10 Celebrities Who Were Escorts Before Becoming Famous
Published in May 2021 / Updated in Aug 2021
The rise from grass to grace is something many people dream about. However, only a few manage to make this envied journey in life.
As many successful people will tell you, their rise to the top was full of hardships and hurdles. At some point in their lives, many of the icons people adore today had to settle for less than glamorous jobs by anyone’s standards.
Anyway, life has its ups and downs; and each of us has a unique path laid out in front of them. While some celebrities got off on the right foot and became famous overnight without too much struggle, others had to take a long and winding journey that later made them wild successes.
Today, we will focus on the latter. Some of these were actually making a living doing jobs most of society frowns upon, but they still managed to turn into megastars.
So, here are the 10 popular stars who were actually escorts before winning the celebrity lottery.
1. Marilyn Monroe
First of all, Marilyn Monroe’s name was Norma Jean Mortenson. She was considered the very first blonde beauty.
Today, many people remember her as a famous actor and a sex symbol, but her beginnings were a lot less glamorous and attention-worthy.
Yes, she was also a singer, and she managed to get a modeling job at only 20 from the Blue Book Modeling Agency. After working as a model, she made the easy transition to acting.
However, her modeling career was not as lucrative as her acting job. At one point, she posed for a photographer, Tom Kelly, for just $50. That was in 1949.
Later, she caught the eyes of a number of film directors and producers.
That said, she is rumored to have taken up a gig as an escort at one time and went on dates with influential men. Apparently, she would hang out with powerful men for $500 a day.
According to many biographies written about her, Marilyn Monroe would go on dates as a way to make money to cover her rent.
2. Brad Pitt
These days, everyone knows Brad Pitt is one of the biggest actors in Hollywood. He is quite the superstar.
However, at the time he was trying to get into the industry, all he had was a few bucks to his name. His greatest selling points were his looks and his acting talent.
His first role started as he was late to an interview with Thom Racina, a gay soap star. He was nothing more than an errand boy for the man, and he did other menial jobs for him in exchange for a place to sleep.
That was his humble beginning as an actor.
3. Al Pacino
Al Pacino’s acting is iconic, and there is no doubt that he is one of the best actors in the industry, thanks to movies like Scarface and The Godfather. However, his towering reputation in the film industry did not come easily.
In fact, before becoming a Hollywood legend, he was quite poor. Among the things he lacked were a house and proper meals.
At one point, he said during an interview that when he was 20, his only asset was his body.
With few options to pick from, he got into a sexual relationship with an older woman to get a place to live and food to eat. Later, after getting to the USA, he worked hard and turned into one of the best actors ever.
4. Denise Richards
Denise Richards was an escort in the ‘90s. However, she rose to fame after getting married to Charlie Sheen.
She ditched her escort job and worked on becoming a successful Hollywood star.
Before getting involved with Charlie Sheen, she worked for Heidi Fleiss. Charlie was one of her most famous customers.
Soon, she was in a relationship with him.
Since Charlie had already made some inroads in the acting industry, she leveraged his influence and started her gradual rise as an actress.
Of course, that brought to an end her role as an escort.
5. Russell Brand
Russell Brand has done plenty of things that have made him into a popular global celebrity. In addition to marrying Katy Perry, a megastar in her own right, he was also quite famous as a comedian.
However, his was not an easy climb to the top.
For one, he was abused as a child. He was also an addict, and his addiction was so bad that he had to sell himself to maintain his addiction.
Ultimately, his job as an escort helped him get the connections that allowed him to become a Hollywood star.
6. Raquel Welch
Before the fame, Raquel Welch was called Raquel Tejada. However, her fame in the ‘60s changed all that.
She was a popular escort and later, she and her children moved to Texas. Raquel became a model with Neiman Marcus in addition to working as a waitress.
In 1979, she was featured in Playboy magazine, and eventually, she made it big in Hollywood. With that, her days as an escort came to an end.
7. Tony Danza
Today, Tony Danza is popular for his starring role in the famous television show, Who’s The Boss? His journey to the top was not easy for Tony.
At first, he was a boxer, then a prostitute took an interest in him. She helped him connect with a Hollywood producer who would help him launch his career.
However, things did not go as expected. Merv Griffin had other uses for him, and this mostly included him getting almost naked for various functions and parties, among doing other strange things.
To be fair, Griffin was notable for doing such things.
Fortunately, Danza still managed to get into Hollywood. So, everything worked out for him eventually.
8. Joan Collins
Before she got her big break as a Hollywood star, Joan Collins had to jump through a lot of hurdles. At one point, she was so frustrated that she turned into an escort.
Strangely, that’s what helped her create the connections with powerful producers and directors.
She got her first film role as a result. At this time, there were also rumors floating around that she was getting paid quite well for her services by King Fahd of Saudi Arabia.
Joan is also believed to have played a major role in helping Heidi Fleiss’ business grow.
9. Sophie Anderton
Today, Sophie Anderton is mainly famous as a model and reality TV expert.
Initially, she was a drug addict and had to do some pretty drastic measures to make the money she required to fuel her addiction.
She would charge wealthy businessmen a staggering $15,000 an hour as a prostitute. Apparently, some women even charged $40,000 a night.
10. Nancy Reagan
Nancy Reagan is one of the most popular first ladies in the history of the United States. Before then, she wanted to be an actress and wanted to get into Hollywood.
However, her first shot resulted in her serving dinner and entertaining actors. She dated many actors, but she had to forget about showbusiness after marrying Ronald Reagan.
As you can see, things are not always what they seem. Some of the big stars you see and admire today started from the very bottom, taking jobs most of us would never think of doing.