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Who said it? 10 celebs who failed before they made it!


‘When things go wrong, don’t go with them’

  • Elvis Presley failed music class and was told at age 14 that he could not sing. He then went on to win 3 Grammys and become one of the most famous American singers, with a long-term legacy.

‘It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all – in which case, you fail by default.’

  • Do you know how many times J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected by publishers? 12! But Bloomsbury Publishing took it on in 1997, and it was probably the best decision they ever made.

‘All good ideas start out as bad ideas, that’s why it takes so long.’

  • Steven Spielberg was rejected by the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, more than once.  He then went on to create some of the most famous movies of all time: Jaws, Indiana Jones, E.T, Jurassic Park and so many more we all know and love.

‘All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them.’

  • Walt Disney was told he had little imagination and didn’t have any good ideas. He then successfully went on the create Oswald the Rabbit, and then on to Mickey Mouse, the symbol for the legacy. The Disney corporation then went on to win 22 Oscars.

‘The only real valuable thing is intuition’

  • We all know Albert Einstein for his extreme intelligence. But, he did not start speaking until 4, writing until 7 and many thought he was mentally disabled. Einstein then went on to win a Nobel Prize for his physics.

‘You can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will.’

  • Stephen King’s book Carrie was rejected by 30 publishers and led to King throwing the manuscript in the bin out of frustration. It was his wife who took it out and told him to give it another go. Which obviously, he did…

‘What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything’

  • Van Gogh only sold one painting throughout his lifetime. He also wrote a letter claiming his painting ‘The Starry Night’ was a huge painting failure. It is now one of his most famous paintings.

‘Patience is a key element of success’

  • Bill Gates may now be one of the world’s most wealthy businessmen after creating Microsoft, but it wasn’t all plain sailing. Gates’ first business Traf-O-Data dismally failed.

‘Success isn’t about the end result, it’s about what you learn along the way’

  • The American fashion designer Vera Wang originally had ambitions to become a professional figure skater, but after failing to make the Olympic team, she decided to try out the fashion industry

'If it doesn't look easy it is that we hve not tried hard enough yet'

  • During Fred Astaire’s first screen test, it was noted by MGM director that he ‘Can’t act. Can’t sing. Slightly bald. Can dance a little’. Once he found fame for singing, acting and dancing, he kept the note in his home to ensure he always knew where he came from.

We should learn that it’s okay to fail and not succeed the first time round, but each time you’ve got to pick yourself up, off dust yourself off, and try again.





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