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The internet is never short of conspiracy theories, from long-winded explanations about the illuminati to breakdowns about why 9/11 was an inside job. Add celebrities into the mix and the stories become even crazier. We’ve come to know and love stars such as Avril Lavigne, Taylor Swift and Britney Spears. But what if these world-famous celebrities aren’t who you think they are? What if they’re clones, satanists or even dead?
Ahead, we’re rounding up the wildest celebrity conspiracy theories we’ve ever heard, from the actress who is apparently illiterate to the singer that might be the grown-up version of a murdered beauty queen. Of course, the likelihood that these stories are true is less than none, but who doesn’t appreciate a good theory once in a while? Check out these theories and marvel at the receipts.
Lea Michele Can’t Read
Theory: Glee actress Lea Michele is illiterate and needs to have her lines recited to her when she’s acting.
Evidence: Jaye Hunt and Robert Ackerman, hosts of the podcast One More Thing, introduced this theory in March 2018 when they published a 40-minute video explaining why they believe Michele is illiterate. Their evidence includes pictures of Michele at book signings where her pen isn’t touching the paper, Instagrams where the captions are very short or only contain emojis and videos of her playing Cards Against Humanity on The Ellen DeGeneres Show with her Glee costars where she appears to struggle writing down her castmates’ names. Hunt and Ackerman argued that because Michele isn’t touching her pen to the paper in book-signing pictures and because her Instagram captions usually consist of only emojis, she can’t write.
They speculated that Michele’s parts or Glee creator Ryan Murphy would have to read her lines to her because she couldn’t read her scripts. Michele has since responded to the theory and shut it down in an interview on Watch What Happens Live. “I got accepted into NYU. It’s the most bizarre thing to happen in my life,” Michele said. Michele also addressed the theory in a tweet, poking fun at its ridiculousness. “Loved READING this tweet and wanted to WRITE you back😛 literally laughing out loud at all this😂 love you!!! 😘❤️,” Michele tweeted. (Come on, people.)
Avril Lavigne Is Dead and Was Replaced by a Look-Alike
Theory: Avril Lavigne committed suicide in 2003 and was replaced by a look-alike, a woman named Melissa Vandella, so Lavigne’s record label could continue profiting off her.
Evidence: First introduced by the Brazilian blog Avril Esté Morta, this theory claims that Lavigne died in 2003 and was replaced by an actress who looks almost exactly like her. The theorists’ evidence includes pictures from 2003 and now where the singer’s nose, wrist and birthmarks look ever-so different. (The theorists claim that the look-alike’s birthmarks are tattoos or plastic surgeries to resemble Lavigne’s real marks.)
But the most damning evidence comes in Lavigne’s music, which many believe to be a message from the look-alike, letting fans know that the pop-punk singer is long gone and a look-alike is in her place. “That day you slipped away was the day I found it won’t be the same….. It wasn’t fake/It happened, you passed by,” Lavigne sings in her 2004 song, “Slipped Away.” She continues, “Now you are gone, now you are gone/There you go, there you go/Somewhere I can’t bring you back.” The likelihood that Lavigne is dead and replaced by a clone is highly unlikely, but, man, is it a wild story.
Lorde Is Actually 40 Years Old
Theory: Lorde is actually 40 years old and faked her age so she could pursue a career as a young pop star.
Evidence: Conspiracy theories about Lorde’s age first emerged in 2014 when she told Rookie magazine that she related to the 1999 film The Virgin Suicides “as a teenager.” “The Virgin Suicides really resonated with me as a teenager. I mean, I am still a teenager,” Lorde said. Many considered the quote to be a slip-up in Lorde’s lie about her age. Given that The Virgin Suicides came out in 1999, that would mean that Lorde would need to be born in the early ’80s to be a teenager, meaning that she would be around 40 today. The theory was only fueled when Lorde told Vanity Fair in 2014, “I’m actually 45.” Of course, the statement was a joke, but it still didn’t stop conspiracists from theorizing about Lorde’s age. The theory became so out of control that the website Hairpin obtained Lorde’s certificate, confirming that she was born on November 7, 1996. Conspiracy theory debunked.
JonBenét Ramsey Didn’t Die and She’s Katy Perry as an Adult
Theory: JonBenét Ramsey, a 6-year-old beauty queen who died in an unsolved murder in 1996, didn’t actually die and grew up to become singer Katy Perry.
Evidence: First introduced in a 2014 video by YouTube conspiracist Dave Johnson, the theory claims that Ramsey’s death was a hoax, so she could grow up and become a pop star under the pseudonym Katy Perry. Johnson didn’t have much evidence to back up the theory, other than Perry’s parents, Keith and Mary, and Ramsey’s parents, John and Patsy, looking somewhat similar to each other. Still, the theory has gone viral and is one of the most well-known in the celebrity-conspiracy-theory world. Though we would love for it to be true, this theory seems far-fetched, given that Ramsey was born in Atlanta while Perry grew up in Santa Barbara, California—or so we’re told.
Beyoncé Is Actually Solange’s Mom
Theory: Beyoncé became pregnant and gave birth to a baby when she was young, and her family covered it up by raising her daughter as her sister named Solange.
Evidence: Beyoncé, born in 1981, and Solange, born in 1986, are only five years apart, meaning that Bey would have to be 5 years old when she had her sister. However, theorists claim that Beyoncé wasn’t actually born in 1981, but in 1974, according to a supposed employee for the Department of Health in Texas who apparently unearthed Beyoncé’s birth certificate and discovered that she was born in 1974. Theorists also reference Beyoncé’s friendship with Gabrielle Union, born in 1972, claiming that the two were friends as teenagers.
The theory claims that Beyoncé got pregnant as a teenager, and her parents, Tina and Matthew, covered it up by pretending that the baby was her sister. Some theorists even believe that Tina, Bey’s mom, might also be her sister. If true, the theory assumes that Beyoncé gave birth to Solange when she was around 13, which isn’t impossible but seems unlikely.
Taylor Swift Doesn’t Have a Belly Button
Theory: Taylor Swift doesn’t have a belly button, which is why she wears so many high-waisted outfits to cover up her buttonless belly.
Evidence: There are a lot of conspiracies about Swift—that she and Kanye West faked their 2009 VMAs moment; that she faked her relationship with Tom Hiddleston to cover up that she cheated on Calvin Harris—but one of the most believable (almost) and hilarious is that the singer doesn’t have a belly button, which is why she wears so many high-waisted clothes. There isn’t much evidence other than the hundreds of pictures out there where the waistband of Swift’s bottoms—whether they be skirts, shorts or pants—conveniently (or perhaps strategically?) fall above where her belly button should be. The conspiracy got so out of hand that Swift responded to it in a 2015 Lucky interview.
“I don’t like showing my belly button. When you start showing your belly button, then you’re really committing to the midriff thing. I only partially commit to the midriff thing,” Swift said. “You’re only seeing lower rib cage. I don’t want people to know if I have one or not. I want that to be a mystery. As far as anyone knows based on my public appearances, they haven’t seen evidence of a belly button. It could be pierced. They have no idea. If I’m going to get some sort of massive tattoo, it’s going to be right next to my belly button because no one’s ever going to see that.”
The interview didn’t exactly silence conspiracists. However, what did, was when Swift started going out in two-piece swimsuits where her belly button was in full view. Eh, there’s still the theory that she’s the leader of a satanic cult.
Britney Spears Was an Instrument in the Bush Administration
Theory: Britney Spears was used by President George W. Bush to create a national tabloid frenzy to distract from the Bush administration’s mistakes.
Evidence: The theory is that Spears’s meltdown in 2007, when she shaved her head and attempted to smash a paparazzo’s car window with her umbrella, was a result of years of working as an instrument for the Bush administration to take the heat off the president with distractions about her personal life. Many cite instances, such as Spears driving with her baby in her lap or her divorce with Kevin Federline, as examples of the Bush administration using her to drum up drama to distract from incompetence in the White House. (There’s even a theory that Spears was used by Bush to muster support for invading Iraq.)
Where the theory becomes too far-fetched, however, was when some theorists claimed to have seen Spears in a romantic relationship with Bush’s White House adviser, Karl Rove, in 2002. There’s no photographic proof of the relationship. Plus, the whole theory is darn crazy.
Justin Bieber Is a Lizard
Theory: Justin Bieber is a lizard and transforms into his human form when he’s in public.
Evidence: This theory emerged in 2017 when an Australian site reported (and then deleted) that Bieber was seen by eyewitnesses transforming into a lizard in public, in the daylight. The theory continued when another site claimed that Bieber was a member of a “dominant reptilian Illuminati bloodline,” leading to a 2014 video of Bieber’s eyes changing in court going viral. The video, in which Bieber’s eyes change from dark brown to translucent, is supposedly proof of his reptilian, shape-shifting abilities. Is it true? Probably not. Is it entertaining? Hell, yeah.