We already know that celebrities are ahead of the game when it comes to the baby naming trends of the 21st century. However, with the popularity of classic names on the rise (and a tendency towards names that are original without being awkward), perhaps it’s time we start looking at our favorite celebs themselves for some trendy name inspiration.
But, how do we decide which A-list celebrities bare names worthy of your golden boy or girl, and which ones will wind up on the D-list? Why, the Golden Globe Awards of course!
Every year, the 93 members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association nominate a few select films, along with the celebrities that star in them, that they believe best represent excellence in film and television. The Golden Globe Awards honor both domestic and foreign work, so these films, celebrities, and their names, will be recognized as a worldwide industry standard for years and years to come.
Some noteworthy names, like Meryl (Streep), have popped up on the nominee list multiple times, ensuring that their name is recognized and respected in households around the world. Others, like Toni (Erdmann), are part of this years nominated film titles, and thus are just beginning the ascent to the top of the industry lists, making them the perfect inspiration for the next big thing in baby names.
The 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards are just around the corner, and what better way to support your favorite nominee than with one of the following honorary monikers for your future superstar!
2016 was the year of the last name when it came to the next generation of trendiness, and this classic-sounding last name is no exception. Making its 2017 Golden Globe appearance in the form of the musical/comedy Florence Foster Jenkins, Foster is a fantastic name for anyone envisioning Broadway lights and curtain calls for their future bundle of joy.
Historically, Foster made its first appearance on the social security database in 1900. It reached peek popularity just one year later when it represented .031 percent of total male births in the United States (an astonishing 36 lucky young boys were named Foster that year!)
Currently Foster is ranked in the 990’s, making it a unique choice with trendy, classic appeal. Beware of trend alert though! Foster is quickly rising up the charts with the recent popularity of actress Sutton Foster – another Broadway dynamo.
Similar names include Forester, Fisher, and Gardner.
It’s no surprise that this vintage name makes our Golden Globe inspired name list. Meryl tops our list as a tribute to perhaps one of the most recognized Golden Globe names of all time: Meryl Streep.
Meryl Streep has received more Golden Globe nominations than any other actress. At the time this article was written, she had whopping 30 nominations and 8 total wins. In 2017, Meryl is nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in any Motion Picture” for her role in the musical/comedy Florence Foster Jenkins.
Classic to the core, the name Meryl showed up on U.S. charts in 1947, and reached peek popularity in 1952. Sadly, the name disappeared from the social security database entirely in 1957. If you’re looking to bring back a name that screams vintage charm, place Meryl on the top of your list!
Call her Mery for short, or for a trendy twist, try Marin.
The -ee suffix is all the rage this year, so we were super excited to see Hailee Steinfeld pop up in the “Best Performance by an Actress In A Motion Picture – Music or Comedy” category for her role in The Edge of Seventeen.
Although the name Hailee does not currently show up on the social security name database, its homophone, Hailey, is definitely in the Top 100. In fact, there are 10 different spelling variations currently propelling this moniker into name superstardom – an impressive feat considering the name didn’t exist at all prior to 1982. In 2010, over 3.5% of females born were given some variation of this modern classic.
Traditionally the name means “Hay’s Meadow,” when spelled with an –ey ending. A simple switch to the latest –ee ending trend conjures up dreams of silver screens and red carpets instead!
Other star-ready names with the –ee ending include Bailee, Ashlee, and Kaylee.
Yet another Florence Foster Jenkins moniker hits our inspiration list with this well-known actors surname. Grant, in honor of 2017 nominee Hugh Grant, is a name overflowing with quirky character and strong masculine vibes – traits that tend to perform strongly for long periods of time.
Grant currently ranks 177 in the social security name database, which has been updated to 2015. The name has taken on the meaning “large,” after originating as a nickname for men that were extremely tall.
The name Grant peeked in 1997 when it hit 115 on the U.S. charts, and has been slowly declining in popularity ever since. The slow decline in popularity, combined with the longevity of over 100 years in the top 500, makes Grant a strong choice for any little boy looking to make a lasting impression on the world!
Gage and Brant are fabulous choices that give off a similar feel.
If you are looking for a name that says feminine but sassy, then this is a name you absolutely must consider. Octavia makes it to the Golden Globes inspirational naming list thanks to the always fascinating performances of Octavia Spencer – nominated this year for her role in Hidden Figures in the “Best Performance by Actress in a Supporting Role in Any Motion Picture” category.
With a ranking that hasn’t broken the top 400 in maybe ever, Octavia is a smart alternative to some of the trendy, yet increasingly common, ‘O’ names of the next generation (like Olivia and Orianna). It’s long enough to suggest femininity, and diverse enough to provide several nickname options like Avi and Vi.
The name itself is Latin in origin and means “eighth” – a meaning that made it an obvious choice for a Victorian couples eighth child back when having more than eight children was a thing.
The first gender neutral name to hit our Golden Globe inspiration list comes
from the one and only Dev Patel, nominated for “Best Actor in a Supporting Role in Any Motion Picture” in reference to his role in Lion.
Dev, Sanskrit for “God,” is a very cool, very chic three-letter name loaded with meaning. It’s a shortened version of both the traditionally male (but more recently gender-neutral) Devin, and the traditionally female Develyn. It’s a name that says “I mean business” in a way that’s still ultra-hip. It’s practically screen-ready! What more could you want in a name?
While the name has yet to breach the Top 1000 in the United States, it is expected to hit the charts very soon. On an international level, Dev has been gaining some popularity in Britain, and is currently ranking in the 800-900 range.
Other chic three-letter names include Liv, Abe, and Kai.
When we saw the name Toni Erdmann on the Golden Globe nominee list we knew it was meant to be. Arriving in the form of a German film title nominated for “Best Motion Picture in a Foreign Language,” Toni is a classic name that has been taking sides for as long as anyone can remember.
Traditionally, Toni is a shortened version of the classic name Antonia, making it primarily a feminine moniker. But, change the ending to a –Y and the name automatically becomes the shortened version of the masculine Antonio. Short, or long, Toni is a sophisticated name destined for the star-studded streets of Hollywood.
The name Toni first broke the Top 1000 in the 1920s. It remained on the charts until 2007 when it disappeared from the rankings. Almost 10 years later, this versatile classic is due for a comeback in a big way.
Similar names include Lonnie, Traci, and Terri.
Everyone loves a virtuous name full of charm and meaning. Thanks to Felicity Huffman of the hit show American Crime, we were able to add one of the most melodic virtuous names to our Golden Globe Inspiration list! Felicity is up for nomination in the “Best Performance by An Actress in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television” category.
True to the original word, Felicity actually means “good fortune” or “happy,” so when it comes to a meaningful, virtuous name for your little one it is indeed a charming choice.
In terms of popularity, Felicity is a rising star! It’s been climbing the charts since 2009 – making its way from 789 to 360 by 2015. Look for Felicity to keep on climbing as the more traditional versions of virtuous names prepare to relinquish their coveted spots in the Top 100.
Similar names include Hope, Faith, and Serenity.
Kerry Washington is to blame (or should we say thank!) for bringing this gender-ambiguous name back into the limelight. The gorgeous go-getter is nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television.”
The name Kerry is Irish in origin, but it means “dark” or “dark-haired,” giving you the best of both worlds – a beautiful name with a wonderful Irish cadence, and a meaning that suggests mystery. The juxtaposition makes the name an ideal choice if your future star or starlette was born with a full head of luscious locks!
Kerry reached it’s peek popularity in it’s masculine form in 1960, before its diversity propelled it into the Top 200 for girls in 1971. The name disappeared from the Top 1000 completely in 2004, so it’s ready for a one-of-a-kind revival.
Try Keeghan or Kamryn for a modern take on the male form of Kerry. For girls, alternatives include Carrie, Keira, and Aerie.
Okay, so he may play a bad guy in the mini-series The Night Of, but this actor/rapper has a name so chic, we absolutely had to include it in our list. We’re talking about Riz Ahmed of course, one of the nominees for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television.”
The name Riz is relatively new to the scene so information on origin and meaning is scarce. It’s gaining popularity in the United States and Britain as the tendency towards short, snappy names surges across these countries.
To gain celebrity status you have to have a name that is quick to pronounce, easy to remember, and sure to stand out. Translation? This name is most definitely going to make it’s way to the top as fast as you can say North West!
Other names with 3 letters and a punchy attitude include Raj, Kai, and Zev.
This name has been in the Top 1000 names in the United States since 1962 but there’s a catch – it’s a girl’s name…or, at least it was. Courtney B. Vance is changing that in a very big way. Nominated for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television,” Courtney’s stunning skills are paving the way for this name to appear on the boy charts for the first time in ages.
If you’re looking for a meaningful name, then Courtney may not be the best choice. The name is French in origin, and means “short nose.” But, if you’re searching for a boy name that is just the right shade of edgy, and looks great on the big screen then it is certainly one to consider. No need to worry about too many celebs sharing the same name…Courtney hasn’t been seen on the male name charts since 2001.
Similar names include Jamie, Ashley, and Morgan
When it comes to having a glamorous name you can’t get any better than Caitriona. The stunning Caitriona Balfe, nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Drama” for her role in Outlander, is responsible for bringing this name to our list. With a Scottish lilt and the right number of syllables for a beautiful cadence, this name has everything it takes to make it big!
Caitriona is the Gaelic variation of the traditional name Catherine. While there are multiple spellings (Catriona, Katrionna, etc.….), it is traditionally agreed upon that the meaning of the name is “pure” – a fitting meaning for a feminine bombshell destined to dole out performance after performance of pure gold.
The name is currently popular in Scotland and Ireland, but it has yet to breach the Top 1000 in any form within the United States.
Similar names of Scottish origin include: Ailsa, Fiona, and Vevina.
The name Evan has been topping the charts in the United States for over 20 years – for boys. It broke the Top 100 in 1983 and remains there to this day. Now, thanks to the increasing popularity of actress Evan Rachel Wood (nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Drama”), the name is setting itself up to begin the steady climb up the girl charts.
Choosing a boy name for a girl child is all the rage lately! Not to be stripped of feminine charm, the name Evan means “the Lord is gracious,” and with a name like this, there’ll be plenty to be grateful for! It’s a fantastic name choice for any parents hoping to bring a little bit of an edge to their future baby girl.
For a more common gender-bending moniker, try Alex or Sam. For something a bit less traditional, try Dylan.
We mentioned previously that last names are performing fabulously as first names in the 21st century, and this one is no exception to the trend. Ryder comes to us as the last name of Golden Globe Nominee Winona Ryder of Stranger Things. Ms. Ryder is nominated in the “Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Drama” category.
In the United States, the name Ryder first hit the male charts in 1994. Now, a mere 22 years later, it ranks in the Top 100 names for male babies born in the U.S., Australia, and New Zealand.
Originally a British surname, Ryder means “cavalryman” or “messenger” – great roles for any future movie star. It is strong, short, and features the increasingly popular –er ending that seems to be taking over the next generation of names.
Other strong –er names that are climbing the boy name charts include Gunner, Jagger, and River.
Rami Malek is officially nominated for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Drama” for his role in Mr. Robot. This makes two nominee years in a row for Rami, which is exciting for us because it means we get to add his ultra-chic, ultra-trendy name to our Golden Globe Inspiration list!
The name Rami is so hip, we weren’t able to find popularity stats for it on any official charts. We can tell you, however, that it’s either Arabic or Persian in origin. In Arabic, it means “loving” or “Archer” or “sniper.” In Persian, it means “happy” or “joyous” or “untroubled.” Alternate spellings include Ramy and Ramee.
Okay, so there’s some discrepancies associated with this particular moniker, but that makes it so much more mysterious - and mysterious is fabulous in the film and television industries!
Similar names include Remy, Kian, and Ramzi.
Golden Globe newbie Matt Rhys is nominated for “Best Performance by an Actor in Television Series – Drama,” which means we were able to bring this unique name to our list! Just four letters long, the name Rhys features a non-traditional spelling with absolutely zero vowels, making it acceptable for darling divas and cool Casanovas alike.
Traditionally, this Welsh name means “ardor.” Translation? Ardor is another word for enthusiasm or passion, which are most definitely desirable traits for any future kiddo, celebrity or not!
In terms of popularity, Rhys is used most in England, Scotland, and Ireland. It broke the top 1000 in the United States in 2004, and has been steadily rising on the male charts. Conversely, Rhys has remained nearly non-existent on the girl charts due to the more popular, slightly more feminine spelling: Reese.
Names similar in origin, and suitable for both boys and girls, include Brady, Quinn, and Kieran
What is short and sweet, and totally TV ready? The name Issa, of course! Issa Rae, nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy,” for her role in Insecure, is living proof that this name was built for star status.
Pronounced “ee-sAA,” this semi-exotic name is an excellent choice for any adorable drama queen turned culture icon. It’s an Arabic variation of Isaiah that will have people jealous of your little one for years to come.When it comes to popularity, Issa is in a league of its own. It is currently not in any of the Top 1000 charts for girls, but the male version (spelled the same) ranked 841st in England in 2015. Use this name if you’re looking to call your baby girl something unique, elegant, beautiful, and yes…dramatic!
For a similar-sounding, more popular name, try Anissa or Isla. Choose Asta for something equally as unique.
We owe Lena Headey of Game of Thrones an extra-large thank you for bringing this name to our Golden Globe inspiration list. Nominated for “Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television,” Lena Headey is making everyone take notice.
Her feminine moniker is coming back in a BIG way. Originally popular between 1880 and 1920, Lena is commonly considered the short form of the name Helena. Don’t turn away just yet, however. It is thought to have roots in multiple languages including English, Scottish, Dutch, German, and Scandinavian, and is considered the root of many other names ending in –lena.
As of 2014, Lena is back with a vengeance and is pushing its way to the Top of charts all over the world. (It was ranked 7th in Germany in 2014!)
Names similar to Lena include Elsa, Nora, and Ada.
The next bombshell name on our Golden Globe list comes from another nominee in the category of “Best Performance by an Actress in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series or Motion Picture Made for Television:” Thandie Newton.
Thandie, commonly short for Thandiwe, is pronounced TAN-dee. It’s South African in origin, and means “loving one” or “beloved.” It’s lyrical sounding when pronounced correctly, and unique enough to stand out in a crowd full of trendy, pattern names. Play around with the spelling (Thandee, Thandy, Thandey) for an even more original version of this gorgeous name.
With a fabulous meaning and a strikingly ladylike pronunciation, we are surprised it’s not already ranking on any charts worldwide! (Although it does have somewhat of a following in Britain and South Africa.)
For a name that is similar in origin, try Nahara, For a more common name that is similar sounding, choose Brandi or Tilda!
4 Christian And Slater
We couldn’t finish our list without a contribution from 2017 nominee (and 2016 winner) Christian Slater. This year and last, Slater was nominated for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role in a Series, Limited Series, or Motion Picture made for Television” for his role in Mr. Robot. We ran into a conundrum, however, when we had to choose between his first and last name! They are both awesome choices for anyone with aspirations of fame for their future child! The solution? We chose both!
Since it’s officially trendy to do so, let’s start with the surname. Slater is an English name originating from the occupation: slate maker. In fact, the meaning of the name is literally “maker of slates.” The name itself tends to vacillate when it comes to popularity, jumping from the 2500s to the 1900s and back again. It has never been in the top 1000, but reached peek U.S. popularity in 2006. Similar names include Chandler, Parker, Mason, and Baker.
Christian, on the other hand, is in the Top 100 in the United States, England, and Australia. It has held tight to its coveted ranking since 1986, and reached its peek popularity twenty years later. In 2006, 0.66% of the total male population was given this name whose meaning is “follower of Christ.” Make no mistake, however! There’ is no shame in a common name. In fact, in the film industry, I think they call that …timeless.
Biblical or religious sounding names have always performed well on the charts. If you’d rather shy away from the traditional name, try switching up the spelling and form. Christiano, Cristian, and Kristian also rank within the Top 500. Other names ranking high in popularity that are similar in connotation to Christian include Gabriel, Noah, Eli, and Elijah.
Anthony Anderson is a 2017 Golden Globe nominee for “Best Performance by an Actor in a Television Series – Musical or Comedy” at the 2017 Golden Globes. He is well-liked by the public for his role in and executive production of the sitcom Black-ish. He is well-liked by us because of his versatile, baby-friendly last name.
Another surname (are we stylish or what?), Anderson means “son of Anders.” It is Scandinavian in origin, and has been slowly but steadily regaining popularity in small bouts since 1987. It currently sits in the Top 500 in the United States, however peek popularity occurred in 1880. Several notable celebrities have carried the last name Anderson (Pamela, Laura, Hans Christian), but with the recent affinity for surnames as first names, we think it should definitely be a front runner for any actor-to-be.
Other Scandinavian surnames that are perfect for your future superstar include Hansen, Janson, and Olson.
We wanted a Top 40 name in our list and, lucky for us, we got one thanks to actress Riley Keough. Riley is nominated in the “Best Performance by an Actress in a Limited Series or a Motion Picture Made for Television” category for her starring role in The Girlfriend Experience.
The name Riley means “courageous,” and it is a well known fact that it takes courage to work your way into the limelight. As is true with most names ending in -ey, there is a lot of room for spelling versatility when it comes to this name. Ryleigh, Rilee, and Rylie are all excellent variations.
Like we mentioned above, Riley is currently a top performer on the female charts (holding strong at number 19 in the United States for 2016). It’s also performing very well on the New Zealand charts. Having a boy? No worries. Riley is in the Top 500 on the male charts as well!
Similar names include Kelly, Sidney, and Emery.
The number one name on our Golden Globe nominee inspiration list comes to us from Taylor Sheridan, nominated as the writer of the screenplay Hell or High Water, which is up for “Best Screenplay – Motion Picture.” While we were originally going to choose his first name (Taylor is still performing well on both the male and female charts), we fell in love with his last name. It has all the qualities of a 2017 top performer: it’s a surname, it’s gender-neutral, and it can be spelled almost any way you’d like it to be.
Sheridan is Irish in origin and means “searcher.” While it can typically be used as a boy or a girl name, we prefer it for girls. Not too popular, Sheridan did a brief stint on the U.S. Top 1000 chart between 1996 and 2002 (barely braking past 800) before it fell off entirely. With all of the qualities of the quintessential celebrity name, Sheridan is the perfect comeback name for babies born in 2017.
Similar names include Finlay, Fallon, and Lennox.