The Stories Behind 10 Bizarre Celebrity Middle Names
We know it’s been on your calendar all year. You’ve likely been counting down the days, and now that day has arrived – Middle Name Appreciation Day. March 10 is a day to be thankful for your underappreciated middle name, a name which doesn’t get much love or notoriety unless you’re filling out a DMV form or if you’re in trouble with your mother.
To celebrate, we honor those celebrities whose parents got very creative with the whole middle-naming process, some who went so far as to give their child literally every name they could think of – we’re looking at you, Kiefer Sutherland.
So go ahead, tell your friends and co-workers what that underrepresented name is (unless you were born with only two names, and in that case, choose one of the many below).
1. KENDALL JENNER: NICOLE
The name Nicole is a beautiful and common name. No red flags there until you find out that Kendall is named after Nicole Brown Simpson. A year and a half after the June 13, 1994, murder of O.J. Simpson’s ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson, future model and Kardashian sister Kendall Jenner was born to Kris and Bruce Jenner. Why the middle name Nicole? Nicole Simpson was “a very special friend,” Kris told PEOPLE in 1996. Kris’s ex-husband Robert Kardashian was O.J.’s friend and defense attorney during the murder trial. A whole lot of weird stuff going on there.
2. ELTON JOHN: HERCULES
When it comes to making up your name (John was born Reginald Kenneth Dwight), the sky is the limit – literally. So choosing the middle name of the Greek hero and son of Zeus isn’t so crazy, right? Turns out, that’s not where Elton’s head was at … at all. According to The Biography Channel, he chose Hercules because it was the name of the horse in the British sitcom Steptoe and Son. Oh.
3. KATE HUDSON: GARRY
Guy names for girls are usually very sexy. Taylor, Brooklyn, Jordan, etc. But Garry? Not typically one of them. Hudson explained that her mom decided on the unconventional middle name after her Uncle Garry passed away just before she was born. “I like how androgynous it is,” Hudson told The Daily Telegraph. “It did actually end up suiting my personality.” Also, when you are as hot as Kate Hudson, any name is pretty sexy.
4. TINA FEY: STAMATINA
Ever heard of Elizabeth Fey? Neither have we. But if the comedian hadn’t decided to borrow the “Tina” part of her middle name, you would all be talking about how hilarious and wonderful that Elizabeth Fey is. Hard to imagine.
5. CIARA: PRINCESS
There is not a lot of information on Ciara’s middle moniker, but with a name like that, do you need to give an explanation? No! You are royalty. This middle name is great for when you tell a guy to “treat you like a princess” because, after all, it is your name.
6. KIEFER SUTHERLAND: WILLIAM FREDERICK DEMPSEY GEORGE RUFUS
Some people give a nod to those they admire by writing a thank-you note, Liking a post on Facebook or just saying a quick “Hey, man, I think you’re great!” But when you’re Kiefer Sutherland’s parents, you name your kid after all the folks you adore – hence, a whole lot of middle monikers. Named after his grandfather, his dad’s best friend and a writer – Sutherland was gifted so many names even he doesn’t know every reason.
7. UMA THURMAN: KARUNA
The star’s middle name Karuna (which means compassion in Buddhism), is topped only by her own daughter’s middle names: Rosalind Arusha Arkadina Altalune Florence Thurman-Busson. Have Thurman and Sutherland’s dad been talking?
8. MARTIN SHORT: HAYTER
“Hey Martin, why do you have to be such a hater?” is something we imagine he heard a lot growing up. The middle name was bestowed on behalf of his mother’s maiden name. Not much to hate on about that.
9. HUGH GRANT: MUNGO
Grant’s middle name went mostly under the radar until the 2011 phone-hacking scandal when he was forced to use his full moniker in court during testimony: Hugh John Mungo Grant. There are many wonderful things about this. First of all, the name Hugh Grant is just so normal; finding out it’s actually got the spicy name “Mungo” in it is very thrilling. And secondly, it’s an incredibly fun word to say. Try it.
10. ADELE: BLUE
She’s known only by her first name, but the singer’s middle name, Blue (which is one of two middle names; the other one is Laurie), was almost her first name, according to Vogue UK. You hear that, Blue Ivy? Adele did it first.