CULTURE

8 Celebrities Who Peaked Before They Were Famous

Because it turns out celebrities exist even before we hear about them.

So many celebrities seem to build their entire lives around careers in entertainment.

Good for them. They knew what they wanted to do, and they were actually lucky and talented enough to be successful. But for a lot of these people, it's hard to imagine how they would function in the world without their celebrity status. That's why people freak out when they find out that Taylor Swift can cook. She not only eats people food, she actually knows how to prepare it! Do you think she even washes her own dishes?!

But there is another class of celebrity. People who had full, interesting, and often insane lives before anyone had ever heard of them. People like...

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Renee Zellweger Is Looking A Lot More Like Bridget Jones Again These Days

Renee Zellweger has (almost) got her old face back again.

The 45-year-old turned heads when she stepped out at the Miu Miu show during Paris Fashion Week on Wednesday.

Clad in a stylish pillar box red coat, black lace shift dress, nude heels and hair swept up in a messy updo, the actress was reminiscent of the late style icon Audrey Hepburn.

But, it was Zellweger's face that drew the most attention.

As Popdust previously reported, Renee sparked plastic surgery controversy last October after showing off a remarkably different appearance which rendered her almost unrecognizable.

Zellweger's eyebrows appeared markedly more raised and her eyes much wider—prompting speculation that she has undergone a brow lift or at the very least a very large dose of Botox and a more than liberal amount of filler.

Zellweger sparked plastic surgery speculation last October (left) —five months later she was looking more like her old self (right)

However, the Bridget Jones Diary star vowed she hadn't gone under the knife—or syringe—insisting in a statement to People magazine that her new face was down to “healthy living" and being in a happier place.

I'm glad folks think I look different! I'm living a different, happy, more fulfilling life, and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows. My friends say that I look peaceful. I am healthy. For a long time I wasn't doing such a good job with that. I took on a schedule that is not realistically sustainable and didn't allow for taking care of myself. Rather than stopping to recalibrate, I kept running until I was depleted and made bad choices about how to conceal the exhaustion. I was aware of the chaos and finally chose different things.

Hmmmm…well, hopefully looking more like her old self doesn't mean she's now living an "unhappier life"…

The good genes certainly stayed in the family.

Emma Ferrer’s name may be brand new to the modeling industry, but her porcelain skin, raven black hair and ethereal grace on the cover of the new subscriber issue of Harper’s Bazaar is a flashback in time.

Ferrer's grandmother is none other than Audrey Hepburn, and the slim, long limbed, graceful, 20-year-old art student is the spitting image of the Breakfast at Tiffany’s star.

Currently in her third year of studies at the Florence Academy of Art, the captivating brunette is the daughter of Sean Ferrer, who is the son of Mel Ferrer, Hepburn's first husband.

Emma wasn’t even born until a year after Hepburn died—of appendiceal cancer in 1993—so she never met the movie icon whom she so closely resembles.

"The first images I have of her are, interestingly enough, when she was quite young," Emma Kathleen Hepburn Ferrer says of her paternal grandmother in the accompanying interview with Harpers.

"I remember seeing a photo of her jumping on a trampoline — I believe this was before I understood that she was famous. But I remember thinking that she looked like a friend I wish I could have had."

Along with being a screen goddess in classics such as Roman Holiday and a style icon for a generation, Hepburn was a crusader for the world's underprivileged children as an International Goodwill Ambassador for UNICEF, traveling to Ethiopia, Somalia and Turkey.

She was also a muse for photographer Richard Avedon, who shot her for numerous Harper’s covers and on the streets of Paris, so it is fitting that Ferrer was captured by his grandson, Michael Avedon, for her own cover.

When asked if she owns any memorabilia from her famous grandmother, Ferrer shared, “All I can think of are her cashmere turtlenecks, which I adore and wear all throughout the winter … and a white antique stuffed teddy bear."

It’s that Oscars time of the year once again!

In celebration of Hollywood’s biggest night, Rock Paper Photo has a collection of absolutely gorgeous iconic shots of Academy Awards nominees from past and present—Popdust has selected our favorite photos.

Drawing on work from all the leading photographers, including Terry O’Neill, Richard Corman, Michael Tighe and the late Frank Worth, each amazing picture is truly worth a thousand words.

Case in point, O’Neill’s fabulous post-Oscars shot of Faye Dunaway, recovering poolside at the Beverly Hills Hotel, the morning after winning the Best Actress Academy Award in 1977 for her performance in Network.

“I look at this picture often, and I’m still so proud of it. It’s still the best Oscar picture ever taken,” London born, O’Neill, told Britain’s Guardian newspaper.

“I wanted to capture the look of dazed confusion, that state of utter shock that Oscar winners enter, where they go to bed thrilled, then overnight, it dawns on them that they’ve changed, that they’ve just become a star. And not just a star, a millionaire.

“She isn’t sure quite who she is any more. I waited for her to look away from the camera, and I got the shot.”

O’Neill ended up getting more than just an amazing photograph—he also got the girl. Dunaway and O’Neill married six years later, although, sadly, they divorced after just three years.

Faye Dunaway by Terry O’Neill

Marlon Brando and Bob Hope by Frank Worth

Sandra Bullock by Michael Tighe

Audrey Hepburn by Terry O’Neill

Philip Seymour Hoffman as Truman Capote by Richard Corman

Martin Scorsese by Michael Tighe

You can check out the full amazing collection and buy your favorite fine art prints at Rock Paper Photo

By now you've probably watched Beyoncé's "Countdown" video several hundred times, and between memorizing the choreography and wondering how hard Bey and Jay tried to plan a pregnancy so that both their lyrical prophecies could come true, you may have experienced waves of nostalgia to pop culture moments past. Before Thursday's premiere, much of the talk had been about B's turn as Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face, and while it's there, there are so many other things we started thinking—and YouTubing, and singing—about as well. So many that we made a list! Enjoy.

FUNNY FACE

Beyoncé greets us with an homage to the 1957 film that featured Hepburn in a simple yet elegant black turtleneck, trousers and ponytail, making the everyday wear both chic and iconic. Here she does her best attempt at replicating Hepburn's moves and overall look, which was later used to hawk pants for GAP.

MICHAEL JACKSON

Singing her way through a relationship while moving her body through the hours on a clock, Beyoncé shows off some noticeable footwear. Hepburn may have popularized black-on-black, but Jackson's loafers and thick white socks became most memorable when paired with his Moonwalk, making it impossible for us to think of anyone but the King of Pop.

THE BRADY BUNCH

Unlike our first encounter with the Bradys, who managed to merged two families with relative ease, these "Countdown" square are all Beyoncé. And yet we're still not bored.

FAME

B holds court in her own version of LaGuardia High School, surveying the competitive scene around her, while giving priceless tips that any aspiring performer would kill for.

DRUMLINE

Like the kids on Glee, who can't afford flights to Nationals but have the privilege of a full band to back them up at most rehearsals, Beyoncé's school of dance brings in outside musicians, including a percussion team firing away with the same ferocity possessed by the collegiate squads from Nick Cannon's 2002 film.

For downtime in one of Jay's old shirts and nods to a few more dance films, click NEXT.

GREASE

Taking pantslessness from trashy to classy, B lounges in an oversized button down—we like to think it's Jay's—with her hair in a casual updo, reminiscent of Stockard Channing's provocative slumber party outfit from the 1978 film. But the video's numerous profile shots and form-fitting bodysuits let us know that B does not share one of Sandra Dee's biggest virtues Channing so snarkily sings about.

A CHORUS LINE

All those mind-blowing dance moves require preparation, and it's likely a row of Beyoncés can feel the pressure of getting the steps just right, not unlike the hopeful performers in the classic behind-the-scenes musical.

FLASHDANCE

Off-the-shoulder sweats while in the studio are far from visionary, but at least "Countdown" wasn't a full-on replica of Jennifer Beals' welder by day, dancer by night cult favorite. J.Lo wouldn't be too happy.

TINA TURNER

This sparkly sequins dress could be a nod to The Supremes, or even her portrayal of Deena Jones and The Dreams in Dreamgirls, but that's all the more fitting of a Destiny's Child video. Here we see only Miss Tina—Turner, not Knowles—and are reminded about how good the former's legs look. Still.

WHITNEY HOUSTON -- "I WANNA DANCE WITH SOMEBODY"

Just before close, Beyoncé revisits the color blocking phenomenon of the 1980s—and this year's current DayGlo trend—as seen in Whitney Houston's ultimate girls-getting-ready jam, "I Wanna Dance With Somebody." It's fun times with bright hues, only with much sleeker hair than her predecessor. Sorry, Whit.