29 Celebrities You Didn’t Know Were Siblings
Isn't it funny how talent runs in the family? For National Sibling Day on April 10, let's celebrate some equally accomplished and surprising celeb pairs.
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Many celebrities have non-famous brothers or sisters—after all, according to U.S. News & World Report, 80 percent of Americans have siblings, so it makes sense that stars are just like us in their family make-ups. What’s more unusual are multiple siblings who’ve each become celebs in their own right. There are those brothers and sisters who are very well-known, such as Venus and Serena Williams, Prince William and Harry, and the Kardashians. But you might not realize that some other famous people are related, let alone siblings, even when they share the same last name! (For instance, can you guess who the two pictured above are?) On National Sibling Day, find out about some unlikely family duos you probably didn’t know about before. Plus, here are some famous siblings who changed history.
Scott Evans and Chris Evans
Captain America, aka Chris Evans, might be handsome and by all accounts a nice guy—but he’s even more adorable when paired with his equally good-looking younger brother, Scott Evans. Best known for his role on the soap One Live to Live, Scott also has a recurring role on Grace and Frankie. The brothers are as close as can be: Chris took Scott as his plus-one to the 2019 Oscars and even recently touched up Scott’s buzz cut in a Twitter video. Scott also shared on a “Know Your Bro” skit on The Tonight Show that he once kept his older bro out of trouble when Scott cracked his head on the coffee table, needing stitches. “I said I fell, but you know you pushed me,” Scott said to Chris. “Yeah, but that was between us,” Chris joked. “Ma showed up, and he covered for me.” That’s brotherly love, and why siblings are some of the most important people in your life.
Shirley MacLaine and Warren Beatty
Talk about Hollywood royalty: It doesn’t get much more impressive than two siblings who’ve both won Oscars. Born to teacher parents in Virginia, older sis MacLaine (who took a stage name based on her mother’s maiden name) first made the move to New York City to pursue acting and dancing; inspired by her success, Beatty followed later. Both landed film roles and eventually won Oscars: MacLaine for Terms of Endearment in 1983 and Beatty for directing Reds in 1982. “I was very close to my brother,” MacLaine told The Guardian in 2017 of her childhood with Beatty. “We loved to play together.” Looks like they avoided becoming one of the famous sibling rivalries throughout history.
Kate Hudson and Oliver Hudson
Bubbly rom-com actress Kate may have the more high-profile career, but audiences will no doubt recognize her older brother Oliver from his starring roles on TV shows such as Splitting Up Together, Rules of Engagement, Scream Queens, and Nashville. Raised by their mom Goldie Hawn and her partner, Kurt Russell, whom they consider their father, the siblings have always been close. Today, the pair even hosts a podcast called “Sibling Revelry” that examines the bond between sibs. “Being able to talk about the past and how we grew up and what we meant to each other has given me a deeper understanding of us, as siblings, as best friends, as parents,” Oliver wrote in a touching Instagram post. “Every time we sit down and get into it I learn something new! I love you so much, and I am so excited to keep exploring, to keep adventuring, to keep digging into the good stuff!”
Jonah Hill and Beanie Feldstein
Born Jonah Hill Feldstein, the L.A. native may have started as a funnyman, but Hill’s dramatic work has also been recognized, with two Academy Award nominations. Beanie Feldstein, who, to fans’ surprise, happens to be Hill’s sister, has recently been on a similar trajectory: Following a breakout role in the film Lady Bird, she scored a 2020 Golden Globe nomination for Booksmart, played a supporting role in Hello, Dolly! on Broadway, and boasts major upcoming projects including playing Monica Lewinsky in Impeachment: American Crime Story. “He’s my best friend in the world,” Feldstein told U.S. Weekly about her brother. “We give each other advice all the time. We are constantly found heart-to-hearting in a corner at a family engagement.” Looks like the two actors have found smart ways to stop sibling rivalry before it starts.
Tracee Ellis Ross and Evan Ross
Fans might already know that Emmy Award winner and Black-ish star Tracee Ellis Ross has a famous pedigree—her mom is legendary singer Diana Ross. But among her many siblings, there’s at least one other famous Ross in the family: half-brother Evan Ross, a singer and actor known for the TV shows Star, Wicked City, and 90210, as well as the films ATL and The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 and Part 2. Evan is married to fellow singer Ashlee Simpson—herself a famous sibling to Jessica Simpson—and the couple starred in their own E! reality series, Ashlee+Evan. Multi-talented Evan is also an artist, and at his art show, big sis Tracee raved it’s been “a childhood thing he’s been doing forever,” according to E! News. “Finally, people get to see the magic!”
Debbie Allen and Phylicia Rashad
These two sisters, born in Houston to a poet and a dentist, were not just close in age (they’re less than two years apart) but in talent, too. They both rose to fame in the 1980s—literally on the show Fame, in Debbie Allen’s case. Allen was an actor, dancer, and choreographer on the series; older sis Phylicia Rashad portrayed beloved matriarch Clair Huxtable on the sitcom The Cosby Show. Today, both sisters continue to be active in the entertainment industry, with Allen executive-producing, directing, and acting in the recurring role of Catherine Fox on Grey’s Anatomy and Rashad becoming the first black woman to win a Tony for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play in 2004, for A Raisin in the Sun. The sisters were honored together by the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in 2018. “It means everything because that doesn’t happen—it’s always one or the other,” Allen told Variety. “We’re always there for each other, but it’s so nice to be here together.” These are the things only sisters understand.
Emily Deschanel and Zooey Deschanel
The L.A.–born and bred Deschanel sisters’ parents, a cinematographer and an actress, were in the industry, too. Even so, what are the chances that both of them would go on to star in hugely successful TV series (Emily for 12 seasons on Bones and Zooey for seven seasons on New Girl)? “We shoot on the same lot, so I’ll stop by her trailer,” Zooey said on Jimmy Kimmel Live when they were both filming their shows. But things weren’t always so peachy with the sisters. “When I was 3, she was 7, and she was already evil,” Zooey joked on Jimmy Kimmel. Young Emily told Zooey that “the Neptunians had killed my real sister and replaced her with a facsimile who looked just like her, talked just like her; but when my parents weren’t in the room, [she] made crazy faces at me and talked like Vickie from Small Wonder. I was terrified!” Zooey said. This is one of those bizarre sibling stories you won’t believe are true.
Ralph Fiennes and Joseph Fiennes
One of them was Voldemort in the Harry Potter films; the other is the villain Fred in The Handmaid’s Tale. But these British brothers are much more down-to-earth—and less evil—in real life. They grew up as part of a brood of six siblings and a foster brother. “Are we rivals? Absolutely not—we all get on very well indeed,” Joseph told The Guardian about his siblings. But interestingly, Joseph has a fraternal twin—and it’s not Ralph. “When you share bunk beds and birthdays and a womb with someone, you have a special connection,” he says of his twin, Jacob, a conservationist. “It definitely feels different from the relationship I have with my other siblings—my twin and I are more connected.” Sorry, Ralph! These are the skills you learn growing up in a big family.
Florence Pugh and Toby Sebastian
Florence Pugh is having a moment: The actress recently scored an Oscar nomination for playing Amy in Little Women, gained recognition for her work in the horror film Midsommar, and will appear in the upcoming Marvel movie Black Widow. But fans were surprised to learn that her brother Toby Sebastian acted on arguably the biggest show of all time: Game of Thrones. He played Prince Trystane Martell of Dorne, fiancé of Myrcella Baratheon. Now that we mention it, we can totally see the family resemblance around the mouth. On her Oscar nod, the big brother just couldn’t resist posting an embarrassing Instagram photo of the two of them tussling, captioned, “You have worked your arse off and you’ve been exquisite in every single one of your performances. Proud doesn’t cover it. Congratulations fatso, I love you.” They’ve mastered the ways to become BFFs with your siblings as grown-ups.
Rooney Mara and Kate Mara
These sisters aren’t just part of a Hollywood power family: They’re actually part of a football dynasty, too. Their dad’s side of the family founded the New York Giants; their mother’s side founded the Pittsburgh Steelers. The sisters grew up in Bedford, New York, but got especially close when Rooney followed Kate into the world of acting. “From the time I was 14 ’til, I think, my sister started acting when I was 20, 21, I didn’t have someone to share this craziness with,” Kate told ABC News. “So when she became an actor, we actually lived together in my apartment for the first year or two. We would both go on auditions and come home and talk about the terror of certain auditions and funny stories, and so it just became something super special that you can actually bond with a sibling with, which is very rare.” Both went on to success: Kate in House of Cards, among other TV shows and movies, and Rooney as the title role in The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo. Luckily, they don’t have one of these famous rivalries between sisters.
Fred Savage and Ben Savage
As kids, the Savage brothers each starred on beloved shows today’s grownups fondly remember from their own childhoods: Fred on The Wonder Years and Ben on Boy Meets World. But like the Maras, Fred says he and his little brother actually bonded over their unique situation instead of being competitive about whose show was better. “It’s so funny, growing up as a young person on a TV show is a very rare and strange way to grow up—but I happened to have someone going through the exact same thing as me in the next bedroom in our house as a kid,” Fred told E! News. “We kind of helped each other along. There was never any rivalry. It was much more like, ‘I’m so glad you’re here and know what I’m going through.'”
Elle Fanning and Dakota Fanning
Perhaps best known as a child star, Georgia-born Dakota Fanning got into acting first. But little sister Elle followed in her sister’s footsteps, starring as Princess Aurora in Maleficent and its sequel. Both sisters are now transitioning into grown-up roles, with Dakota in the TNT series The Alienist and Elle taking the lead role in the film Mary Shelley. The two sisters are “very supportive of each other,” Elle told Us Weekly—which is super important given that the duo will be starring together in the film The Nightingale, based on the bestselling novel by Kristin Hannah. And, bonus: They’re playing sisters! “The Nightingale will be the first time we act on screen together,” the sisters said in a statement, per Entertainment Weekly. “For years, we have looked for a film to do with one another and then this gem appeared. As sisters, to share our artistry with each other while bringing such a powerful sister story to life is a dream come true.” Sounds like it will be one of the best movies about sisters to watch with your sister.
Chad Lowe and Rob Lowe
The ageless Rob Lowe has been a heartthrob since he burst onto the scene as part of the 1980s “Brat Pack.” Younger brother Chad might not elicit the same reaction, but he did win an Emmy for his role on Life Goes On; he was also known for being famously married to now-ex Hilary Swank. The brothers grew up in Ohio before moving to L.A., which afforded the duo a good old-fashioned childhood. “I always feel like I got it perfect—I had my formative years in the Midwest,” Rob told Parade. The brothers have worked together as well, with Chad behind the camera directing Rob in Brothers & Sisters and the short-lived sitcom The Grinder. “My little bro, this might be the only time he gets to boss me around,” Rob joked to Extra TV on the Grinder set. “We have a shorthand that’s developed over 48 years for me of being this guy’s brother,” Chad said before giving Rob a hug and a kiss.
Luke Hemsworth, Chris Hemsworth, and Liam Hemsworth
You probably know about two of the best-looking brothers in entertainment: Thor‘s Chris Hemsworth and The Hunger Games‘ Liam Hemsworth. But you might not know that there’s a third Hemsworth in the business: oldest brother Luke. If you’re a fan of HBO’s Westworld, you might not even realize you just watched him in a major plot twist (SPOILER: His character, Ashley Stubbs, is actually not human, but an AI “host”). Luke was actually the first to venture into acting in the brothers’ native Australia, where they enjoyed a rugged childhood. “My grandfather gave my older brother [Luke] a BB gun that my mother didn’t know about,” Chris told an Australian news site. “So we made Liam put a motorbike helmet on and a couple of jumpers [sweaters] and some gloves and we said ‘run’. And we had to hunt him around the house. He didn’t love that game as much as we did.” Next, check out 14 funny sibling stories that will make you grateful for yours.