15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke

Going broke is awful, it can happen to anyone. Including celebrities we know. Here is a compelling list of Movie Stars who went broke.

Have you ever thought that inspiring stories of celebrities who went from nothing to working their way up, climbing high on the financial ladder, could go the other way round? Well, you will be shocked as we take you through the heartbreaking stories of 15 famous movie stars who went from being big to ending really small.

15 Famous Movie Stars who went Broke


Whether you believe it or not, there are some famous actors who have gone from being super-rich to becoming really poor in quite a short instant.

These famous super-stars have climbed to the peak of success, reached milestones, amassed a great deal of fortune for themselves over the years. But, However, they seem to have lost it all. Some, due to bad investment choices, while others, maybe divorce, or health challenges you name it!

Therefore, let’s take you through some of the most famous movie stars who have gone from nothing to something, and back to nothing. Some of these names might appear shocking to you, while others might be common knowledge. Nevertheless, these stars have been there, done it, and now they’re back to nothing.

15. Teresa Giudice

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke

In 2009, Teresa and her husband filed for bankruptcy, but the aftermath of their action put both couples in a series of legal problems from which they are still dealing with the consequences.

So how did she end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? The Real Housewives of New Jersey star and her husband were charged with cases of bankruptcy fraud. Which, apparently, showed that she and her husband lied about being broke. Further investigations also revealed other creditors who claimed that the couple did not disclose all their assets, in an attempt to commit wire and bank fraud. [Also Read: 12 Dangerous Dogs In The World, You Probably Don’t Know]

Teresa and her husband were both arrested, charged and sentenced to prison. Although Teresa has served her time in a Federal prison, her husband is still incarcerated. She finally moved up in 2016 to settle her bankruptcy case, with reports of her paying back taxes to both the IRS and the New Jersey Department of Revenue.

14. Gary Busey

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke


Gary is one of the very successful actors in Hollywood, but his huge success and fat paycheck days in the industry were cut short when serious health problems kicked in, all caused by reckless driving which dates way back to the 80s. Gary was diagnosed with cancer, plus a prodigious head injury.

So how did he end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? He filed for bankruptcy in February of 2012, as a result of his huge medical bills. In order to fit some bills, Bary took up roles in low budget movies, sitcom reality shows laughing like crazy, trying to get more attention. Gary’s debt list includes court penalties, IRS bills, hospital bills and bank payment notice which totalled over $1 million. Ironically, his total assets were estimated to be $50 thousand.  [Also, Read Top 6 Best Netflix Comedy Films Of all Time]

13. Joey Lawrence

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke


After the end of the “Melissa & Joey” show in 2015, Joey Lawrence and his wife, wife Chandie Yawn-Nelson, had to file for bankruptcy two years later due to a boatload of expenses they couldn’t cover. Reports according to Blast showed that the couple had only $8 thousand dollars in their bank at the time of the filing of bankruptcy. The couple was faced with unpaid loans, credit card debt, back taxes and unpaid rent expenses. [Also, Read: 15 Most Dangerous Kids in the World]

12. Linsday Lohan

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke


Coming up at number 12, is former childhood star, Lindsey Lohan. Famous for her roles in hits like “The Parent Trap” and “Mean Girls,” Lindsey is one actress who grew up in the spotlight, with so much glamour and exquisite lifestyle which later took a downturn on her.  [Also, Read: The 11 Richest Countries In Africa By Economy]

So how did she end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? According to reports by NY Dialy News, Lindsey owed over $600,000 in credit card debt in 2010. Two years later, she settled a $93,000 debt with the IRS. Her troubles continued in 2016, after she was sent out of her apartment because she owed $137,000 in rent.

Today, she has made less appearance in tabloids, but is looking to make a return to the big screen with a return in “Sick Note”.

11. David Cassidy

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke


David Cassidy comes up at number 11 on our list of former rich and famous stars turn broke. The former Patridge star had fallen into a deep financial crisis of recent. He suffered from a drinking problem and was charged with a DUI three times between 2010 and 2014. His wife divorced him in 2014, and by 2015, he was declared broke. [Also, Read: Top 20 Most Beautiful Places in the World – You have to Visit]

Filing for bankruptcy after claims that he owed a huge sum to the tune of $10 million. A list of creditors he owes includes a lawyer, several banks, and the American Express.

He openly confessed in court that his royalty checks as he used to receive them during his Patridge Family days weren’t coming like they used to. And with a couple with health challenges, he’s having more difficulty earning from touring. He announced his retirement in February of 2017. the movie star went broke even when he was famous

10. Johnny Depp

15 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke

Everyone’s favourite captain Jack Sparrows comes up at number 11 on our list. Surprisingly, Depp was the fifth highest paid actor in Hollywood, in 2016.  [Also, Read: 25 Hardest Riddles That Will Leave You Speechless (With Answers)]

So how did he end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? Well, for one, he is a famous movie star, secondly, after frivolous spending of huge amounts of money on a number of things he’d wish he never spent on, including $18 million on a 150-foot yacht and $4 million on a failed record label, Depp has been under serious fire for his unwise financial decisions over the years.

However, despite his heavy financial burdens up his shoulders, Depp hasn’t filed for bankruptcy yet. In 2017, he sued his former business managers, with claims that they made unwise financial decisions without his knowledge. But his managers debunked his claims with a counter-law-suit, saying he alone, Depp, is responsible for his money problems.

According to his lawsuit, Depp is estimated to be $40 million in debt. That’s quite a lot of money to owe, Johnny!

9. Chris Tucker

Chris Tucker


Chris Tucker is one of Hollywood’s funniest comedians. Famous for his role in Rush Hour as Detective James Carter, Chris suffered a major setback after he plunged himself into financial troubles with the U.S government. He was charged with a $2.5 million dollar lawsuit for tax evasion. [Also. Read 10 World most expensive fidget spinner]

It’s funny how Chris, who was one of Hollywood’s Highest paid actor at one point, could be found guilty of such an offense. However, in an interview, Chris blames his tax crisis solely on his financial management team. Apparently, during his time off the big screen, Chris made some really bad investment choices on the influence of his financial adviser who failed to provide sufficient assistance to make sure his tax payments were rightly made.

The result of this lead Chris to owing the IRS a total debt of $14 million. As of April 2017, Chris’s net worth was estimated at $11.5 million. The actor is now set to reach a deal with the IRS to settle his debts. the Famous Movie Stars that went Broke

8. Kim Basinger

 Famous Movie Stars that went Broke


Talk about wrong investment choices, actress Kim Basinger in 1989, bought a 1,691-acre town in Braselton, Georgia, for a jaw-dropping price of $20 million, with the idea of building a tourist attraction such as a theme park or a movie studio.  [Also Read: 16 Most Richest Drug Dealers of all Time]

However, things didn’t turn out as expected and the famous actress declared bankruptcy after. She later then had to put the town up for sale, which was sold at a lower price, and she, incurring a huge loss.

She dropped out of performing in the 1995 movie “Boxing Helena”, but settled with mainline pictures. Thus, avoiding the initial $8.1 million judgments. Basinger in 1995, was living in three different homes on both coasts, spending a ravishing $31,000 a month on clothes, pets, and her ex-husband (Alec Baldwin).

7. Stephen Baldwin

  Movie Stars that went Broke


On number 7 we bring to you the sad story of another Hollywood great who went from hero, to..broke! But before we look into how Stephen Baldwin encountered his ‘stroke of bad luck’, we were just wondering to ask, How is it possible that you go broke after a bunch of movies on your resume, and more importantly, not just having a recognizable Baldwin face, but being the youngest of the Balwin brothers? Well, I think its quite simple, you just avoid paying taxes and credit card bills, for an extended period of time. Three years, to be exact. [Also, Read: 10 Most Expensive Cars in The World]

Stephen was a tax evasion offender. He was nabbed and forced to file for bankruptcy protection in 2009 because his debts were bigger than $2 million. The latest reports are that he has managed to pay about $400 thousand to creditors, but he now faces mortgage problems and his house was foreclosed in 2017 after six years of no mortgage payments. I guess he might be considering changing his mind now about his daughter dating Justin Bieber!

6. Gary Coleman

Gary Coleman


While many celebrities went broke from trying to live well beyond their means, others had to declare bankruptcy as a result of more disturbing challenges. Take Gary Coleman for example. He was one of televisions’ most popular faces, thanks to his role in Different Strokes.

So how did he end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? He was reported to have been earning a whopping $64,000 a week for his role as Arnold Drummond and would have been set up comfortably by the time he got to adulthood. But he had mummy-daddy issues, parents who couldn’t get enough hold on their son’s fortune from his God-giving talent. When he turned 18, he only had about $200 thousand left. [Also, Read: 14 Amazing Game of Thrones Facts You Didn’t Know]

Cole was forced to file for bankruptcy protection in 1999, following debts of $72 thousand. He blamed his parents for looting his trust fund and causing him great misfortune. Health challenges soon crept in and worsened his financial woes. Coleman later passed on in 2010. What a sad ending to a glorious start.

5. Abby Lee Miller

Abby Lee Miller

Abby Lee Miller is next on our list as the latest Hollywood star to file for bankruptcy. Although she filed for bankruptcy, her case led to an even bigger mess. The no-nonsense star of Dance Moms pleaded guilty to bankruptcy fraud in 2016.

This comes after she was nabbed for apparently trying to hide hundreds of thousands of dollars in income she received for appearing on the popular Lifetime show. And according to other news, she was reported to have also smuggled more than $120,000 in Australian currency into the U.S – Fox News Reported.  [Also, Read: 12 Mind-blowing Mandela Effects With Example]

Well, it turned out she wasn’t as broke as she claimed to be. More so, she was spotted on TV by the judge in charge of her bankruptcy proceedings. Reuters reported the judge saying in 2013 that, “I realized there is a lot of money coming into this plan, this case, and it hasn’t been disclosed”.

4. Pamela Anderson

Pamela Anderson


If for some obscure reason you don’t know who this 90’s Sexy Diva is and why it is practically inconceivable that she went broke, here’s why- Divas like lifestyle and overspending. From plastic surgeries to the nice home to the partying and living the good life, Pamela Anderson was having the time of her life until she was noticed by the IRS. [Also, Read Top 10 Most Valuable Brands in the World by Forbes]

So how did she end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? It turned out that Pamela owes more than $2 million in taxes to the IRS and over $122,000 to the state of California. But, however, despite all the reports and news, Anderson says that she is far from filing bankruptcy, adding that, “That’s all garbage. I have a beautiful home in Canada, nine little cabins on the dock that I’m building and a store in the front. That’s going to be kind of my sanctuary. I think eventually I’ll be out of L.A. and I’ll be living more on Vancouver Island. And Malibu, I can’t get away from Malibu… I’m all over the place.”

3. Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes
Image Credit: twitter.com/


One of Hollywood’s famous vampire hunter is next on our list of famous stars who went broke. Wesley Snipe has been charged to court several times by the IRS, facing an all-out prosecution on multiple serious felony tax evasion counts. For an actor with prominent film roles over the years, with a blistering career, Wesley Snipes is also one of the highest profiled criminal tax defendants in recent memory.

According to reports, Snipes avoided $7 million in taxes from 1999 through 2001, by listening to an accountant and anti-tax advocate who told him he did not legally have to pay taxes. And in 2008, he was arrested and convicted of three misdemeanour counts of failing to file tax returns. He served jail time and was released in April 2013. [Also, Read: 25 Business Ideas That Will Make You a Millionaire]

However, his fall from grace just took another big hit again, with his latest loss in a U.S Tax court which sided with the IRS. Snipes still owes $23.5 million tax, but the Blade crooner has come out to say he cannot pay that huge amount, offering a fraction of about $842,000. However, the IRS has refused his offer, and his case is still in court. The Famous Movie Stars went Broke

2. Nicolas Cage

Nicolas Cage
Image Credit: NME.com


Known for his love for luxury, Nicolas Cage was one of Hollywood’s biggest earners and spenders as well. In 2009, he was worth $40 million, he spent most of his fortune on exotic automobiles, buying many houses, and rare artefacts as well. Some might say, his choice of spending is rather frivolous than investing in many assets for a rainy day.  [Also, Read: 20 Netflix Original Movies You Need To Watch]

So how did he end up being on the list of famous movie stars who went broke? However, when the days became “rainy” with the IRS placing tax liens on multiple properties he owned, Cage was made to pay more than $6 million for failing to cover his 2007 tax bill. His tottering financial situation led him to sell off many of his properties and belongings he acquired through his roles in acting, including one of his most treasured comic books. In order to maintain his pertinence, Cage now takes on many film roles.

1. 50 Cent

50 cent,
Image Credit: bet.com


I guess you weren’t expecting to find famous rapper Curtis James Jackson III on our list, not after his ‘Get Rich or Die Trying’ slogan. Well, it turns out that 50 Cent, as he is popularly known, is the latest celebrity on our list to file for bankruptcy. Not the type you expect to take such action, considering the gigantic amount of wealth he acquired in the music and movie industries.

He was worth well over $155 million in assets. But, however, his big spending lifestyle and lack of care for an obligation have cost him a lot of downturns in his finances. The most recent of his misfortune is the alleged sex tape saga between him, 50 Cent, and Rick Ross baby mama, Lastonia Leviston. [Also, Read: 25 Business Ideas That Will Make You a Millionaire]

Although according to TMZ reports, 50 Cent is yet to pay her a dime after filing for bankruptcy, he was ordered by a judge back in July, to pay Leviston $7 million for allegedly leaking her sex tape without her permission. He was also called ‘Broke’ by Floyd Mayweather after the two had crossed each other’s path. Cent has become one of the Famous Movie Stars that went Broke

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