10 Huge Hollywood Stars Who Live in Small Towns
THESE SILVER-SCREEN CELEBRITIES LIVE THE QUIET LIFE WHEN THE CAMERAS AREN'T ROLLING.
Not every celebrity who makes it big wants to put down roots in Hollywood. For every camera-loving Kardashian, there are stars who—wanting to hold on to some semblance of normalcy—have taken a pass on La La Land and opted for a much quieter existence in sleepy towns and rustic rural areas. So keep your eye out for these small town celebrities next time you run out to your local Starbucks or Target.
Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively; Bedford, New York
This impossibly good-looking couple and their two kids love the quiet life in Bedford, New York. The Westchester suburb, known for its low-key but luxurious vibe, is home to plenty of media and Wall Street millionaires who have better things to do than gawk at Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively—two down-to-earth actors in their midst.
Dave Chappelle; Yellow Springs, Ohio
When he's not performing, comedian Dave Chappelle has done his best to stay out of the limelight for most of his career. So when he's not on the road or working in L.A., he's at his home in Yellow Springs, Ohio, where he's lived with his family since 2005—he first came upon the town as a child when he would spend summers there after his parents separated. For the most part, Chappelle keeps a pretty low profile in his quiet midwest neighborhood, though he did make a rare public appearance in 2017 to speak at a village council meeting advocating for police reform.
Julia Roberts; Taos, New Mexico
Yes, Julia Roberts has multiple homes, but it's her ranch in Taos, New Mexico that she and husband Danny Moder consider home base for them and their three children. Located in the stunning Sangre de Cristo mountains, Taos is an artsy, boho spot that appeals to Roberts' inner hippie.
Meryl Streep; Salisbury, Connecticut
The actress with the most Oscar nominations in history—a head-spinning 21 nods in all—hasn't really ever "gone Hollywood." Instead, silver screen icon Meryl Streep raised her family, and still spends most of her time, in Salisbury, Connecticut. Located in leafy Litchfield County, it's a typical New England town where residents take pride in counting the acting legend as a local, but have always respected her privacy.
David Letterman; North Salem, New York
David Letterman is known for being a notoriously private figure, which is why it's no surprise that after leaving the Late Show in 2015, he and his family spilt their time between two off-the-beaten path homes. One is in blink-and-you miss it North Salem, New York, and the other, a ranch just outside Choteau, Montana.
Jeff Daniels; Chelsea, Michigan
Actor Jeff Daniels didn't bail on Hollywood for just any old place when left 33 years ago—he moved back to his hometown of Chelsea, Michigan, where he's lived with his wife Kathleen ever since. The Newsroom star has said that he always believed his fame wouldn't last, so he wanted to make sure he didn't stray far from home. It turns out his fame has lasted just fine, but talk about humble!
Harrison Ford and Calista Flockhart; Jackson Hole, Wyoming
This long-time celebrity power couple spend as little time as possible in Hollywood—far preferring to roam on their lavish spread in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Granted, the rustic region is not exactly the middle of nowhere, but it's as far cry from the smog and flashing cameras of L.A. Ford even donated sections of their 800-acre land as a nature preserve where any property development that impairs the area's wildlife and natural resources is strictly prohibited.
Debra Winger; Weschester County, New York
The famously outspoken star of iconic films like An Officer and A Gentleman and Terms of Endearment walked away from Hollywood at the height of her fame. Debra Winger guards her privacy so fiercely she wouldn't even tell Best Life what town in Westchester County she calls home—it's one of the "river towns" overlooking the Hudson. When I spoke to her several years ago for her film Rachel Getting Married, I asked her why she chose to live outside of Hollywood. She said: "The idea of the limelight upsets me."
Ashley Judd; Leipers Fork, Tennessee
Ashley Judd is another star who shunned the Hollywood life. The native Kentuckian currently lives in Leipers Fork, Tennessee. And it seems to be a family affair, as both her mom, Naomi Judd, and sister, Wynonna Judd, live nearby on adjoining farms.
Brendan Fraser; Bedford, New York
"What ever happened to Brendan Fraser?" GQ asked in a 2018 headline. The answer: The star of blockbusters like The Mummy and a string of 1990s comedy classics relocated to the seclusion of upstate New York, where, in between acting gigs, he tends to his horse and partakes in archery to let off steam. His ex-wife and sons live nearby in Greenwich, Connecticut.
Diane Clehane is a New York-based journalist and author of Imagining Diana and Diana The Secrets of Her Style.