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Celebrity Offspring: Five Worth Watching

9/30/2008 10:27am EDT
Will & Jaden SmithNot all relatives should show up at the same office everyday, and not everyone wants to get into the family business. Yet when the perks include fame, big paychecks, and glamorous premieres, the choice seems a little easier to make.

And since nepotism in Hollywood is as classic a tale as Citizen Kane, it’s no surprise that lots of Tinseltown legacies are following in the footsteps of such other celebrity offspring as Michael Douglas, Jane Fonda, and Liza Minnelli.

Here are five we think are worth watching...


The son of Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith, Jaden, 10, almost stole the show from his dad in 2006’s The Pursuit Of Happyness with an adorable and understated performance. As a result, he scooped up a bunch of nominations, including an MTV Best Breakthrough Performance, and he and Will won a Teen Choice Award for Best Chemistry. Our biggest fear for Jaden: he seems a bit too smarmy and precocious off-screen, and with a dad as well-liked as Will, he seems destined to hit some teen angst-driven rough patches. Here’s hoping he’ll keep his head together and keep up the good work.

Jaden Smith


Goldie Hawn’s little girl had a strong start with critical acclaim as well as Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild, and Oscar nominations for her breakthrough role in 2000’s Almost Famous. Since then her only nods have come from MTV and The Teen Choice Awards gang. What is she thinking? We seriously can’t name one other good movie out of the over 20 films she’s made so far. But we have a suggestion that we think might turn her career around. So, Kate, if you’re listening, here’s our advice: Just do a remake of Butterflies Are Free already. It’s time.

Kate Hudson


Colin has an even more popular dad than Jaden Smith does: Tom Hanks is our generation’s Jimmy Stewart. But in this case, Colin seems equally likable and has shown hints of his dad’s enormous talent and charm. His biggest downfall seems to have been the poor choices he’s made along the way. Remember Alone With Her? Us either. But his recent stint on AMC’s Mad Men as the young priest anxious to get to know Peggy and all her secrets is very, very promising.

Colin Hanks


Colin’s House Bunny costar Rumer Willis has three sets of big shoes to fill: those of dad Bruce Willis, mom Demi Moore, and step-dad Ashton Kutcher. Jury’s out on whether she’ll make us ever forget her famous family with her own efforts, but if she finds she makes a career mistake or two she can always shout out, “My mom was in Striptease!,” and run out of the room. Beyond that, Rumer recently told Al Roker on the "Today" show that she wants to be just like her dad and record a blues album. Spawn of Bruno? We’re really hoping this acting thing pays off.
(Check out an interview with Rumer Willis here.)

Rumer Willis


Of course, odds are that some celebrity offspring will mix a little singing with their acting. Eric Roberts’ daughter, Emma (also known as Julia Roberts’ niece), is doing just that. This Nancy Drew star had a hit TV series called "Unfabulous" and a spin-off record. And while so far she’s gravitated toward Nickelodeon-light fare (a far cry from the dark and brooding roles her dad’s known for), she’d better start searching for a project that will give her some indie cred — or she could be moving into the Surreal Life house before she’s 25.

Emma Roberts

By Amy and Nancy Harrington,

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