When you think of celebrities, you automatically think of Hollywood. But most of these superstars didn’t start off that way — they come from all sorts of backgrounds and origins. These VIPs are obviously a big source of pride for their hometown, and for many of these famous folks, that feeling is reciprocated.
1. Florida — Ariana Grande
This pop star got her start in Florida as Ariana Grande-Butera. She was born in Boca Raton, and as a child, often performed with the Fort Lauderdale Children’s Theater, as well as multiple orchestras in Florida.
2. Texas — Beyoncé
Texas is pretty big, but no one’s bigger in Texas than Queen Bey herself. She was born in Houston and attended St. Mary’s Montessori school, where dance lessons inspired her to uncover her talent for singing.
3. New Mexico — Demi Lovato
Demi Lovato is one of the biggest celebrities out there, and she kind of outshines Neil Patrick Harris when it comes to the most famous person from New Mexico. Other stars from here include the other Demi, more commonly known as Demi Moore.
4. California — Meghan Markle
Sure, there are plenty of stars to come out of California. But did any of them become a Duchess? Although she’s not part of the royal family anymore, her journey was so unforgettable, we had to give her a nod of recognition on this list.
5. Pennsylvania — Taylor Swift
Shockingly, she’s not from the South! Will Smith once used to have this honor, but T-Swift may have taken it from him with her hordes of fans. Swift grew up in Reading, Pennsylvania on a Christmas tree farm, and she then moved to Tennessee at 14.
6. Hawaii — Jason Momoa
This hottie, who most of us know as Aquaman, was born in America’s most lush and verdant state — Hawaii. This long-haired hunk was born in Nanakuli, Honolulu, although when his parents broke up, he moved to Iowa.
7. Louisiana — Reese Witherspoon
Southern belle Reese Witherspoon, amongst many other beloved celebs, was raised in Louisiana. Born in New Orleans, Reese said that this upbringing instilled a sense of family, courtesy, and responsibility in her.
8. Indiana — David Letterman
This world-renowned talk show host was born in Indianapolis, Indiana, to a florist and church secretary. In 1975, he went on to move to Los Angeles and live out his dreams.
9. Tennessee — Miley Cyrus
Also home to Justin Timberlake, Miley Cyrus grew up in a little place called Tennessee. She was born and raised in Franklin, and to this day, has invested in her home state. She even dropped a whopping $5.8 million on a mansion in Tennessee.
10. Massachusetts — Mark Wahlberg
Nothing is more synonymous with Boston than Mark Wahlberg, aka Marky Mark — he may as well be the city’s mascot. He was born in Dorchester, and was raised as the youngest of nine children.
11. Michigan — Kristen Bell
One of the state’s most beloved actresses to hail from Michigan is Kristen Bell. She was born in a Detroit suburb known as Huntington Woods. Madonna and Stevie Wonder hail from the same state. Although her parents divorced when Bell was young, she stayed in Michigan throughout high school.
12. Minnesota — Chris Pratt
This Parks and Rec and Jurassic World star might be a loyal Seattle Seahawks fan, he’s actually from Minnesota. His mom worked in Virginia, Minnesota at a Safeway supermarket while his father remodeled houses. When he was three they moved to Washington, hence his dedication to the Seahawks.
13. Mississippi — Oprah Winfrey
The most famous female talk show host in the world was birthed in Mississippi. So that’s where all that Southern hospitality comes from! Her mother was a teenager, and through a tough childhood filled with poverty, Oprah rose above the odds to become one of the most successful celebs ever.
14. New Hampshire — Mandy Moore
Mandy Moore, aka Rebecca from This Is US, was born in New Hampshire, where her mother was a news reporter and her father was a pilot. Mandy was two months old when her family moved to Florida, but New Hampshire is still technically her home!
15. New York — Jay-Z
Plenty of famous Hollywood big-wigs have gotten famous, but not too many have a rags-to-riches story like rapper and entrepreneur Jay-Z. He grew up in a Bed-Stuy Housing Project in Brooklyn, and his name is even an homage to NYC train stations. The famous song “Empire State of Mind” is proof enough.
16. Ohio — John Legend
Singer John Legend and Chrissy Teigen’s hubby grew up in Springfield, Ohio. There, he was homeschooled by his mom. His start in singing began in church choir — at just four years old.
17. Arizona — Emma Stone
This famous redhead calls Arizona home. She was originally born Emily Jean Stone, and grew up in Scottsdale. In 2005, her and her mum moved to LA to pursue acting.
18. Alabama — Channing Tatum
Hollywood’s resident muscle cutie Channing Tatum might have been raised in Mississippi, but up until the age of six, he lived in Alabama. He’s always considered the state his hometown, and reps it in his clothing, as well as retuning for special occasions.
19. Oklahoma — Blake Shelton
This country singer was born and raised in Ada, Oklahoma until the age of 17. From there, he moved to Nashville. But as soon as he reached fame, he returned to his hometown and bought a ranch over in Tishomingo.
20. Utah — Chrissy Teigen
You wouldn’t think that someone as glamorous as Chrissy Teigen comes from a place like Utah, but this supermodel was born in Delta, Utah. Eventually, her parents settled in California, where she was discovered in a surf shop she worked for.
21. South Carolina — Chadwick Boseman
The late and great Black Panther star was born in South Carolina, where his mom was a nurse and his dad was a textile factory worker. In high school there, he wrote his first play and staged it after a classmate was killed in gun violence.
22. Illinois — Harrison Ford
He might not be the youngest celebrity on this list, but he’s still remained an A-lister after all these decades, which is an impressive feat. Ford was born in Chicago, Illinois, and born at the Swedish Covenant Hospital there. He stayed in the state all the way through high school.
23. Georgia — Julia Roberts
From Steel Magnolias to Pretty Woman, Julia Roberts is pretty much Hollywood’s eternal It-girl. She grew up in Smyrna, Georgia, with a passion for oboe and clarinet in her high school’s band. Nearby in Atlanta, her parents led acting workshops. No wonder she’s so talented!
24. Delaware — Aubrey Plaza
This deadpan funny brunette spend her early years in Wilmington, Delaware. Plaza even acted in the town’s drama league productions in her early days.
25. Maine — Patrick Dempsey
Some of you might always remember him as the handsome Dr. Derek Shepherd, but in real life, Dempsey is just an actor from Maine. He was born in the town of Lewiston, and then moved around to local areas like Buckfield and Turner before eventually moving to Texas.
26. Nebraska — Gabrielle Union
Gabrielle Union is a #WCW for many, but she’s so much more than that. The Bring It On beauty is an actress, activist, and writer. She was born in Omaha, Nebraska, but moved to California when she was 8. Regardless, Nebraska pride has always been the norm for Gabrielle.
27. New Jersey — Bruce Springsteen
Bruce Springsteen is as proud of NJ as the state is of him! He was raised in Freehold and born in Long Branch. Springsteen’s music frequently discusses his hometown and old haunts. I mean, his first album was titled “Greetings from Asbury Park, N.J.”.
28. Oregon — Ty Burrell
This hilarious dad on Modern Family hails from Grant Pass, Oregon. He even stayed there for college, graduating from Southern Oregon University. Ty is also famously passionate about the Oregon Ducks, and you can usually see him in the stands.
29. Kentucky — Johnny Depp
You might not take Johnny Depp for a Southern boy, but that’s exactly what he is. He was born in Owensboro, Kentucky with three other kids, to a waitress mom and a civil engineer dad. He even bought his mother a 40-acre horse farm in The Bluegrass State.
30. South Dakota — January Jones
This blonde enchantress might be able to call Mad Men her breakout role, but that’s not at all how it began. Instead, January Jones has humble roots in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, as the daughter of an exercise physiologist and store manager.