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Mindhole Puffers: 20 Random Celebrity Facts that Might Blow Open Your Mindhole

By Cindy Davis | Seriously Random Lists | August 21, 2013 | Comments ()


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See more Celebrity Facts.

If you enjoyed the brain fog induced by the first Mindhole Puffers edition, just imagine how cool it’ll feel when that tiniest of blood vessel in your brain goes *pop*!

1. Claire Danes and Hugh Dancy had an indoor swing installed in their New York city apartment. Danes explained, “My parents had a swing, a trapeze and a trampoline in their apartment, I was inspired by that.”

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2. Damian Lewis’ “shittiest” pre-acting job was telemarketer (car alarms), and he despises Phil Collins’ Another Day in Paradise. “I wasn’t going around looking at people’s swanky cars saying, ‘I think you could use the UP3Z-40.’ I was cold-calling them on the phone. I’d get off the subway everyday carrying my Walkman, which was the size of a brick, and I’d always hear the same song. Unfortunately, Phil Collins and the worst song he ever wrote, ‘Another Day in Paradise,’ are forever connected with me selling car alarms. Phil put me in such a bad mood I was unable to charm the customers. It drove me fucking insane.”

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3. Jake Gyllenhaal got his first driving lesson (on a racetrack) from a family friend: Paul Newman.

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4. George Clooney slept in a friend’s closet for a year when he first moved to LA. It took him that long to find acting work.


5. At age 11, Toni Collette faked appendicitis so well that doctors actually removed her organ. “I just wanted to fake my appendicitis and see what it would be like to be cut open. My mum had her appendix taken out when she was 11 so when I was younger she told me the story and said, ‘When the doctor comes to feel you to check how you’re going, he presses in and it doesn’t hurt. It’s when he lets go…’ So when he let go, I did all the right things. I was young, I can’t rationalise it now. I find it embarrassing.”

6. Charlize Theron was “discovered” when an agent witnessed her throwing a fit at a bank teller who wouldn’t cash her check.

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7. Rebel Wilson *caught* the acting bug from a mosquito. “When I graduated school I became a youth ambassador and was stationed in South Africa for a year to spread goodwill across the continent. I got malaria and was put in intensive care, where the doctors gave me a cocktail of drugs so I wouldn’t die. I hallucinated that I was at the Oscars and won. It was so real that when I came out of hospital I said, ‘I know this is crazy, but I’m going to become an actress!’”

8. Animal lover Matthew McConaughey has helped rescue many critters, including countless pets stranded after Hurricane Katrina. But perhaps the most moving tale of his commitment involves a night the actor was driving in Sherman Oaks, CA; he spotted a group of teens dousing a cat with hairspray—getting ready to set the poor creature on fire. McConaughey jumped out of his car and grabbed the animal, went off on the kids, and took the kitty to an animal shelter.

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9. In 2006, director Werner Herzog rescued Joaquin Phoenix after the actor lost control of his vehicle; the car went off an embankment and flipped, leaving him even more dazed and confused than usual.


10. Madonna suffers from brontophobia aka astraphobia—the fear of thunderstorms.

11. Doctor Ruth Westheimer was a trained sniper in the Israeli army. “When I was in my routine training for the Israeli army as a teenager, they discovered completely by chance that I was a lethal sniper. I could hit the target smack in the center further away than anyone could believe. Not just that, even though I was tiny and not even much of an athlete, I was incredibly accurate throwing hand grenades too. Even today I can load a Sten automatic rifle in a single minute, blindfolded.”

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12. Simon Cowell’s first show business gig was as a runner on The Shining. Cowell’s brother explained, “It was only a stone’s throw away from where we grew up,” he explained. “I well remember him saying he used to clean Jack Nicholson’s axe in between takes for the most famous scenes. He took great pride in it, you could see your face in it, it was so shiny. It’s a far cry from where he is now. I think the only thing he shines these days are his teeth.”

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13. Daryl Hannah and her Summer Lovers co-star Hilary Shepard have created several board games together: “LIEbrary,” (similar to Balderdash, but with the first lines of books), “Call-it!” and “Famous Last Lines.”

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14. Woody Harrelson’s father Charles was a hired hit man, convicted (Woody believed falsely) of killing a federal judge; Charles died in jail while serving his life sentence.

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15. Leighton Meester’s mother gave birth to her while serving time in a federal prison for her part in a drug ring (marijuana smuggling); she was allowed to give birth in a hospital, spend a few months in a halfway house with the baby, and then returned to serve the rest of her time. Meester’s grandmother took care of Leighton until her mother was released.

16. Leonardo DiCaprio’s father, George is a comic book writer and distributor (Greaser Comics #1 1971, Greaser Comics #2 1972, Neurocomics 1979 [with Timothy Leary and Pete von Sholly])

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17. Katey Sagal has twin sisters who both act (“Double Trouble, Picket Fences”), edit and direct, and starred in Wrigley’s long-running “Doublemint Twins” ad campaigns.

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18. Diane Lane’s mother, Colleen Farrington was a Playboy Playmate of the Month (1957).

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19. In addition to being a musician himself, Johnny Depp has appeared in videos for Tom Petty’s Into the Great Wide Open, Paul McCartney’s My Valentine, The Lemonheads’ It’s a Shame About Ray and Avril Lavigne’s Alice.


20. Among actors who are also painters…


Viggo Mortensen:

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Pierce Brosnan:

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Sylvester Stallone:

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Anthony Hopkins:

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and Dennis Hopper:

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Cindy Davis, (Twitter) likely suffers many collapsed brain vessels.







Are you following Pajiba on Facebook or Twitter? Every time you do, Bill Murray crashes a wedding.


Comments Are Welcome, Bigots and Trolls Are Not


  • oatmealpie

    "George Clooney slept in a friend’s closet for a year when he first moved to LA. It took him that long to find acting work."

    Some would say he never came out of it.

  • dahmercatchesacrow

    I'm pretty sure that the painting Dennis Hopper is standing in front of is by Julian Schnabel.

  • e jerry powell

    Every time I think of Daryl Hannah in that movie I get a giggle remembering that Randal Kleiser was recasting his boyfriend as a woman, and that the whole film was really a re-gendered fictionalization of Kleiser's own life.

  • KaGe

    Between learning from Cracked that Stallone is an anti-gun advocate and that he's not a bad artist (come at me bro), I'm beginning to think all of his movies, with the exception of Rocky, are secretly satire.

  • BWeaves

    I'm sorry, but the "painters" paintings suck flaming monkey balls.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I don't know. I kinda like Brosnan's. It looks like melted Gauguin.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    There's a lot of 'sploosh' in there, isn't there?

  • BWeaves

    Not for me, there isn't. No turn on at all.

  • minxy

    Dennis Hopper was also a brilliant photographer. A man of many talents.

  • Jifaner

    I want that Viggo Mortensen painting! Pierce Brosnon's isn't bad either.

  • MichaelEhrgott

    Matthew McConaughey saving kitties from juvenile delinquents should be a movie

  • chanohack

    My uncle actually saved a kitty in a similar way... some dholes were trying to drown her. "Ripley" is like 16 years old now, but she's still kickin'.

  • Lauren_Lauren

    That's what I love about kittens, man. I get older, they stay the same age.

  • NateMan

    It could be Dangerous Minds for the animal lovers. He plays shirtless biology teacher Malcom Waxer, who teaches at-risk black youth about the love that can only be provided by kittens.

  • kirbyjay

    I am deeply disturbed that asshole juvies were trying to light a cat on fire.
    No snark....just disturbed
    and I love Viggo's painting.
    is Dennis the Menace's a collage or a painting. Looks just like him.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    Nah, I was thinking the same thing. Not to be flip, but *of course* the first thing I thought is that they're just working their way up to humans and there's no humour in that.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    #17 is clearly the best. How have I forgotten Double Trouble all these years?!

    I knew all of the painters except Hopkins. I remember seeing an art book on Brosnan's paintings...and of COURSE Viggo paints. Because he claims all of the sexy. (that might also bother Grammar Nazi, but I can't figure out a better way to phrase it at the moment)

  • Grammar Nazi is secure enough in his masculinity to note that Viggo is in fact a damn good looking man and so he'll allow it in a Vichy Adjective sort of way.

  • $27019454

    You did just fine. He claims it all. My all. All.

  • ,

    Wow, that header pic: I never noticed what a great rack Nancy Grace has.

    Mind = blown.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    Why do want to make me cry?

  • NateMan

    That was just plain wrong.

    I approve.

  • lowercase_ryan

    *Simon Cowell vagina shining low hanging fruit*

  • NateMan

    I feel like that needs a hyphen somewhere. Otherwise it's the best gibberish of the day.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    And by the way, I'd believe it could even be a regular swing chez Danes-Dancys, because they really are that weird. Cue me berating Madame Davis for missing the story about how they take photos of airport carpets and submit them to Dancy's brother's airport carpet website.

  • lowercase_ryan

    casino carpets > airport carpets

  • Pants_are_a_must

    Tell that to them. They're the ones with the airport carpet fetish.

  • lowercase_ryan

    I took from this that Damien Lewis doesn't know how to fast forward. Or buy another fucking tape. Or exercise free will.

  • $65530708

    If Lewis was listening to the radio fast forwarding or buying another tape would not be a option. Yes, he could have changed the station but if radio there is like radio here inevitably the song you are trying to avoid will be played on whatever station you turn to.

  • emmelemm

    That was my takeaway too.

  • dizzylucy

    As soon as I saw the photo of the twins, I remembered watching the show Double Trouble. NO idea they were Katey's sisters.

  • Fabius_Maximus

    I can barely see the resemblance in that picture. I guess her look in Married with Children is so iconic that I have trouble recognizing her when she looks normal.

  • NateMan

    Ms. Danes: It's a sex swing. We all know it's a sex swing. Just admit it's a sex swing and move on.

  • IngridToday

    That was the first thing I thought of

    Also, cracked.com had a similiar article posted this morning.. this feels like someone was borrowing..

  • Pants_are_a_must

    Video or it didn't happen.

  • Zenundated

    Jamie Lee Curtis is also godmother to the Gyllenhaals.

    Lucy Liu could be on your list of painters - her style is abstract.

  • dilwazr

    Also Ringo Starr. His work is atrocious.

  • Bedewcrock

    However, Marge Simpson's painting of Ringo Starr is the BEST.

  • AngelenoEwok

    OH MAN SOMEONE BEAT ME TO THIS COMMENT AND MY WEDNESDAY AFTERNOON IS RUINED.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    We're all little ruined, sometimes.

  • There'll Be Pancakes

    Another artist? Alia Shawcat - marry me!

  • Guest

    Wanna
    know something else mind-blowing? Woody Harrelson's assassin father was
    referenced in No Country for Old Men, in which Woody Harrelson played
    an assassin. The line was cut though.

  • kirbyjay

    Interesting book about Charles Harrelson murdering other people ( which Woody also doubts, I guess no one wants their father to be a murderer) , Run Brother Run by David Berg
    Harrelson was also mentioned in conspiracies involving JFK, never proved.

  • TCH

    I came for the header and was not disappointed.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Thank goodness Stallone is wearing sunglasses in the art gallery. Those places are notoriously bright.

    Also, in the version of my life where my financial situation is not extremely tenuous and unlikely to improve, I have a couch swing in my living room and/or on my wraparound porch.

  • Ruthie O

    I just bought a hammock and the equipment to mount it on my wall for less than $100 total. See, you can live like the stars do!

    In other news, first-time homeownership is quickly going to my head.

  • Sara_Tonin00

    for 9 months I lived in a Brooklyn apartment that had a lawn swing in the living room, built with an A frame.

    That was the only good thing about that living situation.

  • NateMan

    But his artwork... Well, it doesn't suck. It's so easy to forget he's not stupid or a one-note hack when you hear him speak or watch his movies. Although Viggo's is the one I actually find beautiful.

  • Maguita NYC

    The man is a published poet for Hot-Aragorn's sake!

    It helps though that he has his own publishing company for starving artists.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    Agreed. Viggo's art is beautiful, but I daresay his photography is even better.

  • $27019454

    HE's the real masterpiece.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    I saw him on a subway once and I saw Keira Knightly on a subway during TIFF one year: they are both very thin.

  • Sara Habein

    My husband once sold him a TV in Spokane, WA, while his image from LOTR was plastered all over the store's walls.

  • Pants_are_a_must

    He's not a masterpiece, he's an alien.

  • Mrs. Julien

    Not untalented, just a [whatever the word was we used to describe people like him before the broad acceptance of the term for cleansing a woman's reproductive parts we use now, and that I refuse to use despite the aforementioned acceptance into the slang lexicon].

  • Lucyem

    Mrs Julien, I'm a lurker and thus perhaps unquallified to make suggestions here, but may I respectfully offer 'bell-end' as a replacement for the word-which-will-not-pass-your-lips/keyboard? I'm trying to bring back the British insults of the 1970s, of which I consider that a shining example.

  • Mrs. Julien

    I am honoured that you would choose to delurk for me. What is the origin of this delightful phrase? I should not wish to to replace one female-oriented slam for another.

    Also, EVERYONE is qualified to make suggestions here.

  • Lucyem

    Ah, yes, it's a somewhat esoteric reference to what might be called a gentleman's part. Or - more Pajiban - a wang, specifically the, erm, business end thereof.

    The classy is not strong in this one...

    Btw, lovely to meet you!

  • NateMan

    See, I thought that too. And yet the more I hear from him\learn about him - his devotion to common-sense gun control, his decidedly middle of the road politics, etc. - I find myself having to reluctantly cut him slack. I mean, compared to Ahhnold and Willis; he's a damned sight better than many of his contemporaries.

  • Anna von Beav

    "Katey Sagal has twin sisters who both act (“Double Trouble, Picket
    Fences”), edit and direct, and starred in Wrigley’s long-running
    “Doublemint Twins” ad campaigns"

    AND PLUS ALSO Grease 2, the far superior Grease film.

  • Even Stevens

    I looked at the picture of those two and I would have sworn on my life that one of them was the bitchy chick from Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead. Sadly, I was totally wrong.

  • Jo 'Mama' Besser

    There's no such thing as a superior Grease film.

  • Eva

    #11 FTW

  • Tinkerville

    I don't know if I should find it ridiculously awesome that Toni Collete decided to have her appendix removed for shits and giggles, but I now find her that much more wonderful. Oh, Toni.

  • googergieger

    Pshh I got rid of my third testicle because they didn't all fit in your mum's mouth. Don't see me doing a song and dance about it. I apologize to mums and tristicle havers everywhere.

  • ChomskyTheBear

    Well... that was unnecessary.

  • googergieger

    Whale biologist. Or you know, JOKES.

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