Being a parent in the digital era is tough. With nearly every form of technology available with the click of a button, seemingly every day it becomes easier and easier for children to access adult entertainment, whatever that may mean. It could be bad language, suggestive dialogue, or lots and lots of filthy, dirty sex, but point is, there’s plenty of entertainment out there not meant for children. It can be extremely difficult for a person tasked with protecting this child to protect them from all of the forms of popular entertainment out there, especially with media constantly being thrown in the child’s face. We can only imagine it gets made exponentially worse when the concerned parent stars in the very entertainment they try to keep their kids from watching.
Especially with the rise of gritty, action-packed cable TV, mainstream media isn’t always appropriate for children, and the people within the mainstream media know it. Well, at least some of them. No matter how much they love the film or TV show they made, endless celebrities have gone on record in interviews or talk show appearances as refusing to let their children watch their work. Things might change when the kids get older, but for now, these 10 celebrities’ children have no idea why they’re famous—and if the celebs have anything to say about it, it’s going to stay that way.
10. Bob Odenkirk Doesn’t Want His Kids To Break Bad
Most comedians probably don’t practice their jokes on their children, but Bob Odenkirk isn’t necessarily worried about his kids seeing Mr. Show. Appearing on Conan with the rest of the Breaking Bad cast, Odenkirk noted he didn’t even start watching the show himself until he was cast on it. Prior to that, he heard good things, but with young children at home, he didn’t want to expose them to such a violent and drug-filled environment. This attitude continued when Odenkirk started appearing on the show as Saul Goodman, with Odenkirk himself not even watching the show until season 4. As for his children, they probably still aren’t allowed to watch the Odenkirk-starring spinoff Better Call Saul.
9. Judd Apatow and Leslie Mann’s Children Can’t Watch Their Own Work
Judd Apatow is one of the biggest producers and directors in Hollywood, and his wife Leslie Mann often has at least a supporting role in most of the films he produces. Their children have even appeared in the films, with small supporting roles in Knocked Up and Funny People which led to larger parts in This Is 40. Regardless of becoming a part of the show, the kids still weren’t allowed to watch the films, at least as of a 2010 interview with Mann conducted by David Letterman. Somehow Mann and Apatow have managed control over their children’s friends, as well, also barring them from seeing the raunchy films.
8. Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green’s Kids Don’t Watch TV
Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green’s two sons Noah and Bodhi might see some of their mom’s movies, but they probably won’t be seeing her or their dad on TV any time soon. Fox, who currently appears in New Girl, told Parents magazine she won’t let her children watch any television at all, regardless of the star. She let’s them watch movies, but feels television is lacking in the narrative structure a young developing mind requires to stay focused. The couple is currently separated and Fox has filed for divorce in August of 2010. Not much of their personal lives has been made public since, but maybe things have changed and the kids will at least be allowed to watch their father the next time he lands a supporting role on a cable series.
7. Jack Black’s Children Can’t Pick Their Destiny
Some celebrities have extremely versatile careers, starring in films implicitly made for children at practically the same time they were writing their own films made explicitly not for children. So while Jack Black’s children have seen him in all of the Kung Fu Panda movies, that’s where their understanding of his career ends. Feeling his work in Tenacious D, including the film The Pick Of Destiny, is too adult, Black won’t even suggest his children watch School of Rock, perhaps out of the hesitation they might develop an interest in his musical career.
6. Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard Freeze Their Kids Viewing Habits
All of the stars on this list won’t let their kids watch their own films, but celebrity couple Kristen Bell and Dax Shepard go further with it, banning their children from watching any television at all. Granted, the kids are very young, born in early 2013 and late 2014. However, as Bell acknowledges, they are at the perfect ages to be absolutely obsessed with her starring role as Princess Anna in Frozen. Unfortunately for the two young girls, named Lincoln and Delta, Bell says the two have some time to wait before they get to watch that or any film, and likely don’t even understand what it is she does for a living yet.
Bell and Shepard explained the decision was made upon the advice of the American Psychological Association, who recommend that children should not watch any television until they reach two and a half years old. With their older daughter having just passed that age, perhaps the two will lighten up and chill out on their frigid rules. It will probably still be a few years before they watch their mom as a detective on Veronica Mars and for their sake let’s hope their dad never forces them to watch Without a Paddle.
5. Helen Hunt’s Kid Isn’t Mad About Anything
Things may have changed since, but in a 2008 interview with David Letterman, Helen Hunt claimed her daughter had never seen any film or television show. She told stories of daughter, Makena Lei, being confused by Elmo and Nemo, never having seen or heard of either. Hunt doesn’t elaborate on why exactly her daughter doesn’t watch any form of entertainment, but noted her daughter also gets confused when people do her hair and makeup, not understanding exactly what her job is. While most young children wouldn’t be interested in watching Mad About You, the fact her daughter seemed completely oblivious to all entertainment seems unlikely without parental manipulation.
4. Julia Roberts Is Waiting For A Happier Time
It shouldn’t be surprising to realize Julia Roberts has starred in plenty of films that aren’t appropriate for children when you consider her big break came as a prostitute. Still, she’s starred in her fair share of family comedies as well, but that hasn’t stopped her from banning her children from watching anything she appears in. Twins Hazel and Phinnaeus and their younger brother Daniel were both called “too young” to watch even her fairy tale inspired film Mirror Mirror. Roberts, along with her husband Danny Moder, director of photography on several films, feel they will eventually find the right time to expose their kids to their work. As “happy and joyous” as they feel that time will be, it has yet to come, and isn’t likely to any time soon. The family purport they prefer reading books and spending their time together, opposed to watching any television or movies at all.
3. Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones Get Too Racy On Screen
Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones have two children, who are now in their teens, but it’s possible Zeta-Jones is standing by her mandate that the children can only watch her movies until they’re older. Though Douglas has starred in far more critically acclaimed films, the couple accurately feels his films are too “racy” for children, while Zeta-Jones has starred in a variety of animated and family films more appropriate for youngsters. There’s no problem letting the kids watch Sinbad: Legend of the Seven Seas or The Mask of Zorro, but something like Basic Instinct might be too much even for a young teenager. Then again, if it was your dad in the movie, you might not ever be ready to see that. No word on whether or not the kids will be there for the premiere of Zeta-Jones’ The Godmother, a biographical film about drug lord Griselda Blanco, but we’re guessing it’s not likely.
2. Mayim Bialik’s Kids Won’t See The Big Bang
Mayim Bialik has been a TV star since she was a kid herself, starring in Blossom when she was only a teenager. She currently stars as Sheldon’s girlfriend Dr. Amy Fowler on The Big Bang Theory, but doesn’t let her two sons watch the extremely popular CBS sitcom. She finally allowed her children to watch her work when she starred in the 2015 Lifetime made-for-TV film The Flight Before Christmas. Bialik has stated in several interviews that she is a strict follower of Judaism, so although her reservations must not be terribly strong since she still stars in the show, perhaps her faith plays a role in not wanting her children to watch it, given the sexually suggestive nature of any modern sitcom.
1. Steve Jobs’ Children Weren’t Allowed To Connect
Steve Jobs didn’t make movies or TV shows, he changed the way people watched them by developing Apple products including the iPhone and iPad. Despite being one of the integral forces in changing technology, Jobs didn’t let his children use his new inventions. One year prior to his death, in 2010, Jobs was quoted as saying “we limit how much technology our kids use at home,” explaining his children had never even used an iPod. With technology controlling every element of the current generation, it’s amazing the next generation of the family who invented that technology were ever denied it. At the same time, though, considering they clearly have better things on their minds and most people just use that technology for Angry Birds, maybe that’s a good thing.