From James Van Der Beek to Haylie Duff: A Look at the Stars Who Left Hollywood for Texas

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Los Angeles isn’t what it used to be for some celebrities as they continue to trade glitzy glamor for nature and open space.

Celebrities from James Van Der Beek to Haylie Duff have made the decision to move their families from California to areas near Texas.

The stars talked about nature, feeling normal, being disconnected and having more space when discussing their reasons for the moves.

Here’s what they had to say:

James Van Der Beek

James Van Der Beek and his family moved to Texas in 2020.
(James VanderBeek)

James Van Der Beek’s move to Texas has enabled the actor to prioritize spending time with his family and connecting with nature.

“We love it. We have a lot more space,” Van Der Beek told Fox News Digital. “We all need a more direct connection to nature. It’s been a really great step and the kids are really happy.”

Van Der Beek and wife Kimberly made the decision to move from Los Angeles to Texas in 2020. The “Rules of Attraction” star explained that life has been “very different” so far.

“The parks were amazing,” he told Fox News Digital. “We’ve gone to state parks and the national parks. It’s just one of the benefits of getting out of the big city, that we got to a place where we could just have more space out front. It’s a very, it is a very different life.”

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“We watch the sunset. We know what phase the moon is in. We can even see stars, which is new,” said Van Der Beek.

Haylie Duff

Haylie Duff, who grew up in Texas, moved her family to Austin, Texas, during the coronavirus pandemic.

Haylie Duff, who grew up in Texas, moved her family to Austin, Texas, during the coronavirus pandemic.
(Paul Archuleta/Film Magic)

Haylie Duff, who grew up in Texas, made the decision to move back to the Lone Star State during the coronavirus pandemic.

“I think so much about my fear of moving from Los Angeles was that my career was over and I was never going to work again or anything,” she told Fox News Digital. “And, you know, I think this taught us all that Zoom can certainly be a very powerful tool. And we can, you know, very lucky for me, continue to work from here, and I live near my father, who I haven’t lived here (near) my father in a very long time.

“And so there’s a lot of family here that I can spend time with now that I didn’t before. And we love it. We’ve met great friends here and we’ve really come to a great place here.”

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Duff shared how less traffic and more going outside has changed the “quality of life” of her family, including her children. She has also been able to balance a Hollywood career while living outside of Los Angeles.

“I’m very grateful that there is still work for me,” she told Fox News Digital. “And I’m also a big believer in God standing behind you. And so you make the right decision for your family, and he has it.”

Matthew McConaughey and Camila Alves McConaughey

Texas-born Matthew McConaughey and his wife Camila Alves McConaughey moved to Austin, Texas in 2012.

Texas-born Matthew McConaughey and his wife Camila Alves McConaughey moved to Austin, Texas in 2012.
(Getty images)

Texas-born Matthew McConaughey and his wife Camila Alves McConaughey moved to Austin, Texas in 2012.

In April, Alves told Fox News Digital that she and her family don’t mind living outside of Hollywood. They prefer it.

“It was great,” she said at the time. “It really embodies our belief system, especially the ones I grew up with, like going to church every Sunday and saying ‘yes ma’am’ or ‘no sir’. I grew up with those things that came from a farming family. For me, because I came from Brazil and when I came to Texas I found a lot of similarities in terms of what families practice here, especially going to church on Sundays and being very outdoorsy. It’s been a great transition.”

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Alves, whose mother-in-law moved in during the coronavirus pandemic, added: “We’ve lived in Malibu for many years and have the paparazzi on our doorstep every day – every day – when that becomes normal, you don’t realize how much that actually affects the population. things you do until you actually leave and get out.

“The kids get a personal way of growing up. So from that perspective it was very important.”

The McConaugheys recently visited Washington DC, where the 51-year-old actor argued for responsible gun ownership during an emotional White House press conference. Matthew McConaughey is a resident of Uvalde, Texas, where 19 students and two teachers were killed by 18-year-old Salvador Ramos in a shooting at Robb Elementary on May 24.

Sandra Bullock

Although Sandra Bullock does not live permanently in Austin, Texas, she still owns a lakeside estate there that she purchased in 1997.

Although Sandra Bullock does not live permanently in Austin, Texas, she still owns a lakeside estate there that she purchased in 1997.
(Samantha Burkardt/Getty Images for SXSW)

While Sandra Bullock hasn’t moved out of Los Angeles permanently, she does have a home in Texas. In December 2021, Bullock shared with Kelly Clarkson that she has since returned to LA while her kids are in school, but noted that she loves Austin.

“Austin has the vibe of whatever you do, it’s okay,” she told Clarkson at the time.

Bullock still owns a lake estate on Lake Austin that she bought in 1997. In addition, the actress once owned a three-bedroom, two-and-a-half bathroom house near Barton Creek.

“A lot of people in the industry are flabbergasted that I would just pick up LA and leave,” Bullock previously told Texas Monthly.

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“But I feel a lightness when I’m here. It’s the kind of place where I can feel normal again.”

“Hope Floats” brought Bullock to Texas, but she had considered “leaving” Los Angeles before the script made its way to the actress.

“I made decisions based on fear, based on other people telling me what to do,” she told the outlet. “I tried to please everyone. I tried to be all those perky adjectives that people had attached to me. I didn’t trust my own instincts. I had to get away.

“I needed to find a place where I could go to the grocery store and get a Slurpee whenever I wanted and not have to talk about the movie industry.”

Adrian Grenier

Adrian Grenier moved to a farm outside Austin, Texas during the coronavirus pandemic.

Adrian Grenier moved to a farm outside Austin, Texas during the coronavirus pandemic.
(Jim Spelman)

Adrian Grenier made the official move to a farm outside of Austin, Texas, in 2020. He originally bought real estate in Austin five years earlier.

“I had friends here, I had a business here and I loved the pace. Austin is cosmopolitan without being cocky; it’s earthy,” Grenier told Austin Life Magazine. “People are smart and successful, but they don’t show it off. There’s nothing to prove, people accept you and it immediately felt right.”

Grenier had spent years working on environmental initiatives but felt disconnected from the cause.

“I’ve been doing environmental work for the past 20 years. I’ve founded organizations and run nonprofits, all designed to tell people to live more in tune with nature — and yet I didn’t live that way,” he told the outlet.

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“I was still living everywhere, in the process of accumulating, getting things and stuff, seeing myself as a mini-magnate of anything and everything. I reached the pinnacle of that promise – if you work hard, you become famous, you earn lots of money…but it was lackluster at the top.”

The “Entourage” actor admitted he doesn’t miss much of his former life in Los Angeles.

“I don’t miss any of that world. Listen, if you go on Instagram long enough, you’ll find FOMO somewhere, but everyone just acts like they’re living their best life,” he said. “Eventually I know I am, so I don’t even tell anyone about it.”

Jamie Lynn Sigler

Jamie-Lynn Sigler moved from Los Angeles to Austin, Texas during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jamie-Lynn Sigler moved from Los Angeles to Austin, Texas during the COVID-19 pandemic.
(Charles Sykes/Bravo/NBCU Photo Bank)

Jamie-Lynn Sigler also moved to Texas amid the coronavirus pandemic. The ‘Big Sky’ actress made the switch from Los Angeles to Austin.

“I feel disconnected, in the best way I’ve ever known,” Sigler told People magazine after her move.

“It’s all about the outdoors and nature, which I really appreciate because I’ve never experienced it in New York and LA,” she added.

The ‘Sopranos’ actress revealed that she and her children decided to ‘fully embrace life by the lake’. Her “blooming” children, who she shares with husband Cutter Dykstra, “don’t sit on screens as often anymore.”

James Marsden

Earlier this year, James Marsden, known for his roles in "X-Men" and "Sonic the hedgehog," bought a house in Austin, Texas.

Earlier this year, James Marsden, known for his roles in “X-Men” and “Sonic the Hedgehog”, bought a house in Austin, Texas.
(Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Earlier this year, James Marsden, known for his roles in “X-Men” and “Sonic the Hedgehog,” bought a house in Austin, Texas, for $1.8 million, according to the San Antonio Express News.

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“I love it. I’ve been coming here for 20 years,” Marsden previously said on “Live with Kelly and Ryan.” “It still has a small-town feel, but it’s definitely booming right now.”

Stephanie Nolasco of Fox News contributed to this report

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