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VOICE OVER: Ryan Wild WRITTEN BY: Jesse Singer
These celebs weren't always famous! For this list, we'll be looking at interviews done by big time actors, musicians, and famous folks before they were household names. Our countdown includes Drake, George Clooney, Brad Pitt, and more!

#10: George Clooney

In 2018, George Clooney received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Film Institute. However, back in 1985, he was mostly known as George Burnett on “The Facts of Life” and more famous for being Rosemary Clooney’s nephew than for his own work. It was this cute, mulletted Clooney who appeared on “The Merv Griffin Show” to chat with Merv and charm the audience with his infectious smile and brand new shirt. In the interview, Clooney talks about coming out to LA from Kentucky and discovering the phony side of the business, including meeting lots of fake “producers”. He did meet some real producers though, although at that point he was still 9 years away from his big break on “ER”.

#9: Linkin Park

In October 2000, Linkin Park released their debut album, “Hybrid Theory” and went from a struggling and relatively unknown California alt rock band to one of the most popular bands in the country. Previously known as Xero and Hybrid Theory the band eventually changed their name to Linkin Park, probably around the time when they did this interview. The group had struggled to get a record deal but, as you can hear in the interview, they were persistent and didn’t give up. And given that a VH1 poll voted them the greatest artist of the 2000s, that hard work certainly paid off.

#8: Julia Roberts

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It’s hard to imagine anyone not wanting to cast Julia Roberts. But, that was the case back in 1989 when Disney and Garry Marshall were casting the role of Vivian Ward in “Pretty Woman”. At the time “Steel Magnolias” had yet to be released, so her only credit of any significance was the 1988 film “Mystic Pizza”. It was actually to promote that very movie, that Roberts found herself being interviewed by Bryant Gumbel on “The Today Show” in 1988. And, while she’s very humble in the interview, in just three years, she would be one of the biggest stars in Hollywood and on the cover of People magazine’s “Most Beautiful” 1991 issue.

#7: Drake

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Drake once told us (as he jumped out of a slow moving white Bentley convertible) that he started from the bottom, living in his mama’s house. Which is where this interview took place - back before Drake had found a record label, and when he was better known as “Degrassi: The Next Generation” actor Aubrey Graham. Yet, sitting on a couch, just feet away from his bedroom, Drake definitely wasn’t lacking in swag or confidence. Guess he knew, even then, that it was all God’s plan. The question is though… Did God have any knowledge that Drake’s mega success would provide the world with the “Hotline Bling” dance? Because, if so, we just want to say thank you!

#6: Brad Pitt

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Remember that Fox show, “Glory Days” that was canceled after only six episodes? Don’t feel bad, most people don’t. Of the people who do remember it, though, we’re pretty sure Brad Pitt is one of them, since it was a show he starred in. It was also the reason E! did their first ever interview with the uber-attractive, yet relatively unknown actor back in 1990. Pitt is charismatic, engaging and playful in the interview - all the characteristics he would bring (along with his cowboy hat and chiseled abs) to his star-making performance in “Thelma & Louise” the following year.

#5: Nirvana

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This relaxed chat with Nirvana took place in 1990, the year after the release of their first album “Bleach”. While the record was well received, it wasn’t a hit by any means. As they sat around in the interview, talking about their rock influences, little did they know that they themselves were only a year or so away from becoming one of the greatest musical influences of their generation. With the release of “Nevermind” came the smell of teen spirit and the smell of success, fame and a cemented place in the hearts of a grunge generation.

#4: Justin Bieber

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Before the days of “Sorry” and “Peaches”, Justin Bieber was a cute 15-year-old kid singing on YouTube, who was discovered and signed by R&B superstar Usher. That’s actually around the time when WatchMojo caught up with him, all the way back in 2009. Yes, it was our very own Rebecca Brayton who interviewed the Biebs over a decade ago, before he released his first album and went from getting millions of views on YouTube to selling millions of albums. Not to mention, millions of dollars worth of “Yummy” Tim Hortons’ Tim Biebs!

#3: Jeff Bezos

Jeff Bezos is the founder of one of the Big Five, or one of the most famous technology giants on the planet. Between 2017 and 2021, Bezos was the richest man in the world. (The top spot has since been nabbed by Elon Musk as of 2022). But, back in June of 1997, when this interview took place, Amazon.com was still only selling books and Bezos was just a guy with a vision of the future of online retail. This was also just one month after Amazon went public at $18 per share. We’ll give you a moment to imagine how much money you could have if you had bought a stock in the company back then.

#2: Leonardo DiCaprio

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When people talk about Leonardo DiCaprio before he was famous, they usually reference his recurring character on “Growing Pains” in the early 90s. But, for this interview from E!, we go back to even before Luke Brower, to DiCaprio’s turn as Garry Buckman in the short-lived series “Parenthood”, based on the hit 1989 film. It doesn’t get much cuter than a young Leo smiling from ear to ear as he talks about how excited he was to get the part and how much he loves the attention. About seven years later, “Titanic” would hit theaters and DiCaprio would have all the attention he could ever want - and probably a whole lot he didn’t want too!

#1: Lady Gaga

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Guess who opened for New Kids on the Block during their 2008 tour? That’s right, Lady Gaga! It was just after the release of her first album, “The Fame”, and just when she was starting to blow up as her track “Just Dance” was rising up the charts. It was also when the first question in most interviews - and we here at WatchMojo were no exception - had to do with the origin of her name. As famous as she was then, it was nothing compared to “the fame monster” she would later become. You might say that it was around this time that “a star was born”…

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