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Celebs that ended up with totally regular jobs

There's no business like show business, and for some people, that's a good thing that includes critical acclaim, red carpets, and big money. For others, fame brings unwanted scrutiny, intense pressure, and seriously hectic schedules that celebrities would rather avoid. Some of these stars ditched the limelight in favor of low-key lives, parenthood, childhood, or hobbies. Others didn't have much of a choice, because, well, Hollywood is a cruel and fickle place. One minute you're making headlines, and the next, you're scouring the classifieds and auditioning for a job at a Trader Joes. From former heartthrobs and sitcom favorites to chart-topping musicians and reality stars, find out who's selling shoes, who's bagging groceries, who's playing Mr. Mom, and who's taking your order. Nineties icons, child stars, even a Harry Potter alum and a Jonas Brother have all made this shocking list of celebs who ended up working totally regular jobs.

Freddie Prinze, Jr.

Freddie Prinze, Jr. was every '90s and early '00s teenage girl's dream man. While he still does some acting here and there, his primary job recently has been working as a chef. The actor and father of two even wrote a cookbook, Back to the Kitchen, in 2016. He told GQ he left acting because he wanted to be a "stay-at-home dad." Prinze said, "I wanted to cook breakfast and dinner for my kids every day...That's when you kind of realize, 'Hey, I don't think I have the passion for this.'"

Nikki Blonsky

Nikki Blonsky was a fantastic Tracy Turnblad in 2007's Hairspray – her first big-screen role. She rode that wave of success to star in the ABC Family (now Freeform) series Huge in 2010. She has since expressed frustration with the challenge of pursuing roles for plus-sized women in Hollywood, but she hasn't stopped hustling. To make ends meet between acting and voice-over gigs, she worked in a high-end shoe store in her native Long Island and as a cosmetologist in a salon.

Dylan Sprouse

Former The Suite Life of Zack and Cody star Dylan Sprouse sent fans (and haters) into a tizzy in 2013, when it was revealed that he worked as a host in a New York City restaurant while going to college. He took to his Tumblr page to clarify that he wasn't broke, just trying to live that normal life. "So many pictures have gotten out that I'm now working as a host at a restaurant in NY," he wrote (via Us Weekly). "To clear up the air (which is admittedly pretty rude), I did not take this job because I 'lost all my money,' I am financially secure, and took this job as a way to primarily feed my over bountiful video game addiction. I also took this as a way to try a new experience, working somewhat below the means I'm used to, as well as a way to socialize and get out of the house ... in no way do I think any experience is a step down for me, but rather a new step in another direction."

Kevin Jonas

While brothers Nick and Joe Jonas have continued drawing crowds in the music business, Kevin Jonas became a contractor when the Jonas Brothers broke up. "I've always looked at everything I do as a business, including the Jonas Brothers," Kevin told the New York Daily News. "I like to get my hands dirty. I've been blessed in my life where I get to say, 'You know what? I want to do this.'" His blue-collar job does bring some risks. "I jacked up my thumb yesterday and put a drill bit right through my thumb nail," he said. "It comes with the trade...whatever gets the job done."

Angus T. Jones

Two and a Half Men star Angus T. Jones left the hit CBS series — where he reportedly made $300,000 per episode — because its storylines, especially as he got older, conflicted with his Christian beliefs. He enrolled at the University of Colorado at Boulder, then took a break from school to found the Tonite event production company with Sean "Diddy" Combs' son, Justin Combs. Speaking to Billboard about the venture and his career change, Jones admitted that making the jump into music was "a completely new thought for me" — and suggested he'd softened his stance somewhat regarding his sitcom past. "I am now fully understanding what people meant when they told me that Two and a Half Men was one of the best jobs ever if not the best job ever," said Jones. "That was the opportunity of a lifetime and everyone's always told me that ... I'm really actually understanding myself now. It's showed me what it takes to put on a good show."

Sarah Michelle Gellar

Like her husband, Freddie Prinze Jr., Sarah Michelle Gellar transitioned from acting into the food business. The Buffy the Vampire Slayer star co-developed a non-GMO, organic baking mix company called Foodstirs in 2015. The mom of two told People, "I always joke with my kids like being an actor is a very abstract job. For the longest time my kids, because my kids are still little, they thought I got my hair and makeup done for a living and thought that was a job. Now they watched us have an idea, create it, make it a tangible product and now when they go to the stores that we shop in all the time, they see it on the shelves, and that's incredible to me. It kind of blows my mind." She told CNBC that her celebrity was a "double-edged sword" when she launched her own business. While one might think being famous would give an entrepreneur a leg up, Gellar argued that fame comes with "more eyes on us and more anticipation of failure." She added, "It certainly helps to have my platform to spread the word, but it takes that much more to be accepted as a serious business woman."

Terry Crews

After Geoffrey Owens was shamed by some for working at Trader Joe's, athlete-turned-actor Terry Crews rushed to his defense on social media. "I swept floors AFTER [playing in] the @NFL," Crews tweeted in response to a story about Owens' grocery gig. "If need be, I'd do it again. Good honest work is nothing to be ashamed of." Indeed, Crews has had other jobs in between his football career and his acting roles, including co-founding a furniture design firm and a stint as a courtroom sketch artist covering a high-profile murder case in Flint, Mich. Though he's wildly successful today, the entertainer has made it clear that side hustles have always been a part of his equation. During a sit-down on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Crews said "humility gets you far," noting that he put his artistic talents to use while playing in the NFL. "It would literally take me about two months to do a painting, and they would give me like five grand, and I would survive off that. My whole family survived off that."

MC Hammer

MC Hammer was the biggest rapper in the world, but he would later become the biggest financial cautionary tale after he lost his millions. He's since given up on the entertainment world, save for the occasional commercial, but he's back in the black after becoming a tech investor. Billboard reported that Hammer is one of the savviest tech gurus out there and was one of the earliest investors in companies like Square and Flipboard. He also expressed interest in Pandora and YouTube way before they became household names. "I'm interested in companies that can have a global impact on enterprise in general; things that can make your connected life more interesting and easier," Hammer told the magazine. "But always, I look for opportunities to support and expand the music business model or reinvigorate the music business model." Still, don't discount a musical comeback from the rapper-turned-preacher-turned venture capitalist. He told Billboard, "Why not? Quincy Jones was 50 when he produced the Thriller album. It's not unprecedented."

Vanilla Ice

Stop, collaborate, and list it: Vanilla Ice went from a rapper to a house flipper. The celeb, whose real name is Rob Van Winkle, told CNBC in 2012 that his house-flipping business is just as lucrative as rap was for him back in the early '90s, and he's been chronicling his work on The Vanilla Ice Project on the DIY Network. "They're both pretty good, to be honest with you," he said of his current cash flow compared to when he was a rapper. "The great thing is I found another passion that does make money." He went on, "The short sales, the foreclosures are great, but tax auctions are even better," adding, "If no one's bidding against you and it's an absolute auction, you can steal the homes for pennies on the dollar." Van Winkle said that, in addition to making green, his houses go green too, telling DIY Life, "We create less of a carbon footprint. We use a lot of LED lights. ... We installed a tankless water heater outside. It costs less to run, and you never run out of hot water." Van Winkle even wrote a book on how to get rich flipping houses, which, he said, he got into by accident. He apparently bought an apartment in New York City's elite Greenwich Village, as well as a property in Los Angeles, in his early 20s, but sold them because he was never home — and made a sweet profit.

Mara Wilson

Mara Wilson was the adorable child star of 1993's Mrs. Doubtfire and 1996's Matilda. Then she disappeared from the public eye, embracing a career as a writer, though she makes occasional appearances on nostalgia-themed programs and does voiceover work once in a while too. But more than anything these days, Wilson is an activist, promoting mental health awareness after being diagnosed with panic disorder, depression, and obsessive compulsive disorder when she was 12 years old, as she revealed to The Independent. In November 2018, Wilson told Entertainment Weekly of her time as a child star, stating, "I do think that being a child actor was difficult in some ways, like it made me more of a perfectionist. There were a lot of people out there who were very cruel. But I had a lot of great opportunities that a lot of other people didn't and I met a lot of wonderful people. You kind of have to come to peace with it all." Wilson also recalled her child stardom, as well as her coming of age, in her book Where Am I Now? True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame, which was published in 2016.

George Foreman

George Foreman became famous in the boxing ring, but he became rich when he quit sparring and started selling. His endorsement with the George Foreman Grill was one of the most lucrative sports endorsements in history, according to CNBC. Foreman admitted he was skeptical and uninterested in endorsing the grill when the Salton company approached him for the deal in the mid-1990s, and it wasn't until his wife, Mary, finally made him a burger on it six months later that he signed on to sell them. Under the deal, Foreman would take 45 percent of the profits — and, after collecting his first $1 million royalty check in 1997, he vowed to focus more on business than on boxing. A year later, Salton reportedly sold $200 million worth of grills and bought Foreman out of his contract for a whopping $137.5 million. Since then, he's endorsed other products through George Foreman Enterprises, including meats, shoes, and shakes, but nothing was ever as hot as the grill. To be clear: Foreman didn't create the grills, Michael Boehm did — but Foreman created the hype, which is what made them sell.