When you’re famous, you’re constantly in the spotlight. Aside from building a career out of talent (some of them at least), a celebrity’s life is dipped in glitz and glamour for the whole world to see. That includes cameras flashing, fans admiring, records breaking, and revenue growing. However, when you take a closer look, there is also tabloids talking, haters hating, and projects failing. Some celebs continue to shine in their careers for many years. On the other hand, some end up giving up the fame for a more ordinary career that keeps them out of the spotlight.
These celebs have bid farewell to stardom and are now happily working regular jobs. Read on to find out if some of your former favorite stars shine in different careers too!
#1 Travis Tedford
Travis Tedford rose to fame after he portrayed the role of Spanky in the 1994 film, The Little Rascals. The spunky child actor also made waves when he appeared in a commercial for Welch’s grape juice when he was only 5 years old. In 2010, he appeared in the horror flick, The Final, and has since taken a step back from the spotlight.
This cute face is now all grown up and has found his new calling as an inbound marketing specialist in Texas.
#2 Barret Oliver
How could anyone ever forget the brilliant alliterative wonder that is Bastian Balthazar Bux? If that mouthful of a name rings a bell, that’s because it’s the name of the charming lead character in the whimsical world of The NeverEnding Story. Barret Oliver was the perfect actor to take on the role of this kind-hearted child, and even if he decided to step away from the front of the camera when he grew up, we’re glad that he found a blossoming career behind the camera instead!
The former child actor is now a talented adult who teaches photography and even penned a book that shines a light on the photo process of the 19th century, titled A History of the Woodburytype.
#3 Carrie Henn
This sweet little girl made her way into people’s hearts when she starred as Newt, the sole survivor of an alien attack in the sci-fi movie, Aliens. Acting opposite Sigourney Weaver, the dynamics were simply perfect.
Regardless of all the praise she received for her spectacular performance, Carrie Henn chose a different road that led her to becoming a teacher in Northern California.
#4 Charles Korsmo
You surely recognize this endearing little boy from popular movies like What About Bob?, Hook, and Dick Tracy. Most notably known for his portrayal of Jack Banning, Peter Pan’s Son in the movie, Hook, anyone would have assumed that he would grow up into one of the most talented actors that Hollywood has ever seen. However, he decided otherwise and attended MIT, where he graduated with a B.S. in physics. Afterwards, he went to Yale to earn his J.D.
Come 2011, former US president, Barack Obama, nominated him to the board of the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation. Today, you’ll find this academic genius teaching law at the Case Western Reserve University.
#5 Crystal McKellar
Crystal and her sister, Danica rose to stardom when they landed roles in the TV series, The Wonder Years. It has been said that both she and Danica were considered for the role of Winnie, but her sister ultimately got the role. Later on, they brought Crystal on to play the role of Becky Slater instead. Now, that’s a sibling power duo!
After shining as an actress for a while, Crystal McKellar now shines as a managing director and legal counsel.
#6 Danny Lloyd
No matter how much time has gone by or how many horror flicks have tried to scare us, nothing terrifies us more than The Shining. This horrific cinematic masterpiece was driven by all sorts of spine-chilling elements, which made us want to protect the 6-year-old protagonist portrayed by Danny Lloyd. Well, in hindsight, he scared us too at some point, TBH. Remember “redrum”? (*runs away in terror*)
While his acting prowess was already evident at a young age, this star decided to quit acting once he reached high school. His big career change led him to become a biology professor in Kentucky.
#7 Dylan Sprouse
You’re not seeing double, Dylan Sprouse and his twin brother, Cole, both starred in the Disney Channel series, The Suite Life of Zack & Cody. The brothers’ dynamic charm made the show a hit with a wide demographic. After the show concluded, the duo reprised their roles in the series sequel titled The Suite Life on Deck.
The twins took a hiatus from the entertainment industry to attend college, and while Cole may now have made a comeback into the spotlight (Riverdale), Dylan has taken on a new career as the proud owner of All-Wise Meadery in Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
#8 Isaac Lidsky
Isaac Lidsky made viewers laugh with his quirky portrayal of Weasel in the sitcom, Saved By The Bell: The New Class. His character was parallel to that of Dustin Diamond, who played the role of Screech in the original sitcom.
After leaving Hollywood, he pursued his education at Harvard and earned degrees in computer science and applied mathematics. Nowadays, he may not be supplying comedy on screen, but he’s definitely making a statement as a successful entrepreneur.
#9 Jeff Cohen
Jeff Cohen was catapulted to stardom when he took on the role of cute and clumsy Chuck in the timeless 1995 adventure film, The Goonies.
Regardless of his iconic portrayal of the lovable character, it wasn’t long before this skilled actor opted to pursue a career in law. He also ventured into cofounding the entertainment-oriented law firm, Gardner Cohen LLP.
#10 Josh Saviano
Josh Saviano’s biggest claim to fame is his role as the geeky Paul Pfeiffer in The Wonder Years. after the series came to a conclusion, he chose to pursue an education in political science at Yale.
After completing his tertiary education, the former child actor established a startup company, Act 3 Advisors.
#11 Michael Schoeffling
If you’ve seen the ’80s comedy, Sixteen Candles, you’ll recognize Michael Schoeffling who played the role of Jake Ryan, the popular jock of the film. After he shined in this classic teen flick, the actor stopped acting to take care of his 2 kids. In the ’90s, Michael Schoeffling opened his own woodworking shop in Pennsylvania. You may know of his children, Scarlet and Zane, who are currently working as models.
#12 Nikki Blonsky
Nikki Blonsky put her name on the map when she stepped into the shoes of Tracy Turnblad in the 2007 remake of Hairspray. After landing a number of small roles after the success of the retro-themed movie, the actress found her new calling as a hairdresser on Long Island.
Looks like Hairspray foreshadowed her future career!
#13 Omri Katz
Omri Katz spread his talent and charisma on the small screen when he portrayed the role of Max in Disney’s spooky classic, Hocus Pocus. Afterward, he chose to trade in the spotlight to pursue a career as a hairdresser. If he can style hair as good as he acts on camera, sign us up for a perm!
#14 Peter Ostrum
Before Freddie Highmore melted our hearts as Charlie Bucket in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory in 2005, it was Peter Ostrum who tugged at heartstrings in the 1971 classic titled, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. Afterwards, he declined to sign on for any more movie projects and left Hollywood.
A few years later, he found his love for animals, which led him to earn a degree in veterinary medicine. He now practices his profession in upstate New York.
#15 Peter Billingsley
Peter Billingsley was a popular child actor who appeared in a multitude of movies and TV shows. However, most people know him as Ralphie Parker, the energetic little boy in the 1983 Christmas tale, A Christmas Story.
Nowadays, you won’t see him in front of the camera, because he’s too busy producing and directing behind the camera! His directing and producing repertoire includes Zathura, Made, Dinner for Five, Couples Retreat, and Iron Man.
#16 Steven Anthony Lawrence
If you watched Disney’s Even Stevens in 2001 to 2003, and remember an annoying little kid named Beans, who had a serious bacon addiction, that was Steven Anthony Lawrence!
His iconic character added a bunch of comedy to the hit series, so viewers expected him to truly thrive as an actor in the future. However, he surprised fans by deciding to leave Hollywood and pursue a career as a teacher.
#17 Phoebe Cates Kline
Phoebe Cates was a teen queen who starred in popular movies like, Gremlins, Fast Times at Ridgemont High, and Girls Just Want to Have Fun.
The glitz and glamour of the celebrity life looked good on her yet she retired early from acting after she married Kevin Kline and gave birth to 2 kids. Nowadays, she has switched it up further and manages her own boutique in Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
#18 Macaulay Culkin
Macaulay Culkin is a classic household name. He was propelled to international stardom as Kevin McCallister in the Home Alone movie franchise. Afterward, he also made waves by starring in movies like, Richie Rich and My Girl.
The former child actor may have stepped out of the limelight, but he is still entertaining fans with his blog and podcast titled Bunny Ears. On a more personal note, he and Brenda Song are also busy in their new chapter as parents to their little baby boy!
#19 Cameron Diaz
Cameron Diaz was one of the biggest actresses of the ’90s and early 2000s. From being a Charlie’s Angel to starring in the 2014 film, Annie, Camron Diaz reigned for several years before she decided to retire and become a stay-at-home mom. She and her husband Benji Madden are proud parents to 2 little bundles of joy, and it looks like they’re completely happy with their job titles as mom and dad!
#20 Amanda Bynes
Amanda Bynes rose to fame for her quirky comedic timing on Nickelodeon’s All That. After gaining acclaim, she landed her very own spin-off how titled The Amanda Show. Once she graduated from Nickelodeon, she starred in a myriad of movies and TV series, including What a Girl Wants, She’s the Man, Hairspray, and Easy A.
It came as a surprise to fans when she left Hollywood behind and struggled with substance abuse. Despite this struggle, the former actress was able to adapt to normal college life and graduated from Los Angeles’ Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising in 2019.
#21 Taran Noah Smith
Taran Noah Smith starred in Home Improvement, as the youngest brother, Mark. After showcasing his acting chops on the show for 8 years, he capped off his showbiz career and launched a line of vegan cheese, which he called Playfood.
On another note, he also like lending a hand to charity, as he once spent 2 months volunteering in Texas after Hurricane Harvey struck.
#22 Mike Vitar
Mike Vitar appeared in a bunch of widely-loved ’90s films, such as D2: Mighty Ducks, D3: Mighty Ducks, and The Sandlot. His acting career may have been short, but it was impactful, nevertheless. Nowadays, he works as a real-life superhero, A.K.A. a firefighter in Los Angeles.
#23 Mara Wilson
Mara Wilson made her way into people’s hearts with her charming portrayal of Susan Walker in the 1994 reboot of Miracle on 34th Street. After starring in the magical Yuletide film, she gave a stellar performance as the title character in the film, Matilda in 1996.
Once she hit adolescence, her presence on the silver screen disappeared, because she decided to focus on writing stories. In 2016, she released a memoir titled, Where Am I Now?: True Stories of Girlhood and Accidental Fame. Moreover, she’s also a mental health advocate who is very vocal about the stigmas surrounding OCD and anxiety.