Utter the word 'celebrity' and an image of lavish lifestyles and million dollar award show dresses come to mind. We see celebrities with their over the top hillside mansions and swanky sports cars and assume they've had everything handed to them on gilded platters by a full waitstaff their entire lives. These idealized images are often far from the reality of their lives.
The majority of people believe that celebrities work short schedules. While they may be touring or filming for only five months a year, the rest of the year is very busy. Promotion schedules often require celebrities to fly back and forth across the country appearing on morning newscasts or evening talk shows. As lavish as it may seem, the reality is that they just want to spend time with family and friends just like everyone else.
Another common misconception revolves around the award show attire. Some people are under the perception that celebrities are buying clothing and jewelry worth hundreds of thousands of dollars. In reality, the garments are often on loan to the celebrity with the intention of drawing attention to the clothing or jewelry designer. Often these items are returned to the designer or may be auctioned for charity.
Actors and musicians are often under extreme scrutiny from paparazzi and celebrity reporters. A minor car accident that your average person endures would be front page tabloid news for a celebrity. Health issues like body image and drug usage are exacerbated under the limelight. The idea of a normal life with any concept of privacy is often out of the question for celebrities.
Some celebrities seemed to have been born with the proverbial silver spoon being handed to them. Justin Timberlake, Christina Aguilera, Ryan Gosling, and Keri Russell all started their careers very young and appeared together on the former Mickey Mouse Club show. Brother and sister actors Maggie & Jake Gylenhaal were practically destined to be actors with a director father and screenwriter mother. Miley Cyrus is the daughter of 90s country star Billy Ray Cyrus and Robin Thicke is the son of Alan Thicke who played the father on the TV series 'Growing Pains.'
While some celebrities seemed to stumble straight into their celebrity careers, many endured the same life-sucking, boring, everyman jobs that your Average Joe suffers through on a regular basis. For these celebrities it was a much more difficult journey.
Musicians have a strong tendency to meet while in college. Dave Matthews Band, Maroon 5 and even the Doors met while attending college. Natasha Bedingfield interrupted her college experience to pursue a music career, as did the members of Boyce Avenue, who describe their grassroots evolution on the TuneCore blog. Other performers like Billy Joe Armstrong of Green Day and Bruce Springsteen completely bypassed the college experience.
Not all celebrities got their start on the glamorous end of performing. Hugh Jackman performed at children's parties as a clown but didn't know any magic tricks, but actor Adrien Brody could've come to his rescue since he was once a magician. Christopher Walken was once a lion tamer with a circus. Patrick Dempsey once won second place in a juggling competition.