Name Guru to the Stars: Distinctive Names for Gigi, Rooney, and More!
The common perception is that celebrities all like to give their children distinctive and dramatic names a la Sundance and Saint, but if you follow celebrity baby names closely, you know that’s not actually the case. For every Raddix and X Æ A-12, there are five Mateos and three Graces. Which is to say, most celebrities give their children “normal” names.
But this group of celebrities falls on the more obscure side of the spectrum, doing more to perpetuate the unique celebrity baby names stereotype. Ashlee Simpson, famously the mother of Bronx Mowgli and Jagger Snow, is pregnant with her third child, and Kel Mitchell, parent of Lyric, Allure, and Wisdom, is expecting his fourth.
I’m anticipating the child of Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix is going to have a distinctive name, much like his or her parents, and I’m hoping Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik go with something unexpected for their baby as well. I bet they’re going to surprise me, but I’ve made my predictions for Gigi and Zayn and seven other star couples in this month’s collection of celebrity baby name predictions:
Gigi Hadid and Zayn Malik
World-famous model Gigi Hadid and singer Zayn Malik are expecting their first child together, and a power couple like this will certainly give their baby a powerful name. This baby is going to have a diverse cultural background, with Dutch and Palestinian ancestry on their mom’s side and British and Pakistani (specifically Urdu) heritage on their dad’s. And of course, he or she will be an American. Gigi’s birth name is Jelena Noura, Jelena being common in Eastern Europe and Noura nodding to her Dutch and Muslim heritage. Both she and Zayn identify as Muslim, so chances are this child could have a name with Arabic influence. Aziza is my top choice for a girl for its strength and femininity, while Van is a high-style pick for a boy that connects to Gigi’s Dutch ancestry.
Girl: Aziza, Esme, Inaya, Isa, Laila, Leni, Roxie, Sabeen, Sidra, Yara
Boy: Ayan, Idris, Ivo, Koa, Nico, Raja, Rami, Samir, Sultan, Van
Phillipa Coan and Jude Law
Siblings: Rafferty, Iris, Rudy, Sophia, Ada (previous relationships)
Jude Law has five children, and now his wife Phillipa, a Doctor of Psychology, is pregnant with their first child together. Although the product of different relationships, the Law sibset is extremely cohesive. Together it feels quite British, and the girls’ names especially are all sweet vintage choices. This suggests that Jude has a particular taste in names, one that will likely come out in his sixth child’s name as well. I could easily see him and Phillipa go with something like Eleanor or Mabel if the baby is a girl, and Milo or Simeon if it’s a boy.
Girl: Aurelia, Eleanor, Elodie, Harriet, Isabelle, Lilia, Mabel, Matilda, Ophelia, Phoebe
Boy: Barnaby, Felix, George, Milo, Orson, Otis, Percy, Roman, Simeon, Theo
Lea Michele and Zandy Reich
Former Glee star Lea Michele and her husband, businessman Zandy Reich, are going to welcome their first child later this year. I’m sensing the couple will gravitate more towards classic or well-liked names for their baby — nothing too out of the ordinary, perhaps even within the Top 100. I suspect Zandy’s given name is Alexander (although I can’t confirm), and the versatility of a nickname might be something he wants his child’s name to offer as well. Elizabeth and Cecilia are gorgeous nickname-rich options for a girl, and Theodore and William offer the same flexibility for a boy.
Girl: Adele, Ariella, Audrey, Cecilia, Clara, Elizabeth, Juliette, Lucy, Madeline, Zoe
Boy: Benjamin, Elias, Elliott, Henry, Isaac, Jacob, Nathaniel, Samuel, Theodore, William
Ashlee Simpson and Evan Ross
Siblings: Bronx Mowgli (previous relationship), Jagger Snow
Ashlee Simpson has always been on the cutting edge of baby names, introducing Bronx to the naming pool with her ex Pete Wentz, and adopting Jagger for her daughter with Evan Ross. Now she’s expecting another son, and I am really looking forward to hearing the name that she’ll choose. Odds are high that we’ll hear a nouveau word name for this little boy. My favorite option is Zeppelin, for both its musical and obscure word name qualities. But I could also see them using something like Brave or Journey (which is much more common for girls) on their son.
Boy: Brave, Haze, Journey, Prosper, Revel, Riot, Rune, Storm, Valor, Zeppelin
Rooney Mara and Joaquin Phoenix
Joaquin Phoenix has siblings named River, Rain, Liberty, and Summer. When he was a child, he changed his own name to Leaf. Rooney Mara made the switch to go by her middle name because she “never felt like a Tricia. And Rooney is much more memorable.” So their baby, coming from two parents with creative and interesting names, will likely have one of their own. Bohemian names seem to fit their style well. They have a dog named Oskar (with a K — that’s important! It’s much quirkier), but I could also see them leaning into unconventionality even more. Story or Echo seem ideal for a girl, and my favorites for a boy are Lorcan and Sage.
Girl: Anais, Calypso, Echo, Faye, Haven, Jessamine, Juniper, Pax, Poet, Story
Boy: Ansel, Atticus, Clyde, Cosmo, Django, Hugo, Lorcan, Magnus, Sage
Sonequa Martin–Green and Kenric Green
Siblings: Kenric Justin II
Walking Dead actress Sonequa Martin–Green and her husband Kenric named their son after his father, so he is Kenric Justin II. They’re now expecting a baby girl, and I’m looking forward to hearing her name, because this will give us a better read on their true style. With Kenric, I see something modern and fashionable for his little sister, maybe Nova or Brielle. Or sticking with the family honor names, Vera, to honor Sonequa’s mom.
Girl: Brielle, Cali, Chloe, Eden, Mia, Kinsley, Nova, Vera, Zella, Zoey
Asia Lee and Kel Mitchell
Siblings: Lyric, Allure (previous relationship), Wisdom (g)
Kel Mitchell’s children have fantastic word names, which are some of the most fun to make predictions for. His wife Asia is expecting a baby boy, a brother for their daughter Wisdom and Kel’s two older children, son Lyric and daughter Allure. I’d be shocked if this child didn’t have a word name to match his siblings’. I’m a particular fan of Creed, a fast-rising name thanks to the Rocky franchise, and Justice, which feels especially pertinent in these times.
Boy: Creed, Epic, Golden, Justice, Legacy, Reign, Rocket, Stellar, True, Wild
Kelly and Matthew Stafford
Siblings: Sawyer, Chandler, Hunter (all girls)
NFL player Matthew Stafford and his wife Kelly have three girls, all with traditionally masculine (but technically unisex) names. Additionally, the girls’ names are all two-syllable occupational names that end in -er. So the Staffords have set themselves up with quite a theme here. Luckily, there are plenty more names that fit their requirements. I’ve broken up my suggestions between genders, but they could really use any of these names for a girl or boy. Parker, Baker, and Fletcher would be excellent choices whether a son or daughter.
Girl: Archer, Carter, Jagger, Miller, Palmer, Parker, Skylar, Spencer, Walker, Wilder
Boy: Baker, Cooper, Decker, Fisher, Fletcher, Porter, Sumner, Tanner, Thatcher, Tucker
What are your predictions? Leave a comment here or weigh in on our forums!