George Clooney gave $1m in cash to each of his 14 best friends: ‘They’ve helped me when I needed help’

'I just thought basically if I get hit by a bus, they're all in the will’

Clémence Michallon
New York City
Wednesday 18 November 2020 07:54
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George Clooney's silly joke!
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George Clooney has explained how and why he gave his 14 best friends $1m each seven years ago.

The actor was asked about the anecdote in a new interview with GQ. His friend Rande Gerber initially disclosed the story in 2017 during a conversation with MSNBC, but Clooney had never personally commented on it until now.

Clooney said this happened in 2013, at a time when he had “just met” Amal Clooney, and before the two started dating.

“I was a single guy. All of us were aging. I was 52 or something. And most of my friends are older than me,” he said.

The actor found himself thinking of the ways his friends have helped him along the way, throughout his career. 

“I've slept on their couches when I was broke. They loaned me money when I was broke. They helped me when I needed help over the years. And I've helped them over the years. We're all good friends,” he said.

“And I thought, you know, without them I don't have any of this. And we're all really close, and I just thought basically if I get hit by a bus, they're all in the will. So why the f*** am I waiting to get hit by a bus?”

The actor next got his hands on $14m in cash at an undisclosed location in Los Angeles, “bought 14 Tumi bags”, and “packed in a million bucks, cash”, in each of them.

Clooney invited his friends over the following day to give them the money.

“And I just held up a map and I just pointed to all the places I got to go in the world and all the things I've gotten to see because of them. And I said, ‘How do you repay people like that?’ And I said, ‘Oh, well: How about a million bucks?’” he recounted.

Clooney ended up marrying the following year. Casamigos, the tequila brand he co-founded with Gerber and Mike Meldman, sold for $1bn in 2017.

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