Being a celebrity must be really tough. While the rest of us have to rely on hitting the jackpot at an online casino in the hopes of a multi-millionaire lifestyle, they can make a movie, pose for some photographs or promote a product, and the zeroes start stacking up in their bank accounts.
But never fear, there is an easy way to bring a celebrity down a few notches, and be reminded that they are just real people. How, you’re wondering? Easy. By remembering their real names, prior to them hitting it big. We know, it’s shocking; those aren’t their birth names.
Join us in a little exercise we like to call before they made lots of money they used to be called…
Johnny Depp is falling from grace a bit of late, so we won’t make too much fun of him for his real name. It isn’t that funny anyway, it’s just more of a mouthful as he was christened John Christopher Depp II.
Real name Robyn Rihanna Fenty. Robyn is a lovely name, but there is however a pop star named Robyn already, so maybe that’s why…
Will you still respect beautiful Meghan Markle upon finding out that her real name is, in fact, Rachel Meghan Markle? Let’s face it, her name could be just about anything, the new mom and Duchess of Sussex has already captured hearts around the world.
Blake Lively is, in fact, drum roll… Blake Ellender Brown. When she got in to acting she decided to adopt her mother’s name. Why? No real reason, or at least none that Blake has given, although Brown is rather dull. So that isn’t very mind-blowing, but now you know.
At the Oscars Olivia Colman referred to Emma Stone as Emily. Naturally, social media exploded at this horrifying faux pas, with many declaring it the worst thing since deforestation. But Emma leapt to the defence of her friend, reassuring everyone that her real name was Emily J. Stone. Order was restored and calm returned to the masses.
She changed her name to Emma, according to a Tweet, because she felt that Emily J. Stone was similar to Michael J. Fox. But in her case, she didn’t think she could pull off the floating J. So she removed it.
Gigi is a very exotic name, and it fits this sultry super model well. But strap yourself in and prepare to faint in dismay, her real name is Jelena. So much mystique lost in a single fell swoop. Gigi explained in an interview that when she was a child, her name shifted from Jelena to Gigi due to a mix-up at school. One of the other girls in her class was named Helena, which was too close to Jelena, and the teacher believed confusion was a certainty. So, to alleviate the problem the teacher asked for a nickname, and Gigi’s mother suggested the now widely known pseudonym.
Nina Dobrev’s real name is Nikolina Konstantinova Dobreva. We understand why she felt it needed a few less syllables when she was famous.
Let’s face it; nothing would ever reduce the cool factor Brad Pitt oozes from every pour. Yes, Brad Pitt isn’t his real name. It’s William Bradley Pitt. See? But then you could call him Harvey Pumperdinkle and he’d still be cool.
Ashton Kutcher is moderately less cool than Brad Pitt, and more of a stoner goofball by reputation. Or at least he hasn’t escaped that reputation since That 70s Show. Either way, Christopher Ashton Kutcher is his real name, which doesn’t make him seem like less of a stoner goofball.
Kit Harrington? No, him and Ashton have something in common, the first name Christopher. Kit is actually Christopher Catesby Harrington. He explained in an interview with Glamour that he didn’t know his real name until age 11, because apparently his parents have always just called him Kit. That’s odd.
The story of how Iggy Azalea got her stage name is a sad one. She told Vevo that when she was young, she had a dog named Iggy. Sadly, the poor pooch was bitten by a snake and died, and so Amethyst, her real name, got a necklace with the name Iggy, on it. People assumed it was her name, and voilà.
That doesn’t explain the rest of the changes though, since her full name is Amethyst Amelia Kelly. Do you also get the feeling celebs just make up these little stories as some sort of conversation starter?
Elton John is perhaps the most awesome person on Earth, and if you don’t think so, go soak your head. His real name is Reginald Kenneth Dwight. It is well known that in order to get his stage name he simply combined the real name and stage name of a saxophonist Elton Dean and Long John Baldry.
A true musical icon, Freddie Mercury’s real name was Farrokh Bulsara. Why he changed it to something more universally easy to pronounce should be obvious.
And then we have John Roger Stephens. Sorry, that’s John Legend! Why Legend? Because it sounds cool, we’re guessing.