10+ Celebrities Who Quit Acting For A Normal Job

It's easy to assume that becoming an actor, especially one with some level of fame, is an amazing career to aspire to. However, not all actors find the work glamorous or a dream come true.

Sometimes, actors get some fame and success but decide for various reasons that they want a more normal life.

Here are 10+ celebrities who quit acting for a normal job.

Amanda Bynes

While there was a time when Amanda Bynes seemed like she would be another child actress to have a really difficult life, she was able to get her life on a better track and start a new career.

She attended the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising and is now focused on a career in fashion out of the public eye.

Shirley Temple

Shirley Temple might be one of the most famous child actors of all time, and she'll always be known for classic roles in movies like Curly Top.

But, in the '60s, she went away from acting and instead started working as a United Nations delegate.

While her life probably was never normal, she did step away from the limelight.

Kevin Jonas

The Jonas Brothers are known for their singing careers and some dabbling in acting, but Kevin Jonas didn't continue on with the industry like his two brothers.

Instead, he became an entrepreneur and owns a construction company. But the money from his previous career surely helped.

He's also a husband and father.

Mara Wilson

People who grew up in the '90s definitely know Wilson from her role as Matilda in the Roald Dahl classic.

However, after her successful career as a child actress, she retired in her young teens. Now, she is a writer and has quite the Twitter following, too

Nikki Blonsky

Blonsky had her break-out role in the 2007 film interpretation of Hairspray, alongside Zac Efron and John Travolta.

However, she then focused on getting her cosmetology license and becoming a hairdresser. Although she says this was meant to be more of a way to support herself while still pursuing acting.

Jonathan Taylor Thomas

This actor was a total '90s heartthrob and starred in many movies as well as the TV show, Home Improvement.

But now, for the most part, he has quit acting. He went on to study at Harvard, Columbia, and St. Andrew's University.

Frankie Muniz


While fans still know Muniz from Malcolm in the Middle, he pretty much quit acting to start racing cars.

While this isn't exactly a normal job, it's very different from acting. He's driven cars in the Daytona 500, and he has become an actual professional racer.

Peter Ostrum

This is another actor whose name you probably haven't heard of, but this is because he quit acting so early. However, his role as Charlie in Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory is widely known.

After starring in the film, he became a veterinarian.

Geena Davis


Geena Davis didn't completely leave Hollywood, but she did step away from her successful acting career to focus on a different part of the industry.

She created the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media which is focused on improving how women are represented in film and television.

Ariana Richards

You might not recognize this actress' name, but you do know the role she played as Lex in Jurassic Park.

However, her acting career pretty much stopped there. She is a professional artist now who has even won national awards for her paintings.

Jonathan Bennett

Bennett is best known for playing Aaron Samuels in Mean Girls, and while he hasn't entirely left Hollywood, he really pivoted to something different.

He is the host of shows such as Cake Wars, and he also recently got engaged to his boyfriend.

Dylan Sprouse

While Cole Sprouse, Dylan's twin brother, is still acting and having a lot of success on Riverdale, Dylan went in a different direction.

He lives in Brooklyn and operates a mead brewery. He also attended New York University where he got a video game design degree.

Michael Schoeffling

Michael Schoeffling had a promising career after he played the love interest in films like Sixteen Candles. However, he decided not to pursue acting.

Instead, he quit to become a carpenter and even started running a woodworking shop. Quite the change!

Freddie Prinze Jr.

Freddie Prinze Jr. was a big star in the '90s and early 2000s, but he and his wife, Sarah Michelle Gellar, aren't really in the spotlight more.

He ended up leaving acting for the most part and now writes cookbooks and is a family man.

Cameron Diaz

Diaz was a huge star in the '90s and the '00s, but she went into an acting retirement in 2014.

With such a long career, she clearly has the money and ability now to focus on whatever she wants. Now, she writes self-help books.

Kal Penn

Kal Penn went from eating burgers at White Castle to working for Barack Obama in the White House!

He assisted on the Obama campaign and then segued into a permanent staff position working under the Obama administration.

Danny Lloyd

Danny Lloyd's innocent and terrifying glare will be forever engrained into the hearts and minds of horror movie fanatics.

In spite of The Shining's success, Danny never wanted to pursue acting. Instead, he works as a professor of biology.

Mike Vitar

Mike Vitar played Benny "The Jet" Rodriguez in the Disney cult classic, The Sandlot.

He left the glitz and glam of the Hollywood hills to become a firefighter. No word on whether or not he can still bust the guts out of a baseball.

Karyn Parsons


Karyn had a promising career ahead of her. She became wildly popular playing Hilary Banks on The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, and even starred in the hilarious military comedy, Major Payne, alongside Damon Wayans.

These days, Karyn is focused on her non-profit organization, Sweet Blackberry.

Angus T. Jones


Angus recorded a video bashing Two and a Half Men and openly encouraged TV audiences to stop watching the show. He was fired shortly thereafter.

Since then, Angus has completed his post-secondary studies and is now the president of Entertainment for the events company, Tonite.

Gene Hackman

Gene Hackman was a brilliant actor who decided to walk away while he was still at the top of his game.

Since retiring from acting, Gene has become a published novelist. So far, he has more than half-a-dozen books under his belt.

Phoebe Cates

Phoebe is easily one of the most iconic sex symbols of the 1980s. Her pool scene in Fast Times at Ridgemont High is still to this day one of the steamiest you're likely to find on film.

She left acting to focus on raising her family.

Taran Noah Smith


Sadly, nearly all of Taran's salary from his time spent on Home Improvement was squandered by his parents.

Years later, he and his wife were caught illegally running a vegan catering company out of their home. The business has since been shut down and their house foreclosed on.

Leanna Creel


Do you remember Tori from Saved by the Bell? I don't either, but she was a student at Bayside, albeit for only a short period of time.

Leanna followed her passion to the other side of the camera. She founded her own company called Creel Productions.

Hayden Christensen

Hayden walked away from acting because he said he didn't want to ride the wave of Anakin Skywalker for his entire career.

Ironically, he announced just last month that he'll be coming out of retirement to once again play Darth Vader.

Jeff Cohen

"Do the Truffle Shuffle!" I'm sorry, I just had to. Jeff could have had a promising acting career, but he was never in love with the art form.

He opted instead to become a lawyer, co-founding his own firm called Cohen Gardner Law.

Kirk Cameron

Kirk Cameron is someone who takes his faith incredibly seriously. He left Hollywood in his rearview mirror and went on to become a pastor.

Recently, Kirk stirred up controversy when he began promoting an anti-mask protest over the Christmas holiday.

Charlie Korsmo

I don't know about you, but I used to love Hook as a kid. Charlie played Peter Pan's sarcastic son, Jack Banning.

Shortly thereafter, he quit acting to attend high school. He made a brief return but then quit once again to attend university at MIT.

Omri Katz

Famous last words, Max. Famous last words indeed...

Fun fact: Omri actually beat out Leonardo DiCaprio for the lead role in Hocus Pocus. Nowadays, he's living in LA and working as a hairstylist.

Could we see him return in the recently announced Hocus Pocus 2? Only time will tell!

Rick Moranis

Rick Moranis is one of the most popular comedians to ever live. He was a breakout star on SCTV and starred in wildly popular blockbuster hits like Ghostbusters, and Honey, I Shrunk the Kids.

He's made a few odd cameos in the past 20 years, devoting his time these days to writing op-eds for The New York Times.

Shaquille O'Neal

Shaq is a man of many talents. After retiring from basketball, Shaq worked to obtain his Ph.D. in Education!

He's also worked as a police officer in a number of different cities and states. Can you imagine if you were pulled over by Shaq?!