What happened to Pawn Stars? It’s not canceled yet

April 18, 2024
7 mins read

What happened to “Pawn Stars” – it’s not cancelled yet?

You may have heard, or are even an avid fan of the television reality show, “Pawn Stars”, but do you know how it originated? Well, read on to find out.

In 1980, Richard B. Harrison, a retired US Navy sailor and his family left San Diego and moved to the Neon City – Las Vegas where, after trying his hand at real estate and failing, he opened a coin store on the Las Vegas Boulevard. His son, Rick, had another idea, and that was to open a pawn shop. He had to wait for years before he obtained the first pawn license issued by Las Vegas City Hall, following the rise in population. Rick’s intention was for the shop to be more exclusive, and he began to scope out valuable antiques, art and historical pieces. With that, The Gold and Silver Pawn Shop quickly gained a reputation amongst sellers and treasure hunters, but that wasn’t enough for Rick. He set the intention of having a reality TV show. So, after pitching to several TV networks, Leftfield Productions agreed to shoot a test episode. His dad, known as “The Old Man”, was opposed to the plan, but finally relented, History Channel checked out the test DVD, went for it, and the rest is history!

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“Pawn Stars” premiered on 26th July 2009. Of course, with all the assessing, buying and selling, the show also highlights the banter, conflicts, arguments, laughter and ribbing between its stars. Not only did the Gold and Silver Pawn Shop become a thriving business, but it also became a top tourist attraction in Las Vegas, increasing its daily count from 100 to 1000 pairs of feet through its doors by October 2010. This sparked the enterprise to hire almost 30 extra staff members and to expand their showroom to 15,000 sq ft (1,394 sq m), and they went from strength to strength. It became History Channel’s highest ranked show in 2011 and was ultimately viewed in 150 countries in 38 languages, with over 600 episodes to boot. Nturally, the family patriarch The Old Man took the credit for their fame ,and as stated on their website: “Sipping his morning coffee, looking out over a line of fans waiting to enter the shop, he says to Rick… “You know getting this TV show was the best idea I’ve ever had.”


About the main “Pawn Stars” players:

Richard B. Harrison – “The Old Man” played an influential role in the shop until he passed away at the age of 77 on 25th June 2018, after suffering with Parkinson’s Disease.

Rick Harrison, born Richard Kevin Harrison on 22nd March 1965 in Lexington, North Carolina is the third child of “The Old Man” and Joanne Rhue Harrison. Thanks to his ingenuity and his thirst for reading books, which arose from his days as a child suffering epileptic seizures, and passing the time reading, he has gained a broad base and vast amounts of knowledge ranging from history, to business and physics. He is in fact self-educated having dropped out of school after the ninth grade.

Rick’s girlfriend, Kim, fell pregnant in 1982 when he was 17. She miscarried the baby, but they married anyway, and had two sons, Corey and Adam, but their marriage didn’t last, and they divorced in 1989. Nine months after their separation, Rick went on a blind double-date and met Tracy, whom he married eight months later. They have a son called Jake born in 2003, but yet again this marriage didn’t survive, and within eight years Rick was single again, although not for long, as he married Deanna Burditt, a mother of three girls, in 2013. Sadly it wasn’t ‘third time lucky’, and although Rick kept it secret for over a year, Fox News reported that the couple divorced  in 2020.

Rick was the executive producer for an episode of “Blood Sweat and Heels” in 2009. He has also appeared in several TV commercials and interviews.

In 2015, Rick opened a 2-story shopping center called Pawn Plaza right next door to the pawn store, and owns Rick’s Rollin’ Smoke BBQ & Tavern where he often bartends, hangs out, takes photos with fans, and signs merchandise. He’s an avid movies and rock music fan, and has a stylish car collection.


Corey Harrison – “Big Hoss”: Rick’s son, Corey, was born on 27th April, 1983 in Las Vegas and was a mere nine years old when he started working in the pawn shop. Of course he was nicknamed “Big Hoss” because of his large size, but subsequently was shocked by being diagnosed as a pre-diabetic, which spurred him to undergo weight reduction surgery and radically change his lifestyle. He’s lost a whopping 115lbs (52 kgs), and is now fondly called “Skinny” by girls in the office.

Corey married his high school crush, Charlene in 2009, and she worked at the pawn shop until their marriage ended in 2015. In 2017, Corey married Korina “Kiki” Harrison, but they divorced in September 2018, although parted amicably – their son, Richard Benjamin Harrison, was born in October 2018. Rick and Corey certainly don’t have much luck in the marriage department, and Corey blames the long, hard hours of work as a reason for his failed marriages. Corey has a percentage share in the business and has the reputation of being the one who’s made the highest number of purchases, is there for fans and friends who need support, and for being a loyal friend.

In 2014, Corey and a friend bought into a nightclub and chain of salons called Beauty Bar, but they pulled out of the business which closed down in 2019, a year after they’d left.

Just recently rumors were circulating about Corey having had a stroke, but they proved unfounded and it looks like he has no health issues, particularly since his physical downsizing and healthier lifestyle.

Austin Chumlee” Russell – Born Austin Lee Russell on 8th September 1982, in Henderson, Nevada, he earned the nickname “Chumlee” when he was young, firstly because of his sizeable face, and secondly after Chumley, the walrus from the TV series “Tennessee Tuxedo”. He is Corey’s childhood friend, and started working in the shop when he was 21 – five years before the TV series was launched. Chumlee works behind the counter testing and loading goods. He became a firm favourite on the show and went on to design unique merchandise, forming his own company, of which he sold half to Rick in 2010 to streamline ordering of his goods.

Chumlee also directed, produced, filmed and edited the 2013 movie “Driven: The Story of Tanner Godfrey” – a true life story of a motocross racer who became semi-paralyzed after an accident. He’s appeared in “Lip Service”, and both he and Rick featured in “Bob Dylan: Like a Rolling Stone”.

Chumlee also had a weight problem, but after his father’s death from pancreatic cancer at the age of 54, and as he was inspired by Corey’s massive weight loss, he also went for surgery, changed his diet and lifestyle and lost 100 lbs (45 kgs). He is known to be a collector of shoes, plays Pokémon and skateboards, is a rap and punk rock music fan, and has a cool collection of cars.

In 2019 Chumlee married Olivia Rademann – they were friends before they started dating in 2016.

Chumlee and his brother Sage opened up Chumlee’s Candy on the Boulevard in Palm Plaza in 2017, which is still going strongly.

Other Pawn Star players

Apart from The Gold and Silver Pawn Shop’s employees, many experts appear in the show to evaluate items. Two of them went on to create their own spin-off programs – Rick Dale, antique restorer/metal artist launched his show, “American Restoration” in October 2010, and Danny “The Count” Koker’s “Counting Cars” made its debut on 13th August 2012.


Over the years a host of celebrities have made cameo appearances in the show, including Bob Dylan, Roger Daltrey (The Who), Phil Collen (Def Leppard), Meredith Vieira (journalist and TV personality), the Oak Ridge Boys, golfer Butch Harmon, and the inimitable Billy Gibbons of ZZ Top.

Pawn Star scandals and legal issues

Corey has generated some scandalous news in his time, one of which was exposing himself and pissing on a bar stool, then posing for his fans all on a drunken night out in Jefferson City in 2014, sheepishly apologizing for his behavior after the incident. In 2021, he was the subject of rotten news again, for not returning a rented RV on time apparently because he’d had an accident. The owner had to file a police report for damages when Corey finally had the vehicle towed back in a wrecked  condition, and refused to pay.


In 2017 Chumlee had a brush with the law, and after a sex assault charge which didn’t hold water,  he was arrested for possession of marijuana, other drugs and guns. It seems he took a plea bargain deal to avoid serving time, and was put on probation for three years.

On 25th February 2022 the Las Vegas Review-Journal published the news that Rick was being sued by his 81-year old mother, who originally owned 51 percent of shares in what is sometimes referred to now as The World Famous Gold and Silver Coin Shop, and is now claiming that Rick fooled her into signing the shares over to him when she was in ICU after having suffered a coma. Furthermore, Rick stopped paying her her monthly distribution from investments and there are questions around his breach of fiduciary duty, an unexplained loan and the family trust. Rick responded by stating the allegations are false and that he thinks his mother “is being manipulated by others for their personal gain”.


Pawn Stars was involved in other legal implications, one of which was initiated by ex-manager Wayne Jeffries who was suing for damages and another when Venture IAB claimed that they originally had contracts with the main stars as early as 2007 before the show aired, and that they were instrumental in getting it on air in 2009. They filed for $5 million in damages, but nothing more has since come to light regarding these cases.

So is “Pawn Stars” still on air?

There have been questions as to whether “Pawn Stars” was cancelled – the answer is an emphatic “No!” They filmed their 18th season during the Covid-19 pandemic, and launched their 19th season on 14th August, 2021, but it doesn’t end there. On 9th November 2022, they launched “Pawn Stars Do America“, in which Rick, Corey and Chumlee tour American cities on a quest to discover vintage treasures and collectibles.


Not only are they going strongly and getting great ratings, but their individual net worth is steadily increasing. According to knowledgeable sources, The Old Man was worth $5 million at the time of his passing. Rick, Corey and Chumlee, with their other entrepreneurial ventures, plus TV commercials, extensive social media coverage generated individually and collectively, are worth a tidy sum. Rick Harrison is said to be worth $8 million, Corey and Chumlee about $5 million each. It just goes to prove that one can make a huge success out of wheeling and dealing!

Martha Clifford

As an Author at Net Worth Post, I guide a dedicated team in the art of revealing the stories behind the world's most influential personalities. Fueled by a relentless curiosity and a knack for uncovering hidden stories, I immerse myself in the intricacies of our subjects' lives, weaving together accurate data and compelling narratives. My involvement spans the entire editorial process, from the seed of research to the final flourish of publication, ensuring that every article not only educates but also captivates and motivates our audience.

At Net Worth Post, we are committed to providing thorough investigations into the net worth and life achievements of innovators across diverse sectors such as technology, culture, and social entrepreneurship. My method merges meticulous research with eloquent storytelling, designed to bridge the gap between our readers and the remarkable individuals who redefine our tomorrow. Through spotlighting their journeys to success, the hurdles they've surmounted, and their contributions to society, we aim to give our readers a deep and inspiring insight into the luminaries who are paving the way for progress and ingenuity in the modern era.

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