How generous George Clooney cooked up $14-million surprise to repay friends who helped him when he was broke

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George Clooney opens up about how he repaid his friends that helped him become successful in Hollywood. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)
George Clooney opens up about how he repaid his friends that helped him become successful in Hollywood. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

It pays to be friends with George Clooney, it seems. The Hollywood hunk revealed he rewarded 14 of his friends with $1 million each to thank them for sticking by him when he was starting out.

For years there’s been speculation about the star’s generous act, but in a recent interview with GQ magazine, gorgeous George shared details about how he pulled out all the stops to surprise his buddies, who he refers to as “The Boys”.

He said it happened in 2013 after he’d appeared in the sci-fi film Gravity, which grossed $723m (then around R10 billion) worldwide.

George revealed that in true Ocean’s Thirteen style, he and his security guards drove an old florist van to a secret Los Angeles business location that had “giant pallets of cash”. They then took the truck down a massive elevator to a hidden vault.

“And we brought it up, and I bought 14 Tumi bags, and then I packed in a million bucks, cash, which isn’t as much as you think it is, weight-wise, into these Tumi bags,” the actor, who was named GQ’s icon of the year, added.

The following day, the Up in the Air actor invited his pals over to collect the cash.

“I thought, ‘What I do have are these guys who've all, over a period of 35 years, helped me in one way or another’. 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. 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 only known member of the boys’ club is former model Rande Gerber, who is married to beauty icon Cindy Crawford. Other speculated members include former actor Tommy Hinkley, director Grant Heslov and actor Richard Kind, according to the Daily Mail. 

George Clooney, Amal Clooney, Rande Gerber and Cindy Crawford at the 2018 American Film Institute Awards. Rande is the only known member of the boys’ club. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

Midway through the Zoom interview, George’s three-year-old son Alexander interrupted the discussion for a chat with his dad.

“Oh, hey! Here's Alexander,” George gushed, paying attention to the tot. “Here's my son. Come here! Say hi! Say hello!

“You've got chocolate on your face. Do you know that? What is that? Did you have chocolate?

Alexander answered: “Yeah,” which prompted the actor to ask, “Yeah? You did? Hey, Alexander? Let's see. How old are you now – 15?

“Three. Because I got my birthday,” the adorable little boy replied.

READ MORE: George Clooney's 3-year-old son Alexander interrupts his interview – and it is adorable!

George and his wife, Amal, have been trying their best to safeguard their twins Alexander and Ella’s privacy.

Despite this, the pair, who have been married for six years, have let a few facts about the toddlers slip.

George and Amal
George shares three-year-old twins Alexander and Ella with wife Amal Clooney. (Photo: Gallo Images/Getty Images)

During an appearance on The Ellen Show in 2019, the A-lister revealed that his kids are practically geniuses.

“Here’s the scary part, because they obviously got my wife’s brains,” George boasted.

“They’re not quite two, and they can count from one to 20 in English and Italian.”

Joking, he added, “I’m still trying to do the English part.”

George has also revealed that Ella is the assertive one and calls most of the shots in her interaction with her brother.

“My daughter will be like, ‘Sit down’. And then he’ll sit down.”

Sources: GQ, SKY News, Daily Mail,

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