Riches to rags is not just a phrase, it is the real-life story of a few well-known celebrities. Often, we believe that once we hoard a lot of wealth, our problems would subside. However, that’s not completely true. The industry has known celebrities that became broke even after earning a massive amount of fame and wealth.
Let’s look into some of these celebrities who went completely broke at some point in their careers:
1. Johnny Depp:
The ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ star, Johnny Depp, has been heavily criticized for being spendthrift and not managing his wealth shrewdly. Depp charged a lawsuit against his managers for taking the wrong decisions that led to his bankruptcy. However, the managers counter-sued the star saying he and his unwise spending were solely responsible for his bankruptcy.
In 2016, Depp was the fifth highest-paid actor in Hollywood. According to the lawsuit, Johnny Depp was burdened with a debt of $40 million.
2. Larry King:
The widely known talk show star, Larry King, has also been known to reach insolvency. Over the years, King faced several misfortunes, including an alleged grand larceny case by his business partner. The charges ended King with losing his radio jobs.
It was in 1960 that Larry King first filed for bankruptcy. In 1978, again, King filed for bankruptcy after ending up in $350,000 of debt. He was known to foolishly spend his money which was the reason he wound up in major debts.
After the massive blows to his career, King debuted on the CNN based show ‘Larry King Live’ in 1985. The show went on to boost King’s financial situation pulling him out of the debts and severe monetary crisis.
3. Stephen Baldwin:
Claiming to be under the burden of debts amounting to millions, Stephen Baldwin filed for bankruptcy in 2009. Baldwin was known to be owing an approximate amount of $2.3 million in mortgages and credit card loans. In 2012, Stephen Baldwin was also detained for tax evasion. He was found guilty of not paying taxes for the years 2008, 2009 and 2010.
Later, Baldwin pleaded guilty and was given a year to pay off $400,000 in debts. He cleared these debts successfully.
4. Lindsay Lohan:
Lindsay Lohan had a promising kick start with her child appearance in the blockbuster film, ‘The Parent Trap’. It was not surprising for the public to believe the star to reach great heights of success in the future. However, the contradictory happened. Lohan after getting massive fame from another hit movie of its time, ‘Mean Girls’, started her way down the stardom.
It is reportedly said, a life of too much partying and addiction left Lohan spiraling down her position of success. During 2010, it was reported that she owed in credit card debt an amount of $600,000. In 2012, Lohan was forced to file for bankruptcy. She was also told to vacate ger London apartment, during 2016, when she failed to pay the rent and owed an amount of $137,000.
5. Toni Braxton:
It was during the 90s that Toni Braxton reached the peak of fame through her self-titled album release. The album was a massive success and hit number one on the Billboard 200 chart. It sold 10 million copies worldwide. The success of her first album brought Braxton three Grammy Awards.
However, the massive success didn’t prove too prosperous for Braxton. She revealed in an interview with ABC’s 20/20 that she had to file for bankruptcy twice. Once in 1998 when her record label was paying her a meagre amount of $2000 in the form of royalties. She added that her frivolous spending habits were also a reason she had to claim bankruptcy.
In 2008, again, Toni Braxton had to file for bankruptcy after she had to cancel a Las Vegas revue due to her deteriorating health.
6. Aaron Carter:
We all remember the heartthrob Nick Carter from the Backstreet Boys, right? Well, he has a little brother who is not less of a heartthrob himself! Aaron Carter was once a famous popstar as well with hit singles like ‘Aaron’s Party’ which sold approximately three million copies in the U.S.
However, Aaron ended up filing for bankruptcy in the year 2013 when he owed a whopping amount of $2 million in debt. He owed the debt mostly to IRS due to not paying his taxes on time.
Aaron’s publicist accused the people in charge of managing his finances for his bankruptcy. Aaron lost all his finances at the time he filed for bankruptcy.
Aaron has been a part of ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and several other Broadway performances. He released his fifth album recently and is often on tour doing shows.
7. Nicolas Cage:
Nicolas Cage is known to be one of the finest, most talented stars of Hollywood. He won an Oscar in 1996 for the Best Actor in a Leading Role category for the movie ‘Leaving Las Vegas’. Cage made a fortune through his fame in the movies with earning $40 million in 2009 alone. He was known to spend money unwisely in purchasing various homes, automobiles, etc.
Cage was also known to be sued by his ex for a $13 million lawsuit. Cage was made to pay $6 million to the IRS for failing to pay his taxes in 2007. During 2015, reports surfaced that Cage had exhausted his $150 million fortune during the period between 1996 to 2011.
To fight for his deteriorating financial condition, Cage had to sell most of his prized belongings.
8. 50 Cent:
In May 2015, with an approximate net worth of $155 million, 50 cent was known to be one of the Forbes Five Richest Hip-Hop Artists. During the late 90s, 50 Cent made a name with his rapping career, however, he is known to make most of his money from a vast business empire.
Later, several bad financial decisions and numerous lawsuits that put him in $32.5 million worth of debt, 50 cent filed for bankruptcy in 2016.
50 Cent was also hit with a major lawsuit by a woman who claimed he put her sex tape online as a way of revenge. The court made 50 Cent pay $5 million to the woman as compensation.
9. Gary Coleman:
Starring in ‘Diff’rent Strokes’, Gary Coleman became a childhood star during the 1980s. He was known to earn $70,000 per episode. However, when the show ended in 1986, Gary Coleman accused his adopted parents and managers to have misused his earnings.
Even though Gary won the case against his parents and financial advisors, he still had to file for bankruptcy in 1999. He claimed to have debts amounting to $72,000.
10. Mike Tyson:
Holding the record of being the youngest boxer to win the heavyweight title, Mike Tyson made a massive fortune during his career. He is known to have earned more than $300 million from his successful boxing career.
However, despite his enormous fortune, Tyson filed for bankruptcy during 2003. He was known to be in debt of approximately $23 million owing money to various organizations such as the IRS, the British tax authorities, lawyers, etc. Tyson had to pay $9 million to settle a divorce case. He also had to spend time in jail for cocaine problems.
It is evident that earning massive amount of money doesn’t necessarily mean a secure future. Bad financial decisions and unwise spending are what put many celebrities through massive financial losses and eventual bankruptcy.