We all know that there are tons of celebrity siblings and other famous families who have made it big in Hollywood. There’s no denying that it takes equal parts talent and luck to become a major star, but perhaps good genetics play a significant role as well. It’s rather common for successful singers, actors, and entertainers to open windows of opportunity for those closest to them who are dying for their chance to be the next big thing. While many would do whatever it takes to become a star, piggybacking off of someone else’s achievements doesn’t exactly sound like the most appealing way to secure a stable career to others. There are plenty of famous faces who decided that they would be better off trying to showcase their talents without the help of their superstar relatives. Here are 15 celeb pairs that you had no idea were actually related. These are some of Hollywood’s best kept secrets - consider your minds blown.
15 An Unlikely Set: Nicolas Cage & Jason Schwartzman
Actor Nicolas Cage has been famous for so long that it might seem like we know everything there is to know about him. While many fans of the star can rattle off random facts about Cage being a huge Elvis fan or talk about how he named his son after Superman, but the majority of people probably don’t know that Cage comes from a very prominent family in the entertainment industry. People might also know that Cage and Jason Schwartzman are actually closely related. Sure, they don’t really look much alike, but these gentlemen are definitely bound by their ancestry. Here’s the scoop: Nic changed his last name to "Cage" when he first started acting, but his real surname is actually "Coppola". The Coppola family has a very lengthy history working as actors, writers, directors and pretty much everything else that makes Hollywood tick. A few calculated name-changes almost had us fooled, but a little research shows that Schwartzman’s mother and Cage’s father are brother and sister, making the two stars first-cousins. It’s very obvious that the fame gene runs deep when it comes to this crew
14 The 90's Dream Team: Snoop Dogg & Brandy
While rapper Snoop Dogg and R&B singer Brandy both managed to skyrocket to fame in the early 90’s, few people are aware that the successful pair is also related. In her prime, Brandy produced one hit song after another and broadened her horizons into a fruitful career as an actress. Snoop Dogg has been a prominent figure in the music world for decades now and he hasn’t shown any signs of stopping any time soon. Snoop has become such a household name that he has even landed an unconventional gig on a daytime television show alongside lifestyle guru Martha Stewart. Needless to say, good genes are definitely to thank for a good portion of Brandy and Snoop’s prosperity because they are actually first cousins. On top of that, this musically gifted family also consists of Brandy’s younger brother, Ray-J, who has of course aimed to follow in cousin Snoop’s footsteps by trying to establish himself as a rapper. It’s abundantly clear that this brood has a knack for being in the spotlight, and after so many years in the industry it’s a wonder why Snoop and Brandy’s bloodline isn’t more commonly known to the public.
13 When Modern Family Meets The Addams Family: Ariel Winter & Jimmy Workman
While Ariel Winter’s character on Modern Family comes from a large, loving, yet sometimes overbearing family, the actress’ home life off-screen is anything but copacetic. Winter has been embroiled in a very public battle with various members of her family which ultimately led to her being legally emancipated from her mother in 2015. The rocky relationship between mother and daughter caused a rift between other members of the brood, who were forced to choose sides during the ongoing court battle. In Ariel’s corner was her father and older sister, Shanelle, while Ariel’s older brother, Jimmy Workman, aligned with their mother. Though the name "Jimmy Workman" might not initially ring any bells, the former child actor was most recognizable for his lead role as Pugsley Addams in The Addams Family movie as well as the sequel, Addams Family Values. Yup - Alex Dunphy and Pugsley Addams are actually full-blooded brother and sister. We still can’t believe it ourselves! This is one seriously unexpected celeb pairing that we had no idea were related in real life.
12 The Father/Daughter Duo: Elle King & Rob Schneider
While vocal powerhouse Elle King is relatively new to the music scene, she's certainly no stranger to the spotlight. King first hit it big in 2015 with her single "Ex's & Oh's," only to find commercial success once again the following year when she teamed up with country music star Dierks Bentley for the song "Different For Girls." King even earned herself three Grammy nominations for the two songs. There's no doubt that in just a few short years in the industry that King has already established herself as a serious musician. We're sure that she's incredibly proud of her accomplishments but no one is more overjoyed that her doting dad, Rob Schneider. That's right; Elle King is the daughter of the famed Saturday Night Live comedian and former model London King. Of course, Schneider has been a public figure since the late 80's and he is easily recognizable from his various roles in TV and in film. Although the star's legal name is Tanner Elle Schneider, she intentionally decided to shed her famous father's surname in an effort to earn her own success. In a recent interview, Elle explained her desire to pave her own way in the entertainment industry, saying, "It’s not that I wanted to be a famous person. I wanted to be a performer. But I worked really hard and I did everything myself and I took that name because I wanted to be myself." Elle also acknowledges that while her father is super famous, she wants to be known for more than just being Rob Schneider's daughter, saying, "Yeah people know who my dad is. But I think that my voice and my music speaks for itself: that I am my own person."
11 The Music Mavens: Reba McEntire & Kelly Clarkson
When it comes to talent, Reba McEntire has it by the boatload. The fiery starlet has accomplished a lot in her career. From dominating the country music charts to starring in her own popular sitcom, Reba is a force to be reckoned with. In 1989, McEntire married Narvel Blackstock and many years later, Narvel’s son, Brandon, followed in his father’s footsteps by marrying a singing supernova of his very own. Brandon Blackstcok and American Idol alum Kelly Clarkson tied the knot in 2013, officially making McEntire and Clarkson in-laws by marriage. The two women had already been friends long before they became one big happy family, and both Reba and Kelly were thrilled to be a part of each other’s lives in such a major way. Although Reba and her husband of twenty-six years ultimately decided to call it quits in 2015, she and Clarkson remain incredibly close and will always have a mother/daughter in-law bond that can’t be broken.
10 When Funny Meets Fashion: David Spade & Kate Spade
We already know what you’re thinking: what on Earth could comedian David Spade and fashion designer Kate Spade have in common aside from their relatively ordinary last name!? Well, the SNL alum and Joe Dirt star and the famed fashion mogul share a lot more similarities than you might think. Believe it or not, this mismatched duo is actually related by marriage. Kate has been married to David’s brother Andy since 1994, and Andy even had a hand in co-founding the immensely successful Kate Spade New York brand. While their relation isn’t exactly a secret in Hollywood, few fail to make the connection that these Spades are actually more like two of a kind. These in-laws are about as different as two people could possibly get, but they are still (very rich and very famous) family nonetheless. We could never quite figure out how a guy like David Spade always managed to land beautiful model girlfriends, but it’s beginning to make a lot more sense now. Maybe he gets a really good discount on Kate Spade products and likes to spread the wealth. Who knew? Definitely not us!
9 The Divided Duo: Jenny McCarthy & Melissa McCarthy
Let’s face it; Jenny McCarthy has been a prominent figure in the entertainment industry for what seems like forever. The former Playmate turned television host knows a thing or two about making it big in Hollywood, so it’s a bit of a surprise to find out that she didn’t have any good advice for her now-famous movie star cousin when it came to breaking into the business. Jenny’s cousin is none other than actress/comedian Melissa McCarthy, who herself boasts quite an impressive resume. Melissa scored her first big role on Gilmore Girls and ultimately transformed her career into major TV and movie mega-stardom. You might assume that these two incredibly successful women would have nothing but love for each other, especially considering the fact that they’re blood relatives, right? Not quite. Apparently, the McCarthy’s have a rather strained relationship that was rumored to be caused by Jenny’s rude commentary about Melissa’s weight. Jenny allegedly told her cousin that she wouldn’t be able to make it in Hollywood due to her size and the pair has been at odds ever since. While Jenny has denied these allegations, both stars have admitted that they aren’t exactly close. Regardless of the status of their relationship, Jenny and Melissa can’t change the fact that they’re forever linked by their DNA.
8 Long Lost Cousins: Melissa Gorga & Ralph Macchio
We all know Melissa Gorga as the fiery sister-in-law of fellow Real Housewives of New Jersey co-star Teresa Guidice, and the show often focuses on their close (but oftentimes controversial) family. But what could Melissa possibly have in common with the actor who once starred in The Karate Kid? In possibly one of the most unlikely celebrity family trees ever, it turns out that Melissa Gorga and Ralph Macchio are actually cousins. We guess it sort of makes sense…much like Gorga, the former child actor is of Italian-American heritage and he was born and raised in New York, which isn’t all that far from Melissa’s New Jersey roots. Although this strange duo is oddly related, Melissa insists that the two are anything but close kin. In an interview with The Huffington Post, Gorga revealed their connection, stating, “We are like really distant cousins. Never even met him . We always said it when we were little. It’s like through marriage, my aunt Rosile.” Who knows, maybe Macchio will end making a cameo appearance on RHONJ someday if they ever decide to film a family reunion special!
7 The Odd Couple: Lenny Kravitz & Al Roker
Ever wonder what it would be like to wake up one day only to discover that you’re actually related to a famous musician? Well, that fantasy became a reality for Al Roker! Of course, Roker is NBC’s go-to weatherman and longtime news correspondent, but what most people don’t know is that he is genetically linked to another super famous figure. You’d probably never guess in a million years that Roker and Lenny Kravitz are actually from the same family tree. The rock musician is best known for his unique sense of style while Roker couldn’t be more straight-laced if he tried! The duo have openly admitted that they are definitely related back in 2011, as their grandfathers were first cousins. On the The Today Show, Kravitz revealed that “Roker” was a family name, stating, "My mother was Roxie Roker, my grandfather, Albert Roker from the Bahamas.” Al seems to be pretty open to the idea about having Lenny Kravitz as a distant cousin, telling the audience, "All I know is I'm going with it. Kids think it's cool.”
6 A Winning Combo: Shaquille O’Neal & Bill Bellamy
Shaquille O’Neal, better known as “Shaq” on the basketball court is an all-star NBA player who has also had a successful career as an actor and sports analyst. Let’s face it – there are probably very few people in the world who don’t know who Shaq is…but not many know about his relation to another famous face. According to actor/comedian Bill Bellamy, he and the retired ball player are totally blood relatives. Both Bellamy and O’Neal are originally from Newark, New Jersey are second-cousins and they share a rather close relationship. Bellamy often peaks publicly about his relation to Shaq and has included tidbits about their bond in various stand-up comedy acts over the years. It’s incredible that Shaq and Bellamy are related, but given their witty sense of humor and their knack for being in the spotlight we really shouldn’t be all that surprised that it’s just something that runs in the family!
5 Double Trouble: Damon Dash & Stacey Dash
Stacey Dash is easily most recognizable from her iconic role in the Clueless movie and television series. Of course, there is a lot to know about the seasoned actress and talk show host, but few people realize that she isn’t the only person in her family to be triumphant in the world of entertainment. In fact, around the same time that Stacey was about to get her big break on the big screen in 1995, her cousin, Damon Dash, had co-founded Roc-A-Fella records alongside Jay-Z. While Stacey and Damon are usually pretty close, the entrepreneur isn’t afraid to publicly put his cousin in check when necessary. In 2016, Stacey received major backlash for her unabashed opinions on certain hot-button topics, and Dame unapologetically told the media that “it really isn’t the best thing” to hear the name ‘"Dash" associated with any kind of political controversy but in the end he admitted, “But it is what it is. That’s my life.” It’s clear to see that even though these two have their differences, they continue to have each other’s backs. After all, isn’t that what family is all about?
4 A Royal Pair: Whitney Houston & Dionne Warwick
Of course, Dionne Warwick is a legendary singer whose career dates as far back as the 1960’s. Few female vocalists have been able to rival the success of Warwick over the course of several decades, but another incredibly powerful talent emerged in the 80’s who would be able to steal the spotlight without even trying. That woman was Whitney Houston - an amazingly gifted vocalist who had a career in the entertainment industry that most people could only dream about. While there’s little denying that Dionne and Whitney were unstoppable divas back in their heyday, they have a lot more in common than meets the eye. Few people are aware that Warwick and Houston are actually first-cousins. Warwick’s mother, Cissy Houston, was Dionne’s aunt, making Whitney her cousin. Although they both stirred up their fair share of controversy, the two superstars were notoriously close throughout the course of their lengthy time in the spotlight. Now that we know Dionne and Whitney were relatives, to say that this family is simply "musically inclined" would be the understatement of the century!
3 The Funny Bone Zone: Conan O’Brien & Denis Leary
It’s sort of surprising that not many of us have ever realized how much Conan O’Brien and Denis Leary really have in common. Both Conan and Denis are New England natives who originally hail from Boston, they look rather similar and they have both made long-standing careers for themselves in Hollywood. While these two share an abundance of similarities on paper, they’re comparable traits are anything but coincidental. The famed late-night talk show host and the seasoned actor are actually blood relatives – third cousins, to be exact. Conan first spoke publicly about their relation in 2003 during an interview with CNN, jokingly stating, “You know, Leary claims we’re related. I’m having my people look into it.” The funnyman continued by saying, “We’re related the way any Irish people from Massachusetts are related, you know” adding that Denis reminds him that they’re cousins and then “hits him up for money.” Although we initially had no idea that O’Brien and Leary are actually related, it’s all starting to make a whole lot more sense right about now.
2 Two Of A Kind: Jason Sudeikis & George Wendt
Having a successful career in show business is something that must come natural for actor/comedian Jason Sudeikis. Of course, Jason got his start in improv comedy and was a sketch writer for SNL before ultimately becoming a cast member in 2005, and he’s hardly had a moment to catch his breath ever since. On top of his television career, Sudeikis has been in a string of well-known movies including Horrible Bosses, We’re The Millers, and The Angry Birds Movie. While we’re sure that hard work and determination paid a large role in Jason’s bountiful career, it’s safe to assume that his famous uncle gave him a few pointers along the way. In case you were wondering, Jason’s uncle is none other than George Wendt who is possibly best known for his role as "Norm" on the classic sitcom, Cheers. There’s no denying that Cheers has been labeled “one of the greatest shows of all time” so Jason must have had some seriously big shoes to fill. Sudeikis and Wendt are actually quite close in real life and they have been spotted hanging out together on a number of occasions. In an interview with Playboy magazine in 2011, Sudeikis revealed his uncle’s witty words of wisdom about breaking into the business, stating, “The advice he gave me, and I say this jokingly, is ‘Get on one of the best sitcoms of all time and then ride it out’.”
1 The Dream Team: Danny, Christopher, Alanna & Jordan Masterson
Scoring a lead role in a popular television series is a dream for most professional actors, but for the Masterson’s it’s just the norm. Christopher Masterson was the first of his famous family to land a coveted role on a successful sitcom when he played the role of Francis on Malcolm In The Middle. While Christopher was enjoying the perks of his new-found stardom, his older brother Danny also hit the jackpot when he signed on to play Hyde on That 70’s Show. Of course, these two beloved television series were both incredibly popular and did big things for their careers, but the Masterson family wouldn’t just stop there. Their younger brother, Jordan, also found himself right at home on another sitcom - Last Man Standing, alongside famed actor Tim Allen. But perhaps the biggest winner of all in this famous family is none other than their little sister Alanna, who currently stars on the smash-hit AMC series, The Walking Dead. With so much fame and good fortune the Masterson clan, few people have made the connection that they are all actually related. It seems like these four have literally been dominating the Hollywood scene for years and not many of us have even paid attention to the undeniable fact that they are all siblings. After all these years of mindlessly tuning into shows that prominently feature a member of the Masterson fam, it’s mind-boggling to realize that they all grew up under the same roof. Who knew? Looks like talent and star-power runs deep with this family.
Sources: HuffingtonPost.com, UsMagazine.com, InStyle.com