6. Adrien Brody
First Job: Magician
Along with his unconventional looks that we love, Adrien Brody also started his career off with an unconventional job. After making a fast $50 at 11 years old doing magic at a younger kid’s birthday party, Adrien got serious, going to a professional magician’s camp. He even credits his beginning in magic for his entrance into acting, he told the Wall Street Journal. “I definitely see parallels between acting and magic and performance. You are given a trick and a basic synopsis about what the reveal is and then you make up a story and your own pattern. You have a monologue and you create an illusion. Something is happening that is not necessarily happening. As a kid it was pretty cool to fool all the adults.” Even as an adult it’s cool to fool adults. Like when I make my mom’s vintage clothes “disappear.”
7. Sandra Bullock
First Job: Restaurant hostess
Before she was widely known as America’s sweetheart, Sandra Bullock was the sweetheart of the restaurant for which she was a hostess. Fellow actress and former restaurant worker Jennifer Coolidge said on The Talk, “She ended up getting my shifts because I had such bad attendance. Sandra was incredibly popular, she would’ve won Miss Congeniality at the restaurant. Everybody loved her.” There are no restaurants in space, nor people to love you, so it’s a good thing Sandra became a famous actress before she left Earth and all.
8. Stacey Dash
First Job: Clothing retailer
Stacey Dash had style before she starred in Clueless as Cher Horowitz’s BFF Dionne. As a teen she worked at United Colors of Benetton so she could “have money to buy clothes at the store so I could go out to shows and look hot,” she told the Wall Street Journal. Along with fashion sense, the job taught her about independence. “And I learned that I was the kind of person who could make money on my own and take care of myself.” She’s doing so well taking care of herself, she hasn’t done anything for the public to see in…like, forever. Seriously, what has she been in since Clueless? She might as well be a virgin who can’t drive.
9. Bryan Cranston
First Job: Paper route
Bryan Cranston’s first job had nothing to do with cooking up drugs, à la Breaking Bad. Like Morgan Freeman, Bryan took a paper route as a boy, a job which, he told the Wall Street Journal, taught him his work ethic. “It was a job where you felt important. Even though I only made $7 from working all week on it, I learned how to save and quickly realized it wasn’t something I wanted to do my whole life. I didn’t even want to get up and do it when I did it, but I did, and that changed me.” That’s the kind of perseverance you need as a
drug dealer actor. Did a mini-Aaron Paul sit on Bryan’s handlebars yelling, “Yeah, bitch!” every time the newspaper landed directly on the porch?
10. Eva Mendes
(Photo: Ivan Nikolov/WENN.com)
First Job: Mall restaurant employee
Before she considered it her job to break Ryan Gosling’s heart, Eva Mendes served pizza, pasta and hot dogs at a couple food places in her local mall. Eva told the Wall Street Journal she “couldn’t wait to legally work,” starting at 15 at pizza/pasta place “Ciao” before heading across the food court to “Hot Dog on a Stick.” At Ciao, there was a sneeze guard between herself and the customers she had to serve. “… you would have to give it to them over the bar. I could not tell you how many times I would serve that food through the glass. We started getting a couple of complaints about things and we would all rotate our duties.” Hey girl, you’ve done well for yourself since those days.
11. Rooney Mara
First Job: Babysitter
She wasn’t a girl with a dragon tattoo, but Rooney Mara still isn’t quite sure why parents were entrusting her with their children when she was only in junior high. “I don’t know what they were thinking, I was very mature but I don’t know what they were thinking,” she told the Wall Street Journal. “I would never let a seventh grader watch my child. But I babysat that family all the way through high school so I guess they really trusted me.” And this was pre-Facebook, so the parents couldn’t even search the
C-cup B-cup (according to Mark Zuckerberg) babysitter online!
12. Gerard Butler
First Job: Lawyer
Sure, maybe he’s slightly overrated, but Gerard Butler looks good wearing nothing but a shield (300) or a beat-up leather jacket (P.S. I Love You) – but in a suit? After being president of the University of Glasgow Law Society, Gerard went to work at a prestigious law firm. The reason he’s not still sporting the pinstripes and briefcase look is that he was miserable, he told Men’s Health. ”I was drinking constantly. I hated my life.” People laughed at him giving up his desk job to pursue acting, but Gerard kept at it. ”What happens is that the universe conspires. Once you make a decision to do something, the universe starts to help you.” That, or you have a great body and an adorably sexy Scottish accent.