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Will Ferrell was ‘so embarrassed’ by his real name growing up


What’s really in a name? 

During Tuesday’s episode of Christina Applegate and Jamie-Lynn Sigler’s “MeSsy” podcast, Will Ferrell opened up about an embarrassing childhood memory that haunts him to this day. 

“Who is 10-year-old Will?” Applegate asked.

After detailing his straight-to-curly hair transformation period, Ferrell said, “At an early age, I still liked to make my friends laugh.”

HOLLYWOOD STARS WHO HAVE MADE HISTORY AND ONLY GO BY ONE NAME

Will Ferrell’s legal name is John William Ferrell. (Cindy Ord/Getty Images)

However, the funny man admitted to feeling self-conscious about one thing in particular: his real name. 

“This is a minor thing in terms of – it’s not really even trauma – but I remember feeling so embarrassed because my real name is John, John William Ferrell, so first day of school, I’d be John,” he recalled. “The teacher would be like ‘John Ferrell?’ and it was so embarrassing to me to have to say ‘Here, but I go by Will, I don’t go by John.'”

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Close up of Will Ferrell

The “Anchorman” actor said he was “so embarrassed” by his real name as a child. (Tristan Fewings/Getty Images for Warner Bros)

Ferrell said it took his teachers quite a bit to catch on, a time period that was “excruciating” for the actor.

“I don’t know why it was so embarrassing to me to have to explain, ‘I’m actually Will,'” he added. “People are probably going to be listening to this going, ‘This is the lamest thing ever.'”

“We just lost anyone named John,” Applegate joked. 

A photo of Will Ferrell

Ferrell said asking to be called Will instead of John was “excruciating.” (John Phillips/Getty Images)

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Ferrell isn’t the only actor who famously dropped or changed their first name. 

Earlier this year, Emma Stone revealed she’d actually prefer to be called by her legal name. 

Emma Stone at the Vanity Fair Oscars party

Stone recently shared that she would like to be called by her real name, Emily. (Karwai Tang/WireImage)

“It’s just because my name was taken [by another actress in SAG],” Stone, who was born Emily Stone, told The Hollywood Reporter in a recent story. 

The actress admitted that people she works with will call her Emily after she “gets to know them.” 

“Then I freaked out a couple of years ago. For some reason, I was like, ‘I can’t do it anymore. Just call me Emily.’ Nathan [her co-star in ‘The Curse’] calls me Em, which is easier,” she told the outlet. 

She also explained that she prefers to be referred to as Emily by fans, stating, “That would be so nice. I would like to be Emily.”

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