True Hollywood Stories – Famous Celebrities And The Unexpected Way They Were Discovered

Ever wonder what it took for your favorite stars to get to where they are? Aside from working hard, there are also those whose career seems to have been touched by fate—the ones who were simply in the right place, at the right time. Then there are those who found their luck a little later in life. To their credit, they already had the talent but they also needed the right opportunity for it.
If you need a little boost when it comes to chasing your own dreams, let these stories prove that one’s circumstances can change in an instant. You just have to keep going.

Ellen Pompeo

From busing tables to bartending, some of our favorite celebs were discovered working their “other” jobs whilst waiting for their big breaks. During the mid-’90s, Ellen Pompeo was working as a bartender in SoHo in New York City. During one of her shifts, a casting agent saw potential in the actress and offered her some friendly advice. She mistook it for flirting, however.
Nonetheless, that chance encounter led to her getting credit for small TV roles. Did you know she appeared in Law & Order? Her streak continued, but she didn’t get her big break until 2005 when she was cast for Grey’s Anatomy.

Rebecca Black

Not all Hollywood beginnings are rosy. Just take Rebecca Black as an example. After she recorded the song Friday and uploaded the video on YouTube, it quickly became viral—but not in the best way. She received much criticism and negativity, with some even touting it as “the worst song ever”. Fortunately, Rebecca was able to weather all of that and went on to establish quite a successful career.
Since then, she has released a few other singles and even received voice acting credit for The Legend of Kung-Fu Rabbit. Rebecca also appeared in Katy Perry’s music video for Last Friday Night.

Justin Bieber

Love or hate The Biebs, you cannot deny that his journey to stardom was a very inspiring one. It was in 2007 when videos of the young performer were posted on YouTube, which was still a new platform back then. Scooter Braun, the famed record producer, found a video of Justin and was very impressed with what he saw.
He flew to Stratford, Ontario to meet with the singer and his family. After setting up a meeting with label executives, Justin went on to record with Usher. Since then, he has become one of the most successful artists with plenty of chart-toppers to his credit.


At present, he’s a hip-hop icon and is also one of the richest men in the music industry. His influence in pop culture is overreaching and his music is often pioneering. Before achieving this degree of success, however, he was just a young man struggling to get by in New York. Jay-Z dealt with poverty and violence while living at the Marcy Projects.
In 1989, he began a collaboration with Jaz-O, and together, they released the song The Originators. Slowly but surely, the rapper made a name for himself— showing off his skills and boosting his reputation at the same time.

Jennifer Aniston

With her charming good looks and innate talent, it might surprise you to know that for a while, Jennifer Aniston was actually a struggling actress. She lived in Los Angeles at the time and had been experiencing a series of failures when it comes to her castings. This was when Jennifer chanced upon Warren Littlefield, a TV executive, at a gas station. What did she do next? She asked him for advice.
The NBC boss told her not to give up, but also helped the actress get cast in the show F.R.I.E.N.D.S. Needless to say, this is the acting credit that started everything for her.

Will Smith

Remember DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince? The duo was composed of Jeff Townes and Will Smith. They received decent success, but not quite what they were hoping for. Wanting to boost his career after one of his albums flopped, Will Smith went on the Arsenio Hall Show.
He got more than just 15 minutes of fame with that appearance. There, he met Benny Medina who was inspired for a TV show based on Will’s life. Any guesses on which successful show that was? The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air gets credit for pushing the actor into the spotlight and giving his career a boost.

Zac Efron

He made girls swoon when he appeared as basketball jock Troy Bolton in the Disney film, High School Musical. Long before this, however, he was already showing off his charms on stage. This caught the attention of his drama teacher, who then proceeded with recommending Zac to a talent agent.
Whilst he was not able to pursue a college degree, Zac did go on to establish a highly successful acting career. From dancing his way into our hearts to flexing his drama skills in Extremely Wicked, Shocking And Vile, the actor has proven that he is far from being a one-trick pony.

Katherine Heigl

Grey’s Anatomy star Katherine Heigl began her modeling career at only 9 years old. Back then, she would pose for aunt’s hair care products. Seeing the potential in Katherine, that same aunt sent out her photos to various modeling agencies. Among them, the famed Wilhelmina Modeling Agency. The actress signed with them and began working professionally.
She landed her first magazine cover for Seventeen in 1994, which gave her popularity and career a much-needed boost. By 1999, she was receiving credit for TV roles, including Roswell. However, she only got her big break when she landed the role of Dr. Izzie Stevens.

Burt Reynolds

The iconic actor had no real interest in entering the entertainment industry in the beginning. After all, he had a football scholarship and was set to play for Florida State University! With his skill, Burt Reynolds even got drafted by the Baltimore Colts. All seemed well, but he would later sustain a career-ending injury. Whilst insurance probably helped with his recovery, Burt had to start looking into other careers.
That was when he earned a scholarship to Hyde Park Playhouse in NYC. The actor took a chance and that led to various TV and film projects, with his success continuing on up until the present.

J. Cole

Today, we know Jermaine Lamarr Cole as one of this generation’s most talented rappers and songwriters. He has numerous hits to his credit and has fans worldwide. Before he managed to achieve all of that, however, the artist had to push and grind. J. Cole was willing to do whatever it takes to make it happen.
That includes standing outside of Jay-Z’s recording studio in New York City for three whole hours—in the pouring rain—just so he could personally give the producer his demo. We’re not too surprised that Jay-Z gave him a shot and signed him under Roc Nation!