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Meg Ryan Defends Son Jack Quaid Against ‘Nepo Baby’ Label: ‘So Dismissive of His Work Ethic’ and ‘He’s More of a Natural Than I’ll Ever Be’

Meg Ryan doesn’t want to hear anyone calling her son, actor Jack Quaid, a “nepo baby.” In a recent interview with Glamour magazine following the release of her latest directorial and acting effort “What Happens Later,” Ryan said it’s “dismissive” to say that Jack’s career exists only because of his connection to her and his father, Dennis Quaid. Jack is a rising star in Hollywood with roles on Prime Video’s “The Boys,” “Scream” and more.

“Jack is really talented,” Ryan said. “He’s more of a natural than I’ll ever be. That nepo stuff is so dismissive of his work ethic, his gifts and how sensitive he is to the idea of his privilege.”

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Jack told People magazine earlier this year that growing up with two hugely successful Hollywood stars as his parents “didn’t really feel different” because he “grew up with friends who also had parents in the industry.”

“But then you grow up, and you realize that’s a pretty unique thing, that not one but two of your parents are actors. You don’t realize that things are slightly abnormal until later,” he added. “I will thank them for that until the day I die. Now I get to actually live in these worlds, and that’s just been such a joy.”

The nepo baby discourse has been raging for over a year now, with many celebrities speaking out against the label. The term, short for nepotism baby, went viral in late 2022 due to a New York Magazine cover story on the topic. Gwyneth Paltrow recently made headlines by telling Bustle the term “nepo baby” is an “ugly moniker.”

“Now there’s this whole nepo baby culture, and judgment that exists around kids of famous people,” Paltrow said when her 19-year-old daughter Apple was brought up. “She’s really just a student, and she’s been very…She just wants to be a kid and be at school and learn. But there’s nothing wrong with doing or wanting to do what your parents do.”

“Nobody rips on a kid who’s like, ‘I want to be a doctor like my dad and granddad,’” Paltrow continued. “The truth is if you grow up in a house with a lot of artists and people making art and music, that’s what you know, the same way that if you grow up in a house of law, the discussions around the table are about the nuances of whatever particular law the parents practice. I think it’s kind of an ugly moniker. I just hope that my children always feel free to pursue exactly what they want to do, irrespective of what anybody’s going to think or say.”

Kate Hudson, the daughter of actors Goldie Hawn and Bill Hudson, also shrugged off the term in an interview with The Independent.

“The nepotism thing, I mean… I don’t really care,” Hudson said. “I look at my kids and we’re a storytelling family. It’s definitely in our blood. People can call it whatever they want, but it’s not going to change it.”

“I actually think there are other industries where it’s [more common],” Hudson continued. “Maybe modeling? I see it in business way more than I see it in Hollywood. Sometimes I’ve been in business meetings where I’m like, ‘Wait, whose child is this? Like, this person knows nothing!’ I don’t care where you come from, or what your relationship to the business is – if you work hard and you kill it, it doesn’t matter.”

Head over to Glamour’s website to read Meg Ryan’s latest profile in its entirety.

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