Celebrity pregnancies are a common occurrence among the Hollywood realm, however, 2012 has already seen a plethora of baby bumps and births, and it's only March. So to help everyone get a full look at this year's exceptional baby boom, Hollywood.com has compiled a list of stars who are about to become (or already have become) parents.
First out of the baby gate were Beyoncé and Jay-Z, who officially became parents to baby girl, Blue Ivy Carter, on Jan.7. The superstar couple first announced the pregnancy at the 2011 VMA's after Beyoncé strategically placed her hand on her stomach, while giving a knowing smile. This is the duos first and only child.
Robert Downey Jr. and his wife Susan welcomed a son into the world on Feb. 7 and named him Exton Elias Downey. The baby weighed in at 7 lbs., 5 oz., and was 20 inches long. This was the couple's very first kid together, though Downey also has another son from his previous marriage with Deborah Falconer.
Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck welcomed their third child and first son on Feb. 27. Affleck posted the exciting news on his Facebook page along with revealing their newborn's name: Samuel Garner Affleck.
James Van Der Beek and his wife Kimberly welcomed a baby boy into the world on March 13. The pair already have a daughter named Olivia, who's 17-months-old, however, they've yet to announce the name they've chosen for their newest little bundle of joy. Feel free to throw out any suggestions.
Charlize Theron shocked the world on March 14 when her rep announced that the actress decided to adopt a healthy baby boy named Jackson. The child was born in the United States and is of African-American decent. And since Theron currently isn't seeing anyone at the moment, she's taking on this new role of motherhood completely solo.
Maggie Gyllenhaal's pregnancy became public knowledge in late November 2011, where she was reportedly already six months along. So, if you do the math, she should be due any day now. This will be the actress's second child with her husband Peter Sarsgaard. The couple already share a five-year-old daughter together, Ramona.
Hilary Duff announced her pregnancy on her official website in August 2011. Later on in October, the actress revealed on The Ellen Show that she and her professional hockey player husband, Mike Comrie, are expecting a baby boy. And though Duff has yet to give birth, she's scheduled to be due in late March or early April, so there's only a few more weeks to go.
Jessica Simpson revealed her baby bump on Halloween 2011, after dressing up as a "mummy" and cradling her stomach. Since then, she's been a pretty open book in regards to her pregnancy and even posed nude for Elle magazine — where she announced that she and fiance Eric Johnson are expecting a girl. Simpson's little girl is due sometime in April, and the baby's name is rumored to be Maxwell (Maxi for short).
Chris Hemsworth's rep confirmed in January 2012 that the actor will become a first-time father sometime this spring, after news broke that his wife Elsa Pataky was pregnant. The couple are extremely excited about the upcoming birth and have opted to be surprised by the child's gender. But whether it's a boy or girl, it's bound to be a good looking baby.
Kourtney Kardashian announced that she was expecting a second child with her boyfriend of five years, Scott Disick, back in November 2011. At the time she was only nine weeks along in her pregnancy, which means she's scheduled to give birth sometime in June. The reality, who already has a two-year-old son named Mason, revealed in February that she'll be having a baby girl.
Alyson Hannigan and her husband of eight years, Alexis Denisof, are currently expecting their second child together. And while the news was officially confirmed by Hannigan's rep back in December, the actual due date is not yet known. She currently has a 2-year-old daughter, Satyana Marie.
After a lot of back and forth baby rumors over the past few months, Snooki finally confirmed that she's fifteen weeks pregnant as of March 2012. The reality star is due sometime over the summer, either in late July or early August, and the father is her longtime boyfriend Jionni LaValle.
Nick Lachey announced on Live! With Kelly on March 5 that his wife Vanessa Minnillo is pregnant with their very first child. The gender and name choice are still unknown, however, Lachey did reveal that the due date is in late summer or early fall.
Real Housewives of Atlanta star Kim Zolciak and her husband Kroy Biermann are also expecting another child later this fall. The reality star shared the news via Twitter on March 20, writing, "@biermann71 and I are happy to announce YES WE ARE PREGNANT!" The couple just welcomed a son Kroy Jagger Jr. in November 2011. Zolciak also has two daughters -- Brielle, 15, and Ariana, 9 -- from a previous relationship.
And last, but certainly not least, news broke on March 21 that Reese Witherspoon is 12 weeks pregnant, which puts her due date in either late August of early September. The actress already has two children with her ex-husband Ryan Phillippe (daughter Ava, 12, and son Deacon, 8), however, this will be her first child with her new hubby Jim Toth.
Drab prim and more than a little prudish Guinevere Pettigrew (Frances McDormand) isn't a very good governess--her rigid personal beliefs keep getting in the way of her ability to hold a job. Homeless and hungry on the streets of 1939 London she's on the verge of despair when fate sends her to Delysia Lafosse's door. Flighty enthusiastic and impulsive Delysia (Amy Adams) is a club singer with aspirations of becoming a serious actress; to achieve her goals she'll literally charm the pants off of any man who can help her--even at the risk of losing her one true love forever. Equally shocked and fascinated by Delysia's sophisticated fast-paced colorful lifestyle Miss Pettigrew uses her brief time as the young woman's faux social secretary to try to save her from herself. At the same time she begins to let go of old fears and finds the way to her own happiness. Miss Pettigrew benefits immensely from the strengths of its two stars. McDormand is both funny and affecting as the title character; she plays a recurring gag in which Miss Pettigrew almost gets to eat with just the right notes of humor and pathos. The twinkle in her eye as she takes the measure of Delysia's world is convincingly conspiratorial and her scenes with co-star Ciaran Hinds who plays courtly lingerie mogul Joe are both sweet and realistic. Adams meanwhile is just as captivating as she was in Enchanted. Delysia's perky effervescence hides both determination and vulnerability and Adams mixes all three elements expertly. The ladies get strong support from their fellas particularly Hinds and Pushing Daisies' Lee Pace who plays Delysia's poor-but-ardent suitor Michael. And Shirley Henderson is perfectly poisonous as socialite/salon owner Edythe. Parts of Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day have a distinctly screwball feel -- particularly the early scenes in which Miss P. arrives at Delysia's and must immediately juggle four or five different crises for her new client. The brink-of-World War II setting with its cocktail parties jazz clubs and dames in bright red lipstick encourages that association. But director Bharat Nalluri's movie is also a touching romance with scenes of true poignancy that centers on a complex mature heroine who knows life isn't all roses. His ability to balance the two yields a genuinely funny accessible comedy that has some real depth to back up its lighthearted romping. Even if like Delysia Miss Pettigrew is only a passing presence in your life you'll likely remember her quite fondly.
Based on H.G. "Buzz" Bissinger's bestselling book of the same name Friday Night Lights tells the true story of the dusty West Texas town of Odessa where nothing much happens until September rolls around. That's when the town's 20 000 or so denizens pour into Ratliff Stadium the country's biggest high school football field every Friday night to watch the Permian Panthers Odessa's "boys in black " take to the field. All the town's hope and dreams are pinned on the padded shoulders of these young gridiron heroes--including insecure quarterback Mike Winchell (Lucas Black); cocky self-assured running back Boobie Miles (Derek Luke); headstrong self-destructive tailback Don Billingsley (Garrett Hedlund) who must contend with an overbearing abusive dad (Tim McGraw--yes that Tim McGraw the country singer); and the team's spiritual leader middle linebacker Ivory Christian (newcomer Lee Jackson). The Panthers begin their season with one thing on their minds--winning their fifth straight championship for the first time in the team's 30-year history--but for their coach Gary Gaines (Billy Bob Thornton) it also means instilling a love and joy of the game in the boys' hearts amidst tremendous pressures and expectations. Easier said than done.
There isn't a false note in any of the performances and no one falls back on clichéd versions of their characters as is so easy to do in rah-rah sports movies. Thornton does a particularly good job as Gaines keeping you guessing whether he's going to be a hardass insensitive to his players' emotional needs (like so many movie football coaches before him) or if he truly means to coach his boys in a fair and decent way. Gaines too has to deal with his own pressures especially from the townsfolk who are likely to string him up if the team loses the championship. As for Gaines' players Black (the oh-so-serious kid from Thornton's Sling Blade) is all grown up and buffed out and still very serious. It works for the young actor though as the beleaguered Winchell struggles with the love-hate relationship he has with his chosen sport. Other standouts include Luke (Antwone Fisher) as the star player Boobie whose cocksureness leads him to an injury; Hedlund as the volatile Billingsley trying desperately to please his father; and McGraw making his film debut as the father a former Permian Panther champion who sure hasn't given up his competitive spirit basically beating it into his son. First Faith Hill (McGraw's real-life wife) in The Stepford Wives and now McGraw--who knew country singers could act?
From All the Right Moves to Varsity Blues to Remember the Titans Friday Night Lights unfortunately doesn't completely distinguish itself from the pack of football movies before it--like those this is all about how the young players--be they underdogs second-string nobodies or stars--rising above the mounting pressure and playing the best they can bless their hearts. Still there's no question the sports genre--particularly football--always gets the juices pumping with FNL being no exception. It might have something to do with our sick fascination with watching bone-crunching hits and body-punishing tackles. It's dangerous out there for these guys; no other sport (besides maybe hockey) can elicit such wince-inducing emotion and actor/director Peter Berg (The Rundown) exploits that. Obviously influenced by Oliver Stone's Any Given Sunday Berg effectively paints his own gritty documentary-style picture of the competitive sport without relying on too many trite gushy over-the-top moments. And to give it credit the film does not necessarily have a feel-good "let's win one for the Gipper" ending; it is based on a true story after all and as we know real life isn't all sunshine and roses especially in the bloodthirsty world of Texas high school football.
P.J. Hogan's Peter Pan follows J.M. Barrie's story almost to the letter. A girl on the brink of womanhood Wendy Darling (newcomer Rachel Hurd-Wood) loves telling her brothers John (Harry Newell) and Michael (Freddie Popplewell) stories of dastardly pirates as they sit in their nursery under the watchful eye of their St. Bernard Nana. Her 19th-century Londoner parents however believe the time has come for the young girl to grow up especially her father. Then a cheeky wild-haired boy named Peter Pan (Jeremy Sumpter) flies through the nursery window one night with his trusted yet jealousy-prone fairy Tinkerbell (Ludivine Sagnier) telling Wendy he can take her to a place full of adventure where no one ever has to grow up. She readily accepts the offer and with a few happy thoughts some fairy dust and her two brothers in tow she flies off to Neverland. (Not the ranch…the real place.) Once there Wendy encounters mermaids Indians and the Lost Boys (who refer to her as "mother") and gets the whole pirate experience in Peter's ongoing feud with arch-nemesis Captain Hook (Jason Isaacs). But Wendy soon becomes conflicted because on the one hand she likes hangin' with hottie Peter but on the other she misses her mother. She decides it's probably best to go back and grow up but in her hurry to leave she ends up in Hook's clutches. A rescue ensues. Swords clash ticking crocodiles are fed and fairies are saved as our clever fly boy zooms Wendy and company back to London on a giant pirate ship. But does he stay and grow up himself? Hell no he's a Toys 'R Us kid forever!
All the kid actors in Peter Pan are highly watchable and appealing with angelic faces peaches-and-cream complexions and pouty cherry lips. This is the first time Peter is being played by a real-life boy a fact much hyped by the filmmakers and 12-year-old Sumpter (Frailty) does his best to live up to the expectations. (He's soon to be swoon-worthy material for sure.) He's got a mischievous gleam in his eye and a great sly smile but he really lights up when he's looking into Wendy's adorable face. Hurd-Wood the first-time actress who plays the spirited girl earned her role after a long and involved casting process it's well deserved; she fits the typical English-girl profile perfectly and gets the hang of her craft quickly infusing the character with a natural cheerful energy. It's also refreshing to see the young actors play up Wendy and Peter's feelings of first love which prior films always hinted at but never fully realized. Isaacs in a dual role as the firm-but-loving Mr. Darling and the frightening comical lonely charming needy reprehensible Captain Hook draws on his experience at playing exquisitely awful baddies (The Patriot Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets) and really sinks his claws into Hook. In a stand out supporting role French actress Sagnier (Swimming Pool) is really fantastic as the vivacious non-speaking Tinkerbell portraying the fairy's conflicted emotions with a silent-film over-the-top technique.
Director/writer P.J. Hogan (My Best Friend's Wedding) and his team try to distinguish their film from the other Peter Pans of the world by using all the technical and special effects wizardry at their disposal. Hogan says his Peter Pan is the way its author Barrie intended to be when he wrote it as a play over a 100 years ago--full of fantasy and wonder. In a way he's right and production designer Roger Ford and visual effects supervisor Scott Farrar take his vision and run with it giving audiences a very lush Neverland with waterfalls fluffy pink clouds crystal-blue waters and a gorgeous fairy world. But despite the bells and whistles there really isn't anything original and different in this Pan. Even its look at the dark side of Neverland has been done in Steven Spielberg's 1991 semi-sequel Hook which showed the dangers of Neverland. In this version lives really are at stake and the pirates are not cute and fun. Even the mermaids are mysterious and malevolent with scary faces and murderous intentions a far cry from the beautiful if somewhat mean-spirited creatures of the 1953 classic Disney animated adaptation another inescapable influence on the audience. When the crocodile draws near for example tick-tocking away the croc's signature tune from the Disney film comes immediately to mind. People may love those Disney films for those cutesy catchy songs but Peter Pan really is a good story. Heck it's a great story. But it's just been done.