These Popular Celebrities Were Deceived About Who Their Parents Really Are

Even if you weren’t raised by both or either of your biological parents, there’s a good chance you at least know their names. Some adopted kids express interest in learning where they came from. Many don’t. In this way, famous musicians, actors, and entrepreneurs are a lot like some of us. These popular celebrities were either lied to about their parents’ true identities, or never learned who they were at all.

Jack Nicholson

Nicholson thought his mother was his sister. | Stringer/Getty Images

Actor Jack Nicholson was raised by his parents — at least, that’s what he believed his entire childhood. As an adult, he learned that his “parents” were actually his grandparents. His older sister, who he’d grown up with, was actually his mother.

Next: She didn’t know he was her dad until she went to one of his shows.

Liv Tyler

Liv Tyler

As a child, Liv Tyler didn’t know she was Steven Tyler’s daughter. | PATRICK HERTZOG/AFP/Getty Images)

For over a decade, actress Liv Tyler had no idea Steven Tyler — of Aerosmith fame — was her real father. Her birth certificate lists Todd Rundgren as her biological dad, but she found out the truth at 11 while at one of his concerts.

Next: His mother was too young to raise him on her own.

Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton was raised by his grandparents. | SINEAD LYNCH/AFP/Getty Images

Singer and songwriter Eric Clapton, like Darin and Nicholson, thought his grandparents were his biological parents. In reality, his mother had him as a teenager, and her mother and stepfather agreed to raise him as their child. Clapton’s father was already married to another woman when he met Patricia.

Next: She grew up in foster care, and never learned who her father was.

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe

Marilyn Monroe never knew her father. | Baron/Getty Images

Monroe never knew who her father really was, though she had a few theories. She spent much of her childhood in orphanages and foster care, and her biological mother wasn’t well enough to give her daughter an answer.

Next: He is one of the richest people in the world.

Jeff Bezos

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos

Bezos has no memory of his father. | David Ryder/Getty Images

Now one of the richest people in the world, Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos grew up under the care of his mother and stepfather. He has no memory of his biological father.

Next: This basketball star has only met one of his parents.

LeBron James

LeBron James smiles during a game against the Wizards.

LeBron James doesn’t know who his biological father is. | Jason Miller/Getty Images

Star NBA player LeBron James never met his father. His single mother had him as a teenager and raised him on her own. Since becoming such a popular celebrity, some men have claimed to be his father, but none of these claims have been confirmed.

Next: You might know him for his business success, not his heritage.

Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas | Wendy’s

You might know him best as the founder of the well-known fast food restaurant chain Wendy’s. Dave Thomas, adopted at a very young age, never met either of his birth parents.

Next: He lost his mother at a young age, and never met his dad.

50 Cent

50 cent smiles while speaking into a microphone

50 Cent barely knew his parents. | Ethan Miller/Getty Images

Curtis Jackson, better known as hip-hop artist 50 Cent, also never met his father. His single mother raised him until she died unexpectedly when he was 8. After that, he lived with his grandmother.

Next: His parents were graduate students who gave him up for adoption.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs was raised by adopted parents. | David Paul Morris/Getty Images

Apple co-founder Steve Jobs was adopted as a baby. His biological parents were both graduate students when he was born, and decided to give him to a family more equipped to care for him. He never ended up meeting either of them.

Next: Learning he was adopted changed his life forever.

Darryl McDaniels

Darryl McDaniels (center) didn’t know he was adopted until he was older. | Hulton Archive/Getty Images

Rapper Darryl “DMC” McDaniels did not learn he was adopted until a sudden, later-in-life curiosity prompted him to ask his parents about his family history. He has since reconnected with his birth mother and sponsored a camp for adopted and orphaned kids.

Next: The religious leader only knows one of his parents.

Louis Farrakhan

Louis Farrakhan never met his father. | ERIC CHU/AFP/Getty Images

Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan has never met his father. He grew up near Boston with his mother, who moved to the United States from Caribbean island of St. Kitts.

Next: He credits only his mother for raising him to succeed in the film industry.

Adrian Grenier

Adrian Grenier

Adrian Grenier grew up estranged from his father. | Brenda Chase/Online USA, Inc.

Actor Adrian Grenier’s mother, Karesse, raised him on her own. He remained estranged from his biological father for his entire childhood.

Next: This quarterback grew up with a father but has never known his biological one.

Colin Kaepernick

Colin Kaepernick was adopted. | Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images

Former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick still does not know who his father his. His biological mother reportedly does but has never officially disclosed the man’s identity. Kaepernick’s adopted parents raised him.

Next: This star thought his grandparent were his biological parents.

Bobby Darin

Bobby Darin

Bobby Darin was one of the biggest stars of the late ’50s-early ’60s. |  Keystone/Getty Images)

At the time Darin was born, it wasn’t unheard of for a teenage mother’s parents to raise her child as their own. He isn’t the only celebrity on this list raised by his grandparents. The singer, songwriter, and actor thought they were his biological parents.

Next: This infamous “celebrity” has something in common with Darin.

Ted Bundy

Ted Bundy

Bundy is one of America’s most infamous serial killers. | State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory/Wikimedia Commons

The infamous American rapist and serial killer Ted Bundy, like Darin, was raised by his grandparents, who wished to hide the fact that their unmarried teenage daughter had a son.

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