We’re obsessed with celebrity gossip — watching stars react to internet trolls, scrolling through “most hated celebrities” lists, wondering to ourselves, “Why do people hate Nickelback?” But our favorite type of drama revolves around how some of the richest, most famous people in Hollywood became broke.
After reportedly earning more than $25 million starring in the 1990s-era hit sitcom Grace Under Fire, the talented TV star with the throaty, memorable voice is now completely hard up for cash and struggling with facing eviction from her home.
Brett Butler first struggled with the risk of homelessness and being nearly flat broke just about a decade ago, all the way back in 2011. But to hear her tell The Hollywood Reporter, it sounds like things have taken another turn for the worst — and she’s now asking for GoFundMe help to get back on her feet.
Butler has admitted that she is broke and “ashamed to death” about the same. Her dire financial crisis came to light recently after her friend Lon Strickler started a GoFundMe to help her with the basic necessities. At the time of writing this article, her GoFundMe had raised over $45,000.
“Friends and loved ones are reaching out and asking for fans of actress Brett Butler to help her through her time of need. We all love and know Brett from her TV series, Grace Under Fire, as Grace Kelly, and her many TV and stage appearances. But like many others, this past year has put her in a critical situation and desperation has set in. I’m not exaggerating using those words. It is urgent. Brett has exhausted all of her resources and the stress of looming eviction is straining her mentally and physically,” her friend mentioned in the GoFundMe description.
Fans have generously poured in support for their favorite actress, who is remembered for her classic portrayal of single mother Grace Kelly in the sitcom. She has also played guest roles in ‘Anger Management’, ‘How to Get Away with Murder’, and ‘The Walking Dead’.
At the peak of her career in the mid-1990s, Butler once earned a staggering $250,000 per episode of ‘Grace Under Fire’. However, her present net worth of $10,000 does not reflect her past prosperity and success. So how did the 63-year-old actress go from being a highly successful TV star to falling six months behind on her rent?
The sitcom ‘Grace Under Fire’ which chronicled a single mother struggling to raise her three kids alone, after divorcing an abusive husband, was actually based on Butler’s own real-life experiences. She had been divorced twice already prior to her TV breakthrough. By the time she was discovered as a New York-based stand-up comedian, Butler had also overcome alcoholism, addiction, and abuse for years.
The pressures of being on TV took a further toll on her well-being as she fell prey to Vicodin addiction. The medicine was originally prescribed to her as a painkiller for sciatica but Butler slowly grew dangerously addicted to it. In fact, she had been in a daze often while shooting and remembers only around 80 of the total 112 episodes she starred in.
“At the bloody bitter end, I really was difficult, I was out of my mind. Drugs will do that to you. The show should have been pulled sooner than it was,” she admitted.