Colin Jost reveals his mother tried to convince him and Scarlett Johansson to change their son’s name

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Colin Jost reveals family’s reaction to baby name (AFP via Getty Images)
Colin Jost reveals family’s reaction to baby name (AFP via Getty Images)

Colin Jost has revealed that his mother was not a fan of the name he and Scarlett Johansson chose for their newborn son, and tried to convince the couple to change it.

The Saturday Night Live comedian, who announced the birth of the couple’s first child together, a son named Cosmo, in August, discussed his mother’s less-than-enthusiastic response to her grandchild’s name during an appearance on Late Night With Seth Meyers on Thursday.

When asked by Meyers how his family had reacted to the unique name, the 39-year-old revealed that they were “very supportive,” but that his mom was “slightly thrown” by the moniker, and had offered alternative suggestions.

“My family is very supportive, always. My mom, I would say, was slightly thrown by it and didn’t quite understand it. I don’t know if she thought it was kind of like a hippie thing?” he said. “But she would call us, you know, after like three or four days, she’d be like: ‘Cosmo.’ And she’d be like: ‘And, now, is it final? Like, did you submit the birth certificate?’

“And we’re like: ‘Oh, yeah, we did that at the hospital.’ And she’s like: ‘Okay. Interesting. Because I was reading that there’s also a name Cosimo, with an I. So, that could also be an option.’”

According to Jost, his mother had suggested that the new parents use Cosimo as their son’s “real name,” noting that they could then “still call him Cosmo”.

“Then she goes: ‘There’s also a patron saint called Cosmos, so that’s another option,’” Jost recalled of his mother’s efforts, before joking: “We don’t need more worse options, variants on Cosmo, but thanks mom.”

However, the “Weekend Update” co-host said his mother eventually got on board with the name after meeting other people named Cosmo.

“You know, she lives in Staten Island, [and] she eventually started meeting various members of the Italian community who have a lot of Cosmo relatives,” he explained to laughter from the audience. “And so then she would call and she would say: ‘I met someone. They said their uncle’s name is Cosmo. So it is okay.’”

“I was like: ‘It’s locked in,’” Jost added of his response.

Elsewhere in the interview, the comedian was asked by Meyers how he and Johansson, who also has a six-year-old daughter Rose, came up with the name, to which he joked that the couple had been “assigned” Cosmo at the hospital.

“We were just assigned it at the hospital,” he said. “I think the hospitals now are just so overwhelmed that when a baby comes out, they’re just like: ‘Uh, that’s Frank. Go.’”

Jost and Johansson, who first met on the set of SNL in 2006, married in October 2020 after dating since 2017.

The SNL writer announced the birth of their son on 18 August, writing on Instagram at the time: “Ok ok we had a baby. His name is Cosmo. We love him very much,” before adding that “privacy would be greatly appreciated”.

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