Plan B

Angelina Jolie, Lady Gaga, Tom Cruise & more stars if they weren’t famous (Photos)

Angelina Jolie let the world know on Sunday’s 60 Minutes that if she wasn’t an actress, she’d be a funeral director. From Britney Spears’s alternate life as a teacher to Ryan Reynolds’ would-be future as a Canadian Mountie, see where other stars would be without show business.

Angelina Jolie let the world know on Sunday’s 60 Minutes that if she wasn’t an actress, she’d be a funeral director. From Britney Spears’s alternate life as a teacher to Ryan Reynolds’ would-be future as a Canadian Mountie, see where other stars would be without show business.

Evan Agostini / AP Photo; Getty Images

Angelina Jolie

Although she’s no longer making out with her brother, playing with knives, or wearing vials of blood around her neck, Angelina Jolie admitted to Bob Simon on 60 Minutes that she’s “still a bad girl.” Not surprisingly, she also revealed to Simon that without showbiz, her career of choice would have been something a bit darker: a funeral director. “It sounds like this very strange, eccentric, dark thing to do but in fact I lost my grandfather and was very upset with his funeral,” she said. “How somebody passes and how family deals with this passing and what death is should be addressed in a different way. If this whole acting thing didn't work out, that was going to be my path.” For now though, she’s sticking to directing films, not funerals. Her directorial debut, In the Land of Blood and Honey, hits theaters in December.

Justin Bieber

With his changing hairstyles and devotion to girlfriend Selena Gomez, Justin Bieber may seem like just another teenager—with an estimated $85 million net worth, that is. But without the career that brought us “Baby” and “Somebody to Love,” the Biebs may have had to earn his living the way many other kids his age do: working at McDonald’s. Bieber admitted in an interview with the Associated Press last year that, if not for his career as a singer, he would “probably work at McDonald’s or something.”  Given Bieber’s propensity for making loud whooping noises around cooks however, it’s probably best that he sticks to singing.

Matt Sayles / AP Photo; Rolf Hicker / Getty Images

Ryan Reynolds

Ryan Reynolds played a superhero who saved the planet in Green Lantern, but even without his job as an actor, the Vancouver native would have found a way to save the day. In an interview with Australian celebrity magazine NW, Reynolds revealed where he’d be if acting hadn’t worked out: he would have followed in his father’s footsteps and become a Mountie. “I probably would have been one too, if it weren’t for this job,” Reynolds said. “Being a Mountie is actually a dirtier, rougher, and a much more difficult job than you’d think.”

Carolyn Kaster / AP Photo; Monalyn Gracia / Corbis

Jennifer Aniston

When asked what alternate life paths she might have taken if Friends hadn’t made her a star, Jennifer Aniston has offered two different answers over the past year. In February, Aniston told Allure that, in another universe, she might have made a living redecorating people’s homes. “If I weren’t an actor, I’d be, maybe, an interior designer,” she said. “I love seeing a house and thinking about how it should be redone or restored. I spent a lot of time doing my current house, and it’s beautiful.” In July, however, Aniston apparently changed her mind and decided that party planning may have been her true calling. “I should have been a party planner,” she told Marie Claire. “I'm a good mixologist in terms of personality types. I do a tree-trimming party every year. Fifteen years I've been doing this. At my tree-trimming party we always do chili: turkey, regular beef, and vegetarian. Everybody is satisfied.”

Joel Ryan / AP Photo; Corbis

Lady Gaga

As far as eccentric musicians go, Lady Gaga lands near the top of the list. Unfortunately, that means that in a hypothetical world where she isn’t famous, the pop songstress would have a pretty hard time fitting in—and she knows it, too. Gaga told Fox News in 2009 that if she wasn’t an international singing sensation, she would “die.” “I was told for a very long time that I was not pretty enough, too strange, not edgy enough,” she said. “But I’ve always been famous, it is just that nobody knew…There are times when it can be a lot to deal with, but always when I get up in the morning I try to find that very joyful place that reminds me that I would die if someone took it all away. If someone did that, I wouldn’t be a person anymore.”

Jonathan Short / AP Photo; John Smith / Corbis

Kristen Stewart

Before Kristen Stewart ever gave birth to vampire spawn onscreen, she co-starred with Meg Ryan and Adam Brody in 2007's The Land of Women. In an interview with Teen Ink shortly before the movie’s release, a 16-year-old Stewart imagined a land where she wasn’t an actress. “I would want to write screenplays,” she told the magazine. “But, if I had to have a practical job, if acting fell through, I couldn’t imagine working anywhere but a movie set. I would want to work in props or the art department.”

MJ Kim / AP Photo; Ken Whitmore / Getty Images

Matthew McConaughey

As it turns out, actor Matthew McConaughey brought more to his role in The Lincoln Lawyer than just a perfect tan and shiny hair—he brought real law experience. Before he ever set out to become an actor, McConaughey was on the track to law school. “When I was going to college, that’s what I thought I was going to do, be a criminal-defense lawyer,” he said during a behind-the-scenes clip on The Lincoln Lawyer’s DVD extras. “Luckily, I changed my career path. I prefer this now. I can go and be a lawyer for three or four months then quit.” Real lawyers around the world are probably a tad jealous.

Chris Pizzello / AP Photo; Corbis

Tom Cruise

Tom Cruise, one of Hollywood’s most outspoken Scientologists, has come a long way from the the year he spent at a Franciscan seminary in Cincinnati. According to, the Mission: Impossible star was 14 when he enrolled and “took a vow of celibacy” while considering a life of priesthood. The Franciscan Alumni Association proudly counts Cruise among its ranks, even providing word from “a reliable source” that “Cruise got a ‘swirly’ while at the sem.” Cruise’s future as a man of the cloth was not meant to be, however. The priest-to-be allegedly suffered a knee injury while playing sports and turned his attention to the theater, where all priestly aspirations were soon forgotten in favor of show business.

AP Photo; Alex Mares-Manton / Corbis

Britney Spears

In the music video for “…Baby One More Time,” Britney Spears donned a skimpy schoolgirl outfit and pranced around the halls of a high school. But if the music video had never happened, Britney would have taken on a different role in the school system: she would have been a teacher. When asked what would be different about the pop princess’s life had she never released that single, Spears replied, “Career wise, I’d probably be a teacher. I love kids and even in what I do now one of my favorite parts of my day is getting to meet my fans before the show. Especially the little ones. They are always so cute.” Spears added that “reading and history” would have been her teaching subjects of choice. At least she left geography out, since she has famously slipped up in that area.

Jeff Christensen / AP Photo; Bill Stormont / Corbis

Steve Buscemi

Steve Buscemi has played everything from a dim-witted sidekick in The Big Lebowski to a powerful, corrupt politician in HBO’s Boardwalk Empire. But one of the roles closest to his heart is the one he held from 1980 to 1985, when he was a New York City firefighter. The Brooklyn native has acknowledged that if not for acting, he would have likely stuck with his life at Engine Company 55. “I’d probably still be on the fire department,” Buscemi told “I would have had 30 years on, so I no doubt would have continued doing that.” Buscemi heroically reprised his firefighting role during the hours after the 9/11 attacks, when he rejoined his old unit and helped locate and save victims trapped under the wreckage at the disaster site. “He put in 60 hours on top of the pile,” retired NYFD battalion chief Richard Ardisson, who was with Buscemi at the site, told People. “Not delivering coffee or giving moral support. He was exhausted and covered in soot.”

Alexandre Meneghini / AP Photo; Patrick Strattner / Corbis

Anthony Hopkins

Anthony Hopkins’s Hannibal Lecter is one of the most terrifying villains to ever appear on the silver screen, making the prospect of Hopkins as a real-life criminal all the more frightening. But the actor has admitted that, without acting, he’d probably resort to a life of crime—either that, or “seafaring.” “I can’t do anything but act,” Hopkins has said. “I stumbled into the profession 55 years ago. I’m careless. I go astray. Misplace things. As an impractical kid, I was hopeless. I’d do odd jobs. If I weren’t an actor, I’d be a burglar or a seafarer.”