Kevin Winter/Getty Images
by Gina Serpe | Tue., May. 17, 2011 1:25 PM
Kevin Winter/Getty Images
It's not just the Sperminator whose loins have been loosed upon a suddenly scandalized nation.
But Arnold Schwarzenegger isn't the first star (and sadly won't be the last) to have his marriage implode amid revelations of illegitimate children. In fact, secret family members—be they children, siblings, or whoever—are nothing new.
And word to the wise: deny them all you want, but they'll always be back. More often than not, with a court order and a DNA test.
So let's take a trip down scandalous memory lane and take a look at five other surprise branches that popped up on some unsuspecting celebrities' family trees:
1. Oprah Winfrey's Half-Sister: As if Oprah would ever get caught up in a scandal unawares! Unless you count that whole beef thing. Or the James Frey fiasco. But she would never get caught out in a personal scandal unawares, which is why when Oprah had a family bombshell to drop, she did so not in a press release or through sneakily-taken paparazzi photos, but on her own terms and turf, dedicating an entire hour of The Oprah Winfrey Show to telling the story of her secret half-sister.
"There is no way a story like this wouldn't get out in the press and wouldn't get exploited," she told the audience, before introducing them to Patricia, a daughter Oprah's mother Vernita Lee gave up for adoption in 1963. Patricia lived in foster homes throughout her childhood and as an adult followed the paper trail back to her birth mother. In 2007, a DNA test was administered to one of Oprah's nieces and came out as a match. Oprah and longtime partner Stedman Graham received the news as positively as could be expected, and even drove up to Milwaukee to spend last Thanksgiving weekend with Patricia and her family.
"We're going to be getting to know each other in the months and days to come," Oprah said.
2. Jude Law's Daughter: Jude's little black book of nannies must've come in handy back in 2009, when, out of nowhere, a rep for the divorced, then-father-of-three announced that another baby was on the way. The mama? Aspiring (aren't they all?) actress/model Samantha Burke, a brief Florida fling that ended up being about as long-term as you can get.
To his credit, once he verified the surprise news that his baby maker was still working—or, as his rep put it, had "been advised that he is to be the father of a child"—Law vowed to support the baby, Sophia, who was born in September 2009 without her father by her side. A month later, mother and daughter posed for the cover of Hello!, and at the time of the magazine's publication, Jude had still not met his daughter.
It's unclear, nearly two years later, if such a meeting has yet taken place, or if Jude's promised support is simply of a monetary nature.
John Shearer/Getty Images; Ian Gavan/Getty Images
3. Gavin Rossdale's Daughter: Imagine you're a rock star, just trying to live your A-list life with a superstar wife. Now imagine that your onetime fling drops a bombshell on you (and the scandal-loving world) that her model and perennial British It girl daughter just happens to be your daughter as well.
And that said daughter is 15.
Back in 2004 (bear in mind, this was before he knocked out a couple fashionisto kids with Gwen Stefani), Rossdale was blindsided by news (confirmed, obviously, by DNA testing) that he was the biological father of London socialite Daisy Lowe.
Rossdale had a fling with singer Pearl Lowe when they were both in their late teens, and had obviously stayed close—while another man, businessman Bronner Lowe, was listed as the father on Daisy's birth certificate, Gavin was the girl's godfather. Minus the god.
AP Photo/Jim R. Bounds; Scott Olson/Getty Images
4. John Edwards' Daughter: Not every aspiring politico is able to secrete a love child quite as easily as Arnold. Enter John Edwards, who failed spectacularly in his much-publicized efforts. Not that you need a recap, but here's one anyway: during his second bid for the presidency, Edwards admitted that he had an extramarital affair with campaign staffer Rielle Hunter. She gave birth to a daughter, Frances Quinn Hunter, in February 2008 and after some super devious public lying and an implosive cover-up campaign (with a big assist from the National Enquirer), speculation as to Edwards' paternity began. He denied it and offered to take a DNA test and after a lot of back-and-forth, which ultimately cost him his marriage to Elizabeth, John finally acknowledged, when the girl was 2 years old, that he was the father.
"It was wrong for me to ever deny she was my daughter and hopefully one day, when she understands, she will forgive me," he said.
5. Liv Tyler's Father: Sure, now everyone can see the resemblance between her and Steven Tyler in those raven locks and pouty lips, but up until she was a preteen, Liv believed (because she was deceptively told by mother Bebe Buell) that her father was singer-songwriter Todd Rundgren. Pretty soon, however, she began noticing the resemblance between herself and the American Idol judge and after questioning her mother, had confirmation on her suspicions that the Aerosmith rocker was in fact her biological father.
The secret wasn't made public until a few years later, when Liv changed her surname from Rundrgen to Tyler. The duo obviously have a tight relationship now, and are something of the poster children (and parents) for secret family members everywhere.
And we know there's gotta be a lot more out there.
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