Three Big Celebrities Who Have More Debt Than You

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You think your mortgage and credit card debt is high? Take some cold comfort from the fact that 50 Cent, Johnny Depp and Kanye West are all worse off than you are.

by Cindy Trillo

Johnny Depp

At one time, Johnny Depp owned five condos in this downtown L.A. high-rise.

At present, approximately 80.9% of baby boomers, 79.9% of Gen Xers, and 81.5% of Millennials in the USA have debt to their name. When even the President of the United States is known to have been personally liable for more than $800 million in debt, you realize that debt can affect anyone, even some of the most well-known celebrities in the world.

Despite their obvious fame and fortune, many celebrities have made questionable decisions with regards to their finances, which have landed them in a heap of debt. While countless celebs have experienced crippling debt over the years, there are three, in particular, that have come face to face with colossal debts in recent times.

50 Cent

Curtis Jackson III, who is better known as 50 Cent, landed himself in serious debt despite his success as a rapper, producer and entrepreneur. His debt was of such a magnitude that he ended up filing for bankruptcy on July 13, 2015, with an estimated debt of more than $32 million according to The Wall Street Journal.

Judge Ann Nevins approved a repayment plan in 2016 that required the rapper to pay back approximately $23 million of his debt over a period of 5 years. Through hard work and readjusted spending habits, a US federal judge was able to discharge 50 Cent from bankruptcy during a hearing in February 2017. According to his lawyer, he utilized $8.7 million of his own money and $13.65 million that he received in a settlement from a malpractice lawsuit to settle his debt.

Johnny Depp

Johnny Depp

Thus highly customized interior of one of Johnny Depp’s condos.

Even if you have large amounts of money at your disposal, it’s important to use it carefully and not splurge unnecessarily on properties, cars, vacations, and trinkets you have absolutely no use for, like Johnny Depp did.  Depp is the 5th-highest paid actor in all of Hollywood and reportedly earned $48 million in 2016 alone according to Forbes.

But after years of spending in the region of $2 million a month, the star of the Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise’s bad spending habits finally caught up to him in 2017. While it will take both time and effort to recover from such extreme debt, it is not impossible. By drastically cutting down on his expenditure and making his debt repayments a priority, Depp could very well recover from his dire financial situation given that he continues to earn a good income.

Kanye West

At present, Kanye West and wife Kim Kardashian are worth a collective $335 million, making it somewhat difficult to understand how either of them could either be indebted to anyone.  Regardless of their combined wealth, Kanye rejoined the celebrity debt club in 2016 when he announced on Twitter that he was $53 million in debt thanks to a failed fashion line. This comes after being nearly $15 in debt while he was first trying to break into the fashion industry.

While Kanye would without a doubt have found a way out of his financial dilemma, being married to a millionaire sure has its perks, as Kim supposedly paid off his debt with a $80 million video game check she cashed.

Debt is never desirable, especially if you are a celebrity who is constantly in the public eye. Unfortunately, bad decisions (and bad luck) often lead to temporary financial ruin that can luckily be overcome through a change of mindset and perseverance—by any of us.

You think your mortgage and credit card debt is high? Take some cold comfort from the fact that 50 Cent, Johnny Depp and Kanye West are all worse off than you are.


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Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell

Lisa Johnson Mandell is an award winning journalist, author and film/TV critic. She can be heard regularly on Cumulus radio stations throughout the US, and on BBC Radio.

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