50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died

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List of celebrities who have almost died, loosely ranked by fame and popularity. Every day, people all over the world are involved in incidents that could easily be fatal. Celebrities have almost died due to accidents, overdoses, and illness. Several famous actors and actresses nearly died while performing stunts for their films.

Who is the most famous person who almost died? George Clooney tops our list. Clooney almost died when he broke his back while filming Syriana. Other actors who almost died on a film set include Jackie Chan, Chevy Chase, and Jaimie Alexander. Coincidentally, two of the stars of Ted almost died in the September 11 attacks. "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane had a ticket to board American Airlines Flight 11 on 9/11. MacFarlane arrived at the airport 10 minutes too late to board the plane that later crashed into the North Tower of the World Trade Center. Mark Wahlberg was booked on that same flight, but he changed his plans last-minute, opting to travel to Toronto before heading to LA. Blink 182 drummer Travis Barker survived a celebrity private jet crash.

Do you think having a near death experience changes the way you live your life? Share your thoughts in the comments section.
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  1. Sarah Silverman is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died
    Photo: Joan Garvin/via Wikimedia Commons
    In the summer of 2016, Sarah Silverman suddenly came down with a rare case of epiglottitis - a condition where the epiglottis (the cartilage covering the windpipe) becomes inflamed  and blocks airflow to the lungs. She was rushed to Cedar-Sinai hospital where she credits the doctors with saving her life. "I was drugged just enough to not feel the pain and have no idea what was happening or where I was. They had to have my hands restrained to keep me from pulling out my breathing tube," she explained.

    Through it all, she managed to keep her sense of humor. Apparently while high on meds, Silverman "stopped a nurse - like it was an emergency - furiously wrote down a note and gave it to her. When she looked at it, it just said, "Do you live with your mother?" next to a drawing of a penis."

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    • Age: 45
    • Birthplace: Manchester, New Hampshire, United States of America
    • Profession: Comedian, Television producer, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor, + more
    • Credits: Wreck-It Ralph, School of Rock, There's Something About Mary, Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic
  2. Ellie Goulding is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died
    Photo: Thomas Hawk/flickr/CC-BY-NC 2.0
    In 2016, Ellie Goulding almost drowned in a frozen lake while traveling through Norway on the European leg of her tour. Photographer Conor McDonnell said he and Goulding had to climb out of the roof of the car in the black of night and in -25C weather to escape.
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    • Age: 29
    • Birthplace: Lyonshall, United Kingdom
    • Profession: Record producer, Guitarist, Singer-songwriter, Actor, Multi-instrumentalist
  3. Leonardo DiCaprio is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died
    Photo: Andrea Raffin/Shutterstock
    Leo was almost eaten by a shark while diving in South Africa. According to the Titanic star, he was in a cage that was supposed to protect him from the great white while it ate tuna from the water around him. But when a wave came that flipped the cage, the shark landed with half its body inside. Leo laid flat at the bottom of the cage, and narrowly escaped being bitten when the shark snapped five or six times just an arm's length away.  

    That's not even the only time extreme sports have almost killed him. On a sky diving trip, Leo's chute was too tangled to open properly. When his diving companion tried the second chute, that one was tangled too. They managed to get it to open in midair, but were going so fast when they hit the ground that there was a good chance they would break their legs. Luckily, they barrel rolled, got banged up, but survived.
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    • Age: 41
    • Birthplace: Los Angeles, California, United States of America
    • Profession: Television producer, Film Producer, Actor
    • Credits: Inception, The Wolf of Wall Street, Titanic, The Departed
  4. Tracy Morgan is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died
    Photo: david_shankbone/flickr/CC-BY 2.0
    Tracy Morgan was on his way back from a show when the car he was riding in was hit by a truck. One person, Morgan's friend, was killed in the six-car accident. Morgan was left in critical condition with several broken bones, and he was released from the hospital one month later. 

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    • Age: 47
    • Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Comedian, Television producer, Screenwriter, Actor, Voice acting, + more
    • Credits: 30 Rock, Cop Out, Saturday Night Live, The Longest Yard
  5. George Clooney almost died when he broke his back while filming Syriana. The pain of the injury even made Clooney contemplate suicide. He recalls, "I was lying in a hospital bed with an IV in my arm, unable to move, having these headaches where it feels like you're having a stroke, and for a short three-week period, I started to think, 'I may have to do something drastic about this' ... but I never thought I'd get there."

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    • Age: 54
    • Birthplace: Lexington, Kentucky, United States of America
    • Profession: Television director, Television producer, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Actor, + more
    • Credits: Gravity, Ocean's Eleven, Up in the Air, The Descendants
  6. Anne Hathaway is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list 50+ Celebrities Who Have Almost Died
    Photo: Featureflash/Shutterstock.com
    Anne Hathaway almost died while vacationing in Hawaii in 2014. She was swimming in the ocean when she got caught up in a dangerous riptide. A surfer was able to get to the the Oscar-winning actress and pull her to shore.

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    • Age: 33
    • Birthplace: New York City, New York, United States of America
    • Profession: Actor, Voice acting
    • Credits: Les Misérables, Rachel Getting Married, The Dark Knight Rises, The Devil Wears Prada
  7. In 1988, Gary Busey was involved in a horrible motorcycle accident. Busey suffered from a cracked skull, and doctors thought he may have permanent brain damage. He was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash.

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    • Age: 71
    • Birthplace: Baytown, Texas, United States of America
    • Profession: Musician, Actor, Voice acting
    • Credits: Lethal Weapon, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, Point Break, Predator 2
  8. Johnny Depp almost died in 2011 when he was flying in a small plane with director Bruce Robinson. They were mid-flight when the engines suddenly died out. Depp said: "The sound of the engines stopped. There was silence. Bruce and I were looking at each other and I think I said, 'Is this it?' It was like this weird extended moment when you're just floating for a second, and you could feel this unpleasant descent." Moments later the engines kicked back on, ensuring that Jack Sparrow would grace the silver screens again.

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    • Age: 52
    • Birthplace: Owensboro, Kentucky, United States of America
    • Profession: Musician, Film Producer, Screenwriter, Restaurateur, Actor, + more
    • Credits: Edward Scissorhands, Sweeney Todd, The Demon Barber Of Fleet Street, Alice in Wonderland, Pirates of The Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl
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