15 Celebrity Pairs Who Were Childhood BFFs

Becky Bracken | Sep 24, 2018 Celebrities
15 Celebrity Pairs Who Were Childhood BFFs

Justin Timberlake and Ryan Gosling young
TheEllenShow/YouTube

For stars in the spotlight, people seeking an opportunity to get their 15 minutes of fame through close proximity to someone famous are all too common -- making friends who knew them before they were a big deal an important touchstone to reality. Some stars, mainly those with famous or wealthy parents, grew up in the gilded world of privilege and private schools with other kids in the same boat. Others rose through the ranks as child actors and performers and share a sense of struggle to make a name in the business. On the road to fame and fortune, it can be tricky to figure out who are true friends and how to keep them close -- which is one of the reasons why childhood friendships can truly be a godsend.

No matter how they came together, these friendships were forged during a simpler time and grounded in something more substantial than cocktail parties and pitch meetings. Most stars spend their days surrounded by people who, whether directly or indirectly, rely on them to earn a living. Managers, stylists, publicists, lawyers, nannies, and often even families have a stake in the earnings of celebrities in their orbits. It's got to be tough to completely remove any business considerations from the relationship. And that's what stars' lives often become: a business. Who could blame them for wanting to hold onto their childhood roots, especially those with others who can relate to life in the spotlight?

Let's take a look at celebrities whose friendships started in childhood and have taken them from knee socks and braces to red carpets.

We can only imagine the amount of memories (and embarrassing stories) they have on each other.
  • BEN AFFLECK & MATT DAMON 

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    Matt Damon and Ben Affleck
    Mario Anzuoni/REUTERS

    It's perhaps the most storied bromance in all of Hollywood history. As hard as it is to believe, it's been more than two decades since the frat-boy-handsome duo and childhood friends, Ben Affleck and Matt Damon, made the breakout hit Good Will Hunting, which earned both actors Academy Awards.

    Throughout the years their friendship has endured.

    Currently, Ben is in rehab after a relapse into addiction. In 2012, Ben told Barbara Walters it was his friendship with Matt, among other strong relationships in his life, that gave him strength to tackle his demons. "I had good friends. I had Matt Damon, I had my brother, and I had a nucleus of friends that I grew up with and I had support from," Ben said.

    Matt and Ben also have a new project in the works. The two recently won the rights to a true-crime story about the rigging of the 1987 McDonald's Monopoly game, with Matt in the starring role and Ben set to direct.
  • KIM KARDASHIAN & PARIS HILTON

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    Once upon a time, Kim Kardashian and Paris Hilton were just two girls from wealthy families running around preschool together. By the mid-2000s, Paris was a household name with her own TV show, which also occasionally featured a head-turning brunette assistant. Who would have suspected the girl cleaning out Paris's closets would one day have fame and fortune of her very own?

    Paris and Kim had falling out in 2008, when Paris was on a radio show and described Kim's legendary derriere as "cottage cheese inside a big trash bag."

    Ouch.

    Later, Kim was reportedly miffed when Paris starting hanging out with her ex, Reggie Bush. Paris later called to apologize, according to Kim, and the relationship has since become more friendly.  "We've known each other since we were little girls. We've always been friends," Paris told Yahoo! in 2015.

    "I'm really proud of her and what she's done," Paris said, adding Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are "cute" together. "They're the perfect couple. She's always wanted to have a family, so I’m really happy for her."

    Earlier this year, Paris dressed up as a "Kim Clone" to promote Kanye's Yeezy Season 6.
  • PARIS HILTON & NICOLE RICHIE

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    These two little Hollywood hell-raisers were childhood friends who introduced the catchphrase "that's hot!" into the pop culture lexicon thanks to their show, The Simple Life, which aired from 2003 to 2007. Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie had a major falling out in 2005, which neither really ever addressed. All Paris ever said about the end of the friendship was "Nicole knows what she did, and that's all I'm ever going to say about it."

    The once childhood friends, now in their mid-30s, recently reunited at a fashion show, causing their fans to hyperventilate with excitement over prospect of a Simple Life reboot.

  • TOBEY MAGUIRE & LEONARDO DICAPRIO

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    Picture it. It's the late 1980s, and two young, unknown teenage actors, Tobey Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio, meet at an audition and make a promise to help each other get ahead whenever they could. Fast-forward almost 30 years later, and they're still friends who have each other's backs in the cutthroat movie business.

    The two became notorious ladies' men, reportedly dubbing their group a vulgar word followed by "posse" -- often seen surrounded by models in the hottest clubs and on the deck of yachts and beaches flung around the most exotic locations on the globe.

    Tobey and Leo starred together in the 2013 remake of The Great Gatsby and have recently been spotted back on the model dating scene after Tobey split with his wife in 2016.

  • DEMI LOVATO & SELENA GOMEZ

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    Demi Lovato Selena Gomez
    Danny Moloshok/REUTERS

    Demi Lovato and Selena Gomez became fast friends on the set of Barney & Friends when they were both 10. Both Texas-born girls (Demi in Dallas and Selena in Grand Prairie) and both huge stars in their own right, these two cute little girls have remained friends through personal and professional ups and downs.

  • KATE HUDSON & LIV TYLER

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    It makes perfect sense the daughter of Goldie Hawn and the daughter of Steven Tyler would be friends. Kate Hudson and Liv Tyler have been close since their days together at Crossroads School for Arts & Sciences in LA and still keep in touch.

  • NICOLE KIDMAN & NAOMI WATTS

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    Acclaimed actresses Nicole Kidman and Naomi Watts have been friends for more than 25 years. Although they both attended the same high school in Australia, it wasn't until they both worked on the 1991 movie Flirting that they became good friends. The two talented ladies have been seen holding hands on the red carpet and singing each other's praises in the press ever since.

  • ADAM LEVINE & JONAH HILL

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    Jonah Hill Adam Levine
    Mario Anzuoni/REUTERS; Runway Manhattan/REUTERS

    Maroon 5 front man Adam Levine and Oscar-nominated star Jonah Hill have been friends since they were kids. "Our dads met in the principal's office in junior high. We were in carpool. We lived at each other's houses," Jonah once said about Adam.

    The two have stayed close. Jonah even officiated Adam's 2014 wedding to model Behati Prinsloo

  • JENNIFER ANISTON & CHAZ BONO

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    Jennifer Aniston and Chaz Bono
    Apega/WENN.com/REUTERS; Phil McCarten/REUTERS

    The Friends star with the best hair, Jennifer Aniston, and Sonny and Cher's baby, Chaz Bono, both attended LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts in the late 1980s and spent a lot of time hanging out. The two didn't stay particularly close, but Jennifer Aniston and Chaz Bono were friends and spent a lot of teen time together.

    "Every day a group of us would go to Chaz's house after school," Jennifer told Allure. "I haven't spoken to him in awhile."

    After-school snacks at Cher's house? Yes, please.

  • KIMORA LEE SIMMONS & TYRA BANKS

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    Tyra Banks Kimora Lee Simmons
    Jonathan Alcorn/REUTERS; FayesVision/WENN.com/REUTERS

    Tyra Banks and Kimora Lee Simmons met as teenagers on the modeling circuit and have remained close ever since. Kimora even made Tyra godmother to her daughter, Ming Lee. Today, the two are working through motherhood and career with each other's support.

    "I think there was always something about Tyra and I think she saw that in me, too," Kimora told Hello Magazine in 2013. "She came along later than me -- I was the youngest girl to model in the history of Chanel I believe. I've gone more in the direction of designing and creating brands, and she did more TV and TV production from the modeling side."

  • RYAN GOSLING & JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE

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    Today, they're two of Hollywood's hottest dads, but Justin Timberlake and Ryan Gosling first met as Mousketeers on the Mickey Mouse Club alongside Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, and Keri Russell.

    At one point, the two were so close that Justin's mom became Ryan's guardian when his mom had to return to Canada for work. In 2011, Justin was on Ellen DeGeneres's show and told a story about stealing a golf cart with Ryan and driving to the MGM Studios lot.

    The two have seemingly grown apart in recent years as both are busy with family and work schedules. But we'll always have Mickey Mouse Club.

  • BJ NOVAK & JOHN KRASINSKI

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    B.J. Novak John Krasinski
    Danny Moloshok/REUTERS; Mario Anzuoni/REUTERS

    Before they served side-eye looks to the camera in The Office, BJ Novak and John Krasinski were childhood friends in Newton, Massachusetts, playing Little League baseball together. BJ was the one who first convinced John to become an actor after asking him to stay in a play he had written.

    And the rest, as they say, is history.

  • MAYA RUDOLPH & GWYNETH PALTROW

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    Maya Rudolph Gwyneth Paltrow
    FayesVision/WENN.com/REUTERS; Apega/WENN.com/REUTERS
    All-around talented ladies, Maya Rudolph and Gwyneth Paltrow have been friends since they were in school together. In 2001, when Gwyneth hosted Saturday Night Live, she brought out Maya, then a cast member, during her opening monologue to share their fifth-grade picture.
  • BROOKE SHIELDS & MATT DILLON

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    Brooke Shields Matt Dillon
    Carlo Allegri/REUTERS; WENN.com/REUTERS

    Two heartthrobs who defined the 1980s -- Matt Dillon and Brooke Shields -- actually dated in their teens and have remained friends ever since.

  • PRINCE WILLIAM & EDDIE REDMAYNE

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    Eddie Redmayne Prince William
    John Rainford/WENN/REUTERS; Andrew Boyers/REUTERS

    Eddie Redmayne and Prince William went to school together at Eton, England. Both were elected to The Eton Society, also known as "Pop," and played on the school's rugby team. "We were on the same Colts B team in 1997," Eddie once said during an interview. "I always felt slightly sorry for Will because everyone wanted to tackle the future King of England. He took all the hits."

    The gents didn't keep in touch after Eton but bumped into one another for the first time since school at a 2015 polo match.

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