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1.
Howie Mandel
Producer, Deal or No Deal
The story goes that huggable stand-up comedian Howie Mandel, who ran a carpet business once upon a time, began his show biz career by chance while catching amateur night at the Comedy Store on the L.A. Sunset Strip during a vacation. Goaded on by friends to try out, a producer spotted him, hired him for an appearance on the comedy game show "Make Me Laugh," and the rest is history...
 
4.
David Hasselhoff
Actor, Click
David Hasselhoff has become one of the most recognizable faces on television and throughout the world. Aside from starring in Knight Rider and Baywatch, he is also an accomplished singer and popular recording artist. David Michael Hasselhoff was born on July 17, 1952 in Baltimore, Maryland...
 
5.
Simon Cowell
Simon Cowell was born in Lambeth, London and brought up in Elstree, Hertfordshire. He is the son of Julie Cowell (née Josie Dalglish), a ballet dancer, and Eric Selig Phillip Cowell, a music industry executive. Simon started his career in the music industry working in the mailroom at EMI Music Publishing...
 
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Jennifer Lopez
Actress, Out of Sight
Jennifer Lynn Lopez was born in the Castle Hill section of the South Bronx on July 24, 1969. She is the middle of three musically-inclined sisters, Leslie Lopez, a homemaker, and Lynda Lopez, a DJ on New York's WKTU, a VH1 VJ, and a morning news show correspondent on New York's Channel 11. Jennifer always dreamed of being a multi-tasking superstar...
 
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Ellen DeGeneres
Emmy-winning talk show host Ellen Lee DeGeneres was born in Metairie, Louisiana, a New Orleans suburb. She is the daughter of Betty DeGeneres (née Elizabeth Jane Pfeffer), a speech therapist, and Elliott Everett DeGeneres, an insurance agent. Her brother is musician and producer Vance DeGeneres. Her parents divorced when she was sixteen years old...
 
11.
Kara DioGuardi
Soundtrack, Boyhood
Kara DioGuardi was introduced to America on seasons 8 and 9 of the hit FOX show, American Idol and was also featured as the head judge on Bravo's songwriting reality show competition, Platinum Hit. Additionally, Kara starred in her Broadway stage debut as merry murderess "Roxie Hart" in the Tony Award-winning hit musical, "Chicago"...
 
12.
Paula Abdul
Miscellaneous Crew, American Idol
Paula Abdul grew up in the San Fernando Valley, California. She began taking dance lessons when she was eight. She attended Van Nuys High School, where she was senior class president and head cheerleader. After graduating in 1980, she started college at Cal State-Northridge, majoring in TV and radio...
 
14.
Carrie Ann Inaba
Carrie Ann Inaba was born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, USA. She is of Japanese, Chinese, and Irish ancestry, and is the youngest of two children. Carrie Ann grew up dancing the hula (native Hawaiian dance) and other dance forms. She also played the piano and violin and sang in the choir. She attended Hanahaouli School and then Punahou School...
 
17.
Baz Luhrmann
Baz Luhrmann grew up in rural Australia. He first became enthralled by the world of movies and the power of storytelling at his father's theatre. He also encountered a variety of interesting people while working at the local gas station, and Luhrmann went on to use these experiences as a source for his own creativity...
 
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21.
Mel Brooks
Mel Brooks was born Melvin Kaminsky on June 28, 1926 in Brooklyn, New York. He served in WWII, and afterwards got a job playing the drums at nightclubs in the Catskills. Brooks eventually started a comedy act and also worked in radio and as Master Entertainer at Grossinger's Resort before going to television...
 
22.
Gilles Marini
Gilles Marini exploded onto the scene as "Dante", the Casanova living in the beach house next door to Kim Cattrall's "Samantha" on the Sex and the City movie, a role which has earned him international recognition. Though people went to the theatres to see Carrie, Samantha, Miranda and Charlotte, they left with one thing on their mind...
 
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26.
Christina Aguilera
Soundtrack, Get Smart
Christina Maria Aguilera was born on December 18, 1980, in Staten Island, New York, to Shelly Loraine (Fidler) and Fausto Wagner Xavier Aguilera. Her father is Ecuadorian and her mother, who is American-born, has English, Scots-Irish, and German ancestry. Her parents divorced when she was young and she lived with her mother...
 
27.
Adam Levin
Miscellaneous Crew, Me, Myself & Irene
 
29.
Ben Folds
Folds first found mainstream success as the leader of the critically acclaimed, platinum-selling Ben Folds Five. He has gone on to have a very successful solo career, recording multiple studio albums, a pair of records documenting his renowned live performances, a remix record, music for film and TV, as well as numerous collaborations with artists from Sara Bareilles to William Shatner...