9 Moments When Celebrities Became Heroes

    alternately titled: celebrities doing heroic things

    by · February 03, 2016

    Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.

    Celebrities are treated like heroes on a daily basis. A star trips on the red carpet? They’re a hero, for making a human mistake. Another person flips off the paparazzi while walking their dog? They’re a hero for standing up for themselves and the rest of Hollywood. It’s the state of media: Spectacles thrive. But, for some reason, when celebrities do real heroic things—like, say saving a man from a burning car, for instance—these stories become mere fun facts for people to dole out at cocktail parties.

    Ahead, we celebrate those who have done extraordinary things in extraordinary circumstances.

    Photo by Dimities Kambouris/Getty Images.

    Ryan Gosling
    Back in 2011, all-around nice guy Ryan Gosling was walking home from the gym when he came across a tussle in the middle of the street. He inevitably broke up the fight, although he later admitted he was “embarrassed” about it.
    “It was sad, because it turns out that I said to the guy, ‘Why are you doing this?’ He said, ‘Well, he tried to steal my painting,’” he told MTV. “I said, ‘How do you know?’ and he said, ‘Well, he comes here every day and looks at my paintings,’ which means the guy was a fan, and so he wanted the painting so bad he had to steal it because he couldn’t afford it. So he finally steals the painting, and then he’s getting his ass kicked by his hero, and then the guy from ‘The Notebook’ shows up and makes it weirder.”

    Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.

    Kate Winslet
    In the same year that Gosling broke up that street fight, Kate Winslet was among 20 other guests at Richard Branson’s private island. Unfortunately the island’s residence, which was famously shown on MTV Cribs, caught fire at 4am. Winslet swiftly acted to get Branson’s 90-year-old mother out of the burning home.
    “My mum is 90 and can walk but it was more just to speed the process up than anything else,” Branson told The Telegraph. “But anyway, she was great. She swept her up into her arms and got them out of the house as fast as possible. Talking to her, she said it’s like being in a film set where you’re waiting for the words ‘cut’ but they just don’t come. So it was quite surreal for her to be in a real-life situation.”

    Photo by Kevin Winter/Getty Images.

    Mila Kunis
    When a man working on her home collapsed and suffered a violent seizure during which he bit through his tongue and coughed up blood, Mila Kunis ran to his aide. She grabbed his head and turned it to the side so he wouldn’t choke and told her friend to call 911 while someone else stuffed a wallet between his teeth. When ambulances arrived on the scene, Kunis reportedly offered to ride to the hospital with him.

    Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.

    Jamie Foxx
    A few weeks ago, a truck skidded off the road, fell into a ditch, and caught fire outside of Jamie Foxx’s home. After hearing the accident and screams from a passenger in the overturned car, the singer/actor called 911, then approached the car with another witness, an off-duty paramedic. After they broke open a window and cut the driver out of his seatbelt, Foxx dragged him about 30 feet away from the car before it exploded in flames.

    Photo by Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images.

    Harrison Ford
    14 years ago, 13-year-old Boy Scout Cody Clawson got lost near Yellowstone National Park. Harrison Ford joined the search party and headed out in his helicopter. The actor found the boy after he was missing for 18 hours.
    “He said, ‘Good morning,’ and I recognized [his voice] because he said it just like he did in ‘Star Wars,’” Clawson told ABC. “He asked how I was doing and said, ‘You certainly should have earned a merit badge for this.’”
    A year prior to that, he also rescued a dehydrated hiker who was unable to make her way back down Table Mountain in Wyoming.

    Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images.

    John Malkovich
    In 2013, a 77-year-old man fell and accidentally slit his neck open after hitting into scaffolding. John Malkovich ran to the man’s aid and applied pressure to his neck, ultimately saving his life. When he recalled the incident with CTV, Malkovich said, “Any citizen would do the same, it’s nothing special.” Classic Malkovich.

    Photo by Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images.

    Clint Eastwood
    At a PGA tour party in 2014, Clint Eastwood performed the Heimlich maneuver on tournament director Steve John, who was choking on a piece of cheese. “I was drinking water and eating these little appetizers, threw down a piece of cheese and it just didn’t work,” John told Hollywood Reporter. “I was looking at him and couldn’t breathe. He recognized it immediately and saved my life.”
    “I looked in his eyes and saw that look of panic people have when they see their life passing before their eyes,” Eastwood told The Carmel Pine Cone. “It looked bad.”

    Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images.

    John Oates
    When Hall and Oates stopped for food on their Australian tour in the ’80s, a man with a ski mask and sawed-off shotgun attempted to rob the restaurant where they were dining. After another restaurant-goer “clocked” the robber, Oates tackled him through a plate glass window.

    Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images.

    Jennifer Lawrence
    When Jennifer Lawrence witnessed a teenage girl collapse in front of her apartment building in 2012, the actress called 911 and stayed with her, even after EMTs arrived.
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    Last updated: 2016-02-03T19:00:43-05:00
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