Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt
Angelina Jolie first adopted a child when she was married to actor Billy Bob Thornton in March 2002, however she filed for adoption as a single parent, and Angelina split from Billy three months after the adoption was finalised. The adoption was of a baby boy from Cambodia, named Rath Vibol, but Angelina re-named him Maddox Chivan.
After going public with her relationship with Brad Pitt, Angelina adopted her second child in 2005. This time, it was a 6 month old girl from Ethiopia named Zahara. Although Angelina adopted as a single parent, Brad officially adopted Maddox and Zahara in 2006, changing both their surnames to Jolie-Pitt.
In 2007, after Brad and Angelina welcomed their own biological daughter Shiloh, they adopted a third child, a 3 year old Vietnamese boy named Pax Thien.
Brad and Ange have since had two more biological children (twins), and rumours often circulate that they are thinking of adopting a fourth baby.
Madonna decided to adopt her first child in 2006 when she met David Banda in a Malwaian orphanage. Along with then-husband Guy Ritchie, Madonna brought David home to the UK but it wasn’t until Christmas 2007 that the adoption was approved by the Malawian government.
After Madonna and Guy split, the singer decided to adopt again from Malawi – this time a little girl named Mercy James. Madonna met Mercy and tried to adopt her at the same time as David, but the little girl’s grandmother had refused. After her first few attempts were rejected by the Malawian government because she wasn’t a resident, Madonna was given the green light to adopt Mercy in 2009.
Madonna has said she wasn’t ruling out having more children – could another adoption be on the cards?
Despite the adoption proceedings taking four years to finalise, Sandra managed to keep it a secret from the world. Originally adopting with her now ex-husband, Sandra and Jesse brought their baby home and decided to keep it a secret until after the Oscars. Sadly, Sandra and Jesse’s relationship broke down after it was revealed Jesse had been unfaithful.
Single mum Sandra’s adopted baby was a 3-month-old boy named Louis Bardo, from New Orleans.
“He’s just perfect, I can’t even describe him any other way,” Sandra said during the interview with People magazine, where she appeared on the front cover declaring, “Meet my son!”
After trying to conceive for three years with IVF, actor Hugh Jackman and actress wife Deborra Lee-Furness decided to adopt. In 2000, they adopted a boy named Oscar. In 2005, they adopted for a second time, a girl named Ava.
Talking about the adoption of their son Oscar, Hugh said, “We opted for open adoption because we thought it would be much easier to discuss the whole subject.”
The couple became friends with Oscar’s biological mother and were there for his birth. “It was exhilarating. I remember tears running out of my eyes in the happiest possible fashion,” Hugh said.
For Ava, the couple decided on a closed adoption so both children were of mixed race.
In 2001, Ally McBeal actress Calista Flockhart witnessed the birth of her soon-to-adopted son on New Year’s Eve. Calista adopted the baby boy, whom she named Liam, as a single parent 10 days after he was born.
“I am overjoyed that I have been blessed with a beautiful, healthy son,” Calista said.
Calista famously quit the showbusiness to spend time with her baby son.
In 2002, when Liam was 9 months old, Calista got together with actor Harrison Ford. The pair married in June 2010.
Actress Katherine Heigl announced her and husband Josh Kelley had adopted a special needs baby girl from South Korea in 2009.
They showed off their adorable little girl through a series of intimte family snaps. “We are thrilled to have a child in our lives, no matter what the challenges. She is a special needs baby and because of that, it all moved so much faster,” Katherine explained.
Baby girl Nancy Leigh, or ‘Naleigh’, is named after Katherine’s own mum and her adopted sister Leigh, who was also originally from Korea.
Katherine recently admitted that she felt pressure from fellow celeb mums when it comes to dressing Naleigh.
After Sharon Stone suffered several miscarriages, she and now ex-husband Phil Bronstein decided to adopt. In 2000, they adopted a baby boy named Roan.
Ten years later, the actress went on to adopt two more boys on her own – Laird, 4, arrived in May 2005, and Quinn, 3, a year later.
Sharon, now a mum of three sons, admitted she has always “wanted a big family.”
In 2006, months after filing for adoption, Meg Ryan brought her baby girl home to Los Angeles from China. Initially naming her daughter Charlotte, Meg decided the name didn’t suit her daughter’s personality, so decided to change it to Daisy.
“She’s a Daisy. She’s got the most open, beautiful, honest face you’ll just ever see,” Meg said when explaining why she changed her child’s name.
Meg’s biological son Jack was 15 months old when she adopted Daisey. Jack’s dad is Meg’s ex-husband Dennis Quaid.
“I never felt like I was on a rescue mission or anything like that. I just really wanted a baby; I was on a mission to connect with somebody, and Daisy and I got to meet each other in this way at this time. We are so compatible,” Meg said at the time.
In 2007, after battling breast cancer, singer Sheryl Crow adopted a 2 week old boy as she worried she’d struggle to conceive. The baby was named Wyatt.
After a few failed adoption attempts, Wyatt gained a sibling in 2010 when Sheryl adopted a second boy, 9-week-old Levi.
To prepare for her adoptions, Sheryl admitted she studied infant CPR. “The idea was, if the opportunity came, I would be ready,” Sheryl said at the time.
When Nicole Kidman suffered a miscarriage due to an ectopic pregnancy shortly after her and Tom Cruise married in 1990, the couple decided to look into adoption.
“We lost a baby early on, so that was really very traumatic. And that’s when it came that we would adopt Bella. My mother has an adopted sister, so it’s been part of our family and I knew it would probably play out somewhere in mine. I didn’t think it would happen so early but it did,” Nicole said at the time.
Tom and Nicole adopted Isabella Jane (Bella) in 1992, and Connor Anthony in 1995, when they were babies. The couple divorced in 2001 and both Tom and Nicole went on to have other children. Tom had a biological daughter Suri Cruise with Katie Holmes, and Nicole had biological daughter Sunday Rose and a second daughter, Faith Margaret, by surrogate.
Kirstie Alley suffered numerous miscarriages and a stillbirth during her marriage to Parker Stevenson, so the couple decided to adopt two children.
Kirstie and Parker adopted son William True, born in 1992, and daughter Lille Price, born in 1994. Kirstie and Parker divorced in 1997.
Sharon and Ozzy Osbourne
Now this one we didn’t see coming! In 2002, Sharon Osbourne and husband Ozzy adopted 16-year-old Robert Marcato after his mum, and close friend of Sharon’s, died of colon cancer.
Ozzy and Sharon also have three biological children, Aimee, 29, Jack, 27, and Kelly, 25.
Oscar De La Renta
In 1983, fashion designer Oscar De La Renta adopted a day-old boy named Moises. Moises was adopted from an orphanage in Dominican Republic shortly after Oscar’s first wife, Françoise de Langlade, died.
Moises has followed in his dad’s footsteps and is now a fashion deisgner himself. “He is the sweetest, nicest human being. He has a heart of gold,” Oscar has said about his son.
Michelle Pfeiffer adopted daughter Claudia Rose in 1993 when she was a baby.
Michelle met David E Kelly shortly after starting adoption proceedings, and baby Claudia was christened on the same day Michelle and David married in November, 1993.
The couple went on to have a son, John, now 16.
Brit actress Emma Thompson and husband Greg Wise adopted a 16 year old Rwandan refugee named Tindyebwa Agaba (nicknamed Tindy) in 2003.
Emma and Greg also have a 12 year old daughter, Gaia Romilly.