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Celebrity IQs That Are Truly Incredible

Updated 5 months ago on May 11, 2020
By Lifehack Lane

Celebrities aren't usually credited for their intelligence so we thought we'd cast some light on celebrity IQs. Admittedly, IQs are not easy to measure but in general, anyone scoring above 110 is deemed to be of above-average intelligence so, with that in mind, Lifehack Lane has compiled the reported IQs of 32 celebrities.

1. James Franco - 130

Making it in Hollywood doesn't require a college degree, which means it's highly unlikely you'll spot Justin Bieber or Harry Styles in your lecture on postcolonial history. But then again, James Franco isn't your usual celebrity. Far from it.

In fact, the Pineapple Express star holds a Master's in English Literature from UCLA and has also taken various creative writing courses. Teaching is another forte of Franco's, and when he isn't studying on film sets, you can find him teaching classes at USC, UCLA, and NYU. 

UCLA even celebrated his academic credentials on a poster of famous alumni members, with a witty caption underneath reading, 'Some A-Listers Actually Get A's.'

2. Ashton Kutcher -  160

He may be known more for his chiseled jawline, poor acting abilities, and marriage to Mila Kunis, but before the actor made it big in Hollywood, he was studying biochemical engineering at the University of Iowa.

In recent years, the Iowa native has also built up an impressive investment portfolio. Along with his investment partner and Madonna's manager, Guy Oseary, Kutcher is thought to have provided seed money for apps like Uber and Airbnb.

3. Nicole Kidman - 132

The Australian beauty's high IQ should come as little surprise once you discover Kidman comes from a family of doctors and biochemists.

Nicole also excelled academically at high school though decided to forgo further academic study. Instead, she accepted an offer to study drama at Melbourne's prestigious Victoria College of Arts. 

4. Arnold Schwarzenegger - 135

The actor and former Governor of California first made a name for himself as a professional bodybuilder, a dream which started in a small town in Austria. But don't let age-old stereotypes of arrogant beefcakes distract you from the fact that Arnie is one intelligent dude.

Not only had Schwarzenegger achieved his dream of going to America and becoming a champion bodybuilder without initially speaking a word of English, his subsequent success as an A-list actor and state governor may in part be explained by his impressive IQ of 135.

5. Natalie Portman - 140


Unlike many child actors, Natalie Portman excelled at school and even skipped the after-parties of movie premiers to revise for her exams. Such dedication to her studies didn't go unnoticed by the media, though Portman was never bothered about combining the two. "I don't care if [college] ruins my career, and I'd rather be smart than a movie star," she famously told one reporter.

Unsurprisingly, Portman's willingness to learn gained her a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Harvard University. If that wasn't impressive enough, the Oscar-winning actress speaks five different languages, has been published in scientific journals and attends graduate classes at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem.

6. Quentin Tarintino - 160

The man behind the lens of some of Hollywood's best-known movies is an encyclopedia of knowledge when it comes to his craft. The director regularly watches over 200 films a year and even worked as an usher in an adult movie theater to immerse himself in the world of cinema as much as he could.

Still, the King of Blood and Gore never had much of a formal education in the art of filmmaking as he dropped out of high school aged 15. He has since credited his directorial knowledge to his years working in a video rental shop. “When people ask me if I went to film school," he explained, "I tell them, ‘no, I went to films'".

7. Sharon Stone - 154

Actress and model Sharon Stone gave the world a pair of widening eyes when she crossed her legs playing sassy serial killer Catherine Tramell in the cult classic 'Basic Instinct' though aside from giving the world a glimpse of her private parts, Stone is also famed for her incredible IQ.

Believe it or not, the actress was offered a scholarship to the Edinboro University of Pennsylvania aged only 15, and though she withdrew two years later to become a model. With an IQ of 154, the starlet is probably smarter than most academics.

8. Matt Damon - 140

Much like James Franco but more successful as an actor, Matt Damon is exceptionally well-educated, winning a place at Harvard University before dropping out to take on a film role.

With that said, his time at one of the world's most elite colleges wasn't wasted. During his stay, he met Ben Affleck, who famously co-wrote the much-loved movie, Good Will Hunting with him.

9. Jodie Foster - 132

It's a shame that Jodie Foster doesn't get the industry love that fellow actress Meryl Streep receives because if we're honest, she's just as good an actress and judging by her eye-catching IQ, a more intelligent one, too. 

Foster's IQ isn't only impressive, it's remarkable when you consider she was homeschooled from an early age following her success as a child actress. But that didn't seem to make much difference, as Foster's appetite for learning started at a young age. Indeed, by 3 she was already writing fluently, so you won't be surprised to know that Foster not only received a degree in English literature from Yale University but also an honorary doctorate in fine arts. 

10. Ivanka Trump - 140 

Judging by her father's controversial and some would say ill-considered rhetoric in the run-up to one of the most heated presidential debates in recent memory, it almost comes as a surprise that President Donald. J. Trump's daughter, Ivanka, possesses an astounding IQ of 140.

With that said, a father or mother's actions, no matter how bad they are, should never reflect poorly on their children, and Ivanka's educational background is nothing to be scoffed at. In fact, Ivanka, who attended Georgetown University for two years before transferring to Wharton Business School, eventually earned a degree in economics.

11. Madonna - 140

Madonna may be an artistic genius to millions, but before she became a household name, the songstress was also a straight-A student, which culminated in a scholarship at Michigan University.

However, by that stage in her life, a young Madonna had already made up her mind to pursue a career in music. 

12. Shakira - 140

Magazines often vote the Latino megastar the Sexiest Woman Alive, but there is much more to Shakira than her good looks and vocal talents. Unbeknownst to many, the singer's academic credentials are highly impressive.

Yes, aside from writing all her songs, and speaking three separate languages, Shakira has a deep interest in world cultures, leading the Columbian to enrol on a course at UCLA to study the history of Western civilisation.

13. Cindy Crawford - 154

Proving there's more to supermodels than chiseled cheekbones and flawless skin complexions, Cindy Crawford isn't your stereotypical supermodel. Graduating as valedictorian in 1984, Crawford would go on to Northwestern University, and once more defy stereotypes by majoring in chemical engineering.

However, her academic career was short-lived, with the model dropping out after only one term following the early success of her modeling career.

14. Kate Beckinsale - 132

Graduating from Britain's prestigious Oxford University, vampire slayer Kate Beckinsale can take on most things, and it appears academia was no exception.

Studying modern languages, the actress is a thoroughly accomplished polyglot thanks to being fluent in both French, German and Russian.

15. Melania Trump - "Very high"

While reports of Melania's official IQ are few and far between, the supermodel's former professor who briefly taught her as a student at Slovenia's University of Ljubljana remembered her as being incredibly bright and even believed that "her IQ was very high."

Whether this is true or not is impossible to prove, but there's no doubting that Melania, who can speak five different languages, is intelligent.

16. Michelle Obama - 130

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Many websites have estimated Michelle Obama's IQ to be lower than expected after she openly admitted that her SAT's scores were lower than they should have been. However, that never stopped her from becoming a high-level lawyer and typically, there is a correlation between married couples and their respective IQ scores.

After all, to graduate from an Ivy League law school, which she did, would suggest an IQ of at least 120 points.

17. Malia Obama - 146

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Just like her younger sister Sasha, the eldest daughter of former President of the United States is thought to have an astonishingly high IQ, and why not, her parents are both lawyers and she has been afforded the best education on the planet. 

Only time will tell just how smart the oldest Obama daughter is and what she puts her mind to, but it certainly seems as though she could achieve great things.

18. Donald Trump - 156

The American President has been estimated to have an IQ of around 156.

Some may find this very hard to believe for a man who tapes the two ends of his tie together, but he did graduate from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1968, with a Bachelor of Science degree in economics and anthropology. However, Trump's official school transcripts are not available, so it is impossible to know his actual scholastic aptitude scores. 

19. Barack Obama - 145

Having gone to both Harvard and Chicago Law school, been a state senator and become President of the USA, it is perhaps not too surprising that many estimate Barack Obama's IQ to be high.

A successful civil rights attorney before he went into politics, Barack has used his brains to propel him to the top of whatever he does.

20. Emma Watson - 138

Graduating from Brown University with a degree in English literature, Emma Watson was the only one of the Harry Potter trio to carry on with their education after their high school exams. But with the responsibility of performing in a multi-billion dollar franchise, studying wasn't comfortable. Apparently, Watson would spend five hours each day between takes to maintain her grades and after gaining straight A's in both her middle and high School examinations, Watson won a place at the prestigious Ivy League College, Brown and has continued to excel, both within and outside Hollywood. 

A notable example of this has come through her work as a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador for Women, which allowed the actress to promote her 'HeforShe' campaign. The campaign encourages men and boys to champion women's rights but ultimately battle against preconceived ideas of what it means to be a woman or a man in the 21st century.

21. James Woods - 184

Known more nowadays for his voice acting, James Woods admitted to James Lipton on Inside the Actor's Studio that he has a recorded IQ of 184! If true, that would put Woods among the brightest people on earth, and it appears his scores on his SATs for verbal reasoning (800) and maths (779) back up his claim.

To put things into perspective, Stephen Hawking's rumored IQ is 160 while Albert Einstein's was believed to be the same. Thus, Woods may not be the King of Hollywood, but he may just be its professor.

22. Bill O’Reilly – 150

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The tension was always palpable whenever the cantankerous former Fox News host interviewed a guest on his show 'The O' Reilly FACTOR'.

But for all the stick he gets from the left, the broadcaster and best-selling author is undoubtedly intelligent, boasting an IQ of 150. 

23. Lisa Kudrow - 160

She may have attained worldwide fame for her portrayal of ditzy blonde Pheobe on NBC's hit series Friends, but Kudrow's personality bears little resemblance to her most well-known character.

For 8 years after her college graduation, which saw her attain a Bachelor's degree in biology, the actress worked with her father as a medical researcher and even gained a research credit for one of his papers exploring the comparative likelihood of left-handed individuals developing cluster headaches before she decided to pursue an acting career.

24. David Duchovny - 147

Some people seem to have it all, and David Duchovny can claim to be one of those people. He's handsome, wealthy, and pretty much good at everything he does, though he is most known for his acting credits on the hit shows The X-Files and Californication. Not that acting is the only craft synonymous with his career.

Perhaps refusing to be consigned to one discipline, Duchovny later branched into directing, screenplay and novel writing and even music before taking his talents into academia, with the star recently earning a Master of Arts from Yale University.

25. Ke$ha – 140 

The hitmaker had been in the news for more unsavory reasons following a wrangling contract dispute with her manager Dr. Luke who she claimed sexually assaulted her which may be the reason why few people even remember her for her music, let alone her IQ.

Never a popular kid at school, Ke$ha confided in books instead of people and though she left high school early to pursue a pop career her outsider status allowed her ample room to study before Hollywood came calling.

26. Steve Martin – 142 

Everyone's favorite actor and funnyman supposedly holds an IQ level of 142 according to some sources, although rumors of a supposed membership with Mensa were denied via his official Twitter account.

Regardless of his actual IQ level, there's no doubting Martin's intelligence, who holds a Bachelor's degree in philosophy from California State University.

27. Mayim Bialik – 163 

Mayim Bialik shot to fame on the smash hit TV series The Big Bang Theory playing Sheldon Cooper's sexually-frustrated girlfriend, Amy Farrah Fowler. Amy's role on the show also explores her job as a neuroscientist, a profession Mayim knows well having been a neuroscientist herself.

How many actresses auditioning for the role of a neurobiologist can say they happen to be one themselves? Not many, that's for sure, which probably helped got Mayim the part.

28. Robin Williams - 140

It seems Hollywood still hasn't quite come to terms with the tragic passing of Robin Williams, a man whose career and personality needs little introduction. However, his life wasn't entirely devoted to the arts.

Before enrolling at Julliard, where he would meet and share a room with Christopher Reeve, Williams was contemplating a degree in political science while he also played an on-screen professor in the famous Gus Van Sant movie, Good Will Hunting.

29. Ken Jeong - 130

Ken Jeong is a former physician and recently reprised his former occupation on the ABC family drama 'Dr. Ken'. Attending high school in Greensboro, North Carolina, Jeong was even part of the High IQ team.

As well as this, the comedian and actor played violin in the school orchestra and would win the Greensboro's Youth of the Year award for his academic and extra circular excellence before studying at Duke University and then medicine at the University of North Carolina.

30. Conan O'Brien- 160

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Conan O'Brien may like to make a fool out of himself on his talk show but he was far from the class clown at school! Whilst still in high school, the red-haired comic interned for Congressman Robert Drinan and in his senior year, he won the National Council of Teachers of English writing contest for a short story he submitted.

Unsurprisingly, O'Brien graduated as valedictorian of his class, which allowed him to gain a place at Harvard University, where he worked on a senior thesis centred on the use of children as symbols in the esteemed literary works of William Faulkner and Flannery O'Connor. 


31. Jordana Brewster- 130

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Considering her grandfather was a professor at Yale University, it's little surprise that the Furious 7 star has inherited some smarts! In fact, she followed in her grandpa's footsteps and graduated with a B.A. in English at the prestigious Ivy League college.

While there is no official record of Brewster's IQ, her rumoured IQ is thought to be between 120-130, proving that there is more to this hottie than just her looks and acting chops!

32. Hillary Clinton

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Presidents and politicians with high IQ scores is nothing new, but Hillary Clinton’s 140-level IQ is considered genius. As well as running a hotly-contested presidential race with eventually Republican winner, Donald J. Trump, Hillary served as  Secretary of State in the Obama administration.

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