There’s a saying that bad gas travels fast in a small town. But basically that just means that when you start gossiping about someone it’s going to get around. If you’re a celebrity, and you’re basically living on the world stage, then that bad gas gets right out of control. Rumors start to fly and soon enough totally fictitious stories become accepted as fact by many people. These are some of the most famous myths about celebrities that have been spread for years now.
10. J.Lo Insured Her Butt
Back before Nicki Minaj and her booty were world famous, there was another very talented singer and actor whose butt was on everyone’s mind. Jennifer Lopez, or J.Lo if you prefer, was known for her dance moves and singing for years. Then she got into acting and became a kind of entertainment powerhouse. But the entire time she never shied away from the fact that her butt got a lot of attention. There’s nothing wrong with that; she seemed proud of it and a lot of other people were happy about it, too. But how happy was she?
For years, the myth circulated that J.Lo had her backside insured for a staggering amount of money. The idea of celebrities getting certain body parts insured is nothing new. Heidi Klum had her legs insured for $2,000,000. Lloyd’s of London gave America Ferrera a $10 million insurance policy on her teeth. And the rumor was that Jennifer Lopez took out a $27 million policy on her butt.
It’s hard to imagine what that might even mean. What can happen to your butt that would pay off $27 million, anyway? Would that just apply to some kind of butt destroying accident? Or would it deal with any health problems that affect one’s behind?
We’ll probably never get the answer to those questions because, as it turns out, Lopez never got an insurance policy on her butt. On James Corden’s talk show, Cordon directly asked Lopez as if she had an insurance policy on her butt. She denied that it happened and denied that such an insurance policy could ever exist.
9. Marilyn Manson Removed a Rib
Marilyn Manson rose to shock rock prominence in the 1990s and early 2000s. He was quite the showman, and certainly not above bizarre behavior on stage and off. So when rumors started to circulate that perhaps he’d removed one of his ribs so that he could autofellate himself, some people just took it as entirely plausible.
The story was so prevalent, someone actually had to go out of their way to ask during an interview if it actually occurred. Amusingly enough, Manson didn’t actually answer the question in the interview but it’s safe to assume that it’s such a foolish notion that it never happened in real life. Just imagine trying to find a surgeon who would do that for you.
8. Mr. Rogers Was a Sniper
Few people in the history of Hollywood had the reputation for being a genuinely nice and decent person that Fred Rogers has enjoyed. Mr. Rogers on TV seemed to be the kindest, most gentle man ever. If you dig into his real life behind the camera it turns out he was absolutely that same man 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
When Mr. Rogers wasn’t concerning himself with educating children and teaching us all to be nice to one another, there was still the odd story being shared about him now and then that seemed out of character. After all, who doesn’t love a fish out of water story? When you find out somebody is presented one way but in secret is another way, it’s an interesting and fun kind of revelation many times. Perhaps that’s why people began to share the rumour that Mr. Rogers had actually been a sniper in the armed forces.
The long standing rumor about Rogers being a sniper was related to the fact he always wore those long-sleeved sweaters. According to the rumor, he wore long sleeves all the time because his arms were littered with tattoos that marked the number of kills he had gotten as a sniper. While that is entirely badass and hardcore, it’s also remarkably untrue. In fact, the man whose profile of Mr. Rogers inspired the biopic starring Tom Hanks about him confirmed that this was untrue because he once accidentally saw Rogers naked when they were swimming together. That’s relevant because it proved that Rogers had no tattoos on his body.
7. Stevie Wonder Can See
According to the Biography profile of Stevie Wonder, he’s been blind since he was an infant. Wonder had retinopathy of prematurity, a kind of vision disorder caused by irregular blood vessels in the eye linked to him being born six weeks early. He became completely blind soon after and has been without vision basically his whole life.
Despite the fact that Wonder has been blind his entire life, there are a study number of people who believe it’s a scam. And not just average everyday people, but other celebrities and singers. People like Shaquille O’Neal and Lionel Richie have added fuel to this rumor before. Much of it stems from the fact that when Wonder was performing a song on stage in 2014, he managed to catch a falling microphone stand.
6. Tupac Faked his Death
Tupac Shakur was shot four times on September 7, 1996. He died from those gunshot wounds, but his legacy has lived on as a performer and a poet. However, some people refuse to believe that was the end of it.
Since his death, a persistent rumor has gone around that the death never really happened at all. Much like Elvis Presley before him, many people believe that Shakur faked his own death and fled to someplace like New Mexico, or even Cuba. The reasoning for this is sparse at best. Some people point to the fact that he named an album Machiavelli, after the famous Italian writer who actually did fake his own death.
There’s been no substantial evidence to support the idea that Shakur is still alive, and all these years later he still hasn’t turned up again.
5. Avril Lavigne was Replaced by a Body Double
Canadian singer Avril Lavigne became famous when she was just a teenager. There’s been a longstanding rumor that during her rise to fame she made use of a body double to help her with public appearances, music videos, and that sort of thing.. That part isn’t too hard to believe. What comes next is a little more difficult to understand.
There’s been a rumor for some years now that Lavigne actually died some years ago. The body double was moved in as the new Avril Lavigne, taking over for her in every aspect of her life. Essentially, they just swapped one woman for another. As evidence, supporters of the theory point to old pictures of Lavigne and new pictures where her appearance is slightly different. The fact that she aged from being a child to a woman is not considered enough evidence that she’s the same person. Lavigne finally addressed the rumor by squarely calling it dumb.
4. Walt Disney Was Cryogenically Frozen
The idea that rich people would cryogenically freeze themselves before they died in the hopes that in the future doctors will be able to cure whatever caused them to die in the first place and bring them back has been around for some years. It’s been made fun of on shows like The Simpsons, and others as well. The poster child for this cryogenic daydream has long been Walt Disney, founder of the Disney Corporation. The rumor has been circulating for many years that Disney had himself cryogenically frozen when he died.
Walt Disney died way back in 1966 and the rumor about being frozen followed almost immediately after. We may not think of tabloid journalism being such an old thing, but a reporter had apparently written a story in early 1967, just shortly after Disney’s death, claiming that he had sneaked his way into the hospital where Disney had died and seen the former King of the Happiest Place on Earth secured in a metal cylinder.
This 1967 story spawned a series of later stories about how Disney was planning to be thawed out in the mid-’70s. Walt Disney’s own daughter claims that there was no truth to this rumor, however, and even said that she thought her father had probably never even heard of that kind of technology before.
3. Stanley Kubrick Faked the Moon Landing
Man landed on the moon back in 1969. It was one of the biggest events in television history as people all around the world tuned in to watch the historic event. And in 2020, over 50 years later, some people still don’t believe it actually happened. The persistent rumor that the moon landing was all fake, shot on a Hollywood backlot somewhere, just won’t go away.
Regardless of all the reasons and supposed evidence that people believe proves the moon landing was fake, there is one interesting aspect of this myth that relates to one of the biggest names in Hollywood at the time. Some people believe that Stanley Kubrick was the man behind the fake landing.
Kubrick, legendary director of The Shining, had made the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey the year before the moon landing. That may be the origin of the rumor that he was involved in staging it because he seemed the most technologically capable of doing such a thing.
Interestingly enough, one only needs to read the stories of how Kubrick directed anything to cast serious doubt on him directing a slapdash moon landing. Kubrick was an absolute monster behind the camera. He would have spent forever and a day doing shoots and reshoots on something like this, and it would have taken a lot of people to get it done with him.
2. Marisa Tomei’s Oscar Was a Mistake
In 1993, Marissa Tomei was a surprise Oscar winner when she took the acting award for her performance in the movie My Cousin Vinny. It was so surprising to some people that they assumed it had been a mistake by presenter Jack Palance, perhaps as a result of him reading the wrong name.
As the story goes, Palance read the name incorrectly and to avoid embarrassment the Academy just went along with it. Tomei took the award that hadn’t actually been given to her, and none of us were meant to be the wiser.
In fact, Palance read the name correctly off of the card in the envelope. Moreover, the Academy has a contingency plan in place should this ever happen for real. There are pe
.\’ople waiting in the wings offstage should the wrong winner ever be announced, so that they can head to the podium and immediately correct it. In fact, this actually happened at the 2017 Academy Awards when La La Land was announced as the Best Picture Winner. During that broadcast, someone did come out and they quickly corrected it to the real Best Picture Winner, which was Moonlight.
1. The Richard Gere Gerbil Story
You could make a good argument that no rumor is more famous and more awful than the Richard Gere gerbil story. This is like the grandfather of all unfounded celebrity rumours. To put it in the least offensive terms possible, there was once a rumor that Richard Gere had, at some point in time, inserted a small gerbil into one of his lower orifices.
The fundamentals of pulling off such a bizarre ritual aside, the story became world famous. It’s been referenced on TV shows and movies, something that must irk Richard Gere something fierce when he gets wind of it.
The rumor began to spread after the release of the movie Pretty Woman, which dates all the way back to 1990. This was pre-internet, and amazingly this rumor was circulated by a fax machine. It just showed up in offices around the country, detailing the story of the mysterious man, later identified as actor Richard Gere, who showed up at a hospital with a gerbil lodged in his backside.
The story was circulated as an actual press release from an organization like PETA, accusing gear of animal abuse. It had an official look to it, which likely contributed to its perceived authenticity and allowed the rumor to spread.
In a baffling twist, it’s been speculated that fellow thespian Sylvester Stallone is the source of this gerbil rumor. According to Stallone, the two of them were hired to star in the movie The Lords of Flatbush back in 1974. Gere was somewhat arrogant and obnoxious on set but Stallone was okay with it until lunch one day. They were both eating in the back of a car to stay warm on set, and Richard Gere had half a chicken covered in mustard in a foil wrapper. Despite being warned by Stallone to not make a mess, a bunch of greasy mustard spilled on Stallone’s leg so he popped Gere in the head and kicked him out of the car. He told the director to make a choice about which actor was going to stay in the movie in which would go, and the director fired Richard Gere.
That started a feud between the two actors, and some believe it inspired Stallone to make up the gerbil rumor. There’s no proof that he did make up the terrible rumor, but it’s perhaps a plausible explanation for who would have such a dislike for the man.