Hollywood “nepo babies” Jamie Lee Curtis and Kate Hudson hit back at critics who appeared to suggest that the film industry — and other arenas as well — gave deference to the children of celebrities.
The topic graced the latest cover of New York Magazine, along with the headline, “Aw, Look! She Has Her Mother’s Eyes. And Agent: Extremely Over-analyzing Hollywood’s Nepo-Baby Boom.”
And while Curtis was not mentioned in the article herself, she appeared to feel singled out due to her own close ties to the theme of being an actress who was raised in a family of Hollywood stars. The daughter of Academy Award nominees Tony Curtis (“The Defiant Ones,” 1959) and Janet Leigh (“Psycho,” 1960), Curtis described herself in an Instagram post as “an OG Nepo Baby.” She went on to criticize the term, however arguing that it was being used to devalue people like her who, through no fault of their own, simply happened to have famous parents.
“I have been a professional actress since I was 19 years old so that makes me an OG Nepo Baby,” Curtis began. “I’ve never understood, nor will I, what qualities got me hired that day, but since my first two lines on ‘Quincy’ as a contract player at Universal Studios to this last spectacular creative year some 44 years later, there’s not a day in my professional life that goes by without my being reminded that I am the daughter of movie stars. The current conversation about nepo babies is just designed to try to diminish and denigrate and hurt.”
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Curtis went on to explain that she had always been aware that the “reflected fame” from her parents could have brought her certain advantages, but that did not mean that she had no value or worth of her own.
“It’s curious how we immediately make assumptions and snide remarks that someone related to someone else who is famous in their field for their art, would somehow have no talent whatsoever. I have come to learn that is simply not true,” Curtis continued. “I have suited up and shown up for all different kinds of work with thousands of thousands of people and every day I’ve tried to bring integrity and professionalism and love and community and art to my work. I am not alone. There are many of us. Dedicated to our craft. Proud of our lineage. Strong in our belief in our right to exist.”
Curtis concluded with a note to her followers — and to herself — saying that it was important to simply “be kind.”
Academy Award nominee Kate Hudson (“Almost Famous,” 2000) was raised by her mother, actress Goldie Hawn, and her stepfather, actor Kurt Russell — and she argued that the influence of nepotism seemed to be far more prevalent in other industries.
“I see it in business way more than I see it in Hollywood,” Hudson said during an interview with The Independent on Sunday. “Sometimes I’ve been in business meetings where I’m like, ‘Wait, whose child is this?’ Like, ‘This person knows nothing!'”
Hudson went on to say that, at least in her family, the correlation might have more to do with a common personality type than nepotism.
“It’s definitely in our blood. People can call it whatever they want, but it’s not going to change it,” she said. And at the end of the day, she argued that it all came down to who was willing to put in the work. “I don’t care where you come from, or what your relationship to the business is … if you work hard and you kill it.”