There are over 70 million people around the world claiming to have Irish roots which is over 14 times the actual population of the tiny country itself. With all the spotlight shining on some of the worlds most famous celebrities its hard to believe that some of them are of Irish heritage and have incredibly close links to the Emerald Isle.
Take a look at these 8 superstar celebs who you may not have known to be Irish:
Although she technically has no Irish blood that does not mean she doesn’t have a bit of Irish in her. Olivia spent every summer of her child hood in Co. Waterford where her grandparents had lived since the end of WW2 and even spent a summer studying acting in The Gaiety School of Acting in Dublin. Olivia states that she credits “a lot of my growth as a child and a lot of my happiness with the people I was surrounded by in Ireland.” Having taken her stage name in dedication to the Irish writer Oscar Wilde and holding an Irish passport I think we can all agree that Olivia is almost as Irish as she is American.
Hathaway is one of the world’s most famous celebrities and has previous won the academy award for her role in Les Miserables. Anne claims that her mother and grandmother are both Irish with surnames McAuley and Sinnott and has close relatives in the Emerald Isle “There’s only a few that I have met too – and I was to give a big shout out to my dear, dear cousin Noel.” Having filmed her movie “Becoming Jane” in Ireland in 2007, Hathaway stated that she sees herself living in Ireland someday but is unsure about the weather.
After portraying the infamous James Bond in a few of the movies it’s hard to believe that one of Britain’s most iconic characters could be played by an Irish man, alas, it is true. Pierce is Irish and hails from the town of Navan in Co. Meath. At the age of 10 Brosnan moved to London to live with his mother and stepfather and attended an all-boys comprehensive school where he was given the nickname “Irish”. Although granted American citizenship in 2004 Brosnan considers himself now and always 100% Irish.
Rose is of Irish and Scottish decent and her surname “Byrne” is one of Ireland’s most common names. Born and raised in Australia, Byrne has visited Ireland and travelled all over the country claiming it to be beautiful. With a name like that I think we will claim her as one of us!
Michael is an Irish German actor with an Irish mother. Fassbender moved to Co. Kerry at the age of 2 with his parents and lived there until he was 19 when he travelled to England to study acting. Michael’s mother is said to be the great-grandniece of Michael Collins so you don’t really get more Irish than that! Fassbender very clearly has a strong hint of Irish in his accent and there’s no denying it!
Mischa grew up in the UK and her mother is 100% Irish. She moved to the US when she was 5 and has stayed there since. Not only is her mother Irish but Barton’s maternal grandfather was a Gaelic language professor in the University of Belfast. Although living most of her life in America Mischa’s has stated that “I’m an English-Irish girl who grew up in New York City and who moved around a lot with her dad’s job.” In 2012 Barton returned to the stage in the Irish production of “Steel Magnolias”.
Irish born and raised Victoria Smurfit belongs to one of Ireland’s richest families and her uncle Michael Smurfit sponsors sporting events such as Smurfit European Open and the Champion Hurdle. Smurfit has three children and is recently divorced from her advertising exec husband. She is currently playing the part of Cruella di Vil on ABC’s Once Upon A Time.
Now next time you watch a movie with any of these actors you may feel a little bit differently about them knowing the are connected to such a wonderful country, if we do say so ourselves! If you or someone you know has a strong interest or love for Ireland make sure to check out TheIrishStore.com and see all the wonderful and luxurious Irish products we have to offer! Bring a piece of Ireland in to your home with one of our amazing Irish sweaters, paintings or pieces of jewelry!