Celebrity Kids Changing Their Last Names: Shiloh Jolie-Pitt and Suri Cruise

Celebrity Kids Changing Their Last Names: Shiloh Jolie-Pitt and Suri Cruise

Celebrity kids are making waves by changing their last names, signaling a desire to carve out their own identities separate from their famous parents. This trend has been particularly noticeable with high-profile children like Shiloh Jolie-Pitt and Suri Cruise, who have recently opted to drop their well-known surnames.

Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise’s daughter, Suri Cruise, recently made headlines by choosing to go by Suri Noelle, a nod to her mother’s middle name, during her high school graduation in June 2024. This change marks a significant step for the 18-year-old, who has grown up under the intense scrutiny of the public eye. Suri’s decision to drop her father’s stage name reflects a personal choice to honor her mother and perhaps distance herself from her father’s high-profile legacy.

Similarly, Shiloh Jolie-Pitt, the daughter of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, filed to legally drop her father’s last name on her 18th birthday in May 2024. She now goes by Shiloh Jolie, a move that underscores her connection to her mother while distancing herself from her father’s surname. Shiloh’s sister, Vivienne Jolie-Pitt, also opted to go by Vivienne Jolie in the playbill of “The Outsiders” musical she worked on earlier this year, further emphasizing this trend within the Jolie-Pitt family.

This phenomenon isn’t limited to the Jolie-Pitt and Cruise families. Malia Obama, the daughter of former U.S. President Barack Obama and Michelle Obama, chose to go by Malia Ann, her first and middle names, when credited on her 2023 film project “The Heart.” This decision allowed her to step out of the shadow of her parents’ political legacy and establish her own identity in the creative world.

Rob Schneider’s daughter, Tanner Elle Schneider, known professionally as Elle King, also made a similar move. She chose to use her middle name combined with her mother’s surname, King, for her singing career. Elle explained her decision to ABC News in 2015, stating, “I wanted to be myself. I am my own person.” This sentiment resonates with many celebrity kids who seek to forge their own paths without the weight of their parents’ fame.

Other celebrity offspring have also chosen to drop their famous last names in favor of more personal or simplified monikers. Olivia Jade Giannulli, the daughter of designer Mossimo Giannulli and actress Lori Loughlin, goes by Olivia Jade for her YouTube career. Similarly, Samia Najimy Finnerty, the daughter of Kathy Najimy and Dan Finnerty, uses just her first name, Samia, as her stage name as a singer.

Nicolas Cage, born Nicolas Kim Coppola, changed his last name to distance himself from his famous uncle, Francis Ford Coppola. Inspired by superhero Luke Cage and avant-garde composer John Cage, Nicolas Cage’s name change allowed him to create a distinct identity in Hollywood.

Willow Smith, the daughter of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, dropped her last name to go by WILLOW as her music stage name. This decision reflects her desire to be recognized for her own talents rather than her family’s fame.

The trend of celebrity kids changing their last names is not new. Angelina Jolie herself dropped her father Jon Voight’s last name amid their estrangement, choosing to go by her middle name instead. This decision set a precedent for her children, who have followed in her footsteps by dropping their father’s surname.

Elon Musk’s daughter, Vivian Jenna Wilson, also made headlines when she legally changed her name and gender in 2022. She chose to use her mother’s surname, Wilson, and cited her motivation as “gender identity and the fact that I no longer live with or wish to be related to my biological father in any way, shape or form.”

Liam Neeson’s son, Micheál, changed his last name to Richardson to honor his late mother, Natasha Richardson. This heartfelt decision was praised by Liam Neeson, who called it a “lovely homage.”

Emilio Estevez, the son of Martin Sheen, chose to retain his father’s real last name, Estevez, rather than adopting the stage name Sheen. Martin Sheen, born Ramon Estevez, expressed his gratitude that his son kept the family name, despite the pressures to change it for Hollywood.

These name changes reflect a broader desire among celebrity kids to establish their own identities and careers, free from the expectations and associations tied to their parents’ fame. Whether it’s a minor adjustment or a complete name makeover, these decisions signify a personal journey towards self-discovery and independence.

Source: E! News, Page Six, People, ABC News, Wired

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