5 Celebrities Who’ve Worked For Free or Almost Nothing

You may think that these stars would make millions from their work – be it a side design project or a major film – but these stars have revealed that there have been times when they’ve worked for free or almost nothing, taking home a very low sum even though they’ve worked hard. Explaining why they chose to work for no financial gain, these stars picked experience over hard cash and wanted to further their careers or go in a new direction, even if it meant saying goodbye to a wad of cash.

Adam Levine


Adam took no money for his first film role in ‘Began Again’. He explained that he did it for the experience: “I did this movie for no money. I’m very lucky that I’m in that position. I want to have good experiences. I don’t want to do a bunch of s*** that I hate. I want to treat [acting] completely differently because I have the very fortunate luxury of not having to think of this in terms of money.”

Gwyneth Paltrow

Earlier in her career, Paltrow claimed to be making almost nothing on the films she was working on: “I haven’t been paid anything substantial for a movie for two years. I hear you can make a good living from this line of work! We did a movie called The World of Tomorrow recently and I didn’t get paid anything. So it’s been a while since I’ve worked for the money.”


Jane Lynch

When she was just starting out, Jane says she would work almost any job for free: “I worked for free a lot, I did stuff I thought was stupid. Even for free I did things I thought were stupid. I’d do things to help a friend out. One would say, `I’m going to do a short and you’re going to play the boss.’ And I’d be rolling my eyes, knowing how disorganized it was going to be and that I’d have to bring my own clothes. But it was always, `Okay, I’ll do it.’ ”

Jonah Hill

Jonah was paid just $60,000 for his work in ‘Wolf of Wall Street’ which was the lowest sum possible: “They gave me the lowest amount of money possible, that was their offer. And I said, ‘I will sign the paper tonight. Fax me the papers tonight. I want to sign them tonight before they change their mind.’”

Sarah Jessica Parker

Sarah was appointed “president and chief creative officer” of Halston Heritage from 2010 – 2011, but she says she made little money from the big fashion job: “I really did work for free.”