There’s a general belief that successful people watch very little, if any, television. The theory probably stems from the old wives’ tale that says “TV rots your brain,” and spending hours watching shows and films is nothing but a waste of time.
However, everyone needs downtime. And there’s nothing wrong with choosing to relax with a good movie or Netflix series. After all, with all the money being poured into production nowadays, we really are in a golden age of television and film.
As it turns out, plenty of successful people from the President to award-winning actors and directors make time to watch popular shows. Even Bill Gates has a few favourites.
Here’s a list of what 11 super successful people like to kick back and watch — when they have the time.
Michelle Obama — ‘Scandal’
The former First Lady of the United States is apparently a huge fan of the ABC drama “Scandal,” which is also on Netflix. According to People, she loves the series so much that when she met one of the stars — Bellamy Young — she asked her about the storylines before even introducing herself.
Theresa May — ‘Poirot’
In 2016, Theresa May told the Radio Times that she likes to watch “a good Agatha Christie show,” and that “David Suchet was a great Poirot – he got him to a T.”
The Prime Minister also manages to find the time to watch Doctor Who at Christmas.
Jennifer Lawrence — ‘Keeping Up with the Kardashians’
When she isn’t winning Oscars, Jennifer Lawrence is reportedly a massive fan of reality TV.
Speaking about when she bumped into Lawrence at a New York hotel, Kim Kardashian told The Sun: “We said ‘hi’ and walked into the elevator,” she said. “And as the doors were closing, she screamed across the lobby, ‘I love your show’. We were laughing so hard.”
Hillary Clinton — ‘The Good Wife’
In 2015, Hillary Clinton sat down for an interview with South Carolina Democratic Party Chairman Jaime Harrison and revealed “The Good Wife” was one of her favourite shows. She also likes “Madam Secretary,” “Downton Abbey,” and what she called “House and Garden TV” like “Love it or List it” and “Beachfront Bargain Hunt.”
Bill Gates — ‘Homeland’
In February, Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates did a Reddit AMA in which he revealed some of his favourite shows.
“There are so many great TV shows now I can’t keep up,” he said. “I thought someone might ask specifically about ‘Silicon Valley,’ which I love. I can relate to Richard. ‘Silicon Valley’ captures a lot of how crazy it is to start a new company and the dynamics of success. All the employees of Pied Piper remind me of people I have known.”
He narrowed the rest of his list down to “Homeland,” “This is Us,” “The Crown,” “The Knick,” and “Downton Abbey.”
Warren Buffet — ‘Breaking Bad’
Mega-investor Warren Buffet was a big fan of AMC’s “Breaking Bad” when it was on. According to an interview with Buzzfeed, he thought the storyline was compelling and the acting was superb.
“This is my number one show, by far,” he said. “[Walter White] is a great businessman… He’s my guy if I ever have to go toe-to-toe with anyone.”
Jennifer Aniston — ‘The Bachelor’
The “Friends” actress is apparently a superfan of the reality TV series which first aired in 2002. In December, she went on Jimmy Kimmel Live and shared her predictions of who the final four would be.
Quentin Tarantino — ‘How I Met Your Mother’
Yes, you read that right. In an interview with New York Magazine, Quentin Tarantino revealed the last two shows he watched all the way through were FX series “Justified” and sitcom “How I Met Your Mother.”
Barack Obama — ‘House of Cards’
The former president was such a fan of “House of Cards,” he even impersonated Frank Underwood, the manipulative president in the show played by Kevin Spacey, in an episode of the White House web series “West Wing Week.”
In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres in 2014, Obama said: “I have to tell you, life in Washington is a little more boring than displayed on the screen. The truth of the matter is, if you followed me, most of my day is sitting in a room listening to a bunch of folks in gray suits talking about a whole bunch of stuff that wouldn’t make very good television.”
Drew Barrymore — ‘Game of Thrones’
Drew Barrymore showed off her love of “Game of Thrones” with an Instagram photo showing her wearing a “Mother of Dragons” t-shirt, a reference to the character Daenerys Targaryen in the show. Barrymore somehow manages to find the time to watch the HBO series between juggling being a mother, running her businesses, acting, and directing.
Eddie Redmayne — ‘The Real Housewives’ franchise
In an interview with People, Eddie Redmayne admitted he is also a fan of reality TV. He may have won an Oscar for playing one of the greatest scientific minds in the world, but apparently when he gets home Redmayne likes nothing more than putting his feet up and switching on “The Real Housewives.”
He added: “I’ve been a closet lover of faux-reality TV since ‘The Hills.’ It’s bad.”