Céline Dion and her late husband, René Angélil are known as Canadian royalty, and both hail from Montreal, Quebec.
The couple has always had strong ties to the city. Not only were they both born and raised there, but the two tied the knot in Montreal's Notre-Dame Basilica. That church was also the same one where Angélil’s funeral was held in January 2016.
Céline Dion and René Angélil in 2013.
A few months after laying Angélil to rest, Dion returned to the city to perform and revealed she was “ecstatic to be home.” She also shared that Montreal will always hold a special place in her heart.
“I’m very happy to be here,” she said in French. “Here in Montreal, I have to think of René and I know he’s here with us.”
But Dion and Angélil aren’t the only famous Canadians who call Montreal home. Late poet and musician Leonard Cohen, tennis champ Eugenie Bouchard, and “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” star Caroline Rhea are all Montrealers, too.
Watch the video above to see 10 of the most famous Canadians who hail from Montreal, and check out the list below for more notable Canadians who were born in the Quebec city.
The day job: Actress
The backstory: You likely recognize Jessica Paré as Don Draper’s second wife, Megan, on AMC’s "Mad Men." The 36-year-old actress was born in Montreal, and is the daughter of Anthony Paré, the former chair of McGill University’s education department. Besides "Mad Men," Paré has starred in “Wicker Park,” "Hot Tub Time Machine," "Jack & Bobby," and "Brooklyn."
The day job: Voice actor
The backstory: Peter Cullen was born in Montreal and is best known as the voice of Optimus Prime in the ‘80s animated series “Transformers.” And if that wasn’t cool enough, the 75-year-old is also the voice of Eeyore in a number of Disney animations for Winnie the Pooh, including “The New Adventures of Winnie the Pooh” and “The Tigger Movie.”
The day job: Journalist
The backstory: Jan Wong is a Canadian journalist who famously worked as a foreign correspondent for The Globe and Mail from 1988 to 1994. Based in Beijing, Wong became an eyewitness to the 1989 massacre at Tiananmen Square. She then wrote a book based on her experiences, called Red China Blues. Besides The Globe and Mail, Wong has also worked for the Montreal Gazette, The Boston Globe and The Wall Street Journal.
Chris Haney & Scott Abbott
The day job: Inventors
The backstory: Believe it or not, the board game Trivial Pursuit is Canadian! Montrealers Chris Haney (left) and Scott Abbott co-invented the game in 1982. Haney, who died in 2010, was a former photo editor at the Montreal Gazette, while Abbott is the owner of the North Bay Battalion hockey team of the Ontario Hockey League.
The day job: Singer
The backstory: The ‘80s heartthrob hails from Montreal and is the man behind pop songs like “Sunglasses at Night” and “Never Surrender.” Hart has released 10 albums over the years and sold over 16 million records worldwide.
The day job: Former NHL hockey player
The backstory: Ramzi Abid was born in Montreal and became a professional NHL hockey player. During his 18-year career, he played for well-known teams such as the Phoenix Coyotes, Pittsburgh Penguins, Atlanta Thrashers, and Nashville Predators.
The day job: Actor/producer
The backstory: Yannick Bisson is the star of CBC’s “Murdoch Mysteries,” which is one of Canada’s longest-running series. Bisson was born in Montreal, but moved to Toronto as a teen to pursue an acting career. Now he is not only the star of “Murdoch Mysteries,” but is also a producer on the show.
The day job: Animator/author
The backstory: Montrealer Janet Perlman is both an animator and children’s author. She is best known for writing “penguinized” versions of fairy tales such as Cinderella Penguin, The Emperor Penguin's New Clothes and The Penguin and the Pea. Of her short films, “The Tender Tale of Cinderella Penguin” is a standout, as it was nominated for Best Animated Short at the 1982 Academy Awards.
The day job: Professor/Nobel Prize winner
The backstory: Sidney Altman is a Canadian-American molecular biologist from Montreal who won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry in 1989. He is currently a Professor of Chemistry at Yale University.
The day job: Actor
The backstory: Yep, Scottish actor Gerard Butler is a Montrealer to some degree. At six months old, Butler’s parents moved to the Canadian city. Unfortunately, their marriage ended over a year later and Butler moved back to Scotland with his mom. The 47-year-old is now a Hollywood star and is known for films such as “The Phantom of the Opera,” “300” and “Olympus Has Fallen.”
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