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12 Celebrities Who You Probably Never Realized Go By Their Middle Name, And 12 Celebrities You Didn't Know Who Use Stage Last Names

Imagine my shock when I learned that Ashton Kutcher's real first name is Christopher.

1. Jason Sudeikis was born Daniel Jason Sudeikis.

Jason Sudeikis on a red carpet holding an award

Jason doesn't go by his first name because his father's name is also Daniel, and it would get confusing in his house when his mom would call out for Daniel.

close up of Jason

2. Alicia Keys was born Alicia Augello Cook.

Alicia Keys sitting in a chair while on a late night talk show

Alicia Keys said when she was younger she wanted to use a stage name and she originally thought of going by Alicia Wild. She asked for her mother's opinion, and she said, "It sounds like you're a stripper." Alicia settled on the last name Keys and explained, "It's like the piano keys. And it can open so many doors."

Alicia keys waking down the street

3. Keke Palmer was born Lauren Keyana Palmer.

Keke Palmer posing on a red carpet

Keke goes by the nickname her family gave her, which is a shortened version of her middle name, Keyana.

Keke crouching down for a photo at an event

4. Olivia Wilde was born Olivia Cockburn.

Olivia Wild posing at an event

Olivia changed her last name to Wilde after playing Gwendolen in her high school's production of Oscar Wilde’s, The Importance of Being Earnest.

Olivia on a red carpet

5. Jason Momoa was born Joseph Jason Namakaeha Momoa.

Jason Momoa on a red carpet

Jason's father's first name is also Joseph.

close up of Jason

6. Erykah Badu was born Erica Abi Wright.

Erykah Badu stands in front of a step and repeat in almost floor-length braids and layered patterned dresses

When she was younger, she changed the spelling of her name from Erica to Erykah because she believed her original name to be a slave name. She chose Badu as her last name because it was her favorite jazz scat sound, and is also an African name for the 10th-born child of the Akan people in Ghana.

Erykah Badu performing on a stage

7. Kevin Jonas was born Paul Kevin Jonas II.

Kevin Jonas on a red carpet

Kevin's father's name is Paul Kevin Jonas Sr.

close up of Kevin wearing a suit

8. John Legend was born John Roger Stephens.

John playing the piano

The stage name John Legend started out as a nickname that his friends would always call him. He said, "'Legend' is something that I never would have chosen for myself originally. It grew to the point where more people in my circle would know me by that name than by my real name."

John sitting in his The Voice couching chair

9. Tina Fey was born Elizabeth Stamatina Fey.

Tina wearing a plaid suit at the Tribeca Festival

Tina Fey is known by a shortened version of her middle name. She's said that only a few people know her first name is Elizabeth and still call her that, including Amy Poehler.

Tina holding champagne on stage

10. Blake Lively was born Blake Ellender Brown.

Blake posing with her hands on her hips

Blake took her mom's surname, Lively, when she decided to be an actor.

Blake posing in a three piece outfit

11. Ashton Kutcher was born Christopher Ashton Kutcher.

Ashton on a red carpet

At the 2017 Teen Choice Awards, Ashton revealed in an acceptance speech that his first name was Chris and that he started going by his middle name when he was 19 and became an actor.

Ashton pointing at the camera on a red carpet event

12. Nicolas Cage was born Nicolas Kim Coppola.

Nicolas Cage on a red carpet

Nicolas is the nephew of director Francis Ford Coppola. He made appearances in some of his uncle's films and apparently changed his name to avoid the accusation of nepotism. His stage name is partly inspired by the Marvel comic book character, Luke Cage.

Nicolas Cage on a red carpet

13. Elle and Dakota Fanning were born Mary Elle Fanning and Hannah Dakota Fanning.

Elle and Dakota Fanning together at an event

Elle explained that she's always gone by her middle name and so had her sister and their mom. She said that, "It’s possibly a Southern thing."

the sisters pose at an event

14. Tim Allen was born Timothy Allen Dick.

Tim Allen on a red carpet

Tim uses his middle name as his stage last name because he didn't want to go by Tim Dick. When he was on Good Afternoon Detroit, he was told to think of another name because they refused to have "Tim Dick" written on the screen when he was on camera.

Tim Allen walking down the street

15. Reese Witherspoon was born Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon.

close up of Reese on the red carpet

She shortened her name to make it sound more "Hollywood." Reese is her mother's maiden name.

close up of Reese on the red carpet

16. Katy Perry was born Katheryn Elizabeth Hudson.

Katy Perry posing with her hands on her hips

Katy changed her name because she didn't want to be confused with Kate Hudson. She made her stage name by switching her last name for her mother's maiden name.

Katy Perry walking down the street

17. Drake was born Aubrey Drake Graham.

close up of Drake

Drake's father gave him his middle name, and Drake said he's always embraced it. He said, "Drake is me in my everyday life, Drake is who I am and Aubrey is more of a separate, sort of proper individual."

close up of Drake

18. Jonah Hill was born Jonah Hill Feldstein.

a close up on Jonah Hill at an event

His sister is actor Beanie Feldstein and she uses their family's last name.

Jonah saluting on a late night talk show

19. Brad Pitt was born William Bradley Pitt.

close up of Brad in a suit

Brad is named after his father, William Alvin Pitt.

Brad holding an award on the red carpet

20. Theo James was born Theodore Peter James Kinnaird Taptiklis.

Theo James on a red carpet

After attending the Bristol Old Vic Theatre School in England, he decided to change his last name to be an actor. He felt the surname Taptiklis was unidentifiable and hard to pronounce. He also liked the idea of not having everything about him out in the world. He chose his second middle name as his stage last name due to "a very pertinent personal connection to a family member."

Theo James smiling on a red carpet

21. Marie Osmond was born Olive Marie Osmond.

Marie Osmond on a red carpet

Marie is named after her mother, Olive May Osmond.

Marie on stage with a mic

22. Winona Ryder was born Winona Laura Horowitz.

a close up of Rider at a red carpet event

Winona was cast in the 1986 movie, Lucas. When she was asked how she wanted her name to appear in the credits, she allegedly chose Ryder as her stage name because a Mitch Ryder album was playing in the background.

Winona Ryder on a red carpet

23. Lance Bass was born James Lance Bass.

Lance Bass on a red carpet

Lance Bass is named after his father, James Irvin Bass Jr.

Lance walking down the street at night

24. And lastly, Joaquin Phoenix was born Joaquin Rafael Bottom.

Joaquín Phoenix on a red carpet

After his parents left the religious group, Children of God, they changed their family's surnames from Bottom to Phoenix.

close up of Joaquin