The name "Jennifer" is one of the most popular and quite possibly successful names of the 21st century. It doesn't take more than one flip through celebrity magazines to see that Jennifers are making headlines everywhere.
Hollywood, for example, has the largest accumulation of Jennifers with high-profile leading ladies such as Jennifer Aniston
, Jennifer Tilly
, Jennifer Love Hewitt
, Jennifer Jason Leigh
, Jennifer Garner
, and Jennifer Connelly
Multi-talented performers are causing a sensation as well, namely Jennifer Lopez
and Jennifer Hudson
. Even the world of sports boasts superstar athletes with this prevalent name like tennis champion Jennifer Capriati
. So what is it about these women that share this common attribute that makes them so prestigious? Maybe it truly is all in the name.
It has been suggested that the name "Jennifer" didn't become popular until legendary playwright George Bernard Shaw used it for his main character in "The Doctor's Dilemma", a play in the 1920s. Another claim is that Jennifer was also introduced to pop culture by the 1970's motion picture entitled "Love Story
," where the name of the starring character was Jennifer Cavilleri-Barrett. This claim may hold some truth because since then, Jennifers quickly began emerging all over the country.
In fact, Jennifer became the most common baby name of the '70s and '80s, which was when most of the Jennifers we know and love today were born. According to the Internet Movie Database, Jennifer Aniston was born in 1969, Jennifer Garner in 1972, and Jennifer Love Hewitt in 1979. This era created not only over 900,000 Jennifers within a decade, according to the U.S. Social Security Administration, but a massive number of accomplished ones at that.
When googling the name "Jennifer," it comes as no surprise that three of Hollywood's most talked about celebrities pop up numerous times: Jennifer Aniston, Jennifer Hudson, and Jennifer Lopez.
An assortment of people instantly recognize the last name Aniston as a result of the mass media attention she has received over the past couple of years. Not only did Aniston inspire women everywhere to go out and get "the Rachel," a haircut she popularized while playing Rachel Green during her 10-year span on the hit show "Friends
," but she has also starred in films such as "Rumor Has It
", "The Break-Up
," and the currently in production "He's Just Not That Into You
Aniston is primarily well known for her on-screen performances, but she is also renowned due to her personal life being strewn across the tabloids ever since her marriage to Hollywood heartthrob Brad Pitt
. Aniston has often been referred to as America's sweetheart with her genuine smile, honest attitude, and down-to-earth personality; hence, it was no surprise that when the shocking downfall of Aniston and Pitt's marriage became magazine cover fodder, millions of fans across the world joined "Team Aniston."
One of the newest Jennifers to hit the celebrity scene is Jennifer Hudson, who quickly burst onto the small screen after becoming a finalist on the extremely popular "American Idol
" in 2004. After being voted off Idol, Hudson furthered her career as a singer and actress in the 2006 film adaptation of Broadway's "Dreamgirls
" alongside distinguished stars such as Beyonce Knowles
and Jamie Foxx
. Hudson landed the role of Effie White, which was originally played by Jennifer Holliday
in the theater. Hudson further confirmed her star status by taking home an Oscar in 2007 for the role. She is currently on the set of the much-anticipated "Sex and the City: The Movie
," playing Carrie Bradshaw's (Sarah Jessica Parker's
) assistant. The film is set for release in 2008.
A few more notable Jennifer's are Garner, Lopez, and Capriati. Jennifer Garner is a Hollywood megastar who catapulted her way onto the celebrity scene through roles in popular television shows such as "Alias
" and "Felicity
." She then went on to receive a Golden Globe award, MTV Movie award, and was honored as one of People
magazine's "50 Most Beautiful People." Garner is currently married to actor Ben Affleck
and gave birth to their daughter Violet, who is now two years old.
"Bennifer" would be a clever media nickname for Garner and Affleck, but ironically this name was already given to Affleck and another Jennifer: Jennifer Lopez. Lopez was engaged to Affleck in 2004 after dating for two years when they broke up. Some claim their failed engagement was due to the cinematic disaster of the 2003 film "Gigli
," others blame it on Affleck's "cold feet" and excessive media attention surrounding the couple. Even so, Lopez is known for more than her stint in the gossip columns. Jennifer Lopez became better known as J.Lo after releasing her second album
in 2001, which was followed by her 2002 single "Jenny from the Block." Lopez is now married to her third husband, singer Marc Anthony
, and has lately been causing a media frenzy over a rumored pregnancy.
Another accomplished Jennifer is champion tennis player Jennifer Capriati; she is a former world number-one women's tennis player and holds three Grand Slam singles titles along with a gold metal from the 1992 Olympics. Capriati was born in 1976 and at the age of 13 won the French Open singles tournament. Although Capriati has recently been out of the tennis scene for a few years due to a shoulder surgery, there have been unconfirmed reports of her plans to make a comeback.
If you were to ask, "What's in a name?," Jennifer would spark a number of favorable attributes. After taking a closer look at the assortment of famous Jennifers, it's easy to see that they all possess similar qualities: ambition, courage, intelligence, charm, and beauty. Even through the magnifying glass of the public eye, these women find an admirable balance between celebrity and reality. Whether they are recognized for their acting, singing, or sports careers, these Jennifers are all successful at one thing - having their name in lights.
Article by Jennifer Gregory
Starpulse.com contributing writer
Sources: Wikipedia, IMDb