Many of the celebs who now cruise around in a luxurious ride and park it in the garage of a multi-million dollar home once just had the car — and a much less expensive one at that.
Comedian Steve Harvey is the latest celeb to reveal that he once called his set of wheels home. The "Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man" author revealed to People that as a struggling comedian in the late '80s, he was without a permanent roof over his head and slept in his 1976 Ford Tempo for about three years. He was sending most of his money to his ex-wife and and their children. "One or two gigs fell through, and suddenly I was homeless," Harvey said, adding that he used an ice chest as a makeshift refrigerator and used hotel bathrooms or gas stations to clean up. Today, Harvey, who now hosts his own talk show as well as the "Family Feud," has multiple homes.
Of course, Harvey's not the only celeb who once called his vehicle home. Check out some others:
Kelly Clarkson: After her high school graduation in 2000, the Texas girl packed up and moved west to pass out her demo tape in L.A. She worked at low-paying jobs until her apartment caught fire, and briefly called her car home. It was only when she moved back to Texas, defeated, that she heard about auditions for a new reality show called "American Idol."
Kelly Clarkson and Jim Carrey (Getty Images/WireImage)
Jim Carrey: The goofy actor got serious on "Inside the Actor's Studio" when he revealed in 2011 that his family really struggled financially. "My father was a musician who got a 'regular job' to support his children," he said. "When he lost his job that's when everything fell apart. We went from 'lower middle class' to 'poor.' We were living out of a van. I quit school at age 15 to begin working to help support my family as a janitor."
David Letterman: No wonder the late-night TV host collects cars by the dozen now that he's a success. He temporarily lived in one when he first moved from Indiana, where he was a weatherman and a radio talk show host, to L.A. to become a comedy writer.
Jewel: Before her breakthrough album "Pieces of You" became a big hit, the songstress traveled around the country strumming her guitar for small audiences in a van, which doubled as the place where she slept at night.
Dr. Phil: The friend of Oprah once encouraged a homeless family on his show by talking about his own family's hardships. "My dad and I had to split up from the rest of our family because we couldn't afford for everybody to stay together," the 63-year-old revealed. "We spent a number of nights in our car, and then we found a room at the YMCA for $5 a week, and he and I lived there until we got an apartment that was close enough to school for me to walk. We got that in September, and we didn't have any electricity until December."
William Shatner: The "Star Trek" star revealed to Details magazine in 2007 just how desperate he was after the show went off the air. When asked if it was true he had lived in his car, Shatner answered, "A pickup truck, actually. It was the early 1970s and I was recently divorced. I had three kids and was totally broke. I managed to find work back east on the straw-hat circuit — summer stock — but couldn't afford hotels, so I lived out of the back of my truck, under a hard shell. It had a little stove, a toilet, and I'd drive from theater to theater. The only comfort came from my dog, who sat in the passenger seat and gave me perspective on everything."
Sam Worthington: He's one of the stars of the highest-grossing film of all time, "Avatar," but the actor was actually scraping by when he auditioned for the blockbuster film. Around his 30th birthday in 2006, the native Australian sold all his possessions and drove his car (which became his home for a while) to Sydney to take the first step in a grueling audition process that really paid off.
Hilary Swank: Long before she racked up two Oscars, the 39-year-old was just a 15-year-old girl whose mom moved her from her Bellingham, Washington, home to L.A. to chase her dream. The two actually lived out of their car for about eight weeks while Swank's mom saved money until they could afford to rent an apartment. And the rest is history!
Drew Carey (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
Drew Carey: In 1991, "The Price Is Right" host moved to Hollywood for the second time to become a comedian, after 15 months of living in his car, according to the Plain Dealer newspaper. (He ran out of money the first time and returned to his hometown.) Just 10 months later, he made his first appearance on "The Johnny Carson Show," and things really took off.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Steve Harvey