The Untold Truth Of Ashton Kutcher

Ashton Kutcher made headlines in 2022 by sharing his battle with vasculitis, a dangerous autoimmune disease that almost killed him. "Like two years ago, I had this weird, super rare form of vasculitis, that, like, knocked out my vision, it knocked out my hearing, it knocked out, like, all my equilibrium," he told survival expert Bear Grylls in an August episode of National Geographic's "Running Wild with Bear Grylls: The Challenge."

Kutcher also revealed that it took him a year to fully recover from the disease and its side effects, telling Grylls that he was "lucky to be alive" after his ordeal. "You don't really appreciate it until it's gone," he observed. "Until you go, 'I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to see again, I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to hear again, I don't know if I'm ever going to be able to walk again.'" According to NBC News, vasculitis is a life-threatening condition that is known to be difficult to diagnose and leads to "inflammation of the blood vessels," which can affect the whole body.

Keep reading to find out more surprising facts about the former "Punk'd" host and his life in the spotlight.

His twin brother had a heart transplant

Ashton Kutcher's twin brother Michael Kutcher has had health complications ever since he almost died after birth, according to his website. Not only was he diagnosed with cerebral palsy as a child; Michael had to have a heart transplant when the twins were 13. And when it looked like he might not find a donor, Ashton told their family that he wished he could give his own heart; he even considered suicide. "It's just ... I can't find the words," Michael later reflected to Us Weekly. "It's a connection that you can't explain... It's an honor or deep appreciation and a deep love for someone who would sacrifice that for you. I really can't put words to it."

He survived the heart transplant and went on to become a disability advocate and spokesperson for the Cerebral Palsy Foundation. Although Michael was initially upset by Ashton bringing his disability into the spotlight, he decided that he would use the platform to raise awareness of his condition and organ donation. "My brother's daily actions remind me that life isn't about running around challenges — it's about running through them," Ashton told Today. "Mike has a relentless work ethic and a deep compassion for others."

Ashton Kutcher was arrested in high school

Fans of Ashton Kutcher's acting career might not know that the movie star actually has a criminal past. As a teen, Christopher Ashton Kutcher was caught breaking into his high school with his cousin to help the relative steal a copy of the answers to an upcoming test. And according to biographer Marc Shapiro, Kutcher's furious parents left him to spend the night in custody. "My stepdad told me if I ever got thrown in jail he would let me stay there for the night," Kutcher later explained. "I called him and said, 'Hey, I'm in jail. And he's like, 'Have a good night,' and he hung up the phone!"

His sentence was three years of probation and 180 hours of community service. Adding insult to injury, the high schooler was also banned from school sports and dumped by his girlfriend before senior prom. The experience clearly stayed with him, as he later mentioned his brush with the law in 2017 while collecting the Robert D. Ray Pillar of Character Award at Drake University. "I'm probably the first guy to get this award who had a deferred judgment for a felony burglary," Kutcher joked, explaining how the criminal sentence affected his life. "By the way, deferred judgment, when you actually get it expunged from your record and you go to get your global entry pass, they remember," the actor added. "So it doesn't ever really go away."

He lost a modeling competition to Josh Duhamel

Ashton Kutcher got his start in show business after he won a local modeling competition and moved to L.A., but in 1997, he lost to another future star. "So then I came to New York for another contest," he explained to Howard Stern, recalling his early days in the industry. "Josh Duhamel won... Handsome son of a b****," he joked. After Stern asked whether he bore a grudge against the "Transformers" star, Kutcher admitted that he had been annoyed. "I was so f***ing upset at this guy for so long, and then finally I ran into him and I was like 'Alright, you're good-looking.' I had to give it up."

Duhamel later told his side of the story on "Late Night with Seth Meyers." "It was probably the most pivotal moment in my life — beating Ashton Kutcher," Duhamel declared. "The whole week was about, 'Who's gonna win?' ... The word on the street was that it was between me, this kid from Cedar Rapids, and some other kid. The kid from Cedar Rapids was Ashton, obviously," he told Meyers, sharing the tension behind the Model of the Year competition. Hilariously, if you watch footage of the 1997 contest, you'll hear Duhamel say of Kutcher, "The guy, I forget his name, from Iowa was exceptional... I thought that he was gonna be the hands-down winner."

His date was killed by a serial killer

Ashton Kutcher had a chilling encounter with a real-life tragedy when Ashley Ellerin was murdered on the same night he was supposed to pick her up for a date. The fashion design student, age 22, was stabbed to death by serial killer Michael Gargiulo in February 2001. Kutcher, who had met her previously at a party, arrived at her house later that night.

As NBC News reported, Kutcher later testified against Ashley Ellerin's murderer in court. "I knocked on the door and there was no answer," the actor recalled. "I knocked again, and once again, no answer. At this point I pretty well assumed she had left for the night, and that I was late, and she was upset." Although he had looked in and seen stains on the floor, Kutcher assumed they were from spilled wine and didn't suspect anything unusual until the following day.

"I remember the next day after I heard about what happened, I went to the detectives and said, 'My fingerprints are on the door,'" the star told the court. "I was freaking out." The right killer was eventually caught and Gargiulo was ultimately sentenced to death row for the murder of Ellerin and one other woman, as the Associated Press reported.

He and Demi Moore almost had a kid

Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore's turbulent relationship was like catnip to the tabloids: there was a 15-year age difference between party boy Kutcher and movie star Moore, who already had two children. And as the "Ghost" actor later revealed in her memoir, Kutcher's reported infidelity wasn't the only issue pushing their marriage to the brink. She also went through a miscarriage when they were together, which forced her to deal with her substance issues.

"Ashton did his best to connect with me in my grief. He tried to be there for me during the miscarriage, but he couldn't really understand what I was feeling," she wrote (via Insider), blaming the age gap. "...he was in his twenties at the time: he wasn't remotely late to the game of fatherhood." As she revealed, Moore felt guilty over the loss of the baby but also panicked about her ability to conceive again. "His possibilities were not running out, far from it. I was suddenly acutely aware that mine were," she added.

Ashton Kutcher fasted in the woods after his divorce

After months of separation, Ashton Kutcher and Demi Moore's divorce was finalized in November 2013, as E! News reported. Clearly, this emotional upheaval took a toll on Kutcher, as he reacted by retreating to the woods for a fairly extreme fast.

"I went into Big Sky in Montana...and I did no food, no drink — just water and tea," he later explained on his friend Dax Shepard's "Armchair Expert" podcast. He also left behind any form of entertainment, including his phone. "I was there by myself so there was no talking, and I just had a notepad and a pen and water and tea for a week," Kutcher added, recalling that he began hallucinating on the second day of the trip.

The actor made it clear that he was motivated by remorse over past relationships and the idea that he had possibly hurt his exes. "I wrote down every single relationship that I had where I felt like there was some grudge or some anything and then I wrote letters to every single person and sent the letter on day seven," he told Shepard, comparing it to an Alcoholics Anonymous exercise. "I typed them all out and sent them." Whether his ex-girlfriends forgave him or not, Kutcher at least enjoyed his break from the modern world.

He's a smart investor

Ashton Kutcher might be known for films like "Dude Where's My Car?" and "The Butterfly Effect," but he didn't get to an estimated net worth of $200 million through acting alone. Kutcher has earned his reputation as one of the tech industry's top investors by helping companies like Uber, Skype, Airbnb, Spotify, Pinterest, Shazam and Foursquare get off the ground. He even appeared as a guest shark on "Shark Tank" in 2015, per Insider.

He also asked Mila Kunis to try various dating apps to give him feedback, as she told Jimmy Kimmel. "Listen — when we started dating... Tinder hadn't been really out yet," the actor recalled. "And he was like, 'So babe, you know, I got this thing that I'm thinking about... You need to do me a favor and look at this app.'" Kunis was happy to oblige and started swiping so that she could report back, but it wasn't the only app he made her try out. "This is the stuff that I do at home. He makes me go on all of these websites," she laughed, adding, "What's the gay version of Tinder? Grindr! I've been on Grindr."

A failed blind date led to him marrying Mila Kunis

Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis might be a Hollywood power couple now, but back in 2012, Kutcher was trying to set his future wife up with someone else.

His former "That '70s Show" co-star had also recently broken off a major relationship at the time, so he invited her over to hang out. "I found out later in life that my husband was trying to set me up on a blind date with one of his best friends that night," Kunis later explained to James Corden, reflecting on how her platonic feelings had changed over the years. "So he was like 'come over,' and he had a friend that he wanted to set me up with and that didn't happen." She also joked about how both she and Kutcher had starred in movies about being "friends with benefits" beforehand, adding that they should have seen their romance coming.

In an interview with Howard Stern, Kutcher gave his account of their early romance. The actor insisted that he had planned on staying single, but after his other friend didn't show up to his house, smoking with Kunis led to the pair getting closer. "It was pretty mutual. It was kind of obvious that things were happening," the actor commented. He also recalled that Kunis had recently quit cigarettes, so she asked Kutcher to "shotgun" some smoke into her mouth and give her the second-hand experience. "Gradually, through the night, it got closer and closer and closer," he admitted.

He was hospitalized for following the Steve Jobs diet

In order to play Steve Jobs in a biopic, Ashton Kutcher became a "fruitarian," but he quickly regretted it when he had to be hospitalized. "First of all, the fruitarian diet can lead to severe issues," the actor explained, per USA Today, admitting that he had put himself at risk for the role. "I went to the hospital like two days before we started shooting the movie. I was like doubled over in pain." The actor was particularly scared by his abnormal pancreas levels, considering that Jobs had died from pancreatic cancer not long before filming began.

Mila Kunis made fun of her husband for his commitment on "Hot Ones" in 2021, recalling the dramatic health scare. "He was so dumb. He also, I think, only ate grapes at one point... it was so stupid," she revealed, joking that Kutcher had underplayed his extreme diet. "We ended up in the hospital twice with pancreatitis!"

Ashton Kutcher will be in the That '70s Show spin-off

Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis have announced that they'll be returning to the set where they first met by appearing in Netflix's upcoming "That '70s Show" spin-off. "That '90s Show" will follow the offspring of the original Point Place crew, but as Kutcher and Kunis told Variety, they couldn't resist stopping by as guest stars. "We thought, 'Listen, we're only in the position that we're in because of that show, so let's just go back and do this,'" Kutcher explained. "We just went back and had fun for a week. It was so random and fun." He then praised the new version, adding: "It's really funny. The new cast is phenomenal."

The cast will have one major absence: Danny Masterson, who is facing a criminal trial. The actor, who played Hyde, has been accused of rape by three different women and will answer to a court in October 2022, per the Daily Mail. Kutcher starred in Masterson's Netflix show "The Ranch" until it was canceled in 2018. He has not commented on his former co-star's legal situation so far.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

He and Mila Kunis raised over $35 million for Ukrainian refugees

In 2022, Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis decided to step up and do something for Ukraine, the country where Kunis was born, in response to the ongoing conflict. "I'm a proud American. I love everything this country has done for myself and my family," Kunis announced on Instagram. "But today, I have never been more proud to be a Ukrainian."

The couple organized a GoFundMe to fund transportation and housing for Ukrainian refugees, promising to match all donations up to $3 million. "Ukrainians are proud and brave people who deserve our help in their time of need," Kunis wrote on the fundraiser page. "This unjust attack on Ukraine and humanity at large is devastating and the Ukrainian people need our support."

President Zelenskyy thanked them for their GoFundMe efforts on social media, sharing a picture of them having an online meeting and praising the campaign for raising over $35 million. "Grateful for their support. Impressed by their determination," the Ukrainian leader wrote, pointing out how quick the couple had been to react to the situation. "They inspire the world."