$53 Million? Celebrities With Record-Breaking Amounts Of Debt

February 16, 2016  |  
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When Kanye West announced that he was $53 million in debt, we all raised an eyebrow. How can someone who makes millions get that far behind on their bills? Well, as it turns out, Kanye West was speaking figuratively about his massive bills. That $53 million is the amount that he’s invested in his own companies. And if he can get Mark Zuckerberg to invest that cool billion in him, his financial house will soon be in order.

But the rest of the celebrities on this list aren’t just broke because of investments. These stars managed to get themselves into mind-boggling amounts of debt. Everything from IRS debt to balling out of control helped these stars find themselves millions of dollars in a hole. What’s even more unbelievable? How some of these stars managed to work their way out of their debt. Get ready to feel better about your own credit card bill and learn some hard lessons in finance from these celebs with the biggest debts in recent history.

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Comedian Sinbad filed for bankruptcy for the second time in 2013 after finding himself $11 million in debt, including $8 million in unpaid taxes.

Source: WENN

MC Hammer

Back in 1996, MC Hammer’s massive luxurious lifestyle put the rapper $13 million debt. His money issues wound up outshining his music career. But, as of 2014, he’d paid the debt down to roughly $1 million.

disinherited celebrity kids

50 Cent

Recently, 50 Cent had a few hiccups in his plan to Get Rich Or Die Trying. Despite his reported $155 million net worth, the rapper recently declared bankruptcy to deal with all the lawsuits against him. He estimates his debt at between $10 and $50 million, which is just about equal to his assets.

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Nicolas Cage

Most people couldn’t imagine blowing through $150 million. But Nicholas Cage not only spent his fortune, but he also ended up owing the IRS $13 million on top of it. To pay off his massive debt, Nicolas Cage had to sell his castles in England and Germany, an Island in the Bahamas and several other of his properties all around the world.


Willie Nelson

In 1990, the IRS most of Willie Nelson’s property (everything but his favorite guitar) to cover his $16.7 million debt. But the legendary country singer managed to earn it all back with his 1992 album, The IRS Tapes: Who’ll Buy My Memories?

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Kim Basinger

Kim Basinger wound up $8 million in debt when she was sued for pulling out of her contract to appear in the movie Boxing Helena — right after she spent $20 million on the town of Braselton, Georgia. Not only did Basinger have to file for bankruptcy, but she had to sell her town too!

Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes

Wesley Snipes wound up with a $17 million tax debt (and a three-year prison sentence) and was found guilty of not filing tax returns in 1999, 2000 and 2001.

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Mike Tyson

Back in 2005, boxer Mike Tyson announced that his $400 million net worth was gone, and he was $23 million in debt. But Iron Mike has spent the past few years getting financially back on track. The IRS even forgave $2 million of his debt in 2014.

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Toni Braxton

Despite selling millions of records in the 1990s, singer Toni Braxton filed for bankruptcy in 1998 claiming debts up to $50 million. She had to file for bankruptcy again in 2010. Thankfully, Braxton Family Values helped to bring the Braxton family back into the spotlight and Braxton back into the black!

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Annie Leibovitz

Famous photographer Annie Lebovitz found herself $24 million in debt. How did Leibovitz do it? Mortgages on several homes, frequent trips abroad, and flying her Vermont maintenance man all around the world to fix the air conditioner on properties when she needed it.

Image Source: WENN

Michael Jackson

The only thing more impressive than Michael Jackson’s massive debt is his massive wealth. When Jackson died in 2009, he was $500 million in debt — split among 65 creditors. But the $750 million in assets that he accrued in publishing catalogs has left behind plenty to support his family.

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Joe Francis

Girls Gone Wild founder Joe Francis also found himslef in hot water for fudging tax details. Now he’s on the hook for a $29.4 million bill with the IRS, and millions in other financial responsibilities.

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In 2011, the rap legend revealed that he owed a nearly $7 million debt to the IRS plus $25,000 a month in child and spousal support after his divorce from R&B singer Kelis.

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Wayne Newton

Singer Wayne Newton made the 1983 Guinness Book of World Records as the highest-paid entertainer in the world. About 10 years later, he was an impressive $20 million in debt following a string of bad investments.

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  • Boom Boom

    So….Dumbye is $53 million down but he wants $1 billion in return? Is the rest of the money for his skanky ho of a wife?

  • Geradeaus

    Kim could make another sex tape. That’d bring in, at least, a hundred bucks.

  • Pjack

    Dude. Kanye, close your mouth. It makes you look stupid!

  • SteveUrkelDidIDoThat

    lol zuckerberg isn’t stupid. he knows any money given to kanye is wasted money. it would be the equivalent of literally flushing it down the toilet.

  • Shaun Baxter

    How do these rich people manage to get into debt? Michael Jackson half a billion in debt?! Couldn’t the people he owed money to have taken at least 500 million dollars worth of his reported 700 million dollar assets left behind?

  • Wayne Walls

    Hopefully, Zuckerberg isn’t that stupid.

  • Chuck Stone

    Kanye is a punk misogynist that should be broke for the crummy noise he calls “music”.

  • joe

    The racist begging the white man. hahahahaha

  • ED S

    A fool and his money are soon parted? A fool and his money are soon parted? King Solomon saw the poor gather large harvests, but they never had anything left at the end of the year. Their lack of financial judgment cost them their income…..

  • Josh

    If you’re going to give someone a billion dollars, please give it to the sick children at St. Judes.
    Kanye has had it all and blew it, these kids have no choice.

  • aguilloe

    He’s in debt and then he asks Mark Zuckerberg for financial assistance, and then says he is leaving the U.S. Don’t do it Mark, he won’t pay you back. I mean he trashes everyone, including the U.S., trashes decent people, has everything going for him, but his ego is getting in the way of his mess. Go ahead and leave, we have enough to care about like the poor, the homeless and our families.

  • Fred Flinstone

    can a brotha get a loan????

  • madmilker

    If there were love there Ms Ann would not have let it happen in the first place…

  • Dave Algonquin

    Hey, Kanye. I hear Taco Bell is hiring. Putting lettuce on tacos would be in line with your real-world skill set, or lack thereof.

  • Unknown User

    Are you really all this dumb to take his word for his “debt”. It’s not an actual debt, it is money he has spent that he has. Are you in debt, when you buy a soda and drink it? no you’ve consumed a product.
    Are you “in debt” when you take money you have and invest it in a stock? no.
    He’s invested money he had in a product that will have little or no ROI. That’s not in debt, that is just stupid.

  • I’m surprised you guys don’t get… This is a PR stunt!! Kanye South, East and West clang need lots of publicity to stay afloat… He got what he wanted, because every news outlet is talking about him now…

  • They’re Black. what do you expect? Most all Black pros are broke shortly after they retire.

    • Krazy Duck

      Thing is hes not broke.Hes just trying to use other peoples money.

  • John Johnson

    Kardishan hookers cost a lot of $$

  • john

    Kanye needs Trump to walk him through bankruptcy.That way when he takes it he keeps his money while screwing every one else.

  • Jack Straww

    What you get for loaning money to a black. How stupid were you?

  • ishabaka

    Ima send im tree fiddy..

  • cp123

    So he made bad investments in no-talent corporations. Talk about admitting not just failure but BIG TIME failure. His family must be so proud of this little do*ch.

  • Skip Godinez

    MORON !!!!!

  • disqus_nPD0cxKd50

    He could sell his brain , and get about 2 cents for it.

  • Albert Creech

    It’s expensive having a white wife. This is what we call a dumb negro.

  • Ed White

    Asking a white man for the money is 2 funny Go ask Floyd Mayweather see what he says lol

  • Fred Tattersall

    What we have here is a perfect example of why “debtors prisons” should be re-established and they should be apart from State or Federal funded prisons. These should be used across the board for anyone, any color, any creed who manages to make millions of dollars and yet end up with millions of dollars in debt! Kanye has shown that no matter how much money you make/have/had, a loser will always be a loser.

  • jon

    I’d be worried too, if I owed $51 million and was a no talent hack like he is too.

  • Billy Futch

    Kanye probably believes Zuckerberg, or society owes his sorry A– something. Kanye is a dirtbag and thug.

  • soledo

    Trump will recommend KW to file bankruptcy.

  • mark

    SIck of the ads popping up every few seconds.

  • jeephann

    This idiot needs to Call Moochelle and ask to the borrow the White House credit card

  • DerpDerpDerp

    Well, now you know who was buying all his albums….. Him.

    • Al Talena

      stupid [post

  • Mr. Righty Right

    Simple solution. Go to settlebankdebt and get rid of the debt.

  • hi-liter

    This man has some nerve as much as he brags about what he wears, his WIFE’s closet, and all that shat, chile please get the FOH. He should stop wasting his money making body stockings and trying to sell them. He is not a good, not even mediocre designer. Let his WIFE (used all caps because that’s how he says it) get him out of debt with her golden arse and pussee.

  • Holier than thou

    53 million? Nothing a few “accidentally leaked” sex tapes can’t fix.
    Kanye is such a troll. He must be high all the time.

  • GoldenGirl;)

    I’m sure he’s WIFE can help him out? Lol….

    • mjphoto45

      child support here we come

      • cp123

        This dude would never consider paying child support.

      • GoldenGirl;)



    I’m sorry but I don’t feel sorry for none of them.

    • Dave Algonquin

      any of them.

  • Annamuffin

    Kanye west needs to take a page from Jessica Simpson. She has a billion dollar clothing line with affordable clothes that is well respected and hits his same market… News flash the average young professional is shopping at H&M, forever 21, Top shop, Anthropology and other fast fashion stores… If Kanye wants to be a somebody he needs to talk to Kate Moss and Jessica Simpson and look at his target audience and what their buying….

  • Lisa

    So basically, he’s invested $53 million in a line of dull clothing and does not expect a positive return on investment. Then he wants Mr. Zuckerberg to just hand him many times that amount because presumably after Mr. West receives the billion dollars, his dull clothing and crap music will magically become the must-have items of the millennium? wtf?

    • Hallelujah

      Around here, they call the guy a “genius.”

      • Juan Motime

        Glad I don’t live there. Genius must require a considerably lower IQ than where I live.

      • Geradeaus

        Where’s “here”? The California Center for Mental Midgets?

    • Annamuffin

      Kanye is a fool, he should of made a affordable fashion line for his base and not contributed to shoe killing culture. He also should of opened clothing factors in America like American apperal….. He should of tried to be apart of the solution instead of the problem….

      • Lee

        should HAVE

        • Annamuffin

          Nope should’ve

  • ReallyReal

    I’m sweating over college loans here. I can’t even begin to imagine how one owes 53 million. Bless his heart.

    • DG

      Why are you sweating over student loans? Seriously people need to relax. Get a job, set up an income driven payment plan and make your payments. Student loans do not hinder you from starting your life – a family, house, car, etc. are still easily obtainable.

    • Juan Motime

      “Bless his heart”. You must be a fellow southerner. For those of you from the north, bless his heart means, ain’t he stupid. We tend to be polite here in SC. We are a concealed carry state. If you come here, you be polite too.

  • IntrovertedSE

    I hope Kanye stays broke. He needs a slice of humble pie.

    • Sylvia Mccullough


      • Jessica

        Dumb? I don’t know. Flat broke…..nah!