the church.
Aubrey O’Day is a musician who found fame as a member of the duo Dumblonde and girl group Danity Kane and later signed as a solo artist. Later she starred in a Broadway show and also did some modeling, until her career moved in the direction of reality TV, appearing in shows like Big Brother and The Apprentice.
Jessica Sierra was a finalist on season 4 of American Idol, but despite her success decided not to pursue a career in the music industry, and is currently working at Hooters in Florida.
Cote de Pablo
Cote de Pablo is the gorgeous Chilean-American actress and singer, best known for her role as Ziva David on NCIS, since 2016 she has taken a break from the entertainment industry and is taking it easy in Los Angeles.
Dylan Sprouse is best known for starring alongside Adam Sandler in Big Daddy. In 2011 he announced that he was leaving Hollywood to become a full-time student at New York University.
Liam Gallagher is the singer and songwriter who formed the hit 90s band, Oasis, with his brother. Liam later started his own clothing line called Pretty Green, which is still going strong today.
Roseanne Barr is most well-known for her hit TV sitcom Roseanne, which aired for nearly 10 years, winning an Emmy and a Golden Globe Award for her work on the show. Nowadays she is pursuing politics, even running for the presidential candidate for the Peace and Freedom party in 2012.
Lucy Liu Lucy Liu made her breakthrough into a celebrity with her role on Ally McBeal, even become nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award. Lucy also loves visual art and has created her own work, sometimes donating her art to charity.
Chris Owen is best known for playing “The Sherminator” in the American Pie franchise. Chris has actually been acting since he was 10! He is currently working as a waiter in an upscale sushi restaurant in L.A., saying that he loves acting and the job lets him stay in the game.
Ariana Richards began acting in 1987 when she was just 7 years old, and is best known for playing Lex Murphy in Jurassic Park. She acted for a number of years, and graduated with distinction from Skidmore College with a degree in Fine Art and Drama, and went on to focus on her art at Art Center College of Design in Pasadena. Ariana is an accomplished painter in Oregon.
Another child actor who decided to pursue political science as a study subject is Josh Saviano, who became famous for his role on The Wonder Years when he was a teenager. After graduating from Yale with a degree in Political Science, he studied law at Cardozo. Josh has been practicing law for many years at Morrison Cohen LLP, and also owns his own consultant company.
Stanley Kirk Burrell had a very successful career as MC Hammer, but somehow accumulated $13 million of debt and decided to switch careers. He now develops apps for Apple, amongst a number of other things.
Daniel Day-Lewis is a talented and successful actor but decided to leave acting and take an apprenticeship with Stefano Bemer, an Italian cobbler. Interesting! Daniel is now working on designing his own fashion line.
Julia’s first on-screen appearance was in the Ghostwriter Tv show when she a teenager. Later on, she stared in major blockbuster movies such as 10 Things I Hate About You, Save the Last Dance, and The Prince & Me. Since then, Julia faded into the background and left the real industry to live life anonymously.