15 celebrity parents and their adopted children

Famous mums and dads who have adopted babies, children and even teenagers. From Angelina Jolie and Madonna to Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman, plus some surprise names, too!


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?


Sandra Bullock

After a lengthy custody battle over her step-daughter and a divorce from Jesse James, Sandra Bullock announced she had been keeping a huge secret throughout it all – she had adopted a baby boy!

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!”


Hugh Jackman

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.


Calista Flockhart

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.

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