steve carrell
“Steve Carell” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by Eva Rinaldi Celebrity and Live Music Photographer

You’d think that commanding millions of dollars a movie would be enough for most stars, along with all the fame and adulation that this brings. But plenty of them obviously also live on the principle that you’re only as good as your last performance so they’re hedging their bets by having a sideline going on.

For some, this means keeping a close eye on how the stock market doing. For others, it means taking on entrepreneurial ventures such as opening a restaurant or bar. But for all of them it means that when the offers finally stop coming in, they’ve got something to fall back on.

William Shatner

The original captain of the USS Starship Enterprise certainly chose to boldly go into stocks and shares when he agreed to take stock options as part payment for advertising the discount online travel site Priceline. He obviously also kept a very close eye on the stock futures index, picking up useful information about the best time to sell as he’s alleged to have made hundreds of millions of dollars in the deal.

Ashton Kutcher

Kutcher’s a firm believer in the philosophy that money makes money so he’s set up his own investment company called A-Grade Investments. He seems to have a canny ability to back winners, as the companies he’s helped on their way include Airbnb, Foursquare and Skype. He’s also been instrumental in helping the super successful fab.com to set up its online shop.

Robert De Niro

robert deniro
“Robert De Niro 2011 Shankbone” (CC BY 2.0) by david_shankbone

 

The star of more films that anyone could ever possibly remember may have arguably loosened up his quality filter in the last few years to appear in movies that could most politely be described as forgettable. But he’s been sharp enough in his business interests, especially around the Tribeca area of New York. Not only does he co-own the exclusive Tribeca Grill, the legendary Greenwich Hotel is his too.

Kevin Costner

Costner has helped to turn the box office disaster of Waterworld, which he now denies was a flop, into a multi-million dollar sea-cleaning system, Ocean Therapy Solutions. It’s the company that’s usually called in to clean up major oil spills after events like the Deepwater Horizon disaster – and which has more than reimbursed him for the company’s $24 million purchase price.

Mark Wahlberg

What else could the singer turned actor be involved in apart from a fast food joint called Wahburgers? His two brothers Donnie and Paul are responsible for the day-to-day running of the business and it has also helped to generate another useful revenue stream thanks to the reality show of the same name.

Clint Eastwood

Veteran actor/director and one-time mayor of Carmel owns his own exclusive golf club and hotel in California. The hotel is super luxurious and exclusive and the whole resort is run on environmentally sustainable lines, cutting down on overheads while saving the planet at the same time.

Of course, for every star whose business has thrived, there are countless others who have bombed and who have seen fortunes disappear in a puff of smoke. But that’s a subject for another story…