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Top 10 Celebrity Ghost Hauntings

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Laura Keating BOO! Don’t be scared, it’s just the ghost of that celebrity you love! Some of these celebrities did so well with their fame that they were given the opportunity to be a ghost and trick us living humans into thinking that they exist as spectral forms of their celebrity selves! So if you missed out on meeting the likes of Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe or Orson Welles, perhaps you can schedule a meeting with their ghostly spirits?

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Top 10 Celebrity Ghost Hauntings

Celebrity spotting is a common past time in some towns … only the celebrities spotted are usually alive. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Celebrity Ghosts/Hauntings.

For this list, we’re looking at the alleged, reported, supposed ghosts of celebrities, not celebrities who claim to have been haunted – no matter how, um, intimate the encounter.

#10: Orson Welles

Just about everything for this early twentieth century auteur and actor was larger than life. His “War of the Worlds” radio broadcast terrified thousands into believing they were truly under attack by alien invaders, and his magnum opus, “Citizen Kane,” redefined much of what was expected in western cinema. He got the very most out of life, and apparently still is in the afterlife. Alleged paranormal activity at his former home has been attributed to the restless spirit of the famed dramatist, and an apparition resembling Welles has been spotted enjoying brandy at the Sweet Lady Jane Bakery in LA, on site of a restaurant he used to frequent.

#9: Bonnie Parker & Clyde Barrow

One of history’s most notorious duos is apparently as restless in death as they were in life. In their heyday, Bonnie and Clyde were weirdly venerated despite their terrible deeds. They’ve become no less fascinating since. While no full apparitions have been spotted, orbs have been photographed on the rural Louisiana road where the pair was finally gunned down by a posse of Texas officers, and around their shot-up Ford V8, which is on display in Nevada. Furthermore, it is believed that Bonnie haunts the lobby of the Baker Hotel in Mineral Wells, Texas, where she and Clyde are thought to have spent some nights.

#8: Lon Chaney, Sr.

The original Phantom of the Opera is now perhaps a phantom once more. Lon Chaney, an icon of silent horror films, might have passed away back in 1930, but that hasn’t stopped him from coming into work. Since his death, there had been multiple sightings on Soundstage 28 at Universal Studios – at least up until its 2014 demolition - where the 1925 silent classic, “The Phantom of the Opera,” was filmed. Witnesses reported seeing the famed star of the silver screen in his traditional cape, and sometimes masked. Others attributed the flickering of lights to the deceased actor.

#7: Lucille Ball

Who didn’t love Lucy? Well, perhaps the new owners of the property where her former home once stood. The much beloved and highly influential actress died back in 1989 at the age of 77. A bon vivant, she apparently has not been able to let the party end, even after death. The new owners of the home have reported seeing the actress, finding objects moved, windows broken, and loud voices radiating from their attic, as though speaking over music at a party. Whatever the afterlife is like, there seems to be at least one ghost around who is still living it up.

#6: John Lennon

Few bands have made their mark on the world quite like The Beatles did back in the 1960s. So when John Lennon was shot in front of his New York apartment in 1980, the murder shocked the world. But it seems like the superstar was not quite ready to move on. Not only has his ghost been allegedly sighted around the apartment where he died, but also those closest to him in life have several times said that they thought that he was around and watching over them. According to Paul McCartney, while the remaining band members were recording “Free as a Bird” in 1995, strange things kept happening and they all felt he was near.

#5: Abraham Lincoln

In 1865, the 16th President of the United States was assassinated while attending a play at Ford's Theatre. Since then, countless visitors to the White House have reported seeing the dead prez, including many officials. The first person to report sighting Honest Abe was Grace Coolidge. The then First Lady said he was looking out the window in the Yellow Oval Room towards the Potomac. Other witnesses have included Theodore Roosevelt, Franklin D. Roosevelt’s valet (who ran screaming), and Sir Winston Churchill after a bath. Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands also reportedly opened her door when she heard a knock and came face to face with the ghost, causing her to faint.

#4: Al Capone

One of America’s most notorious gangsters is now one of its most famous ghosts. The New York born bootlegger achieved national and international fame when he set up shop in Chicago during Prohibition, and became the city’s most feared crime boss. Little known fact, he was also an avid banjo player – not an instrument one usually associates with hardened criminals. As talented as he was at running liquor and picking strings, he should have had someone cook the books a little better, and he was finally arrested for tax evasion and sent to the island prison of Alcatraz. Since his death, banjo music has often been heard in his former cell – both while the prison still functioned, and after.

#3: Joan Crawford

From chorus line, to silent screen, to cinema legend, Joan Crawford’s name is still synonymous with the glitz and glam of Hollywood’s golden age. Throughout her five-decade career, she became one of the most popular and well-paid actresses in her time. She and her family moved into a large mansion – which according to her daughter Christina was haunted when they moved in. Concerned, the actress had an exorcism performed, but to no avail. After her death, Crawford’s bedroom wall caught fire, seemingly without cause. The activity has continued and even increased, with several more exorcisms having been performed. Some believe that the former silver screen queen has joined the cast of spirits haunting the Los Angeles home.

#2: Elvis Presley

Okay, we’re going to say this right off the bat for anyone watching still holding out hope: He’s dead, guys. It might break your heart, but face the music. However, he may not have “left the building,” so to speak. There have been numerous accounts by folks who claim to have spotted the ghost of the King of Rock and Roll. He has appeared in a couple different places, including his old recording studio (which is now a TV production company), and his home in Graceland, which seems to get the most reports. Accounts have included everything from flickering lights when he is mentioned to images caught on film.

Before we lift the veil on our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Clark Gable

Harry Houdini

Rudolph Valentino

#1: Marilyn Monroe

Most people will agree that Marilyn Monroe was the most iconic symbol of beauty of all time and the world lost her far too soon. Since her tragic death, however, the blonde bombshell has supposedly resurfaced as a ghost. The legendary leading lady has been spied at her Brentwood home, near her crypt at Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park, and in the large lobby mirror at the Roosevelt Hotel in LA. What makes the infamous mirror story even creepier is that it used to hang in the same room that Monroe liked to book when she stayed at the hotel.

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