Normal may be a small town but it does have its surprises!
I have always been a fan of the TV show, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation. My favorite CSI show was CSI: NY where actor Gary Sinise plays the lead role in the drama so imagine my surprise when I found out that I had something in common with Sinise. Sinise lived in Normal, Illinois when he was a student at the Illinois State University.
Several years ago, I also lived in Normal, Illinois. At that time, I was studying at Illinois State University for my Masters, Of course, Sinise graduated a long time ago while I am a more recent graduate of Illinois State.
Still, I remember thinking even then that Normal was a great little town and I wouldn't have minded staying in the area after graduation.
Here is a listing of some Hollywood stars who lived in Normal at one time,
Gary Sinise was born in Illinois and has always been a resident of the state. He lived in Highland Park until he moved to Normal to attend Illinois State University (ISU). At ISU, Sinise was very involved with the theater program. He even met his wife, Moira Harris, at ISU. She also graduated from ISU and the couple got married in 1981.
Sinise is known for movies like Apollo 13, Forrest Gump, and the CSI: NY drama series. He has won a Golden Globe and has even been nominated for the Oscars.
John Malkovich was also an Illinois resident when he was growing up. He is a unique actor who takes strange roles and makes them his own. Malkovich lived in Normal in the 1970s when he was a theater major at ISU.
At ISU, Malkovich was an urban legend. The story goes that he had enough credits to graduate but he had to take a test first. However, he thought that the test room was hot and stuffy so he just walked out before he could complete the test and graduate. At ISU, he was also friends with fellow actor Gary Sinise.
About 30 years after Malkovich abruptly left ISU, he came back and received an ISU diploma.
Malkovich is known for appearing in more than 70 Hollywood movies. He is also a producer.
You might have seen Jane Lynch in the TV series Glee. Lynch also lived in Normal when she was a theater major at ISU. She still has fond memories of her student days in Normal and credits her ISU professors with her acting career.
Lynch is a 1982 graduate of ISU. She received an honorary doctoral degree during the Founders Day Convocation from ISU in 2017.
Other famous actors who lived in Normal include Sean Hayes, Laurie Metcalf, and Gary Cole. ISU is set to produce many more Hollywood stars in the future and it would not be surprising to see this listing change in the future as more stars are added.