For many, being a mom is one of the most beautiful experiences a woman can live through, but without a doubt it is a stage where we experience great changes, including in our organism and in our daily life, and one of the big problems that many moms face is to find a balance between her professional life and her new role as a mother. Definitely not an impossible challenge, but a challenge that requires patience and creativity until the mother finds the formula that works best for her family, and can find that midpoint in both areas.
And these are situations that every woman has faced in her life, regardless of whether they are a Hollywood celebrity or a normal person. In fact, many actresses face greater difficulty, having to hide their pregnancies in front of the cameras, because a pregnancy is not contemplated in the story of the character they portrayed. And although it is true that many times producers prefer to include the pregnancy of the actress in the storyline of the character, often depending on the plot of the show this option is not possible.
It's in that moment when the production staff, script, costume, makeup, and the cameramen manage to conceal the pregnancy of the actress, thanks to various tricks they have under their sleeve that they have managed to deceive the spectators, and make them believe that everything is normal in the lives of our favorite characters.
So, today we are going to unveil some of our favorite actresses who had to hide their pregnancies in front of the cameras in our favorite television shows.
20 Zooey Deschanel -New Girl
Zooey Deschanel is an American actress that's best known for her role in the movie "500 Days of Summer", and for her role of Jess in the tv show "New Girl" that follows the life of a bubbly teacher in her early 30s and her roommates. By the time Zooey discovered she was pregnant for the first time, the show was in its fifth season, and a pregnancy in the story of the protagonist was not raised, so the editorial team and production ingenuity with the basic techniques to hide Zooey's pregnancy by means of wide clothes and shots made in certain angles.
In fact, the writers decided to pre-taped her scenes before she gave birth to her daughter Elsie in 2015. They create a storyline that would allow Zoeey take her first maternity leave, sending Jess Day off on one seriously intense and drawn-out jury duty, and bringing a new girl ( Megan Fox, as a special guest) to the show.
19 Hilary Duff -Younger
Former Disney star Hilary Duff surprised her fans this year by sharing the news that she was back with her ex-boyfriend Matthew Koma, but also she surprised everyone by announcing that they were expecting a baby girl.
Hilary is currently working on the TV Land series, "Younger," where she plays Kelsey Peters, a young publicist who lives in New York. If we look in detail at the last season of "Younger", we will notice that the production team took care of the full-body angles of the actress, and this time she wore clothes less adjusted to what we normally see in her character. Hilary and her partner welcomed their baby 2 months ago.
18 January Jones - Mad Men
January Jones is an American Model and actress who is best known for portraying the role of Betty Draper in the successful Tv show "Mad Men" (2007-2015). She surprises most of her fans when they learned that she was expecting her first child as a single mother because she felt that her son would be better off without a father in his life.
The actress gave birth to a baby boy, whom she decided to name Xander in 2011, inspiring a storyline in which her character piled on the pounds and joined Weight Watchers. Showrunner Matthew Weiner upped the ante by having the actress wear a fat suit.
17 Cobie Smulders -How I Met Your Mother
Cobie Smulders is a Canadian actress who is best known for portraying to Robin Scherbatsky in the comedy series "How I Met Your Mother", besides her roles in movies and tv shows like "The Avengers" and " Friends From College." But during season 4 of "How I Met Your Mother", writers faced a big challenge trying to hide Smulders belly spent a lot of time sitting and using many clothes layers.
Her pregnancy could not be included in the story because the character of Cobie was against having kids. In fact, later in the show, we learned that Robin is sterile. So the writers and the film crew had to be creative at the time of recording the episodes. She and her husband the American actor and comedian, Taran Killam, welcomed a baby girl whom they decided to name Shaelyn Cado Killam.
16 Julia Louis Dreyfus - Seinfeld
Julia Louis Dreyfus is an American actress and comedian, who is known for her diverse works in the small screen such as "Saturday Night Live" (1982–1985), "Seinfeld" (1989–1998), and "The New Adventures of Old Christine " (2006–2010), among others. But when she was portraying Elaine Benes the production team had a hard time trying to hide her pregnancy during season 3 in 1992 and season 8 in 1997, when she got pregnant again.
If we pay attention we will notice that during those seasons Elaine was using oversized coats, and the shots were well thought. The American actress has been married to Brad Hall an American actor, comedian, director, and writer since 1987. The couple only had two children, Charlie Hall, and Henry Hall.
15 Gillian Anderson- X-Files
Gillian Anderson the American-British film, television and theatre actress, is best known for her role as the FBI Special Agent Dana Scully in the iconic tv show from the 90s "The X-Files."
During the second season of the show Gillian got pregnant, so producers made the usual when it comes to a pregnant actress, hide the growing bump with the help of camera angles and trickery. But the advantage of working in a science fiction show is that it gives writers greater freedom to be creative, which is why the character of Gillian at almost the end of the season is abducted. Gillian has been married twice and has 3 children.
14 Sarah Jessica Parker - Carrie Bradshaw
Sarah Jessica Parker the American actress has had a successful career in the entertainment industry for decades with iconic films such as "Footloose" (1984), "Hocus Pocus" (1993), "The Family Stone" (2005), "Failure to Launch" (2006), "Did You Hear About the Morgans? " (2011), and the HBO franchise " Sex and the City."
It was during the fifth season of "Sex and the City" that Sarah Jessica Parker learned that she was pregnant, but her character Carrie Bradshaw and the storyline of the show wasn't going in that direction. Luckily, Bradshaw was known for her great sense of fashion, so the producers order and had a custom set of clothes made to hide the baby bump. Sarah Jessica Parker has been married to Matthew Broderick since 1987. The couple have 3 children.
13 Claire Danes - Homeland
Claire Danes the American actress has stolen our hearts with each of her performances since the early 90s. She rose to fame thanks to her role in the tv show "My So-Called Life." Years later she portrayed Juliet with Leonardo DiCaprio as Romeo, in the film "Romeo + Juliet" from 1996, a new cinematographic adaptation of Shakespeare's novel. Danes has participated in other iconic films such as "Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines" (2003), "Shopgirl" (2005), "Brigsby Bear" (2017), and currently has a role in the tv drama "Homeland."
But when Claire learned that she was pregnant again, the producers of the show couldn’t afford to have Carrie Mathison stop any of her high-octane spy antics. That's why the producers decided to invest in a combination of meticulous camera angles, a body double, and the slimming power of CGI to make it seem like Carrie with the same type of body. She has been married to Hugh Dancy since 2009, and they have two children.
12 Kristen Bell - House Of Lies
Kristen Bell the American actress has also had a successful career in Hollywood, from being the voiceover of the successful teen series "Gossip Girl," to embodied one of the most beloved Disney princesses of recent times as Elsa in "Frozen." It seems that there is nothing that Kristen cannot achieve.
From 2012 until 2016, Bell was back in the small screen as Jeannie van der Hooven, in the tv show "House of Lies", but during the second season when her character was dealing with a leaked sex tape, Bell was seven months pregnant; so producers had a hard time trying to figure it out how to hide her growing belly. They shot most of the scenes at the best angles possible and edited around it with CGI. Kristen is married since 2013 to Dax Shepard, and they have two children.
11 Kerry Washington - Scandal
Kerry Washington is an American actress who began to gain recognition in the entertainment industry thanks to her role in the television series "Scandal." Since 2013 Kerry is married to actor, producer and former American football cornerback, Nnamdi Asomugha, and currently, the couple has two children, Isabelle Amarachi Asomugha who was born in 2014, and Caleb Kelechi Asomugha, born in 2016.
If we pay attention we will notice that during the third and sixth seasons of "Scandal" were shortened to accommodate Washington's pregnancies. Producers applied the typical resources, angels and clothes, to hide her pregnancy. And if we watch those seasons again we will notice that we can only see Kerry's from the neck up in most of the scenes.
10 Jemima Kirke - Girls
Jemima Kirke is an English-American artist and actress best known for her role of Jessa Johansson on the television series "Girls" (2012- 2017) that follows a group of friends living in New York City in their late 20s trying to figure it out their lives. Back then the actress was married to Michael Mosberg another actor in the industry. They tied the knot in 2009 but they signed the divorce in 2017. The couple have two kids.
Kirke gave birth to her second child just months after filming the show's second season. Thanks to some slick camera work and the use of specific clothes made viewers none the wiser.
9 Anna Chlumsky -Veep
Anna Chlumsky stole our hearts when she was a child actress thanks to her roles in films such as "My Girl" (1991)," Trading Mom" (1994), and "Gold Diggers: The Secret of Bear Mountain" (1995). From an early age, she has remained in the acting industry performing various roles for movies and television shows. She currently has a role in the series "Veep" playing Amy Brookheimer.
In the second season of the show Anna was pregnant, and she faced the awkward issue of hiding her pregnancy. During an interview, the actress shared her opinion about the issue saying "We started to have to get a little creative in maybe the last episode. But the nice time is it took place in the winter so everyone’s wearing jackets anyway." Anna is married to Shaun So since 2008. The couple now have two kids.
8 Tina Fey- 30 Rock
Tina Fey is an actress and comedian best known for her roles on the NBC sketch comedy series "Saturday Night Live" from 1997 to 2006, and for creating the successful comedy series "30 Rock" (2006–2013).
When Fey announced that she was expecting her second child in the summer of 2011, NBC was able to push back the season 3 premiere of "30 Rock", and one of the advantages of comedy is that there are always fun options to disguise a pregnancy. All Liz Lemon needed, then, was a baggy hi-vis vest to get her through the season 2 finale. Tina has been married to Jeff Richmond, an American composer, actor, director, and producer since 2001. The couple have two children.
7 Debra Messing- Will & Grace
Debra Messing is an American actress who is best known for her role on the sitcom "Will & Grace" (1998–2006), and for her acting in movies such as "Garfield" (2004), " The Wedding Date" (2005), and "Nothing like the Holidays" (2008), among others.
In this case, when the actress learned that she was pregnant, the producers decided to use the classic tricks, big bags, thousands of layers of dark clothes, and camera angles. Messing's 2011 pregnancy also caused her to be absent for six episodes in season 6. Debra was married to Daniel Zelman, an actor and screenwriter from 2000 to 2016. They only have one child, a baby boy they welcomed in 2004.
6 Courteney Cox - Friends
Courtney Cox is one of Hollywood's favorite celebrities thanks to her role on the acclaimed television series "Friends". From 1999 to 2013 she was married to the well-known actor David Arquette, both had a daughter in 2004 who they decided to name Coco Arquette. In 2013 they announced their divorce.
When Cox became pregnant, Monica had already discovered she was sterile in a heartbreaking episode. So, she put the producers in a tricky situation where they couldn't just turn around and give Monica the child she always wanted, instead they hid the pregnancy through baggy clothes, and made a lot of shots with Monica just sitting or hiding behind large furniture and things.
5 Anna Paquin- True Blood
Anna Paquin is a New Zealand-Canadian actress who started her career as a child actress. She is best known for her roles in movies such as "The Piano" (1998), "She's All That" (1999), the " X-Men" franchise, "Furlough" (2018), and for her role in the successful tv show " True Blood" where she portrayed Sookie Stackhouse.
It was during season 5 that Anna learned that she was pregnant. Unfortunately, her pregnancy couldn't be included in the plot, so producers decided to rely on a stunt double, props, and oversize outfits to accommodate her under-wraps pregnancy. Paquin has been married to Stephen Moyer, an English actor and her on-screen love interest in the series. They welcomed twins in 2012.
4 Ellen Pompeo - Greys Anatomy
Ellen Pompeo is an American actress who is best known for portrayed Meredith Grey in the successful ABC's popular medical drama Grey's Anatomy (2005 - present).
During season six Ellen found out that she was pregnant for the first time, so producers try everything to hide her pregnancy because the idea of Meredith pregnant didn't suit story arc of the show. In fact, they made her character donate her liver due to Pompeo's pregnancy during that season. A great idea to later excuse her to be present in some episode when she was taking her pregnancy leave. Ellen has been married to Chris Ivery since 2007, and they have 3 kids.
3 Kelly Rutherford - Gossip Girl
Kelly Rutherford is an actress who is best known for her television roles as Sam Whitmore on the NBC soap opera "Generations" (1989–1991), as Megan Lewis in " Melrose Place" (1996–1999), and of course for portrayed Lily van der Woodsen on The CW teen drama "Gossip Girl" (2007–2012).
In 2009, Kelly found out that she was pregnant again, but her character Lily was already a mom, and add a new baby to the plot wasn't the best idea at the moment. So, writers and producers decided to play with filming angles and baggy designer clothes to give her a chic style that allows her to hide her growing belly. Back then she was married to Daniel Giersch with whom she shared two kids, sadly after their divorce in 2010, they went through a difficult custody battle.
2 Julie Bowen- Modern Family
Julie Bowen is an American actress and model. She is best known for her roles in tv shows such as "Dawson's Creek" (2000), "Boston Legal" (2005–07), "Lost" (2005–07), and her most recent role as Claire Dunphy on the comedy "Modern Family" (since 2009).
When producers were filming the pilot for "Modern Family," Julie was pregnant of twins. But luckily for her, a good portion of the show is just her sitting on the couch talking to the camera. So, the producers and cameramen focused on taking care of the angles and placing objects that distracted the gaze from the actress' belly. Julie was married to Scott Phillips from 2004 until 2018. They have three children.
1 Alyson Hannigan - How I Met Your Mother
Alyson Hannigan is an American actress who is best known for her roles as Willow Rosenberg on the tv show "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" (1997–2003), Lily Aldrin on the sitcom "How I Met Your Mother" (2005–2014), and for her role of Michelle Flaherty in the franchise "American Pie."
During season four of "How I Met Your Mother" producers faced a big challenge when two of their lead stars were pregnant at the same time. When it was about Smulders bump they were more careful because Robin was so against having kids. Nevertheless, they had a little fun with Hannigan, giving her a scene which showed off her growing belly during a hot dog eating competition.