Celebs Who Are Only Famous Because Of Their Parents

Whilst some celebrities are only known to the public because of their famous parents, other families are full of talent and make success their own, just look at the Beckhams or the Ramsey’s.

It certainly helps being connected whether your parent is a famous chef, footballer or tv presenter – so is it unfair on wannabe stars, if other auditionees have famous parents?

The narrative of the self-made celebrity is more present than ever. Whereas once upon a time celebrities were delivered to us in their final form rather than from tiktok.

We know the only thing people love more than Hollywood celebrities are Hollywood celebrities who are children of other Hollywood celebrities. Generational Hollywood stories are such a constant element that each year, the Golden Globe Awards choose the child of two famous actors to give acting awards to other actors. The nepotism of the industry knows no bounds.

It’s no surprise that, with that kind of fervor for new famous faces born from old famous faces, there are frequent times when the children of actors become famous even though they have done little to no work to achieve their own fame. In today’s media-obsessed society, people become famous for terrible and notorious reasons, so simply being the child of a well-known actor isn’t the worst offense imaginable. However, it is undeniable that many of the second-generation celebrity faces seen on-screen didn’t work half as hard as other struggling actors to get where they are, and the average film and television watcher would have no idea who they were if not for the pre-existing fame of their parents.

This list contains people from all walks of fame, from acting and modeling to music and reality television, and each one’s level of celebrity is in large part owed to the generations of fame that came before them.

Colin Hanks

His father is one of the most beloved actors in Hollywood. From his role in Big, to Forrest Gump, even in the Carly Rae Jepsen music video for “I Really Like You”, everything Tom Hanks does is just so darn pleasant. His son, Colin Hanks, it seems, does not have that same characteristic. He’s best known for his role as Jack Bailey in the TV series “The Other Guys”. His most famous movie role is probably 2002’s Orange County with Jack Black and John Lithgow. Once again, he doesn’t have the intense watchability of his father. If he did, he would probably be in a lot more stuff. Were he not his father’s child, he maybe wouldn’t even be in anything, his unmarketable name in that hypothetical not making up for his average talent.

Connor Cruise

Though his last name is readily identifiable, Connor Cruise has not had a huge acting career thus far. Back in 2008, he appeared as the younger version of a very famous actor to whom he is not related, playing Will Smith’s character as a young man in Seven Pounds. It would be four more years before he would appear in another film, this time in the 2012 remake of the classic 1980s cold war action film Red Dawn. As of this point, those films are the only ones Connor has appeared in.

Rumer Willis

Rumer Willis is probably best known currently for her role as Tory Ash on Fox’s series Empire. Her previous TV experience includes a run on 90210 and Hawaii Five-O, and she has appeared in horror (Sorority Row) and comedy (The House Bunny) films. She also had a successful run on the competition reality series Dancing with the Stars.

Nicole Richie

She first became famous for her performance in the reality TV show, ‘The Simple Life’. Nicole shot to fame as the daughter of music legend Lionel Richie.

Alison Eastwood

Alison Eastwood has become a fairly recognizable name, appearing in comedies like Just a Little Harmless Sex and Breakfast of Champions. She has tried her hand at drama with Poolhall Junkies and Finding Harmony, and ventured into horror with Shadow People. She’s even part a franchise series that started with Hot Bath an’ a Stiff Drink.

Her fame is obviously linked to her father, Clint Eastwood, and not just because the last name is so distinctive. Her first FIVE film credits are: Bronco Billy, Any Which Way You Can, Tightrope, Absolute Power, and Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil. Every single one of those films is either produced by, directed by, or starring her father. Like her composer brother Kyle and actor brother Scott, her career exists because of her father’s name recognition.

Jaden Smith

Jaden Smith is an American rapper and actor. He has acted in a number of hit movies. He started showing interest in movies during his childhood with famous parents who managed to get him along to some auditions.

The Actor and musician Jaden Smith, the son of Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith, is known for starring in the remake of ‘The Karate

Elizabeth Jagger

Elizabeth Jagger isn’t known for her film work, aside from a role in 2002’s Igby Goes Down, nor does she perform music, aside from backing vocals on one of her father’s songs. However, she is very well-known in the fashion industry. She began as a runway model in 1998, and has appeared in campaigns for Tommy Hilfiger, Marks and Spencer, and Lancome.

Kelly Osbourne

Kelly Osbourne struggled in the limelight for a while, trying to find her niche in the industry. After trying and failing at a straightforward acting career in work like Life As We Know It and Are We There Yet, she finally found her calling as a fashion commentator on shows like Fashion Police and Project: Runway. She now has her own fashion line, and she is a staple on red carpet celebrations everywhere.

Lily-Rose Depp

Though her film career has been relatively short, Lily-Rose Depp came to prominence fairly quickly in the handful of films in which she has appeared. Due to a friendship between her and Harley Quinn Smith, daughter of filmmaker Kevin Smith, her first two film appearances were in films he wrote and directed. Starring alongside Harley Quinn in Yoga Hosers and appearing in a cameo as the same character in Tusk, the movies were glorified home movies with charm and humor. She followed those up with The Dancer and Planetarium in 2016, and will soon be appearing in Moose Jaws.

What do you call someone who is famous for being famous?

Over the years, the phrase has been glossed as “a celebrity is someone who is famous for being famous”.

What is it called when someone is famous because of their parents?

The nepotism of the industry knows no bounds. It’s no surprise that, with that kind of fervor for new famous faces born from old famous faces, there are frequent times when the children of actors become famous even though they have done little to no work to achieve their own fame.

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Sarah Meere
Sarah Meere
Executive Editor

Sarah looks after corporate enquiries and relationships for UKFilmPremieres, CelebEvents, ShowbizGossip, Celeb Management brands for the MarkMeets Group. Sarah works for numerous media brands across the UK.

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