By Linda Rosenkrantz
So far this year, some amazingly named starbabies were born to their high-profile Hollywood dads. Here’s our hearty Father’s Day salute to these proud celebrity papas, some first timers and others who welcomed a new bambino into their brood. Our nominations for the twelve most outstanding so far this year:
Late night host Seth Meyers honored two of the most important women in his life with his son’s name. Ashe—right on trend with popular Asher and Ash—is the maiden name of his wife Alexi; Ashe‘s middle name Olsen was the maiden name of Meyers’ maternal grandmother. In that way they were able to keep in play two family names that might have been lost.
Olympic swimming champ Michael Phelps’ enthusiastic joy at the birth of his first son (shown) is reflected in the choice of the upbeat nickname name Boomer. Robert is a tribute to Phelps’ longtime coach, “Bob” Bowman, and also to his great-grandmother Roberta.
One of the newest entrants into the tree branch of the botanical genre, Cypress was the interesting choice of Boardwalk Empire actor Jack Huston and Shannon Click. The addition of the word name Night gives it an intriguing, somewhat dark and mysterious aura. Cypress Night works well with sister name Sage Lavinia.
Contemporary Canadian crooner Buble went classic biblical for the names of his two sons. First came Number 1 Noah, followed in January by new baby Elias. Elias is a rising star, the Greek variation of Old Testament Elijah (Number 11)– it hit a solid Number 100 this year in the US, is 5 in Sweden and 9 in Germany.
Emilia, the name chosen for their fourth child by the Van Der Beeks, is shaping up to be the new Amelia—a logical successor to Emily, Emma and Emerson. Currently at 145 in the US, it’s 56 in England and 43 on Nameberry. Their other kids are Olivia, Joshua and Annabel.
One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson and partner Briana Jungwirth jumped on the British bandwagon when they chose the nickname name that’s the 20th most popular name in England. Not prevalent in the US since the 1930s, we expect it to make a return here soon. Reign is rapidly becoming a royal middle (and sometimes first) name du jour.
Eddie Murphy is an old hand at helping to pick baby names, as this latest is his ninth child, six of them daughters. Izzy is often heard as a nickname for Isabel, Isabella and Isadora, but rarely as a full first. Middle name Oona is one of our favorites, also spelled Oonagh and Una. It is currently seeing a comeback in Ireland and now getting some nice attention here, especially on Nameberry, where it’s 407.
There’s been lots of love shown for this luminous, well-publicized choice by Chrissy Teigen and John Legend in April. (Could it be a subtle nod to jazz legend Nina Simone?) Moonstruck Luna is a bona fide hit, influenced by the Harry Potter character Luna Lovegood. This Roman moon goddess name currently ranks at Number 110 and is in 19th place on Nameberry! Several other celebs have picked it as well, including Penelope Cruz and Javier Barden. It blends nicely with the elegant, sophisticated French Simone.
We’re suddenly seeing a few Pixies pop up, and now here comes Nixie—the German word for a water sprite–chosen by Pretty Little Liars star Chad Lowe. He said it “seemed like a good fit because we’re both avid surfers——and are involved in the Waterkeeper Alliance.” Middle name Barbara honors Lowe’s late mother. Nixie’s sisters are Mabel Painter and Fiona Hepler.
Backstreet Boy Nick Carter became a first-time father in April when he welcomed son Odin Reign. Odin is one of the latest mythological names to enter the celebrisphere. This time it’s Norse—Odin was the supreme god of art, culture, wisdom and law, and the father of Thor. It has the potential of joining other currently rising O names like Owen and and Otis. Reign is right on trend with other regal names: Kourtney Kardashian and Scott Disick used it as the first name of their second son, and One Direction’s Louis Tomlinson put it in middle spot (see above).
Twilight star Jackson Rathbone (he played Jasper Hale ) covered several bases when he named his baby girl Presley Bowie in May. Not only did he and his wife Sheila Hafsadi salute two musical heroes, but they also did a double-dip gender switch. Big brother is named Monroe Jackson Rathbone VI, after his great-great grandfather, the chairman of Standard Oil of New Jersey; the actor was born Monroe Jackson Rathbone V.
Bobby Cannavale and Rose Byrne became the parents of Rocco Robin in February. The middle name Robin, which is showing signs of returning to the blue column, honors Byrne’s father. Rocco has become much more mainstream since it was chosen by Madonna and Guy Ritchie for their son in 2000, and was later used by Lita Ford, Donald Faison and Jillian Barberie.