"My children were stalked." 7 celebrities on the moment the paparazzi went too far with their kids.

When a celebrity enters the zeitgeist, two things often happen - their fame status rises, and so does the paparazzi's interest

For many of these celebrities, they accept that with fame comes a level of openness in the public arena.

But when it comes to their children, it's a hard no. Because as many celebrity parents have pointed out, their kids haven't signed up for this life. 

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In recent years, celebrities like Blake Lively, Kristen Bell and Halle Berry have taken a stand against the paparazzi industry.

Here's what they've had to say.

Hilary Duff.

In 2020, Hilary Duff shared the challenges she has faced with trying to protect her children's privacy. 

Duff spoke about a confrontation with a paparazzo, which took place at her young son Luca's soccer game.

"You know, I have days where I'm fed up with it and days where I can ignore it," Duff said on The Talk.

As for what led her to confront the photographer, Duff said that at first the paparazzo was standing "closer than any of the parents were sitting" to the kids. Once other parents began asking who he was, Duff realised what he was doing.

"I feel like since I bring the paparazzi there, it's my responsibility to be like, 'Hey, give space,' or 'Back off, you got some shots. Leave.' This wasn't cool with me and that's my opinion that it's wrong. Whatever universe that I'm in I'm gonna protect my kids, and the other kids."


In an Instagram video, Duff recorded her interactions with the paparazzo, asking him to leave her child's soccer game.

"I'm asking you human-to-human as a mother, if you don't know anyone here can you please stop taking pictures of our children playing," she said in the video. "They're our children and we would like to protect them. Go 'practice' your photography on ADULTS! Creep! Laws need to change! This is stalking minors! Disgusting!"


Busy Philipps.

In response to Hilary Duff sharing her experience with the paparazzi, one of the celebrities who stood behind her was Busy Philipps.

She wrote on Instagram: "This is infuriating! This isn't about his job or his 'rights'. This is about his own perceived power over others. I imagine it's the only time this pathetic person feels any power in his life."

Philipps continued: "How is taking pictures of children without parental consent legal?"

Halle Berry.

In 2013, Halle Berry was one of the celebrities who put her support behind anti-paparazzi legislation. The bill sought to prevent harassment of the children of public figures, and Berry testified before the California state assembly in its support.

In a statement, Berry said she was grateful that the bill had been passed.

"I started this fight with a great deal of hope and a bit of uncertainty so I cannot express my immense gratitude that Gov. Brown has recognised, and acted to remedy, the plight of children who are tormented because of the identity or prominence of their parents. On behalf of my children, it is my hope that this is the beginning of the end for those overly aggressive paparazzi whose outrageous conduct has caused so much trauma and emotional distress."


In her testimony earlier this year, Berry told lawmakers: "We're mums here who are just trying to protect our children. These are little innocent children who didn't ask to be celebrities. They didn't ask to be thrown into this game and they don't have the wherewithal to process what's happening. We don't have a law in place to protect them from this."

Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds.

After announcing the news that they're expecting their fourth child this month, Blake Lively and Ryan Reynolds were harassed by paparazzi.

Posting to Instagram, Lively shared a series of images of herself while pregnant in a bid to stop the paparazzi from camping outside her home.

"Here are photos of me pregnant in real life so the 11 guys waiting outside my home for a unicorn sighting will leave me alone. You freak me and my kids out," she captioned the post.

"Thanks to everyone else for all the love and respect and for continuing to unfollow accounts and publications who share photos of children. You have all the power against them. And thank you to the media who have a 'no kids policy'. You all make all the difference."

Lively has been vocal in the past about her frustrations with the tabloid media who fuel paparazzi culture - reiterating that children of celebrities are not 'fair game' like their famous parents.


Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, and two of their daughters at Ryan's Hollywood Walk of Fame Star ceremony. Lively consented for this image to be taken, unlike other instances where paparazzi have chased her down the street. Image: Getty. In 2021, an image of Lively and her children was published on Daily Mail Australia's Instagram, taken by the paparazzi.

Underneath the image, Lively commented: "You edit together these images... to look like I'm happily waving. But that is deceitful. The real story is: my children were being stalked by a man all day. Jumping out. And then hiding. A stranger on the street got into words with them because it was so upsetting for her to see. When I tried to calmly approach the photographer you hired to take these pictures in order to speak to him, he would run away. And jump out again at the next block."


She went on to ask why background checks on photographers don't take place, questioning the morality of the publications that purchase paparazzi videos.

"The photographers who would speak to me, I was able to agree to smile and wave and let them take my picture away from my children if they would leave my kids alone. Because it was frightening."

Directly referring to the publication in question she said: "This is dark and upsetting that you pay people to stalk children. Please stop paying grown-ass men to hide and hunt children. There are plenty of pictures you could've published without the kids. Please delete. C'mon. Get with the times."

Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard.

Several years ago, Kristen Bell launched the No Kids Policy for the paparazzi. 

It was a movement that aimed to keep pictures of celebrities' kids out of the headlines. And the No Kids Policy had the backing of several big names, leading to more pressure on publications who choose to go against their wishes. 

Bell said she once played hardball with network executives, even holding meetings with them to give them the ultimatum of either agreeing to her No Kids Policy or threatening that celebrities like Jennifer Aniston and Jennifer Lawrence would stay away.


"Picture what it would be like walking down the street with your child, whether it's trick or treating or just to school, and have 10 aggressive men taking their picture with a lens in your face, yelling, pushing," Bell told Entertainment Tonight.

Entertainment Tonight then agreed to not use paparazzi photos of celebrity kids, and Us Weekly said they might consider using these images but only in cases of breaking news involving the subjects. 

"If you're standing in line at a grocery store, I would like to start a dialogue with you so you know what goes into that magazine you're about to buy," Bell and her husband Dax Shepard said in an interview. "That weekly magazine has been harassing children." 


George and Amal Clooney.

In late 2021, George and Amal shared an open letter addressed directly to the paparazzi and media, asking them not to invade their children's privacy. 

George explained how having photos of his children on the internet could put their lives at risk due to his wife Amal's job as a human rights lawyer.

He wrote the letter after seeing photos of Billie Lourd's baby published online without her consent. 

George wrote, "Having just seen photos of Billie Lourd's one-year-old baby in your publication [Daily Mail], and the fact that you subsequently took those pictures down, we would request that you refrain from putting our children's faces in your publication. I am a public figure and accept the oftentimes intrusive photos as part of the price to pay for doing my job. Our children have made no such commitment."

He continued: "We cannot protect our children if any publication puts their faces on their cover. We have never sold a picture of our kids, we are not on social media and never post pictures because to do so would put their lives in jeopardy."


It's a topic close to the couple, considering the encounters they've had with the paparazzi.

A few years ago, the Clooneys threatened to sue a French magazine after they published a paparazzi photo of them and their twin babies. The cover of the tabloid magazine showed George and Amal in the backyard of their Lake Como home.

In a statement released they said: "Over the last week photographers from Voici magazine scaled our fence, climbed our tree, and illegally took pictures of our infants inside our home. Make no mistake - the photographers, the agency, and the magazine will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The safety of our children demands it."

Image: Getty. 


Jennifer Garner.

Just like Halle Berry, Jennifer Garner also gave testimony in regards to her scary encounters with paparazzi and her kids. 

In 2021, Garner gave an interview to the Hollywood Reporter, where she described what it's like to be stalked by paparazzi.

"You'd go through a yellow light and 15, 20 cars would go through the red light behind you, driving up on the side of roads, and this is just for [photos of] a mum and a kid," she reflected. "I never had a day without [paparazzi]. And if I did, if I made it to a park by hiding in the bottom of the pool man's truck or something, then a nanny would see me there and call a number and they'd swarm."

She also said that where she and her then-husband Ben Affleck lived was full of celebrities, but that didn't stop the paparazzi from directly coming to them and their kids. 

"We lived down a street that was chock-a-block full of actors, much more successful and famous and decorated than me, including Ben, and they'd all go by one by one, no problem, and then I'd go do a school run and it'd be 15 cars going with me."


Jennifer Garner and her kids at her Hollywood Walk of Fame Star ceremony. Jennifer Garner consented for this image to be taken of her and her kids. Image: Getty. Garner also told the Hollywood Reporter about a moment she had one summer when she was finally able to take her kids to the beach, but it had to be under the guise of face masks. 


"I told them, 'We'd try to go, and we'd just get chased away.' You're not just ruining the experience for your family, you're ruining it for everybody [on the beach]. It's like, 'Who wants to have us around?'"

Daughter Violet also had to deal with paparazzi out of the front of her school and ended up being told she had to quit the soccer team as the paparazzi presence at the games was distracting for the rest of the team. 

Interestingly, Garner said that over the years she has come to know some of the photographers well.

"I just loathe them so much and what they do, but there are a couple of them that have been with me for so long," she told E! Online. "They've been assigned to me for 15 years. One of them said to me one day, 'You don't know how much we love watching you with your children. You don't know how much we respect you'."

She added: "They do know me better than anyone knows me. They go everywhere I go. They've seen me strap kids into cars, they've seen me pregnant, they've seen me at the store."

Now with social media at their fingertips, celebrities have a larger platform than ever to stand up against the paparazzi economy. But it's up to media publications and companies to make the action. 

Feature Image: Getty/Instagram.

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