name tags and markers on a desk
Unsplash | Jon Tyson

Celebs Whose Middle Names Made Us Wonder If We Read Them Right

Our obsession with celebrities leads us to pore over everything about them, even their names.

We all know that some celebs have stage names. But what about their middle names? These are the names that people often forget about, and often ones that reveal hidden details about a person. Sometimes, they may even make you view a person completely differently.

Nick Jonas

Nick Jonas' full name is Nicholas, which shouldn't come as a surprise. What might come as a surprise is that his full name is Nicholas Jerry Jonas — not Nicholas Gerald, Nicholas Jerry. We couldn't find any details on why he was given this name.

Quincy Jones

The legendary record producer has a very fun name, as he was born all the way back in 1933 as Quincy Delight Jones. Weirdly enough, he wasn't the first Quincy Delight Jones in his family as his father — Quincy Delight Sr. — also shared the name.

Blake Lively

Blake Lively was born Blake Ellender Brown in Los Angeles in 1987. She took on the stage name of her father, actor Ernie Lively, and is widely known today as Blake Lively. We're not sure where the 'Ellender' name came from.

Daniel Craig

Daniel Craig saying "You must be joking"
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The prolific 007 actor has a proper English name, as he was born Daniel Wroughton Craig in Chester, England in 1968. Wroughton was an old family name, as it was also shared by his father, Timothy John Wroughton Craig.

Billie Piper

Unlike Billie Eilish, Billie Piper's first name is a stage name and not a real name. Her real first name is Leian, and her middle name is Paul. The name likely comes from her father, whose name is Paul Victor Piper.

Leonardo DiCaprio

Leonardo DiCaprio in a tuxedo looking impressed at an awards show
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Leo's always comes off as having a name that's somewhat bespoke, and the impression only deepens when you see his full name of Leonardo Wilhelm DiCaprio. He gets his middle name from his maternal grandfather, German-born Wilhelm Indenbirken.

Kate Beckinsale

The English-born Kate Beckinsale was born Kathrin Romany Beckinsale in London back in 1973. Her parents were both actors: Richard Beckinsale and Judy Loe. We couldn't find any info on her middle name, as it doesn't appear to be a family name.

Courteney Cox

Courteney Cox, once known as Courteney Cox-Arquette, was named Courteney Bass Cox by her parents. It wasn't inspired by fandom of resonant music, nor did it have anything to do with fishing. It was simply a way to honor her mother, whose full name before marriage was Courtney Copeland Bass.

Jude Law

Jude Law walking on a beach and winking
Giphy | Sky Italia

Interestingly enough, Jude Law's middle name is...Jude. No, his full name isn't Jude Jude Law, it's David Jude Heyworth Law. His parents were fans of the book Jude the Obscure and the Beatles song "Hey Jude," which explains his name. As for Heyworth, it was his mom's maiden name.

Hilary Duff

Hilary Duff's middle name of Erhard comes not from her mom's maiden name, but from an old family name on her dad's side. Her dad, Robert Erhard Duff, shares the same middle name. Interestingly enough, Duff's older sister Haylie has the pedestrian middle name of Katherine.

Orlando Bloom

Bloom's full name is a bit of a mouthful: Orlando Jonathan Blanchard Copeland Bloom. His first name is an homage to 16th century composer Orlando Gibbons. We're not sure where the references to Jonathan or Blanchard come from, but Copeland is his mother's maiden name.

Elton John

John's full name, Sir Elton Hercules John (remember, he's a knight) is a grandiose name for one of the 20th century's greatest musicians. Interestingly, it isn't the name he was born with, it's the name he legally switched to in 1972. He was born with the name Reginald Kenneth Dwight.

Will Smith

First off, Will Smith's first name isn't William, even though he was referred to as "Master William" in The Fresh Prince. His real name is Willard, and his middle name is Carroll. His full name is Willard Carroll Smith, Jr., as his dad is Willard, Sr.

Uma Thurman

Uma Karuna Thurman has always had one of the more interesting names in Hollywood. Born in 1970 to a professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies and a fashion model, Thurman wrote in her autobiography that she was uncomfortable with her name when she was younger, often going by "Uma Karen."

Richard Gere

Richard Gere in 'Pretty Woman'
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Gere's middle name is Tiffany, but it has nothing to do with Tiffany's or Breakfast at Tiffany's. It's actually his mom's maiden name, as she was born Doris Ann Tiffany in 1924. Needless to say, using family names as middle names is commonplace.

Henry Cavill

Henry Cavill is one of those people who has two separate middle names. He was born Henry William Dalgliesh Cavill on one of the Channel Islands. Like many others on this list and elsewhere, his middle name is a reference to his mother's maiden name.

James Corden

The affable late night host's full name is James Kimberley Corden. Like Richard Gere, we're guessing that his feminine middle name is a family name of some kind, but we couldn't find much info on the name or its provenance.

Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish's first name isn't short for anything — it's officially just 'Billie.' Where it gets more interesting is her middle names, one of which is Eilish. Her full name is Billie Eilish Pirate Baird O'Connell. I kind of wish she just went by Billie Pirate.

Dido

Dido's known mononymously by her simple two-syllable name, but her full name is downright grandiose. Florian Cloud de Bounevialle O'Malley Armstrong is a name that has a little bit of everything in it. Her mom, Claire Collins, and dad, William O'Malley Armstrong, both have decidedly more pedestrian names. She takes the name Dido, which she's used since childhood, from the legendary Dido, queen of Carthage.

Jennifer Lawrence

Jennifer Lawrence miming her mind blowing during an interview
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J-Law's full name is Jennifer Shrader Lawrence, born in Indian Hills, Kentucky to a construction owner father and a summer camp manager mother. Like others, we're guessing that 'Shrader' is a family name, but there isn't much info out there on where it comes from.