Celebrities you didn't know were nepotism babies (2023)

A host of celebrities have been wading into the row about nepotism babies after an fierce debate about those in the film and TV industry with famous parents.

The term nepo babies was coined online and is used to describe celebrity offspring who enter the world of showbiz, cushioned by their parents' famous names.

The topic recently started trending on social media following New York's Magazine's The Year of the Nepo Baby cover, which was published in December.

Lily-Rose Depp, Maude Apatow, Maya Hawke, Dakota Johnson, Ben Platt and Zoe Kravitz were among the famous faces plastered across the front cover.

Nepotism row:A host of celebrities have been wading into the row about nepotism babies after an fierce debate about those in the film and TV industry with famous parents. Pictured: Benedict Cumberbatch, whose parents areWanda Ventham and Timothy Carlton

Since then, a slew of A-listers have waded into the row, with Lily Allen launching a wild rant in defence of nepotism babiesin the entertainment industry.

Kate Moss' sister Lottie then provoked social media followers after lending her support to Lily amid the ongoing debate, saying she is 'sick of people blaming nepotism for why they aren't rich and famous or successful'.

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Hailey Bieber, the daughter of actor Stephen Baldwin, didn't shy away from the controversyas she proudly rocked a 'Nepo Baby' T-shirt, withactress Gwyneth Paltrow then giving it her seal of approval.

But as a whole host of stars have spoken out amid the fierce debate, MailOnline takes a look at the stars you didn't realise were nepotism babies from Benedict Cumberbatch to Zoey Deutch and Maya Rudolph.

Famous parents: Now, MailOnline takes a look at the stars you didn't realise were nepotism babies from Benedict Cumberbatch to Zoey Deutch (left) and Maya Rudolph (right)

Benedict Cumberbatch

Benedict Cumberbatch has built up a name for himself as one of the most esteemed British film actors, earning a role as Dr Strange in the Marvel franchise.

He also secured a role as the famed detective Sherlock Holmes in a BBC series and featured in the award-winning westernThe Power of the Dog.

However, what many people do not know is that his parents are also huge names in the entertainment industry.

Success:Benedict Cumberbatch has built up a name for himself as one of the most esteemed British film actors, earning a role as Dr Strange in the Marvel franchise

His motherWanda Ventham carved out a successful television career for herself after rising to fame in the1950s, while his father TimothyCarlton is an actor.

Wanda, who married Timothy back in 1976, trained at theCentral School of Speech and Drama before going on to star in a host of hit television shows.

The actress, now 87, is best-known for portraying Colonel Virginia Lake in the 1970s, while she also secured roles in the original Doctor Who series and Emmerdale Farm.

Despite her long list of acting credits, she is very well-recognised for her supporting role in Only Fools and Horses as Del Boy's mother-in-lawPamela Parry.

Parents: However, what many people do not know is that his parents Wanda Ventham and Timothy Carlton (pictured) are also huge names in the entertainment industry

Meanwhile, Timothy, now 83, was best known for his roles in 1968's mini series Cold Comfort Farm and 1998'sParting Shots.

He has racked up an impressive 117 acting credits across his 60-year career and more recently made one-off appearances in Holby City and Downton Abbey.

In recent years, Timothy and Wanda even made an appearance in Benedict's smash hit series Sherlock as their son's on-screen parents.

Actor:Meanwhile, Timothy, now 83, was best known for his roles in 1968's mini series Cold Comfort Farm and 1998's Parting Shots

Crossover:In recent years, Timothy and Wanda even made an appearance in Benedict's smash hit series Sherlock as their son's on-screen parents

Previously speaking about his upbringing, Benedict, 46, said his parents didn't want him to follow in their acting footsteps.

He toldThe Lady magazine in 2019 that his parents'scrimped and saved' to send him to a prestigious £12,000-a-term Harrow school so he could become 'a doctor or a lawyer'.

He explained: 'They scrimped and saved to get their only son the very best education possible.

'And I took that education threw it all in their face and became an actor anyway.'

Career:Previously speaking about his upbringing, Benedict said his parents didn't want him to follow in their acting footsteps

Zoey Deutch

She is now best-known for her roles inSet It Up, The Politician,Zombieland: Double Tap and Before I Fall.

But Zoey Deutch is also the daughter of actress Lea Thompson and film and television director Howard Deutch.

Zoey, 28, is the couple's youngest daughter as they also share another child,Madelyn, 31, who is a writer.

Roles:She is now best-known for her roles in Set It Up, The Politician, Zombieland: Double Tap and Before I Fall

Lea and Howard have been married for 33 years after tying the knot back in 1989 and the proud mother often posts about their two daughters on social media.

Lea, now 61, is well-recognised for her portrayal of Lorraine Baines-McFly in the Back to the Future film trilogy but has starred in more than 30 films.

She also appeared asBeverly Switzler in Howard the Duck and has even done a stint on Broadway inCabaret.

Meanwhile, Howard worked in collaboration with filmmaker John Hughes and famously directed two of his works -Pretty in Pink and Some Kind of Wonderful.

Parents:But Zoey Deutch is also the daughter of actress Lea Thompson and film and television director Howard Deutch

Veteran director Howard also has a credit on 1988's The Great Outdoors and has more recently worked on The Big Bang theory spin-off show Young Sheldon.

Speaking about growing up in Hollywood, Zoey previously said it gave her a'unique perspective' on show business.

In 2018, she toldCapitol File magazine how her background helped prepare her for the lights, camera and action of Hollywood.

She said: 'Look, all artists pull from their personal experiences, and anyone who tells you that isn't the case is out of their mind, but growing up in this business definitely gave me a unique perspective on the job.'

Like mother like daughter!Zoey, 28, is the couple's youngest daughter as they also share another child, Madelyn, 31, who is a writer

Maya Rudolph

Another very famous actress who many people don't realise grew up with famous parents is comedian Maya Rudolph.

The Bridesmaids star, 50, is the daughter ofsinger-songwriter Minnie Riperton and musician and producer Richard Rudolph.

Richard, now 76, was married to Minnie from 1970 until her death from breast cancer in 1979. They also shared a sonMarc, now 55.

Musical beginnings:Another very famous actress who many people don't realise grew up with famous parents is comedian Maya Rudolph

Minnie was best known for her 1975song Lovin' You but tragically died at the age of 31 just twoweeks before Maya's seventh birthday.

Her father Richard, who is married to Japanese jazz singerKimiko Kasai, produced Minnie's albumPerfect Angel along with Stevie Wonder and co-wrote smash hit Lovin' You with her.

He has also penned an array of songs throughout his career, including tracks for Stevie Wonder,Jermaine Jackson,Patti Austin and Chaka Khan.

Richard, also known as 'Dick' Rudolph, also created music for an array of movies, including 2001'sFinal Fantasy: The Spirits Within, 1981's Outland and 1995'sVirtuosity.

Singers:The Bridesmaids star, 50, is the daughter of singer-songwriter Minnie Riperton and musician and producer Richard Rudolph (pictured with Maya)

And Maya followed in her famous parents footsteps, but went into comedy rather than music, appearing on theNBC sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live.

She has gone on to secure roles in Grown Ups, Loot, The Good Place and Big Hero 6 as she has become a well-known name in comedy.

Maya now has four children of her own - Pearl, 17, Lucille, 13, Jack, 11, and Minnie, nine - who she shares with herlongtime partner Paul Thomas Anderson.

Comedy:And Maya followed in her famous parents footsteps, but went into comedy rather than music, appearing in 2011's Bridesmaids alongside Kristen Wiig

Margaret Qualley

Margaret Qualley first trained as a ballerina before making her acting debut in drama film Palo Alto in2013, going on to gain recognition for her work on HBO'sThe Leftovers.

But the star, 28, was following in her famous mother's footsteps as she is the daughter of none other than AndieMacDowell and her ex-husbandPaul Qualley.

Margaret is one of three children that actress Andie McDowell shares with her ex-husband Paul, whom she wed in 1986 and divorced in 1999.

Acting:Margaret Qualley first trained as a ballerina before making her acting debut in drama film Palo Alto in 2013, going on to gain recognition for her work on HBO's The Leftovers

Andie, 64, is famous for her role as Hugh Grant's love interest in smash hit romantic comedyFour Weddings and a Funeral.

She was also cast alongside Bill Murray in Groundhog Day, while she also starred in 2011'sFootloose and has modelled for Calvin Klein.

Andie has even starred alongside her real-life daughter Margaret in Netflix seriesMaid, playing an on-screen parent and child.

Speaking about starring alongside her real-life daughter, Andie admitted it 'wasn't easy'during an appearance on theGraham Norton Show in 2021.

Inspired:But the star, 28, was following in her famous mother's footsteps as she is the daughter of none other than Andie MacDowell (both pictured in November 2011)

She told how it was difficult to portray the character of Paula as she was so 'mean and cruel' to daughter Alex, played by Margaret.

The Netflix show focuses on a single mother named Alex who flees her abusive partner and takes refuge in a women's shelter.

When asked by host Graham if playing Alex's Bi Polar mum was easy, Andie said: 'It wasn't easy because she was so mean and cruel and horrible to her daughter.

'It was interesting that my daughter suggested me for the role and at first, I thought, 'My god, does she see me like that?' Of course, she doesn't but it was a little intimidating!'

Rom com star:Andie, 64, is famous for her role as Hugh Grant's love interest in smash hit romantic comedy Four Weddings and a Funeral

Amber Le Bon

Amber Le Bon became the face of theAmerican department store Forever 21 and has made a name for herself as a model.

And Amber, 33, is also the daughter of model Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon and model Yasmin Le Bon.

Simon, 64, soared to fame as the lead singer of new wave band Duran Duran, best known for their smash hits Hungry Like The Wolf and Come Undone.

Fashion:Amber Le Bon became the face of the American department store Forever 21 and has made a name for herself as a model

Couple:Amber, 33, is also the daughter of model Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon and model Yasmin Le Bon

Meanwhile, Yasmin, 58, was one of the highest-earning models during the 1980s and has appeared on around 300 magazine covers around the globe, including Elle and Vogue.

The celebrity couple tied the knot back in 1985 and share three daughters - Amber, Saffron, 31, and Tallulah, 28.

Hits:Simon (pictured with Amber), 64, soared to fame as the lead singer of new wave band Duran Duran

Lenny Kravitz

His daughter Zoe Kravitz is well-known for being the daughter of Lenny and actressLisa Bonet.

But many people don't realise that singer Lenny Kravitz, 58, was also born to famous parents - actress Roxie Roker and filmmakerSy Kravitz.

Lenny himself rose to fame with his debut album Let Love Rule in 1989 and went on to have a number of popular hits, includingIt Ain’t Over ’til It’s Over, Fly Away and Low.

Well known:His daughter Zoe Kravitz is well-known for being the daughter of Lenny and actress Lisa Bonet

Stars: But many people don't realise that singer Lenny Kravitz, 58, was also born to famous parents - actress Roxie Roker and filmmaker Sy Kravitz (pictured in 2004)

He even made a foray into acting later in his career, appearing as Cinna in The Hunger Games and its sequel Catching Fire.

However, he grew up in the entertainment industry, with his mother Roxie starring in 1970s sitcomThe Jeffersons and ABC Afterschool Specials.

Roxie and Sy were married from 1962 until their divorce in 1985, and Roxie died in December 1995 from breast cancer.

Meanwhile, Sy was a US military officer before he became a successful TV producer for NBC. He passed away in October 2005.

Film: He grew up in the entertainment industry, with his mother Roxie (pictured with Lenny in 1993) starring in 1970s sitcom The Jeffersons and ABC Afterschool Special

Laura Dern

Laura Dern is an esteemed actress well-recognised for her role as DrEllie Sattler in the Jurassic Park franchise.

Across her successful career, which has also seen her star in Rambling Rose, Blue Velvet and Mask, she has earned an Academy Award, a BAFTA and five Golden Globes.

And she was also born as the daughter of two Hollywood legends,Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd.

Award-winning star:Laura Dern is an esteemed actress well-recognised for her role as Dr Ellie Sattler in the Jurassic Park franchise

Laura starred her career as a child with small cameos in her mother's films such as the 1974 Martin Scorsese picture Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore.

Her father Bruce is a veteran actor who rose to prominence playing a murderous rustler in Clint Eastwood's Hang 'Em High and a gunfighter in Support Your Local Sheriff!.

Hewas nominated for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for 1978's Coming Home.

In 2013, he was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for Nebraska.

Icons: She was also born as the daughter of two Hollywood legends, Bruce Dern and Diane Ladd (pictured in 2019)

He was married to Marie Dawn Pierce from 1957 to 1959. He then married actress Diane Ladd in 1960 and the pair share their daughter, Big Little Lies star Laura.

Laura was nominated for an Oscar in 1992 for her role in Rambling Rose, which her mother Diane also starred in, and was also nominated in her supporting role.

Diane has also appeared in more than 120 film and television roles, including performances in the 1974 filmAlice Doesn't Live Here Anymore, which saw her win aBAFTA forBest Actress in a Supporting Role.

Runs in the family:Laura starred her career as a child with small cameos in her mother's films. She is pictured with parents Diane and Bruce in 2014

She has also starred in Wild At Heart, Chinatown, National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation and Primary Colours, among others.

Laura now has a daughter of her own Jaya, 18, who she shares with her ex-husband Ben Harper. They also share a son Ellery, 21.

Last year, Laura admitted she is making her daughter Jaya wait until she is older to go into show business.

Parenting:Last year, Laura admitted she is making her daughter Jaya wait until she is older to go into show business

On The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Laura said her own experiences of becoming an actress at 11 have influenced her decision to make Jaya wait.

She said of her daughter:'I'm so happy that she's waiting and wants to go to school but really knows in her heart she wants to act.'

The Oscar-winning actress acknowledged that Jaya 'does often say: "You didn't wait!" and yeah, basically, I make her wait'.

Laura admitted that she 'forced' her parents to let her act 'and I lied and I pushed and I lied about age'.

Angelina Jolie

Angelina Jolie has worldwide fame as an actress, known for her roles in Mr and Mrs Smith, Maleficent and Lara Croft: Tomb Raider.

She has won an Academy Award and three Golden Globes and has been named as Hollywood's highest-paid actress on more than one occasion.

But many people don't realise that she is also the daughter of esteemed actorsJon Voight andMarcheline Bertrand.

Jon rose to prominence in the 1960s for his performance as Buck inMidnight Cowboy, which saw him nominated for an Academy Award.

Megastar:Angelina Jolie has worldwide fame as an actress, known for her roles in Mr and Mrs Smith, Maleficent and Lara Croft: Tomb Raider

He went on to win an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role for his portrayal of a paraplegic Vietnam War veteran in Coming Home.

Angelina even made her on-screen debut alongside her father in Lookin' to Get Out in 1982 as she followed in her parents' footsteps.

Meanwhile, Marcheline was both an actress and producer, best known for her work on 1982's Lookin' to Get Out (1982) and 1983's The Man Who Loved Women.

In 2021, Angelinapraised Marcheline for being a 'gentle' mother and said she's always tried to treat her own children with the same tenderness.

Upbringing:But many people don't realise that she is also the daughter of esteemed actors Jon Voight (pictured with her in 2001) and Marcheline Bertrand

'My mother was very gentle. I can be many things in my work and in life, but I am very warm and gentle with my children,' Angelina said.

'That kindness and warmth is a foundation that's unbelievably important. She gave me many other things and taught me many lessons,' she continued.

Marcheline died in 2007 at the age of 56 following a lengthy battle with ovarian cancer.

Angelina shares Maddox, Pax, Zahara, Shiloh and twins Knox and Vivienne with her ex-husband Brad Pitt, who separated in 2016.

Relationship:In 2021, Angelina praised Marcheline (both pictured in 2001) for being a 'gentle' mother and said she's always tried to treat her own children with the same tenderness

Rachael Stirling

She is a British actress known forDetectorists, The Young Victoria, Tipping The Velvet and Snow White and the Huntsman, and is married to musicianGuy Garvey.

But it is less known that Rachael Stirling is also the daughter of actress Dame Diana Rigg and her ex-husband, theatre producerArchie Stirling.

Dame Diana rose to fame in the 1960s and 1970s after starring as leather-clad Emma Peel in cult series The Avengers and James Bond's doomed lover in On her Majesty's Secret Service.

Star: Rachael Stirling is a British actress known for Detectorists, The Young Victoria, Tipping The Velvet and Snow White and the Huntsman, and is married to musician Guy Garvey

She won Bafta, Emmy and Tony awards and earned worldwide acclaim for her role as Bond girl Tray di Vicenzo - becoming only the second Bond girl to marry 007.

More recently, she played cutthroat matriarch Lady Olenna Tyrell in HBO's Game of Thrones, though admitted she never watched an episode of the hit show.

Dianawas made a dame in 1994 for services to drama and evenworked with her daughter Rachael on 2014 BBC comedy series the Detectorists, where they played a mother and daughter.

Icon:But it is less known that Rachael Stirling is also the daughter of actress Dame Diana Rigg (pictured in 2014) and her ex-husband, theatre producer Archie Stirling

Classic:Dame Diana rose to fame in the 1960s and 1970s after starring as leather-clad Emma Peel in cult series The Avengers (pictured on the show in 1967 withPatrick Macnee)

Described a 'flinty, fearless, force of nature', Diana died following a short battle with cancer in September 2020, aged 82.

And in a will signed days before her death, she left the vast bulk of her fortuneto her daughter Rachael. The estate was disclosed at a value of £3,368,886 at the time.

Gigi and Bella Hadid

The supermodel sisters may have worldwide fame in their own right, but Gigi and Bella Hadid also grew up in the fashion and TV industry.

Their parents, who also have a son Anwar together, are TV personalityYolanda Hadid and real estate developerMohamed Hadid.

Palestinian-born businessman man Mohamed and his ex-wife Yolanda, 58, split from in 2000, while healso has daughters Marielle, 42, and Alana, 37, with his first wife Mary Butler, who he parted ways with in 1992.

Upbringing:The supermodel sisters may have worldwide fame in their own right, but Gigi and Bella Hadid also grew up in the fashion and TV industry

Yolanda, 59, is a former model and is best known for her role on reality TV showThe Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

In 2019, Mohamed was criticised for boasting that his eldest daughter Gigi, 27, was'self-made' and 'never took a dollar from her parents'.

Taking to Instagram, he wrote: 'What the 20 things that you did not know about Gigi hadid? 1. Self Made.. never took a single Dollar from her parents.

'2. Started modeling for Baby Guess when she was in Khai's age. 3. She was a jr Olympic volleyball contender.'

Famous roots:Their parents, who also have a son Anwar together, are TV personality Yolanda Hadid and real estate developer Mohamed Hadid

Reality TV: Yolanda (pictured with Bella), 59, is a former model and is best known for her role on reality TV show The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills

'4. She was an Accomplished equestrian jr Olympic contender and hundreds of first place and national Championships.. still rides till today.

'5. She was excepted New York University forensic criminal psychology after high school.

'6.she has the highest number of Voguemagazine covers worldwide around fifty .. 7. Unicef USA ambassador and to African Middle East and Southeast Asia. To be continued.'

However, followers criticised him at the same for claiming that his daughter was 'self-made', despite Yolanda's modelling background.

Controversy:In 2019, Mohamed was criticised for boasting that his eldest daughter Gigi, 27, was 'self-made' and 'never took a dollar from her parents'

Jake Gyllenhaal

Jake Gyllenhaal may be well-known for his role inBrokeback Mountain and more recently his portrayal of villain Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far From Home.

But part of the famousGyllenhaal family, he is also the son ofscreenwriter Naomi Foner anddirector Stephen Gyllenhaal.

Movie star:Jake Gyllenhaal may be well-known for his role in Brokeback Mountain and more recently his portrayal of villain Mysterio in Spider-Man: Far From Home

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  • Who is Thandiwe Newton's lookalike daughter playing in The... 'Side by side forever':Lila Moss dons oversized sunglasses... Anais Gallagher cut a stylish figure in a floral print top... 'You're joking right?' Musical theater fans RAGE over 'nepo...

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He also has an older sister Maggie, 45, who has worked as a producer and is married to actorPeter Sarsgaard.

Stephen, who split from Naomi in 2009, has a string of directing and producing credits, including work on CBS Afternoon Playhouse, Paris Trout and A Dangerous Woman.

Meanwhile, Naomi has written for the likes of Running On Empty, Very Good Girls and theMoon Flower of Flying Tigers.

Their son Jake also has very famous godparents, esteemed Hollywood royalty Jamie Lee Curtis and Paul Newman.

Famous family:But part of the famous Gyllenhaal family, he is also the son of screenwriter Naomi Foner and director Stephen Gyllenhaal. He also has an older sister Maggie

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