Renée Zellweger and Her Mom

This lady really needs no introduction, having established herself as one of the most successful actresses in the world in the late 90’s with her appearances in Empire Records, Jerry Maguire, and Me, Myself and Irene before earning consecutive Academy Award for Best Actress nominations for 2001’s Bridget Jones’s Diary and 2002’s Chicago.

Renee Zellweger, standing, with flowers.

It’s a testament to someone’s success when they become so famous that first names like Pablo, Mitt, Crispin or Barack don’t even sound funny anymore. Today’s post is about one of those people, and for this reason, it was tough to figure out whether Renée Zellweger even deserved to make the cut on our blog.

But when we found out that her parents were named Emil Erich Zellweger and Kjellfrid Irene Andreassen, that really sealed the deal. That, and the accent aigu over the first “e” in Renée.

Now known as one of the premier actresses of our time, she never planned on this career path. Needing a fine arts credit toward her English degree at the University of Texas, she enrolled in a drama class and discovered her love of acting. While in college, she became a Screen Actors Guild member for an appearance in a Coors beer commercial. We all have to start somewhere!

She has done a good job of keeping a squeaky-clean public image, but our research unearthed a few more interesting facts about Ms. Zellweger. She was in a bathroom when it was announced that she had won the Golden Globe Best Actress award for her role in Nurse Betty. Also, her signature “squinty” eyes and high, broad cheekbones are both attributed to her Finnish Sami (also known as Laplander) ancestry on her mother’s side.

Swarthy? What’s up with these adjectives today?

We’re finding it hard to verify that last claim , because the first ten results for “Sami squinty eyes” are a forum, a blog post involving vodka and reindeer outfits, and eight links specifically mentioning Renee Zellweger. This leads us to three possible conclusions:

  1. Renée Zellweger is the only Laplander who has received significant international fame.
  2. The whole thing is completely untrue, or
  3. Scientists and serious journalists aren’t too keen on using squinty as an adjective.

The search for truth continues…

Nevertheless, if Scandinavian gene expression really floats your boat (or Viking ship), we recommend the amusingly-titled article How Swarthy are the Sami?

About Dave

Based out of San Diego, California. Co-founder of the Blog of Funny Names.
This entry was posted in Greatest hits. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Renée Zellweger and Her Mom

  1. Arto says:

    As an unofficial “expert” on the subject with no credentials or credibility whatsoever to offer to this discussion, I will do as the American way suggests and chime in here. Yes, Laplanders tend to have squintier eyes. I think your suggestions 1 and 3 are entirely correct (although a Google Scholar search for “squinty eyes” returns 5190 results, but that was clearly too much research to do on this).

  2. Pingback: Our 100th Post! Sweet Brown’s Got Time for That! « The Blog of Funny Names

  3. Pingback: Post 99 of the 100th Post-a-Palooza | words become superfluous

  4. Pingback: Oscars 2013 : Funny Names Galore at the Academy Awards | The Blog of Funny Names

  5. Pingback: From Reindeer and Herring to English Muffins and Pee Sandals, Funny Names are in the News! | The Blog of Funny Names

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s