Stars

The Surprising Real Names Of 35 Celebrities

We did not expect Tom's real name to be Thomas Mapother IV!

Getty

It’s no news flash that celebrities often adopt new names when they get into the entertainment business.

In decades past, it was anti-Semitism and other prejudices that led some actors to change their names for Hollywood. But today, when celebrities take stage names, it’s usually to maintain some anonymity, make their name easier to pronounce or simply to make it sound cooler than the one they were born with.

Stage names don’t seem to be as common in today’s entertainment business as they were in the old days, but we’ve managed to gather 35 actors who go by a different name than the one they were born with. I bet a few of them will surprise you!

Winona Ryder


Birth name: Winona Horowitz

Jackie Chan


Birth name: Chan Kong-sang

Mindy Kaling


Birth name: Vera Chokalingham

Tim Allen


Birth name: Timothy Dick

Julianne Moore


Birth name: Julie Anne Smith

Demi Moore


Birth name: Demi Guynes

Tom Cruise


Birth name: Thomas Mapother IV

Nicolas Cage


Birth name: Nicolas Coppola

Vin Diesel


Birth name: Mark Sinclair

Alison Brie


Birth name: Alison Schermerhorn

Jamie Foxx


Birth name: Eric Bishop

Natalie Portman


Birth name: Natalie Hershlag

Blake Lively


Birth name: Blake Brown

Ben Kingsley


Birth name: Krishna Bhanji

Meg Ryan


Birth name: Margaret Hyra

Michael Caine


Birth name: Maurice Joseph Micklewhite Jr.

Kat Dennings


Birth name: Katherine Litwack

Theo James


Birth name: Theo Taptiklis

Whoopi Goldberg


Birth name: Caryn Johnson

Michael Keaton


Birth name: Michael Douglas

Portia de Rossi


Birth name: Amanda Rogers

Alan Alda


Birth name: Alphonso D’Abruzzo

Retta


Birth name: Marietta Sirleaf

Ralph Fiennes


Birth name: Ralph Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes

Amy Ryan


Birth name: Amy Dziewiontkowski

Jonah Hill


Birth name: Jonah Feldstein

Queen Latifah


Birth name: Dana Owens

Casey Affleck


Birth name: Caleb Affleck-Boldt

Lea Michele


Birth name: Lea Sarfati

Dennis Franz


Birth name: Dennis Schlacht

Natasha Lyonne


Birth name: Natasha Braunstein

Julie Bowen


Birth name: Julie Luetkemeyer

Martin Sheen


Birth name: Ramon Estevez

John Boyega


Birth name: John Adegboyega

Brie Larson


Birth name: Brianne Desaulniers

Did any of these name changes surprise you?

This story originally appeared on Simplemost. Checkout Simplemost for other great tips and ideas to make the most out of life.