Landing a spot on a reality show has led to fame and fortune for more than a few lucky folks, but that can’t be said of everyone who put themselves out there on-screen for everyone to see. And if you thought that appearing on more than one show – maybe three, four, or even five – might increase your chances, try telling that to the former almost-celebrities on this list. For better or worse, it’s not only the meek or unremarkable reality stars that have faded away, some of the most wild, crazy, trouble-making reality stars shone bright and then apparently supernova’d themselves right out of the public eye. Here are 12 forgotten reality stars and where they are now.
12. Justin Guarini
Appeared on: American Idol
When American Idol hit television screens, it was an immediate hit and looked to make the performers on the show instant stars. First place winner Kelly Clarkson has gone on to an enduring career releasing multiple albums and staying just as beloved in the public eye. Runner-up Justin Guarini may have lost the big competition, but he still managed to win the hearts of audiences everywhere, which is why he went on to star alongside Kelly in the not-so-popular movie From Justin to Kelly. But his initial disappointments continued when he struggled to keep his career afloat in the following years. Stepping onto the Broadway stage, he’s appeared in productions of American Idiot (the Green Day album based musical), Romeo and Juliet starring Orlando Bloom, and mostly recently a stint in Wicked. He’s also made bit appearances in television shows and movies, but in 2013 a blog post written by Justin claimed that there were times when he had skipped meals in order to make sure his wife and children were fed. He later said that the post had been misunderstood and he and his family were in fact doing fine. Let’s hope that’s true.Gregorio T. Binuya/Everett Collection