Top 10 Tragic Celebrity Stories

Top 10 Tragic Celebrity Stories
Script written by Nick Spake

Being famous isn't always what it's cracked up to be. Troubled celebrities like Lindsay Lohan, Jennifer Hudson and Whitney Houston have lived tragic lives, despite incredible fame and fortune. WatchMojo is counting down 10 celebrities with sad life stories.

Special thanks to our users sponge_bob and Tarit Rai for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at http://WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top%2010%20Tragic%20Celebrity%20Stories

Script written by Nick Spake

Top 10 Tragic Celebrity Stories

Being famous isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. Welcome to and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Tragic Celebrity Stories.

For this list, we’re taking a look at celebrities who have lived tragic lives wrought with numerous problems. We’ve excluded celebrities who primarily had tragic childhoods, as we’ve already created a list for them.

#10: Corey Feldman

In the ‘80s, this child star was a household name, thanks to his roles in “The Goonies” and “Gremlins.” As the years went by, though, Feldman became better known for his drug habits, while his acting career took a nosedive. Corey Haim, Feldman’s close friend and frequent co-star, endured a similar fall from grace, eventually dying from pneumonia in 2010 at the age of 38. One year later, Feldman revealed that both he and Haim had been sexually abused as children. Feldman referred to the man who molested him as “Ron,” who also played a hand in his drug addiction. Following the sexual assault allegations against Harvey Weinstein in 2017, Feldman set out to self-finance a film exposing Hollywood pedophiles.

#9: Lindsay Lohan

Lohan won audiences over at age 11 with her dual role in “The Parent Trap.” She continued to show promise as a teenager, starring in hits like “Freaky Friday” and “Mean Girls.” Ever since receiving a DUI in 2007, however, it’s all been downhill for this actress. Over the years, Lohan would become synonymous with rehab as she struggled with drugs and alcohol. In addition to her various legal issues and substance abuse, Lohan has also been widely criticized for her poor film choices and the lackluster quality of her performances. Defending controversial figures like Harvey Weinstein and Donald Trump on social media hasn’t helped to redeem Lohan in the public eye either.

#8: Marlon Brando

This acclaimed actor played a variety of iconic characters throughout his illustrious career, including Mark Antony in “Julius Caesar.” Despite finding incredible success on the silver screen, Brando’s life off-screen was practically a Shakespearean tragedy. In 1990, Brando’s son, Christian, was charged with murdering Dag Drollet, the boyfriend of his pregnant half-sister, Cheyenne. Pleading guilty to manslaughter, Christian went to prison for five years. Throughout her sibling’s trial, Cheyenne attempted suicide on two occasions. Suffering from mental health problems, she lost custody of her son and ultimately hung herself in 1995. Much like Don Vito Corleone, Marlon found himself at the head of a family riddled with death, infamy, and unspeakable turmoil.

#7: Jennifer Hudson

For several years, Jennifer Hudson appeared to be on top of the world. She was a finalist on “American Idol,” won an Oscar for her performance in “Dreamgirls,” and released a debut album that went certified gold. Then, disaster struck Hudson’s family in 2008. At her elder sister’s home in Chicago, Hudson’s mother and brother were shot to death, and her 7-year-old missing nephew was found dead three days later with multiple gunshot wounds. Hudson’s brother-in-law was convicted for their heinous crimes, receiving three life sentences. Hudson walked away from the spotlight for a while in the wake of this tragedy, but came back with new projects; she is currently a coach on “The Voice”.

#6: Gary Coleman

As a child, Coleman was diagnosed with a chronic kidney disease known as focal segmental glomerulosclerosis, requiring him to take medications that contributed to his stunted growth. He additionally went through multiple unsuccessful kidney transplants and dialysis. Never growing taller than 4 feet 8 inches, Coleman retained a youthful appearance as Arnold Jackson on “Diff'rent Strokes.” Despite making $100,000 per episode at one point, he lost much of that fortune at the hands of his adoptive parents and advisors. Although Coleman sued them for misappropriation, he still suffered from financial and legal troubles, filing for bankruptcy in 1999. Following a failed marriage, a couple suicide attempts, and ceaseless illness, Coleman died at age 42 from an epidural hematoma.

#5: Whitney Houston

This record-breaking, award-winning singer had a great career in music, movies, and modeling. Sadly, Houston’s professional success was only matched by the misfortune that plagued her life. After years of maintaining a clean image, Houston and her husband, Bobby Brown, were found with marijuana at an airport in 2000. This only fueled rumors of Houston’s drug abuse. Not too long after divorcing Brown, Houston confessed in an interview with Oprah Winfrey that her marriage did involve serious drug use, like lacing marijuana with cocaine. Then, in 2012, Houston accidentally drowned in a bathtub at age 48, a result of both her cocaine use and heart disease.

#4: Anna Nicole Smith

Born Vickie Lynn Hogan, Anna Nicole Smith dropped out of high school when she was only 14, and eventually rose to fame and was featured on the cover of Playboy. Not too long after her modeling career took off, Smith divorced her first husband, and married aging businessman J. Howard Marshall. When Marshall died at age 90 just over a year later, the widowed Smith found herself in the midst of a lengthy court battle over his estate. In addition to her inheritance issues, Smith lost her 20-year-old son, Daniel, to a methadone overdose in 2006. Smith also died from a drug overdose less than a year later at age 39, leaving behind her newborn daughter, Dannielynn Birkhead.

#3: John F. Kennedy, Jr.

It’s been speculated that there might be a Kennedy curse, considering the unbelievable bad luck that’s hounded this political family. John F. Kennedy Jr. is perhaps the most tragic case of all. A mere three days before his third birthday, his father was shot in one of history’s most infamous presidential assassinations. Heartbreak continued to follow JFK Jr., as his uncle was assassinated in 1968, his cousin died from a cocaine overdose in 1984, and his other cousin died during a skiing accident in 1997. Death loomed over this family like a shadow and it inevitably caught up to JFK Jr., who died, at age 38, when he crashed the plane he was piloting into the Atlantic Ocean.

#2: Judy Garland

With as smile that could light up a room, Judy Garland seemed like the epitome of everything wholesome. Behind the Emerald Curtain, however, was a deeply troubled human being crying out for help. During her early days at MGM, many executives deemed her unattractive and the studio forced her to diet. This not only took a toll on Garland physically, but mentally as well. Although she reigned as one of Hollywood’s most recognizable stars well into her adult years, Garland had a laundry list of money problems, including owing heavy amounts of back taxes. She was consumed by alcoholism and drug addiction, leading to a barbiturate overdose that claimed her life, in 1969, at age 47.

#1: Marilyn Monroe

Like Judy Garland, Marilyn Monroe was a film legend who hid ungovernable pain underneath glitz, glamor, and a lovable screen persona. Born Norma Jeane Mortenson, Monroe moved between various foster homes and an orphanage throughout her youth. Marrying her first husband at age 16, Monroe went on to find enormous success in acting, singing, and modeling. Although she was widely adored, Monroe suffered from great depression brought on by her failed marriages, multiple miscarriages, relentless press coverage, and personal demons. Turning to drugs and alcohol, she died from a barbiturate overdose at age 36. While it’s still debated whether or not Monroe committed suicide, there’s no denying that her life was littered with tragedy.