Chris Pratt Gives an Emotional Speech About His Son's Premature Birth During March of Dimes Luncheon

"Jack went from a small, helpless little squirt to a strong, smart, happy, funny, beautiful boy," he says

By Zach Johnson Dec 08, 2014 1:50 PMTags
Watch: Chris Pratt Talks Son's Premature Birth

Chris Pratt gave a touching and humorous speech at Friday's March of Dimes Celebration of Babies.

During the star-studded event at the Beverly Wilshire, the Guardians of the Galaxy star, 35, recalled his son's premature birth; Jack Pratt was born nine weeks early in August 2012. At the time, the newborn weighed just 3 pounds, 12 ounces. "That's a decent-sized bass," Chris joked. "Very small for a human."

"I've done all kinds of cool things as an actor: I've jumped out of helicopters and done some daring stunts and played baseball in a professional stadium, but none of it means anything compared to being somebody's daddy," said Chris, who has been married to Mom actress Anna Faris, 38, since July 9, 2009.

Chris cherished being able to hold Jack in the NICU. "I made promises in that moment about what kind of dad I wanted to be and I just prayed that he'd live long enough that I could keep them," he recalled.

Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images for March of Dimes

During that time, Chris and Anna were also told that Jack may have special needs and would need cosmetic surgery to correct his eyes. "Welcome to the club, kid," the Parks and Recreation star joked. After about a month in the NICU, they took their son home. "Our Jack went from a small, helpless little squirt to a strong, smart, happy, funny, beautiful boy who loves monster trucks and Daniel Tiger, and, believe it or not, loves vegetables," Chris said. "Broccoli and cherry tomatoes are his favorite foods."

"None of what we went through would be as easy even 10 years ago," the actor told the crowd, adding that in the NICU, life or death hangs in the balance—"a balance that's tipping towards life by cutting-edge medicines, much of which is a direct result of this wonderful organization, the March of Dimes."


This was far from the first time Chris has spoken about Jack's premature birth, however. In GQ's 2014 Men of the Year issue, he said, "We were told, OK, you need to be prepared for raising a special-needs child.' And we felt like it was devastating, but it also felt like, you know, 'We can do this.' He's alive."

In July, Chris recalled that he and Anna "were scared" but "prayed a lot" after Jack's early arrival. As the Jurassic World actor told People, "It restored my faith in God, not that it needed to be restored, but it really redefined it. The baby was so beautiful to us, and I look back at the photos of him and it must have been jarring for other people to come in and see him, but to us he was so beautiful and perfect."

So, what's Jack like today? In addition to being "amazing" and "so open," Chris told the magazine that his mini-me "is so charming that my plan is to just let him take care of us as soon as he's old enough."