Darren Aronofsky Used to Drive a Cab in Brooklyn

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Photo: Getty Images

Lately, the economic downturn is never far from our minds, and at last night's premiere of The Wrestler — a story about a pro wrestler looking for his last shot — we found ourselves wondering if super-successful people, like director Darren Aronofsky, had ever been laid off or otherwise down on their luck. "I've been fired many, many times, and I've been told no many, many times, but I don't think layoffs were happening when I was first working," he told us as wife Rachel Weisz and Naomi Watts chatted behind him. What was his first job? "I was working in the eighties for $3 or $4 [an hour]," he said. "My big job — I drove a gypsy cab in Brooklyn for a long time and that's how I used to make a lot of money as a kid," he said, smiling at the memory. Then he trailed off, prompting us to ask what happened. "I got fired," he said. Wait, isn't the whole thing about gypsy cabs that they're unregulated? Why would they have fired him? "I can't talk about that," he said. "You know, I felt oppressed a little bit." Oh, artists.