These Stars Retired From Acting, But They're Still Living Large

To us mere mortals, leaving the fame and fortune of celebrity stardom seems absolutely insane. However, for some former actors, the business became too much due to a lack of privacy, meaningful roles, or simply a desire to try something new and more in-line with their interests. According to Chron, some of the careers that former actors choose to pursue include producing and directing, so they can be behind the big screen rather than on it; entrepreneurs, so they can use their influence to sell their own products; and writers, so they can use their creative voices in other ways.

Hollywood has its fair share of stars who have left the business but judging by these amazing homes that they live in, they're still doing alright. Many continue to live in million-dollar mansions without the constant stream of paparazzi banging on their doors. Here's where your favorite former actors from the past have lived.

Cameron Diaz's calming Beverly Hills modern farmhouse with 24/7 security

Throughout the 2000s, Cameron Diaz was Hollywood's "It" girl, starring in everything from "Shrek" to "Charlie's Angels" to "Bad Teacher." With such a wide range of roles, it seemed like she would be on the big screen forever, but she had other plans. According to an interview on Kevin Hart's Peacock talk show, "Hart to Heart," Diaz decided to leave acting to make time for other things she wanted in life, like starting a family. After she married Good Charlotte band member Benji Madden, the two began a life of domesticity together, but, of course, one with some luxe touches. In 2020, they bought a whopping $14.7 million mansion in Beverly Hills set upon nearly two acres, said Dirt.

The modern farmhouse-style estate, which includes both the main home and a home for visitors, has lots of privacy for the former A-listers with a security team that operates 24/7. Inside, Diaz and Madden enjoy a flowing open floor plan as well as towering ceilings and calming neutral colors throughout the six bedrooms. There's also a gourmet kitchen with the best appliances on the market, an area for storing wine at an optimal temperature within the dining room, a private theater with an en-suite bathroom, and a primary suite that could double as its own apartment thanks to its lounge area and attached patio.

Eva Mendes' super-private Mediterranean-style estate

Eva Mendes was long a stunner of Hollywood, bringing her Latin flair to films such as "Hitch," "Ghost Rider," and "Lost River." But per E! News, Mendes decided to refocus her energy on being a mom of two daughters after completing "Lost River." So, she hasn't been in a film since then, but she's never felt like she's missing anything. She was so sure of her decision that in late 2021, she left Los Angeles — maybe for good. Mendes and husband Ryan Gosling sold their Los Feliz home for $4.9 million, said Dirt. Mendes and Gosling are so private that they never even put the Mediterranean Revival-style home on the market — it sold in an off-market deal, unfortunately for us nosy real estate fans.

However, what we do know is that the estate they lived in dated back nearly a century and was hidden behind lots of manicured landscaping. It included the main house as well as a separate building, possibly for visitors, as well as a three-vehicle garage. Mendes had owned the four-bedroom, nearly 4,000 square foot place for 14 years, buying it shortly before she and Gosling tied the knot. Since the two moved, it's been rumored that they've been staying at their Santa Barbara County home, which they previously used as a vacation spot.

Robert Redford's $5 million ranch in Utah named after a movie he starred in and produced

Unlike the aforementioned stars, Robert Redford wasn't exactly itching to leave acting. Entertainment Weekly reported that the iconic star who was in classics like "Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid" and "The Way We Were" decided to leave the profession after an astounding 60-year career when he was 81 years old in 2018. His last movie was "The Old Man & The Gun." But 60 years of acting means that Redford has quite the bank account. In 2021, he decided to offload one of his properties — a ranch in Utah set upon 30 acres, including a farmhouse, three barns and stables, and several other buildings (via Architectural Digest).

The ranch, which Redford listed for $5 million, is named Horse Whisper Ranch after Redford's film "The Horse Whisperer." Redford picked it up in 1996, after it was founded a century ago by other owners, said Love Property. Horse Whisper Ranch is also not far away from Sundance, Utah, where Redford formed the famous Sundance Film Festival. So why would he want to part with a property he clearly loved and owned for 25 years? He wanted to set his sights on yet another ranch he owns not too far away from Horse Whisper Ranch (via The Wall Street Journal).

Kal Penn's $1.5 million Hollywood Hills abode with crazy canyon views

Times have changed for former actor Kal Penn. The same actor who starred in comedies like "Harold and Kumar Go to White Castle," "Epic Movie," and "National Lampoon's Family Vacation" went on to become a White House staff member in the Barack Obama administration. It's possible he didn't take too much of a pay cut, judging from his $1.5 million Hollywood Hills home that he put up for sale in 2018. Realtor said that Penn bought it in 2007 when he joined the cast of "House," and owned it for over a decade. 

The home included three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a flowing floorplan, lots of modern updates, and enormous windows for checking out the views of Upper Nichols Canyon. Even though it was built in 1950, it had a super-modern exterior — very Los Angeles — with clean lines and an architecturally interesting gray façade. Inside, though, lots of natural light, wood beams, and other wood details warmed up the space. The kitchen included tons of stainless steel, including a unique stainless steel island with a few black stools. It was set at the end of a cul-de-sac atop nearly 5,000 square feet of property, including a big deck for sunning, a spa area attached to the primary bedroom, and a space for storing wine at the perfect temperature.

Portia de Rossi's six-acre ranch with a nearly 200-year-old home on the grounds

Portia de Rossi is a woman who likes a challenge. She was the star of TV shows like "Arrested Development," "Scandal," and "Nip/Tuck," but in 2019, she bid acting goodbye. According to an interview on "The Ellen DeGeneres Show," she simply wanted to try something new, so she quit acting and started a publication company. However, she and her wife Ellen DeGeneres have also become quite the real estate moguls since then. Dirt said one of their buys included Rancho San Leandro in Montecito, California, which they paid $14.3 million for in 2021 — and, strangely enough, also owned for less than a year while flipping it several years before. They originally paid $7.2 million for it, sold it for $11 million, then repurchased it later.

However, we could see why de Rossi and DeGeneres would want to get their hands back on this stunning ranch. Set upon six acres, the estate includes several buildings, including a small-but-mighty main house. It has only one bedroom, but it dates back nearly 200 years and is in impeccable shape. So how does this famous couple live in just one bedroom on this ranch? They don't, at least not really. Each other building on the property serves as its own "room," like one that's a garage, one that's a personal gym, and one that's an office.

Gene Hackman's longtime Mediterranean-style Montecito home

For many years, Gene Hackman graced the big screens with hits like "The Royal Tenenbaums," "Enemy of the State," and "The Firm." But according to Empire, it all took a turn in 2004, when Hackman was 74 years old. A doctor told him that his heart wasn't doing well, and he had to do what he could to refrain from stress. His acting career abruptly ended, and we haven't heard much from Hackman since. However, long before Hackman retired, he was already settled in his forever home in Montecito, California, still away from the wandering eyes of Hollywood.

Hackman's home, designed in a Mediterranean style with a white façade and red-orange roof atop 25 acres, dates back more than a century from its beginnings as a vacation home, said Architectural Digest. But that wasn't his only impressive property. He also owned an enormous beachfront property within walking distance of downtown Carmel, which he sold for $27 million in 2015 (via The Mercury News). Hackman owned it back in the early 1990s and sold it in 1993. No doubt it wasn't quite as expensive back then, but the man clearly has an eye for appreciating properties.

Frankie Muniz's multiple Scottsdale mansions

We can't forget about "Malcolm in the Middle," with six years and seven seasons, although star Frankie Muniz may like to. After the show was over, Muniz was exhausted, and he decided to pursue some of his other interests that had nothing to do with Hollywood. Per People, Muniz became a race car driver and musician. He also moved to Arizona, where he lived in a five-bedroom home in Scottsdale that he put up for sale for $2.4 million in 2017, said Realtor. The home includes five bedrooms, seven bathrooms, towering ceilings, beige tones, and many stone details. It sits on a little more than an acre and has more than 6,000 square feet of space, said DC Ranch Homes. It's also just a short drive away from the Troon North Golf Club, a five-star Scottsdale resort frequented by the rich and famous.

However, this isn't the only Scottsdale property that Muniz tried to offload around the same time. In late 2016, he also listed Il Segreto, his 1930s-circa home that includes a whopping 5,300 square feet, more than two acres of land, two pools, and tons of space for entertaining guests (via Phoenix Business Journal). Muniz listed the high-end home for $3.5 million.

Andrew Shue's cozy Manhattan apartment that he shares with wife Amy Robach

Andrew Shue enjoyed huge popularity while he was on "Melrose Place" from 1992 to 1999, but acting wasn't his true passion. According to Major League Soccer, Shue was a star soccer player before being cast on the show, and he continued to be one afterwards. He actually didn't want his teammates to know that he had been on the show. After "Melrose Place" ended, Shue stopped pursuing acting, except for a stint in "Gracie" in 2007. But he's still done more than well. He married "Good Morning America" star Amy Robach, and the pair and their kids live in Manhattan.

Shue and Robach's home seems quite normal and homey despite their celebrity status. Their kitchen features an exposed brick wall, counters constructed of quartz, and lots of colorful knickknacks lining the shelves, per Hello!. It also has sliding barn doors to keep storage tucked away in the space-strapped city and a living room with lots of fun touches. The walls have been painted jet-black for a modern aesthetic, while the room is warmed up with wood floors, plush rugs, a pink couch, and a raw wood coffee table. Colossal windows bring sunlight to the space.

Danielle Fishel's $1.6 million Los Angeles family mansion

We all had a bit of a crush on Topanga, otherwise known as Danielle Fishel, on "Boy Meets World." But when the long-running show ended in 2000, it seemed like Fishel's career in the acting world ended with it. IMDb reported that Fishel was in a few made-for-TV movies, but otherwise, it wasn't easy to find her name in the credits of any big-name film. However, she found a few other roles in the entertainment industry, including as a correspondent on "The Tyra Banks Show" and the host of "The Dish." Those roles allowed Fishel to keep up her celebrity lifestyle somewhat.

According to Dirt, Fishel moved to Woodland Hills, California, with her husband in early 2019. The pair paid $1.6 million for a 3,700 square foot home with five bedrooms in the neighborhood that's a part of Los Angeles. Their pad dates back about 70 years, but it's completely updated and has lots of family-friendly touches like a flowing floorplan, wide-plank wood floors, a cozy fireplace, and lots of skylights for tons of natural light. There's also a pool, outdoor fireplace, and plenty of space and patios for entertaining guests while still keeping privacy from neighbors.

Jennie Garth's $3.3 million Pasadena paradise

Jennie Garth was a star of "Beverly Hills, 90210," but since the show ended in 2000, her acting gigs have been few and far between. However, she hasn't totally given up on Hollywood. Per E! News, Garth lives not too far away in Pasadena, a city about 30 minutes away from Tinseltown. She paid $3.3 million for a luxe ranch here, where she lives with her husband and her three children. The home dates back about 70 years, but you would never know by looking at it, thanks to its modern revamps. The 3,360 square foot space also has killer views — Garth can see the many mountains of California here, making this pad the best of both worlds.

Inside, Garth's home includes a gourmet kitchen, a primary bedroom with a closet fit for a fashion queen, a bathroom that doubles as a private spa, and even a wet bar, ideal for entertaining. To make it perfect for a family, the home has many pops of pastel colors and softening features, like wicker chairs and plush rugs. Outside, Garth has set up quite the entertaining space thanks to her pool, outdoor dining set, and plenty of lounge chairs.

Dylan Sprouse's eclectic Hollywood Hills Spanish-style abode

Dylan Sprouse was one half of the twinning child actor duo who starred in "The Suite Life of Zack & Cody," but when the show ended in 2008, Sprouse's interest in acting mostly did, too. At that time, he finished school and set his sights on other projects, including opening a meadery in Brooklyn. But he doesn't seem ready to say goodbye to showbiz. Per Dirt, Sprouse bought a $1.8 million home in Hollywood Hills in late 2021 that dates back to 1923 and includes four bedrooms through its 1,600 square feet. It also seems like it could be a dream for the eclectic former star.

Outside, the Spanish-style home is surrounded by dense foliage, offering lots of privacy as well as a garden ambiance. The driveway can hold up to eight vehicles, ideal for any young man. Inside, the living room is dripping with color thanks to pale green walls, bright and offbeat paintings, and a red couch. The kitchen and dining room are even brighter with dark blue walls framing wood cabinetry, floors, furniture, and a table. However, the bathroom looks straight out of a Grecian resort. It's completely lined with white with a few pops of dark blue, and has a huge walk-in shower as well as a wall-sized mirror.

Meghan Markle's $14.7 million European-inspired Montecito home that she shares with Prince Harry

It's hard to remember that the Duchess of Sussex is also a former actress, having appeared in "Suits," "90210," and "Horrible Bosses." Meghan Markle retired from acting when she married Prince Harry so she could focus on her royal duties, which quickly ended as she and Harry stepped away from the throne. But they may be doing even better than they would be across the pond.

According to Love Property, Markle and Harry bought a simply stunning $14.7 million mansion in Montecito in 2020. Surrounded by ivy rolling up the walls, manicured landscaping, and tons of florals, it looks like a European palace from the outside. There's also a playground-sized area for Markle and Harry's two kids, and a rectangular pool surrounded by olive trees. Inside, the celebrity-worthy pad has lots of other luxe, European-style touches. The living room has built-in bookcases lined with Markle and Harry's favorites, as well as exposed wood beams and regal chandeliers. Nine bedrooms, several with their own fireplaces and patios, fill the enormous space adorned with beige and yellow tones. And so the couple doesn't have to leave too often to face the crazed paparazzi, the home also includes a library, fitness center, private theater, entertainment room, and spa.

Eva Amurri's historic Connecticut home that she completely renovated

Through the late '90s and 2000s, Eva Amurri could be found in productions like "Californication," "How I Met Your Mother," and "House." But in 2015, she decided it was time to focus her attention on her other interests. These days, she operates Happily Eva After, which is a lifestyle brand and blog. Fittingly, she detailed her Westport, Connecticut home renovation on that same blog.

Per Happily Eva After, Amurri lives in a historic home that she finished renovating in early 2019. Dating back to the mid-19th century, Amurri's house has lots of character, but it needed some TLC before she and her family could move in. Now, it features an open floorplan, white wood floors and white walls to brighten the space, and stainless steel appliances. Outside, there's a huge stone patio, perfect for Amurri's growing family to hang out on, as well as lots of green space for the kids to play (via Swenson Granite Works). There's even an outdoor fireplace for those chilly nights. Plus, it's all close to the downtown area in a neighborhood that dates back to the Revolutionary and Victorian eras.

Mary-Kate Olsen's historic New York City townhouse that she bought for $13.5 million

For years, kids followed Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen through their TV and movie adventures, including "Full House," "New York Minute," and "Passport to Paris." However, once the twins grew up, acting was no longer on their priority list — fashion was. The pair became fashion designers, and, as such, money continued to follow them. New York Post said that in late 2021, Mary-Kate Olsen decided to offload her New York City townhouse for an amazing $11.5 million. Unfortunately, the price would be at a loss — Olsen bought the pad with her then-husband seven years prior for $13.5 million.

Despite the loss, it's still an amazing property. The townhouse has 8,700 square feet, a colossal amount of area for space-strapped New York City. It includes five stories, towering ceilings, several fireplaces, tons of skylights, and dark wood for a formal feel. Outside, there's also a lush garden for a bit of nature within the industrial city. The house dates all the way back to 1921, so it has modern amenities as well as historic charm. It features touches like herringbone floors, ornate finishings, and a long history of celebrity residents.