23 Celebrity Deaths That Will Make You Say ‘What The…?’

We all know that life can be unpredictable, and that includes how we meet our end. From the absurd to the tragic, the entertainment industry has seen its fair share of weird celebrity deaths over the years. But some celebrity deaths are just plain bizarre. If you’re ready for some wild stories and oddball details, join us as we take a closer look at some of the weirdest celebrity deaths in history.

P.S, You can also watch the video version below! 

1. Harry Houdini, 52 years old (1926)

celebrity deaths: Harry Houdini
The famed magician died of peritonitis caused by a ruptured appendix, allegedly as a result of a punch he received in the stomach from a fan who wanted to test his strength. Apparently he had refused to be treated for several days, believing he could cure himself.

2. Isadora Duncan, 50 years old (1927)


A renowned dancer was strangled to death when her long flowing scarf got caught in the wheel of the Bugatti sports car she was riding in Nice, France. She was dragged out of the machine into the street, snapping her neck.

3. Brian Jones, 27 years old (1969)

Brian Jones


The founding member of The Rolling Stones drowned in his swimming pool at his home at Cotchford Farm, East Sussex just weeks after being kicked out of the band.

4. Diane Linkletter, 20 years old (1969)

Diane Linkletter
She was the daughter of TV personality Art Linkletter. Died after jumping out of a window while under the influence of LSD.

5. Christine Chubbuck, 29 years old (1974)

Christine Chubbuck
A news anchor for WTOG and WXLT-TV in Sarasota, Florida. Christine committed suicide on live television by shooting herself in the head during a broadcast after suffering from severe depression. Records indicate her as the first person to commit suicide during a live tv broadcast.

6. Vic Morrow, 53 years old (1982)

Vic Morrow
Vic gained celebrity status with his role in the ABC series Combat!. He died on the set of the film Twilight Zone: The Movie when a helicopter crashed onto him and two child actors during a stunt gone wrong, all three losing their lives.

7. Brandon Lee, 28 years old (1993)

celebrity deaths: Brandon Lee
Brandon, the son of Bruce Lee, was accidentally shot with a prop gun on the set of The Crow while filming a scene where his character was shot. Still one of the most talked-about celebrity deaths. 

8. Steve Irwin, 44 years old (2006)

Steve Irwin with a crocodile
A beloved Australian guy, also known as The Crocodile Hunter, was killed by a stingray while filming a documentary on the Great Barrier Reef, Ocean’s Deadliest.

9. David Carradine, 72 years old (2009)


Popular for his Kill Bill and Kung-Fu roles, he was found dead in a hotel room in Thailand. Cause of death: he accidentally strangled himself while practicing autoerotic asphyxiation.

10. Christopher Wallace, The Notorious B.I.G. 24 years old (1997)


Just six months after Tupac Shakur’s death, Wallace, better known as The Notorious B.I.G., was shot and killed in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles. His death remains unsolved to this day.

11. Brittany Murphy, 32 years old (2009)


Having starred in Clueless, 8 Mile and Girl, Interrupted, she died of pneumonia and anemia, which were complicated by drug intoxication. What makes this case eerie is the fact that her husband also died in the same house five months later.

12. James Dean, 24 years old (1955)


Considered one of the brightest acting stars of his generation, he truly lived by his motto “Live fast, die young and have a good-looking corpse!” He had the face and tons of talent, he could have been a huge celebrity. He died in a car crash at age 24 while driving his Porsche 550 Spyder to a racing event.

13. Owen Hart, 34 years old (1999)


A professional wrestler, he died after falling 78 feet from the rafters of the Kemper Arena during a live WWE pay-per-view event.

14. Mike Todd, 48 years old (1958)

Film producer and husband of Elizabeth Taylor, he died in a plane crash in New Mexico. This happened a year after their marriage.

15. Shain Gandee, 21 years old (2013)


Reality TV star of Buckwild died of carbon monoxide poisoning along with his uncle and a third person, while off-roading in his Ford Bronco. A family member stated that Gandee ‘died peacefully in his sleep, without any pain or suffering’.

16. Terry Kath, 31 years old (1978)


The talented guitarist of the band Chicago accidentally shot himself in the head with an unloaded gun after joking around with friends. Apparently, unknown to him, the gun had a round in the chamber.

17. Jean-Baptiste Lully, 54 years old (1687)


This is a way, way back celebrity death. Lully was a French composer who died of gangrene. He accidentally struck his foot with a staff while conducting a performance, his wound was mistreated which quickly led to gangrene.

18. Richard Versalle, 63 years old (1996)


American tenor died on stage during a performance of The Makropulos Affair at the Metropolitan Opera. He finished singing the line “You can only live so long” whilst being halfway up a 20-foot ladder only to suffer a heart attack and fall on the stage.

19. Carl McCunn, 34 years old (1981)


McCunn was a wildlife photographer and adventurer. He found himself stranded in the Alaskan wilderness and chose to commit suicide rather than continue to suffer from starvation and exposure.

20. Anton Yelchin, 27 years old (2016)


Known for his roles in Hearts in Atlantis and the Star Trek reboot, Yelchin was pinned between his car and a brick pillar in his driveway, leading to his death from blunt traumatic asphyxia. It’s a weird, tragic death, even more if you take in consideration just how young he was.

21. Phil Hartman, 49 years (1998)


Hartman, a Canadian actor, was married to Brynn Hartman. He was shot to death by his wife, who then committed suicide making this tragedy a murder-suicide. She shot him three times in the head while he was asleep.

22. Janis Joplin, 27 years old (1970)


Dubbed the first queen of rock ‘n’ roll, Joplin paved the way for women in rock. She died of a heroin overdose in her hotel room, just weeks after her good friend, Jimi Hendrix, also died from a drug overdose.

23. Natalie Wood, 43 years old (1981)


She drowned while on a weekend boat trip with her husband, actor Robert Wagner, and their friend, actor Christopher Walken. Wood was reported missing and her body was found the next morning floating in the water near Catalina Island, off the coast of California. The circumstances surrounding her death have been the subject of speculation and investigation for many years.

These are some of the most shocking and surprising celebrity deaths throughout history. From a freak car incident to LSD, airplane accidents to bizarre circumstances, these stories remind us that no one is invincible, no matter how rich or famous they may be. But it’s not all doom and gloom, these celebrities left behind legacies that will be remembered for generations to come. Their talents, personalities, and contributions to our culture will never be forgotten. Let’s take a moment to honor these celebrities and the memories they left behind, no matter the field they were in.

And if you are in the mood for more celebrities how about some unique celebrity baby names?

Watch the Video Version of 23 Celebrity Deaths That Will Make You Say ‘What The…?’

FAQ

Which is the most famous celebrity death?

Among the most famous people that died in tragic ways, Robin Williams and Paul Walker are at the top of the list.

Which celebrities have passed away so far in 2023?

These are just some of the known celebrities we lost in 2023:

Lance Reddick, 60.
Paul Grant, 56.
Tom Sizemore, 61.
Gary Rossington, 71.
Richard Belzer, 78.
Raquel Welch, 82.
Annie Wersching, 45.
Lisa Marie Presley, 54.

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