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Retired celebrities, now and then: David Letterman, Amanda Bynes, more

From teen heartthrobs to veteran TV show hosts and actors, see which celebs have publicly announced they've retired, have left their known-for professions for something else, or have been missing from the spotlight for years, leaving us wondering "where are they now?"

Cameron Diaz

Cameron Diaz reunited with the cast of
Credit: Chris Weeks / Liaison; Getty Images

Cameron Diaz reunited with the cast of "The Sweetest Thing" during an Entertainment Weekly interview in March 2018 and ended up revealing that she's living the retired life. "I'm semi-retired ... and I am actually retired, so I would love to see you ladies," she said.

After appearing in blockbusters such as "There's Something About Mary" and the "Charlie's Angels" franchise, Diaz, who is married to musician Benji Madden, last appeared in the 2014 films "Annie" and "Sex Tape." At a Goop Wellness Summit in June, she said that she needed to make herself "whole" while explaining her hiatus from acting.

Aretha Franklin

Credit: Getty Images

"The Queen of Soul," who has released hits such as "Think" and "Respect" during the course of a several-decade-long musical career, told Detroit's Local 4 channel that she was retiring at the end of 2017. While she said she still plans to record albums, she deemed 2017 to be her last year in concert. Franklin was included in the lineup for the Toronto Music Festival slated for June 28, 2018, but she cancelled her show over health concerns, according to the festival. In an exclusive interview with the Detroit Free Press on Aug. 16, 2017, Franklin detailed plans to open a nightclub in her hometown of Detroit called "Aretha's," where she plans to sing occasionally.

Paul Pierce

After having played 19 seasons in the National
Credit: Getty Images

After having played 19 seasons in the National Basketball Association, a majority of which was spent as captain of the Boston Celtics, the Oakland native retired on July 17, 2017. After spending shorter stints at the Brooklyn Nets, Washington Wizards and the Los Angeles Clippers, the 10-time NBA All-Star signed an honorary contract with the Celtics so he could retire as a player for the team he spent 15 seasons with. His jersey, No. 34, was retired by the Celtics on Feb. 11, 2018.

Daniel Day-Lewis

British actor of
Credit: Getty Images

British actor of "Lincoln" and "There Will Be Blood" fame announced his retirement via his representative to USA Today on June 20, 2017. In December, "Phantom Thread" -- what Lewis called his last film -- reached theaters to critical acclaim and a subsequent Oscar nomination. A record-breaking three-time Oscar winner for lead actor, Lewis was named the "World's Greatest Actor" by TIME magazine in 2012 and was also awarded a knighthood in 2014.

Mike Piazza

Mike Piazza was a catcher from 1992 to
Credit: Getty Images

Mike Piazza was a catcher from 1992 to 2007 and played for the New York Mets from 1998 until 2005. In July 2016, he was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame and had his number retired by the Mets. That same year, he decided to become the the majority owner of a third-division Italian soccer club, Reggiana.

Jeff Cohen

Former child star Jeff Cohen, whose most notable
Credit: Warner Bros. Entertainment; Getty Images

Former child star Jeff Cohen, whose most notable role is in Steven Spielberg's 1985 film "The Goonies," went from an on-screen, red-headed misfit to real-life entertainment lawyer. His other childhood roles included "Kids Incorporated" and "Family Ties." In 2002, he helped found the Cohen & Gardner entertainment law firm. Detailing his successes as a lawyer, he published "The Dealmaker's Ten Commandments: Ten Essential Tools for Business Forged in the Trenches of Hollywood" in 2015.

Jon Stewart

Jon Stewart left
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Jon Stewart left "The Daily Show" in August 2015 after 16 years as host of Comedy Central's satirical news program. But he couldn't stay away from media for long; he announced in November 2015 that he had signed a four-year production deal with HBO. He's also made guest appearances on "Full Frontal with Samantha Bee," "The Late Show" (most recently on Nov. 8, 2017), and "The Daily Show with Trevor Noah" (most recently on Nov. 16, 2017). He also hosted "The Night of Too Many Stars" on Nov. 18, 2017, a comedy benefit to support autism awareness. Retired? Not exactly ...

Taylor Momsen

Credit: Getty Images

"Little J" is all grown up and retired from acting. Taylor Momsen, who played Jenny Humphrey on "Gossip Girl," left the show in its fourth season and only returned for the series finale at the end of the sixth season. She's currently the vocalist and guitarist in The Pretty Reckless.

Mötley Crüe

Rockers Vince Neil, Mick Mars, Nikki Sixx and
Credit: Getty Images

Rockers Vince Neil, Mick Mars, Nikki Sixx and Tommy Lee, of the '80s band Mötley Crüe, have sold more than 100 million albums worldwide, on top of their New York Times best-seller "The Dirt." In 2014, the band announced its goodbye tour with a surprising twist -- a clause that reportedly included an agreement that none of the members would use the Mötley Crüe trademark again following the tour. In 2016, they released a live DVD/CD combo featuring 15 of their most popular tracks from the tour.

Michael Jordan

Michael Jordan played 15 seasons in the NBA
Credit: Getty Images

Michael Jordan played 15 seasons in the NBA with the Chicago Bulls and Washington Wizards. He retired three times -- the first time to play baseball -- before his third and final retirement in 2003. On March 17, 2010, Jordan purchased NBA team the Charlotte Hornets, becoming the first former NBA player to own majority share of a franchise.

Arnold Schwarzenegger

Arnold Schwarzenegger retired from bodybuilding after winning Mr.
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Arnold Schwarzenegger retired from bodybuilding after winning Mr. Olympia for a seventh time in 1980. He went on to have a successful career as an actor, starring in hits like "Conan the Barbarian" and "The Terminator" before serving as governor of California from 2003 until 2010. He has since returned to acting. He lasted one short season as Donald Trump's "Apprentice" successor before announcing his resignation from the hosting role on March 3, 2017.

Kevin Jonas

Since the Jonas Brothers split in October 2013,
Credit: Getty Images

Since the Jonas Brothers split in October 2013, both Joe and Nick have gone on to launch their own pretty successful careers in the music industry. Nick has two solo albums and Joe released an album in 2016 with his band DNCE. Kevin, on the other hand, decided the business wasn't for him. He had a short-lived reality show on E! in 2013 titled "Married to Jonas." It was later revealed during his 2014 cameo on "The Real Housewives of New Jersey" that the former pop star was working as a contractor. Now a family man with two daughters, he is the co-CEO of an influencer marketing company The Blu Market.

Derek Jeter

Derek Jeter was a star shortstop for the
Credit: Getty Images

Derek Jeter was a star shortstop for the New York Yankees for 20 seasons before he retired in 2014. A player on five World Series championship teams, Jeter said in an April 2015 interview on SiriusXM's Mad Dog Radio that he doesn't miss baseball "at all," adding that it was the right time for him to retire. In 2014, Jeter founded "The Players' Tribune," a sports journalism site that allows athletes to tell their stories in their own words. Jeter also serves as the Chief Executive Officer and part-owner of the Miami Marlins, as of September 2017.

Larry King

Larry King started his career as a disc
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Larry King started his career as a disc jockey at WAHR-AM in Miami in 1957. He then went on to become a columnist for the Miami Herald and a freelance writer and broadcaster in Louisiana, among other professions. It wasn't until Jan. 30, 1978, that the late-night radio talk-show, "The Larry King Show," debuted, and then in in 1985, "Larry King Live" premiered on CNN. After 25 years on the show and countless interviews, King announced his retirement in 2010. But a few months after the show's December 2010 finale, King went on to "Larry King: Stand Up," a comedy series, and "Larry King Now," an online series picked up by Russian-owned news channel, RT. On Sept. 13, 2017, he revealed to Extra's Mario Lopez that he was diagnosed with stage one malignant lung cancer. Celebrating his broadcasting career, he joked, "I'll die on the air probably."

Earvin 'Magic' Johnson

Point guard Earvin
Credit: Getty Images

Point guard Earvin "Magic" Johnson played 13 seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers, retiring multiple times before he left the court for good in 1996. But Johnson has kept very busy since as a businessman and, more notably, as an advocate for the prevention of HIV and AIDS. The former NBA star tested positive for HIV in 1991, and that same year, he founded the Magic Johnson Foundation, which aims to raise awareness and prevent HIV and AIDS. On Feb. 21, 2017, the LA Times reported that Johnson had taken over as the president of basketball operations for his former team, the Los Angeles Lakers.

Oprah Winfrey

Live from Chicago on Sept. 8, 1986, Oprah
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Live from Chicago on Sept. 8, 1986, Oprah Winfrey's self-titled talk show, "The Oprah Winfrey Show," debuted. After 25 seasons on air, Winfrey announced she was retiring. "I love this show. This show has been my life, and I love it enough to know when it's the time to say goodbye. Twenty-five years feels right in my bones and in my spirit. It's the perfect number. The exact right time," she said in a video message. Although retired from her popular show, Winfrey is reaching her fans through her OWN network and "O" magazine, books, charity events and special appearances. She also is the face of Weight Watchers, empowering people during the weight-loss process. At the Golden Globes on Jan. 8, Winfrey gave an impassioned speech in support of the #MeToo movement and women's rights, after she accepted the Cecille B. Demille Award. Her speech also reignited hopes for a 2020 presidential run, an idea she has hinted at in the past.

Sean Connery

Hollywood icon Sean Connery's big breakthrough came in
Credit: Getty Images

Hollywood icon Sean Connery's big breakthrough came in 1962 when he portrayed James Bond in "Dr. No." He went on to star in six more films as Bond, and has maintained a successful career afterwards. While receiving the American Film Institute's Lifetime Achievement Award on June 8, 2006, the Scottish actor, and one-time "Most Sexiest Man" announced his retirement. In 2007, it was speculated that Connery would join the "Indiana Jones" cast, but he debunked the rumors, saying on his website, "If anything could have pulled me out of retirement, it would have been an 'Indiana Jones' film. But in the end, retirement is just too damned much fun."

Jay Leno

Longtime talk show host Jay Leno retired back
Credit: Getty Images

Longtime talk show host Jay Leno retired back in 2014 after decades on NBC. He first hosted "The Tonight Show with Jay Leno" from 1992 to 2009, before being replaced by Conan O'Brien. Leno hosted "The Jay Leno Show" -- 2009-2010 -- before returning to host "The Tonight Show" from 2010 until 2014. He has since returned to the show, now hosted by Jimmy Fallon, several times (most recently on April 7, 2017). He has also made appearances on Late Night with Seth Myers and The Late Late show with James Corden.

Amanda Bynes

Credit: Getty Images

"All That" and "The Amanda Show" made Amanda Bynes a prominent star in the late '90s, early '00s. She then went on to hold a very successful career as an actress, but by June 2010, she was ready to call it quits. "I know 24 is a young age to retire but you heard it here first I've #retired," she Tweeted. "I don't love acting anymore so I've stopped doing it ... If I don't love something anymore I stop doing it ... Being an actress isn't as fun as it may seem." One month later, Bynes tweeted that she's "unretired." However, the once-promising actress' life took a turn in March 2012 -- car accidents, drugs, arrests and Twitter rants included. During a very public breakdown, the once-troubled star yet again tweeted: "I'm 26, a multi-millionaire, retired." Bynes has since been keeping a low profile.

Dave Chappelle

Comedian Dave Chappelle is best known for his
Credit: Getty Images

Comedian Dave Chappelle is best known for his sketch comedy show, "Chappelle's Show," which debuted in 2003 and ran for two complete seasons on Comedy Central. Chappelle left the show in the middle of production of season 3, which led to a three-episode third season that aired in 2006. Chappelle told Oprah back in 2006 that he left the show because he was overwhelmed and stressed out. "I felt in a lot of instances I was deliberately being put through stress because when you're a guy who generates money, people have a vested interest in controlling you," he said. Chappelle has continued to do stand-up comedy since the show ended and, in 2015, he played Morris in Spike Lee's film "Chi-Raq." He headed back to TV (sort of) with two recorded concert specials -- "Dave Chappelle: The Age of Spin" and "Dave Chappelle: Deep in the Heart of Texas" that hit Netflix on March 21, 2017, and won him a Golden Globe for "Best Comedy Album." He made two more specials with the streamer -- "Equanimity" and "the Bird Revelation" that premiered on Netflix on Dec. 31, 2017.

Ricki Lake

Fans may know Ricki Lake as Tracy Turnblad,
Credit: Getty Images

Fans may know Ricki Lake as Tracy Turnblad, the lead character in John Waters' 1988 "Hairspray" or from her self-titled day-time talk show, "Ricki Lake," which had an 11-year run, from 1993-2004. In 2012, she gave it another go, but didn't quite have the same success. She gave it up one year later. However, we haven't totally forgotten about Lake. She also performed on the dancing competition show, "Dancing with the Stars," and in the documentary "Sweetening the Pill." Most recently, she produced "Weed the People," a documentary about the medical effects of marijuana that premiered at the 2018 SXSW Film Festival in Austin.

David Letterman

Known for his brash sense of humor, former
Credit: CBS / John Paul Filo

Known for his brash sense of humor, former talk-show host David Letterman hosted the last episode -- or No. 6,028, the last in a string that began Feb. 1, 1982 -- of "Late Show with David Letterman" on Wednesday, May 20, 2015. During retirement, Letterman has kept a seemingly low profile. However, in March 2016, the retiree was spotted jogging around the Caribbean islands with a Santa Claus-eque beard. Letterman no longer watches late night television and hasn't even seen successor Stephen Colbert's show, he revealed in a March 5 interview with Vulture. For his latest foray as a television interviewer, Letterman announced a six-episode series on Netflix titled "My Next Guest Needs No Introduction with David Letterman." The first episode, which aired on Jan. 12, 2018, featured former President Barack Obama.

Macaulay Culkin

If Kevin McCallister doesn't sound familiar, Macaulay Culkin
Credit: 20th Century Fox; Getty Images

If Kevin McCallister doesn't sound familiar, Macaulay Culkin definitely will. The "Home Alone" actor and Mila Kunis' ex-boyfriend stepped out of the limelight for quite some time, resurfacing extremely thin and gaunt in the summer of 2012, allegedly while battling a drug addiction. Now seemingly healthy, Culkin has since cleaned up his appearance a bit. Sporting long blonde locks, the former child star told Vulture in April, "I'm a man in his mid-30s who's essentially retired. I kind of go where the wind takes me a little bit." On June 21, 2017, Variety reported that Culkin was involved as an actor in Seth Green's directorial debut, "Changeling," which began shooting the same week in Thailand.

Lance Armstrong

Professional cyclist Lance Armstrong announced Wednesday, Feb. 16,
Credit: Getty Images

Professional cyclist Lance Armstrong announced Wednesday, Feb. 16, 2011, that he had retired from the sport to spend more time with his family and to campaign against cancer. Armstrong had the same reasoning when he temporarily retired in 2005. Despite his reasoning, Armstrong, who went through a very public doping scandal, was stripped of his seven Tour de France titles in 2012 and banned from ever cycling again.


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