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THE REAL REASON OLIVIA WILDE CHANGED HER NAME
By LILLIAN GAO
Fans may know quite a lot about Olivia Wilde's personal affairs and professional endeavors; however, few know that Wilde is not actually the actor's given surname. She was born Olivia Cockburn, and told Observer in 2007 that changing names is almost a tradition in her family.
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"My mother thought it was a good idea for me," Wilde explained, "so I could have my own identity outside of my family." She added, “she suggested I pick something Irish and something that I'd always be inspired by," and the inspiration Wilde chose is also surprising.
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"At the time, I was doing 'The Importance of Being Earnest' ... and I was so in love with it," Wilde said. "Oscar Wilde is someone who I respect for so many reasons — a revolutionary, a comedian and a profound thinker." Interestingly, Wilde would change her surname for a second time later in her life.
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Wilde met director, photographer, and Italian prince Tao Ruspoli when she was just 18, and when the two eloped six months later, she presumably took his name legally. However, Wilde filed for divorce in March 2011, saying the marriage "stunted my growth."
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