Big Shot Boomerangs

Politics. Athletics. Rock Roll. Boomerangers exist in every walk of life. Find out how, when, and why these celebrities decided to go back to the future

Call them comeback kids, second-wind superstars, born-again big wigs. We prefer billionaire boomerangers. Like so many corporate workers worldwide, these celebrities dissected their careers, found something amiss, and said goodbye. For some, the initial — and very public — departure was prompted by physical and mental health concerns. For others it was intense professional frustration or simply a nagging sense of stagnancy.


Regardless of the original rationale, all of these celebrities ended up in the same place: back home. They analyzed the risks, forecasted their former colleagues’ reactions, weighed the benefits and drawbacks, and finally took the plunge — again. Perhaps their former employers sweetened the deal with a million-dollar bonus, perhaps the roar of an adoring crowd was enough to win them over, perhaps the opportunities for corporate sponsorship schemes were just too rich to pass up. None of that changes the fact that these big shots decided to boomerang against the odds. Maybe they really are just like you and me. Nah?

Michael Jordan
They say absence makes the team grow stronger. His Airness proved them correct when he ditched his barely scratched Louisville Slugger for a trusty old Wilson in 1995.

Steve Jobs
If you love something, set it free. Unless, of course, it begins to sputter and plunge into a tailspin. Then, introduce the iMac.

Michael Ovitz

Hollywood talent agencies never functioned the same after Ovitz sunk in his teeth. Now crunching the industry for the second time, the titan of talent intends to surpass his own reputation.

The challenge of orchestrating four simultaneous boomerangs did not discourage Blondie — the New Wave revivalists with the most punk, funk, and spunk.


Richard Nixon
Perhaps his own harshest critic and biggest fan, Richard Nixon fulfilled his biggest dream and worst nightmare when he returned to politics in the late 1960s.

Monica Seles
In 1992, she won the French, Australian, and U.S. Opens. In 1993, she suffered a defeating blow at the hands of a crazed tennis fan. In 1999, she’s smarter, wiser, and back in the game.

Steve Perry and Brad Whitford of Aerosmith
Sweet Emotion. Sometimes that’s all it takes to bolster a boomerang. Sometimes it takes a little more to get back in the saddle.

Magic Johnson
The decision to retire was not entirely his. The strength to return was.

Marv Albert
When fame bit this national sportscaster on the back, he bit back with a shocking ferocity and survival instinct.