friendship

These 18 celebrities share a surprising problem

It happens to the best of us. You’re discussing a movie with your friends and suddenly find yourself stumbling over the name “Quevenzhane Wallis” like you’ve never seen letters before. 

While not every celeb name is as tricky as that of the Beasts of the Southern Wild star, some of the real pronunciations might surprise you.

Dr. Seuss

 Dr. Seuss

TNT/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Dr. S-oo-se” 

How it’s pronounced: “Dr. Soy-ce”

It may come as a shock to learn that Theodore Seuss Giesel’s pen name is pronounced “Soyce,” as in rhymes with “voice.” His college roommate even made up a poem to help people out:

You're wrong as the deuce
And you shouldn't rejoice
If you're calling him Seuss.
He pronounces it Soice!

What?!

Chad Kroeger

Chad Kroeger

CINDY ORD/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Avril Lavigne’s fiance” 

How it’s pronounced: "Kr-ooo-ger”

Although it looks like the supermarket chain, the Nickleback front man’s name is pronounced with a long “ooo” sound.

Quvenzhane Wallis

Quvenzhane Wallis

ALBERTO E. RODRIGUEZ/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: We literally have no idea. 

How it’s pronounced: “Kwa-VARN-shuh-nay"

Already an Oscar nominee at 9 years old, you should probably learn to pronounce it sooner than later.

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Shia LaBeouf

Shia LaBeouf

STEFANIA D'ALESSANDRO/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Shee-ah La-BO” or “La-Boof” 

How it’s pronounced: “SHY-uh Luh-BUFF”

Luh-BUFF, like he’s muscular or something. Yolo.

Rhys Ifans

Rhys Ifans

JON KOPALOFF/FILMMAGIC

What you may have been saying: “That guy from Spider-Man” 

How it’s pronounced: “Reese E-fahns”

Pronounce as if you’re describing someone who is a big supporter of the peanut butter cups (i.e. everyone).

Ralph Lauren

Ralph Lauren

STEPHEN LOVEKIN/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: "La-Ren” 

How it’s pronounced: "Law-ren”

Despite the desire of some people to pronounce “Lauren” with some sort of sophisticated accent, they made it all up in their minds. It’s simply pronounced “Lauren” — just like the girl name.

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Martin Scorsese

Martin Scorsese

GILBERT CARRASQUILLO/FILMMAGIC

What you may have been saying: "Scor-say-see” 

How it’s pronounced: "Scor-sez-ee”

If you disagree, here it is straight from the man himself. That’s just how he SEZ it.

Catherine Zeta-Jones

Catherine Zeta Jones

STEVE GRANITZ/WIREIMAGE

What you may have been saying: “Zee-tah-Jones" 

How it’s pronounced: “ZAY-tah-Jones"

The star of Chicago and Traffic pronounces Zeta exactly the same way as the Greek alphabet: ZAAAAY-taaaah.

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Amanda Seyfried

Amanda Seyfried

SOURCE COPY

What you may have been saying: “Say-freed,” “Sieg-fried,” and who knows what else. 

How it’s pronounced: “SIGH-frid”

She doesn’t own a white tiger or hang out with Roy, so Siegfried is beyond wrong. Just pronounce it like you’re disappointed (*sigh*) and pretend the second “e” doesn’t exist (*frid*).

Charlize Theron

Charlize Theron

JASON MERRITT/GETTY IMAGES FOR GLAAD

What you may have been saying: “There-on” 

How it’s pronounced: “Thrown”

wonder if hope they host a “Game of Therons” at family reunions.

Ralph Fiennes

Ralph Fiennes

DAVE J HOGAN/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Ralph Feee-ns” 

How it’s pronounced: “Rafe Fines”

Despite what you may think, his first name is pronounced “Rafe” as in rhymes with “safe.” Double whammy because his last name is tricky, too!

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Mariska Hargitay

Mariska Hargitay

ASTRID STAWIARZ/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Maris-ka Harg-i-tay” 

How it’s pronounced: “Mah-rish-ka Harg-i-tay”

Though it’s hard to imagine fellow Law & Order star Ice-T ever pronouncing this right, the actress’ first name should be treated as though there is an “h” after the “s.”

Demi Moore

Demi Moore

FREDERICK M. BROWN/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Deh-me” 

How it’s pronounced: “Duh-me” 

Example conversation:

“Did you know her name is not pronounced Deh-me?” – Friend
“Duh” – Me

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Rebecca Romijn

Rebecca Romijn

GARY GERSHOFF/WIREIMAGE

What you may have been saying: “You know, the woman from X-Men, Rebecca Romi..gh..n.” 

How it’s pronounced: “Romaine”

It’s just like the lettuce, despite whatever sound you would guess “i,” “j” and “n” make when they are next to each other.

Liev Schreiber

Liev Schreiber

STEVE GRANITZ/WIREIMAGE

What you may have been saying: “Leave Schreeber” 

How it’s pronounced: “Lee-Ev Shrye-burr”

The first name gets two syllables, and so does the last. Not as tricky as it looks at first glance!

Rihanna

Rhianna

JASON MERRITT/GETTY IMAGES

What you may have been saying: “Ree-ahhh-nah” 

How it’s pronounced: “Ree-ANN-uh”

Believe it or not, the correct pronunciation of the singer’s name should rhyme with “banana,” according to the pop star herself.

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Joe Manganiello

Joe Manganiello

ALBERTO E. RODRIGUEZ/GETTY IMAGES FOR ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY

What you may have been saying: “Man-gee-nello” 

How it’s pronounced: “Man-GUH-nello”

Pronounced the same as the name of the billy clubs that cops sometimes carry around with them.

Chloe Sevigny

Chloë Sevigny

What you may have been saying: “Chloe Sevig- … that Manic Pixie Dream Girl actress!” 



How it’s pronounced: "Seven-yee”



The name's Sevigny. Chloe Sevigny. The G’s silent.

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