20 Celebs Who Got A Little Weird With Their First Big Payday

Ashley Hunte
A hand holding several USD $100 bills.
Unsplash | 金 运

When you think of pretty much any famous person, you think about their wealth. Movie stars, musical artists, and professional athletes tend to make a lot more than the average person, after all.

Of course, celebs (who don't already have famous family) don't usually start out with the lifestyle of the rich and famous. These celebrities shared the things they purchased with their first big checks.

Taylor Swift bought a pretty special car.

The Grammy-winner hasn't always been the ultra popular celeb we've come to know and love. Swift spent her first big paycheck on the exact car Regina George drives in Mean Girls (as in, the one used in the movie), as a way to get back at the bullies in her life.

Johnny Depp spent his check on a ranch for his late mother.

Depp initially purchased the horse farm in 1995, but sold it in 2001 before buying it back in 2005. His mother lived in it until her 2016 death, and it's since been sold once more.

Donald Glover fulfilled a childhood fantasy.

Glover opened up about how his early paychecks were spent on Fruit Gushers, something he wasn't allowed to have growing up. I'm not gonna lie, I probably would've done the same thing if I were him.

Shaq spent his first million dollar check in a day.

Shaquille O'Neal may be worth hundreds of millions today, but when he signed his first million dollar contract, he spent it all on cars and jewelry. Luckily for him, spending a million bucks nowadays is probably a drop in the bucket.

Dave Grohl spent his early Nirvana money on a beach house and bbq.

Grohl allegedly spent a lot of money on pulled pork in his 20s. He may not consume quite as much smoked meat now as he did then, but he still has a passion for good barbecue.

Kerry Washington kept the bulk of her per diem under her mattress.

When she began receiving a per diem for Save the Last Dance, Washington decided to save as much of it as possible, and ended up using the cash to buy a laptop.

Nate Burleson saved money by buying fake jewelry.

The retired NFL star did his best to be frugal early on in his career, even going as far as to buy fake jewelry. "In my mind, I thought no one is going to question if they were real because I was an NFL player," he said.

Nicole Kidman bought a new washing machine.

Being a good daughter, Kidman bought her parents a new washing machine. But don't worry, the actress made sure to treat herself with some cool new boots, too. Not bad for a first check!

Ariel Winter bought a lot of shoes.

When asked how she spent her first big check, Ariel Winter said, "I bought some serious shoes. I bought a lot of shoes. I love shoes." To be honest, it's hard to argue with that.

Rami Malek bought himself an espresso machine.

Rami Malek shrugging while on the set of The Late Show With Stephen Colbert.
Giphy | The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

Not necessarily the first thing you'd think of when looking to spend a sudden cash windfall, but definitely not a bad choice, either. After all, those things can be pretty expensive.

Serena Williams actually didn't spend it at all.

Rather than going all out and making a big purchase, Williams drove her first million dollar check to the bank and deposited it all. Talk about having some excellent willpower.

Lil Wayne tried giving his first check to his mom.

Lil Wayne making it rain
Giphy |

Fourteen at the time, Lil Wayne wanted his first big check of $6,500 to go to his mom. But she refused to take it, so he bought himself a Nissan Pathfinder. And yeah, he wasn't even old enough to drive it.

Madelaine Petsch bought herself a rose gold Cartier ring.

After wrapping her first season of Riverdale, Petsch said she bought a Cartier ring: "I now buy myself one at the beginning of every season to have something that I can remember."

Caleb McLaughlin splurged on a pair of expensive shoes.

The Stranger Things star revealed that, while he doesn't tend to spend a lot of money, there was a pair of Jordan Wings that he just couldn't pass up on. Pretty good choice.

Brad Pitt bought furniture.

Brad Pitt sitting and smiling during an interview.
Giphy | PBS SoCal

Okay, but it was pretty swanky furniture, to be fair. He spent his first check on a period Craftsman chair and a Frank Lloyd Wright wannabe lamp. His second paycheck, on the other hand, went toward a new stereo.

Cindy Crawford bought wallpaper.

In a tweet, the model recalls spending her first paycheck on wallpaper. "Says a lot doesn't it?" she wrote.

I think between her, Brad Pitt, and Nicole Kidman, they'd almost have enough to furnish a small apartment.

Lil Nas X took his whole family bowling.

The "Old Town Road" artist said, "What did I do with my first major paycheck? I think I took my family bowling. Like, everybody. It was a lot of us, not just my immediate family. But yeah."

Rupert Grint bought an ice cream truck.

One of the stars of the Harry Potter series, Grint always wanted to be an ice cream man, and bought himself a truck using his HP money. He keeps it stocked, and since he doesn't have a license, he just gives the ice cream away for free.

Jennifer Lopez got a new Mercedes (but lost a boyfriend).

She opened up about how when she got her first big check, saying, "I bought a car — a Mercedes. And it was a huge deal, though I was signing the lease to the car and breaking up with my boyfriend the same week. We were in the dealership and I was crying."

Wiz Khalifa's first check went toward a black and yellow Dodge Challenger.

The car was a tribute to his hometown of Pittsburgh, and appeared in the music video for "Black and Yellow," a song that had Millennials in a chokehold a decade ago.