Although the fans are usually elated when an actress announces a pregnancy, it’s another story for show producers and screenwriters who either have to find a creative way to work the pregnancy into the script or to hide it. Some shows opt to use clever tricks to hide a growing bump, like dressing the actress in baggy clothing or utilizing props. Other times, the pregnancy may be written into the script, which can either make for an excellent or sloppy plot twist. The twenty celebrity pregnancies that made this list could have definitely been handled better. Many fans were unimpressed with how the baby bumps were worked in (or out) of the show. Some might say that these pregnancies actually ruined entire seasons or series, but we’ll let the fans be the judge of that!
20 Lisa Kudrow On Friends - Had Her Brother's Babies
When Lisa Kudrow was expecting with her son Julian in 1998, Friends producers decided to write her pregnancy into the script. However, the whole storyline they used was a bit ridiculous. Phoebe became pregnant with her brother’s triplets since his wife couldn’t conceive. Watching the character say goodbye to the babies was one of the most emotional scenes of the whole series.
19 January Jones On Mad Men - Wore A Fat Suit
Many fans were unimpressed with how Mad Men handled January Jones’ real-life pregnancy in 2011. Her character Betty all of a sudden put on a ton of weight due to stress. After January gave birth, Betty was sent to a fat camp on the show and only returned when she was completely slimmed down. Not only did many fans feel this was unrealistic, but they also found it offensive.
18 Gillian Anderson On The X-Files - Abducted By Aliens
Perhaps one of the weirdest ways a show has written out a character for maternity leave was when The X-Files had Gillian Anderson’s character abducted by aliens. But given all of the crazy things that have happened in the show, we guess we shouldn’t be too surprised by this turn of events.
17 Zooey Deschanel On New Girl - Straight Up Replaced
When Zooey Deschanel fell pregnant, her character was quickly sent off to jury duty on New Girl. Not only that, but she was also replaced by another familiar brunette- Megan Fox. Many fans of the show have said the replacement was unnecessary and also felt forced. Perhaps Zooey’s character should’ve just had a baby?
16 Ellen Pompeo On Grey’s Anatomy - Did A Super Nice Thing For Her Dad
Fans were upset with how Shonda Rimes handled Ellen Pompeo’s first pregnancy. In order to give the actress time off from filming, her character had to take bed rest after donating part of her liver to her estranged father. Given all the reasons Meredith Grey had to hate her father, the move seemed out of character.
15 Jane Leeves On Frasier - Binge-Eating Problem
Hands-down one of the worst ways a show dealt with a pregnancy was when Jane Leeves’ Frasier character developed a binge-eating problem, which led to her character packing on the pounds. Eventually, her character was sent to a health spa to get in shape. When she returned, she was back to her normal size.
14 Melissa Fumero On Brooklyn Nine-Nine - Undercover As A Pregnant Inmate
At first, Brooklyn Nine-Nine producers attempted to hide Melissa Fumero’s growing bump with baggy clothes and oversized purses. But when it became more visible, someone had the great idea to make her character go undercover as a fake pregnant inmate, which seemed like quite the stretch.
13 Angela Kinsey On The Office - Hidden Behind Objects
The Office took a traditional route to cover up Angela Kinsey’s 2011 pregnancy on the show by hiding her growing bump behind objects, which came to include an ice sculpture and cubicles. However, many fans feel the producers did a lazy job since their efforts were so noticeable onscreen.
12 Kaitlin Olson On It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia - A Surrogate For Quick Cash
It’s Always Sunny In Philadelphia is known for its outrageous storylines, so the screenwriters had fun when they had to figure out a way to work in Kaitlin Olson’s pregnancy. At first, her character Dee told her friend group that one of them was the baby’s father. Eventually, however, it was revealed that she was acting as a surrogate in order to earn some quick cash.
11 Debra Messing On Will And Grace - Swimming In Baggy Clothes
When Debra Messing became pregnant while filming for Will and Grace, the costume designers decided to hide her bump behind baggy clothes. However, many felt that the outfit choices were out-of-character for her, which made her pregnancy obvious. She was also written out of five episodes when the baggy clothing wasn’t enough.
10 Amy Poehler On Parks And Recreation - Sped Up The Shooting Schedule
Rather than hiding Amy Poehler’s bump behind baggy clothing or clever props, Parks and Recreation thought it would be a good idea to simply speed up their shooting schedule. However, many fans feel this made the season appear rushed and lower quality than previous ones.
9 Charisma Carpenter On Angel - Demonic Pregnancy
Angel fans felt icky with how Joss Whedon dealt with Charisma Carpenter’s pregnancy in 2003. Her character Cordelia became possessed by an evil force that caused her to have a fling with her boyfriend’s son, resulting in a demonic pregnancy. Her character was also axed shortly after giving birth.
8 Courtney Cox On Friends - They Didn't Even Try With This One
Since Courtney Cox’s on-screen character was already going through the adoption process after facing fertility issues, it wouldn’t have made sense to write the actress’ pregnancy into the script. But there are various scenes where her baby belly is painfully visible, proving the producers did a lazy job at trying to disguise her bump.
7 Marcia Cross On Desperate Housewives - Faked A Pregnancy
Things got complicated on Desperate Housewives when Marcia Cross became pregnant. The producers actually wrote her pregnancy into the script- except it was revealed her character had faked it just so she could raise her grandson as her own child. We don’t think that would work in real life.
6 Sarah Jessica Parker On Sex And The City - We Question Her Maternity Style
SJP’s Sex and the City character Carri Bradshaw was known for her impeccable sense of style. So, when her character began flaunting mumus and oversized t-shirts in order to hide the actress’ real-life pregnancy, many fans were left unimpressed. Some wish the producers would’ve simply made Carrie pregnant.
5 Jane Krakowski On 30 Rock - Dressed In A Dog Suit
The producers of 30 Rock have said they believed Jane Krakowski’s character would be a disastrous mother, so they chose not to work in the actress’ real-life pregnancy into the script. Rather, they had her character dress up in a dog suit for a few episodes in order to hide her bump.
4 Kelly Rutherford On Gossip Girl - Lots Of Oversized Jackets
Since Kelly Rutherford’s Gossip Girl character Lily already had two teenagers, it didn’t make sense for her to become pregnant. So, the costume designers hid the actress’ growing bump behind hilariously oversized jackets, purses, and scarves, though her belly was still painfully noticeable.
3 Julia Louis-Dreyfus on Seinfeld - Refused To Let Her Character Get Fat
Since Seinfeld wrapped up, Julia Louis-Dreyfus has revealed the producers eventually wanted her character to get fat when she was pregnant in real life. However, since the actress was so offended by the idea, they ended up simply hiding her bump behind baggy clothing and clever props (though it was still visible in some scenes).
2 Carrie Washington On Scandal - Props & Costumes
Scandal producers didn’t feel that Carrie Washington’s character was ready for a baby. So, all sorts of props and costume tricks were used to hide her growing belly while filming. However, many fans have pointed out scenes in which the celebrity’s bump was clearly visible, making the season seem a bit sloppier than previous ones.
1 Claire Danes On Homeland - Shot Only From The Waist Up
Rather than using props or costumes to hide Claire Danes’ pregnancy belly, Homeland producers opted to only film her from the waist up, which they likely regret now. Many fans of the show say the poor camera angles were distracting and made it blatantly obvious the actress was pregnant in real life.
Sources: Zimbio, Ranker