St. Patrick’s Day is this week, and besides wearing green, one of the topics that usually pops up on this holiday is the phrase ‘the luck of the Irish.” This made us think of how some celebrities definitely had luck on their side when it came to getting their careers started. Here are seven of them:
7 Lucky Celebrities
After leaving community college and a couple of dead-end jobs, Pratt found himself living in a van in Maui. He happened to be working in a restaurant there when Rae Dawn Chong noticed him and ended up casting him in a film (Cursed Part 3). This turned out to be the start of something big, with Pratt now pulling in major movie roles.
Will Smith had been enjoying success as half of the rap duo DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince, but he hadn’t factored taxes into his earnings. By 1990, he was in serious financial trouble (and in trouble with the IRS). By chance, he met a man named Benny Medina at a party, who pitched the idea for a TV show based on his own formative years in Beverly Hills. The result: Smith ended up being cast in the starring role for The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Those money troubles were soon a thing of the past.
Ford, who had been supplementing his meager acting income with carpentry work, had already landed a bit part in American Graffiti but wasn’t getting much traction. An industry colleague recommended him to George Lucas, who needed someone to help run lines during actor auditions for Star Wars. Ford ended up bringing so much life to this job that he was eventually hired to play Han Solo.
In the mid ‘80s, Steve Harvey was trying to make a go at standup comedy. Times were tough, and he ended up homeless for three years while he struggled for success. His big break came when he was offered a gig as the host of Showtime at the Apollo. He grabbed the opportunity and ran with it.
Braxton had stopped at a gas station one day to fuel up and was spotted by the attendant, who recognized her from local singing performances. He introduced himself to her and expressed his interest in producing her. Braxton accepted, and the rest, as they say, is history.
Bruce Willis was dealing with a stutter when he discovered the magic of acting. He joined his high school’s drama club, where he learned that he could overcome his speech affliction on stage. Armed with this renewed confidence, he was able to eventually turn his talent into a successful career.
A chance casting in a video led to big things for Courteney Cox. When she was a teenager, she appeared in Bruce Springsteen’s video for “Dancing in the Dark.” Receiving tons of airplay on MTV, the video introduced audiences to the young Cox as she was pulled up on stage to dance with Springsteen. That same year, she was cast in her first television role.
What stars would you add to this list? How do you make your own luck?