More 50+ Insights
These celebrities may all be reaching milestone birthdays, but they're just getting started! This powerful demo has led the largest online migration of any single demo in U.S. history, ushering in new opportunities for marketers and advertisers. AARP Media Advertising Network offers many different print and digital methods to reach them.
Declared by the NBA itself as the greatest basketball player of all time, Michael Jordan turns 60 on February 7 – with 15 NBA seasons and six legendary NBA championships with the Chicago Bulls under his belt. With nicknames ranging from “Air Jordan” to “His Airness,” the world’s sole billionaire athlete currently goes by “owner” – of his own steakhouse chain, the NBA’s Charlotte Hornets, and 23XI Racing in the NASCAR Cup Series. Long before he redefined what an athlete could be in popular culture (from putting Nike on the map to Space Jam, Gatorade, Hanes, and more), Jordan was born in Brooklyn, NY, and grew up in North Carolina. Initially, he was too short to play varsity basketball. A growth spurt would change all that, not to mention the history of sports as we know it.
Portia de Rossi was born Amanda Lee Rogers in Horsham, Victoria, Australia. She later changed her name to reinvent herself – “Portia” comes from Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, and “de Rossi” comes from her love of Italian culture. The Arrested Development actress, who turns 50 on January 31, has lived up to her goal of reinvention, from her SAG Award-winning work on Ally McBeal to her role as an LGBTQ+ advocate. After coming out as gay in 2005, de Rossi famously began dating Ellen Degeneres, whom she married in 2008. Though she largely retired from acting in 2018, de Rossi enjoys flipping houses and is an avid animal lover – she has six rescued pets and supports animal sanctuaries like The Gentle Barn.
Pat Benatar, who turned 70 on January 10, got an early birthday present in November when she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The Brooklyn, NY native started voice lessons at age eight, performing her first solo in elementary school. Surprisingly, the artist behind “Heartbreaker” and “Love is a Battlefield” pursued healthcare education before opting for music. Today, she lays claim to six platinum albums, four consecutive Grammys for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance (1980-1983), and the second video ever to appear on MTV (“You Better Run,” which followed The Buggles’ “Video Killed the Radio Star”). Now living with her husband and two daughters in Malibu, Benatar wrote in her 2011 memoir, Between a Heart and a Rock Place, “I’ve nothing left to prove, which is probably the most liberating feeling in the world.”
The release of Magic Mike’s Last Dance in February will mark Steven Soderbergh’s 34th film in 34 years. His directorial debut, 1989’s Sex, Lies and Videotape, made him the youngest solo filmmaker to win the Cannes Film Festival’s Palme d’Or. In addition to being a prolific director, he’s often his own cinematographer and editor, using his parent’s names – Peter Andrews and Mary Ann Bernard – as pseudonyms. Soderbergh, who turned 60 on January 15, was raised in Georgia, Virginia, and Louisiana before setting out for Hollywood. From directing Traffic to the Ocean’s franchise, Soderbergh has worked in practically every genre, and his versatility extends beyond films to entrepreneurship: He’s the founder of the Bolivian grape spirit brand Singani 63.
there's something about mary
In the ’70s, while studying acting in New York, Mary Steenburgen was a server at The Magic Pan restaurant. She lived next door to Steve Martin, but it was another leading man, Jack Nicholson, who discovered her in a Paramount waiting room. Nicholson cast her in her first film, 1978’s Goin’ South. It was one of many, from Back to the Future: Part III to The Help, that would evoke her Southern upbringing. Steenburgen, who turns 70 on February 8, was born in Arkansas. She won an Oscar in 1980 (Best Supporting Actress, Melvin and Howard), married Ted Danson in 1995, and has been acting for 45years. She’ll soon appear in the sequel to 2018’s The Book Club, and recently signed with Universal Music to feed another talent: singing and songwriting.
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