Celebrity Names Blog

Ryan Reynolds on Why He Can Name His Baby Whatever the Heck He Wants

ryan reynolds

Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively made headlines when they named their baby girl James, but Reynolds is now opening up about the inspiration behind the classically lovely (if somewhat gender barrier–crossing) choice -- and it had nothing to do with wanting to keep up with the cult of crazy baby monikers. In fact, the story behind Ryan and Blake's daughter's name is surprisingly sentimental!

Reynolds was a guest on ITV’s Good Morning Britain when one of the cohosts mentioned James, calling her name "unusual" for a girl. But Reynolds explained that he and Lively weren't trying to be trendsetters or anything; James was actually named after his dad, James C. Reynolds, who passed away after a decades-long battle with Parkinson's disease. Plus, as he pointed out, James isn't that "unusual" of a name as far as Hollywood types go:

"In the spectrum of weird celebrity baby names, I feel like we’re not really breaking any new ground here," he said. "I mean, I didn’t call her Summer Squash Meadow Lark, or something."

Fair enough, man. Of course, Reynolds, being the adorable wise guy he is, he couldn't let the moment pass without cracking a little joke at the entertainment industry's expense:

"I also thought of all the letters being silent in her name, so it would be just be 'Haa.'"

Hey, there's always baby #2! Seriously, though, I just love what a great sense of humor Reynolds seems to have about the whole parenthood thing (and in general, of course). I also absolutely love how completely smitten the star seems with his little one. As he said during the same interview:

"She's teething at the moment. I love being a father. I don't want to be one of those celebs who talks about being a parent like they're the only person in the world who has ever done it. It's the most common thing in the world but the most profound. It's super fun. I just love it.”

Awww! Sounds like James is a lucky little girl -- and Lively is one lucky lady!

Image via Starface.ru/Splash News

Originally on The Stir


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February 9, 2016 12:13 PM
By Agnetha (not verified)

Mr Reynolds is not adorable, he is horrid!

February 9, 2016 12:21 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

While I can sympathise with Mr. Reynolds for wanting to honor his late father, I think James would have been better in the middle spot.

He and his wife have now become part of the double standard when it comes to naming babies. It's cool for girls to be given boys names (or unisex names) but don't dare try it on a boy because he'll be a sissy. Boys names are stronger so she'll be taken more seriously etc... Whether conscious or not, misogyny is at play here. Not a fan of this trend at all.

February 9, 2016 12:51 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

The child is named for her grandparent. Blake herself was also named for a (male) relative. This situation probably has a lot more to do with family tradition than any trend. Until they have a boy, we have no idea how they feel about feminine names for boys.

February 9, 2016 2:48 PM
By Stephanie (not verified)

Why is it misogynist for girls to be given "boy" names? Names themselves don't actually have a sex, and any child can be given any name, and there's no indication that these parents specifically sought out a male namesake for their child. It was simply the name of someone they wanted to honor. It seems to me that those perpetuating the double standard are parents who will stop naming their sons James the moment it might possibly be perceived as a "girl" name, or who will suggest that the name James is somehow "stolen," tainted, or damaged by being bestowed on a girl.

February 9, 2016 2:51 PM
By Stephanie (not verified)

Note, also, that giving children names of opposite-sex namesakes is not a "trend," but a practice with a very long history for children of all sexes, and a practice that has only been abandoned by the parents of baby boys.

February 29, 2016 5:18 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I like James as a name, a male name. Why does everything have to be for everybody? Even names. Why name your female child a name traditionally male when everyone is going to assume she's a boy? I knew a boy named Erin. He was called "she" every single time when the gender was not known. Sad for the child. My cousin named her daughter Ryan. I'm not a fan.

March 5, 2016 6:41 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

Of course its misogynist, because its cool to give girls male names, but horrid to give boys female names.
I'll give Ryan props if he has a son named Elizabeth or Sarah... until then, he's part of a sad trend.

March 22, 2016 6:38 PM
By Anonymous (not verified)

I don't think it's misogynistic at all. Boy names on girls is simply a style preference, or in this case, a meaningful way to honor family members. I like how they sound, too, regardless of whether I'd use them or not.
What I do think is that there's a double standard in the boys' case, in the same way girls can wear pants but boys can't wear dresses, as though it's a bad thing to be "girly". Gendered names were made up by humans, and while they have historical associations nothing is set in stone. I think parents should be able to name their kids whatever they want, whether that's a daughter James or a son Isabella or Kaylee or anything.

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