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Star stuck: The sad reality that celebrity status means nothing to bottom line

Scott Stapp and Burt Reynolds are just two of the latest examples of celebrities that have gone from A list talents and millionaire to relegating themselves to selling off personal property or claiming they're flat broke due to anything from bad investments to people they trusted not properly managing their money.
Stapp recently took to the world wide web to tell the world that he's living in his truck and didn't eat for day and even ended up in the hospital as a result, certainly a far cry from sold out arenas with his former band "Creed," a group that sold millions of albums and toured to the masses for quite some time in the 2000s.
Reynolds has been in the movie business for quite some time, but the "Smokey and the Bandit" and "Boogie Nights" star started selling off his prize awards and possessions, no doubt motivated by money or the lack of having enough.
When you think about Reynolds and Stapp, along with others of that ilk who have followed suit and went from the proverbial penthouse to the outhouse, various thoughts begin to scroll through your mind. Perhaps, for some, one of them is sympathy or feeling bad for anyone who has to sell off things they treasure or have to sleep inside of a vehicle as a result of losing the money and stature they once had.
Somehow, however, sympathy seems to escape the logical thinking regarding these types of celebrity situations, with more questions than legitimate reasoning coming to the forefront.

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As a celebrity, you still have a responsibility to oversee your assets and manage your money accordingly. Putting all of your trust and stock into a sea of attorneys or fleet of financial planners is just bad business.
Ask someone like Oprah Winfrey what she does to keep track of her billions. Rumor has it she meets with her money entourage monthly for an entire day to comb through every last penny. Don't call it being overly interested in your money or driven for the wrong reasons; it's smart, savvy and shows that you're not too important, brash or egotistical enough to believe that nothing can ever go wrong.
The second part of these situations center on celebrities, actors and musicians alike finding ways to live beyond their means and assume that the money rolling in is forever. Any star athlete, rock god or Oscar winning performer knows eventually their run at the top is going to end, so planning ahead for that moment is paramount. Far too often, celebrities assume that the next $20 million paycheck is a few months away, and begin buying one vacation home after another or in some cases an entire island just for themselves. You have a hard time feeling sorry for someone that assumed the rich would keep on getting richer or spend the money faster than it was being made.
The combination of not being an active set of eyes over your own money and bank accounts along with poor decision making puts the onus of what went wrong squarely on the superstar shoulders of these men and women. No one is arguing that a shady lawyer or dishonest financial guru won't make expedite the process of going bankrupt or crying poor, but celebrities with any wherewithal or stake in their own financial future wouldn't let it to that point.

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