Skip to main contentSkip to footer
nicole kidman and reese witherspoon afi life time achievement award gala© Getty Images

Reese Witherspoon surprises fans with real name and leaves Nicole Kidman stunned

The Big Little Lies co-stars are close friends

Faye James
Senior Editor
June 8, 2024
Share this:

Reese Witherspoon has recently left fans stunned by revealing that Reese isn't her real name. This surprising revelation came during an interview with her close friend and co-star Nicole Kidman with Vanity Fair.

The 48-year-old Legally Blonde actress was born Laura Jean Reese Witherspoon. When she embarked on her acting career, she decided to adopt her mother's maiden name, Reese, to stand out in the industry. This decision certainly paid off as she ascended to become one of Hollywood's most beloved stars.

However, not everyone remembers that Reese was originally Laura — including Nicole, who momentarily forgot her friend's birth name during a recent interview about their show, Big Little Lies. The interview with Vanity Fair turned into a heartfelt exchange as Nicole, 56, and Reese reminisced about their time on set.

Reese explained her reason for calling their co-star Laura Dern by her last name. "My other favorite thing is that I called Dern when we were shooting Big Little Lies', Reese shared. Nicole, expressing her dislike for the nickname, interrupted, "I hate how you call her Dern though. It sounds weird. I'm always like, 'Laura' and you're like, 'no, Dern, Dern, Dern'."

Reese then clarified, "Do you know why? Because my name is Laura and her name is Laura, and it's confusing to me." Nicole, momentarily forgetting Reese's real name, responded, "Oh, that's right."

reese witherspoon laura dern big little lies season 2 premiere© Getty Images
Reese calls Laura by her surname Dern

Reese continued, "So I get confused and so I call her Dern because we can't both be Laura." Nicole quickly pointed out, "But she doesn't call you Laura, though." Reese, with a playful tone, replied, "I don't understand your point, I don't like your tone, you're trying to understand something." Nicole then jokingly said she would "stay out of it."

This amusing exchange left fans in a state of surprise and delight. Social media was abuzz with reactions to the revelation. One fan wrote, "I was today years old when I found out Reese’s real name is Laura lmao." Another exclaimed, "Reese acting like ANYONE calls her Laura." A user questioned, "Reese is Laura?!" while another added, "Even Nicole didn't know."

reese witherspoon black dress afi gala © Getty Images
Reese's real name is actually Laura

Fans were clearly taken aback, with one commenting, "I did not know her full name is Laura Jeanne Reese Witherspoon!" Another echoed, "Wait, Reese has a real name. Reese is LAURA???!!!! I never knew!" and one more user added, "Never did I ever know that was her real name."

In the same interview, Nicole revealed that she and Reese are "moving fast and furious" on the third season of Big Little Lies. Based on Liane Moriarty's novel, the HBO show was initially a one-season miniseries but became such a hit that it received a second season and now has a third in the works. Both Reese and Nicole star in and executive produce the series, which delves into the lives and scandals of a group of suburban mothers in Monterey, California.

Nicole Kidman looked fantastic as she posed alongside Reese Witherspoon in Nashville
Nicole Kidman looked fantastic as she posed alongside Reese Witherspoon in Nashville

Reese is certainly keeping busy with multiple projects. She recently announced a prequel series for Legally Blonde,"much to the delight of fans. The announcement, delivered by Reese herself in a pink-filled video, sent fans into a frenzy, theorizing who should play young Elle Woods.

The prequel, titled Elle, will explore the character's origin story, focusing on her high school years before she becomes a Harvard Law student. Many fans have already taken to social media to suggest that Reese's daughter, Ava, should step into the role of young Elle.

Sign up to HELLO Daily! for the best royal, celebrity and lifestyle coverage

By entering your details, you are agreeing to HELLO! Magazine User Data Protection Policy. You can unsubscribe at any time. For more information, please click here.

More Celebrity News

See more