17 Celebrities With Slight Name Changes

by Buzz Street Times


Michael J. Fox was born Michael A. Fox.

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It was all a lie. Michael ANDREW Fox had to change his name because two people can’t be registered under the same name in the Screen Actors Guild. (There was someone already registered as Michael Fox, so that’s why he added his middle initial in the first place.) He didn’t like the name “Michael A. Fox” because it sounds literally like “Michael, a fox,” so he went with Michael J. Fox, in tribute to actor Michael J. Pollard.


Meryl Streep was born Mary Streep.

Kevin Winter / Getty Images


Emma Stone was born Emily Stone.

Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

Emily Stone changed her name to Emma Stone when she joined the Screen Actors Guild. Like Michael J. Fox, when she went to register for the guild, there was already someone — a model from Australia’s Next Top Model — registered under Emily Stone. And so Emily Stone had to change her name to Emma Stone.


Tea Leoni was born Tea Panteleoni.

Angela Weiss / AFP / Getty Images


Barbra Streisand was born Barbara Streisand.

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Barbra Streisand originally had another “a” in her name. She changed it when she was 18 because she wanted to be “unique.”


Oprah Winfrey was born Orpah Winfrey.

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Yes, it’s true, Oprah’s birth name is Orpah. Her name evolved into Oprah, she said, because “people didn’t know how to pronounce Orpah, so they put the ‘P’ before the ‘R’ in every place else other than the birth certificate.”


Jennifer Aniston was born Jennifer Anastassakis.

Matt Winkelmeyer / Getty Images

Well, not exactly. Her father’s last name was Anastassakis, but according to this Jennifer Aniston fan site, it was changed when her family moved from Greece. Go figure.


Eric Bana was born Eric Banadinovich.

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He never legally changed his name (his passport still says Banadinovich), but he goes professionally by “Bana” because it was his nickname during his standup days.


Warren Beatty was born Warren Beaty.

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He added a “T” for some reason.


Toni Basil was born Antonia Basilotta.


AnTONIa BASILotta = Toni Basil. See what she she did there.


Garth Brooks was born Troyal Garth Brooks.

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Yes, Troyal is his birth name. Garth is his middle name.


Missy Elliot was born Melissa Elliot.

Bryan R. Smith / AFP / Getty Images

Pretty close to the real thing, but slightly different.


Mila Kunis was born Milena Kunis.

Valerie Macon / AFP / Getty Images


Zayn Malik was born Zain Malik.

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It isn’t really known why he changed the “i” to a “y,” but the Zayn Fandon wiki claims the media was still spelling it “Zain” until 2010.


David Duchovny was originally David Ducovny.

Frazer Harrison / Getty Images

David’s father took the “h” out of his last name because he was tired of it being mispronounced. David’s mother added it back in when she divorced his father.


Liam Neeson was born William Neeson.

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Sigourney Weaver was born Susan Weaver.

Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty Images

She changed her name to Sigourney when she was 14 after reading The Great Gatsby. She also hated being called Susie.

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