3 Celebrities That People Think Faked Their Own Deaths

When a celebrity dies, the world’s eyes turn to them and their work. While the vast majority of celebrity deaths are mourned without controversy, there are a few celebrities over the years, whose deaths have been questioned. For example, some fans believe the comedic genius, Andy Kaufman, faked his own death. Believe it or not, he isn’t the first, or only celebrity that people strongly believe is alive even after their death was announced to the world.

Jim Morrison’s own bandmate has some doubt about his 1971 death

Jim Morrison, the famed member of The Doors, died in 1971 at just 27 years old. Morrison’s official cause of death is often debated because no autopsy was ever performed. According to Today, Morrison officially died of heart failure. What brought that heart failure on, however, has been a topic of debate.

undated photo of Jim Morrison
Jim Morrison | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

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His girlfriend at the time, Pamela Courson, claimed the pair went to a movie, and then Morisson took a bath in the middle of the night after feeling sick. His body was discovered in the bathtub hours later. Several sources have come forward to suggest Morrison overdosed in a nightclub and was taken back to his apartment to avoid a scandal.

The Doors
The Doors | Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Some people don’t think he died in the first place. Ray Manzarek, the keyboardist for The Doors, was outspoken in his belief that Morrison faked his own death. Manzarek, in his book on the subject, insisted he never saw Morrison’s body and hinted, repeatedly, that Morrison was alive and well. Manzarek theorized that Morrison couldn’t handle the pressures of being in the spotlight, so he slipped into obscurity to work on his poetry. Manzarek died in 2013.

Fans still firmly believe that Elvis Presley is alive and well

Elvis Presley was only 42 years old when he famously died in his bathroom from a heart attack. The death, which shocked the entire nation, was initially shrouded in mystery, but as PBS states, his death was not a particularly unusual one. Elvis was suffering from a variety of physical ailments at the time of his death, and an autopsy found that he had a mix of different prescription drugs in his system. Elvis had been prescribed everything from pain killers to sleeping pills to laxatives.

an undated studio photo of Elvis Presley
Elvis Presley | RB/Redferns

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Even with knowing the cocktail of drugs that Elvis was taking at the time of his death, some fans strongly believe “the King” faked his own death to rid himself of the spotlight. Theories that he faked his own death began popping up shortly after he was buried. Some fans believe that he skipped town under an assumed name just one day after his reported death. Over the years, several “clues” that he is alive have been touted by believers, like a 2005 interview in which Elvis’s wife, Priscilla Presley, referred to something Elvis said “the other day” as definitive proof that he’s alive and well.

If Elvis had faked his own death, which seems unlikely, fans believe he moved to South America. Elvis would be 85-years-old if he were alive today. Considering his medical issues at 42, experts insist he wouldn’t be alive now even if he had slipped away to live a quiet life.  

Theories that Tupac Shakur faked his own death have persisted for decades

In September 1996, Tupac Shakur attended a boxing match in Las Vegas. He piled into a vehicle with Suge Knight after the match, and from there, things get a little hazy. What is known is that Tupac, seated in the passenger side of a BMW, was shot in the arm, leg, and chest. He was transported to an area hospital were he succumbed to his injuries six days after being shot. The person or persons responsible for his death have never been found

Tupac Shakur poses for photos backstage after his performance at the Regal Theater in Chicago, Illinois in March 1994
Tupac Shakur | Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

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Fans have had a hard time believing that Tupac is actually gone, mostly because many believe he never died in the first place. Some fans have suggested that Tupac left “clues” in his own music that he faked his own death. Over the years, several theories about where Tupac could be if he were alive have emerged. Some believe he is living in New Mexico under an assumed identity. Others think Tupac escaped to Cuba, where he’s been hanging out on a beach for more than 20 years.