Elle Fanning & Hilary Duff Are Both Related to Royals but Who's the Fairest of Them All?
Someone get this girl a tiara. Maleficent star Elle Fanning is related to Kate Middleton, so basically she had a blood-claim to that Princess Aurora role opposite Angelina Jolie. Not that we're surprised — Fanning, who turned 16 back in April, is charging through Hollywood with style and grace and commanding our attention every turn. So, how related is Fanning to the Duchess of Cambridge? Ancestry.com traced the young star's lineage way back to the 1300s and she's almost as royal as Hollywood's most-royal celeb, Hilary Duff. #BowDown.
According to People, who revealed the site's findings on Tuesday, Fanning's connection is through her mother's, Heather Joy Arrington, side of the family. Extensive research revealed that the Maleficent star is the 22nd great granddaughters of King Edward III, who ruled England for 50 years from 1330 to 1376. That's just the first Fanning tie to royalty. As for her relation to the future queen — Middleton's mother, Carole Goldsmith, is also a granddaughter of King Edward III (that guy got around), making Fanning Her Royal Highness' 21st cousin. Not one, but TWO ties to the royal family — and none for older sister Dakota Fanning. Just kidding, obviously Dakota is related to the monarchy as well.
So did the Fannings usurp the Duffs in the Hollywood hierarchy? Unfortunately, no. In 2013, FindMyPast.com named Hilary Duff Queen Elizabeth II's 18th cousin. The former Disney star is, according to the site, Edward III's 10th great-granddaughter (HOW MANY KIDS DID THAT GUY HAVE?). Duff is also a descendant of Catherine Car, who's believed to be one of Henry VIII's illegitimate daughters. And none for Hayley Duff.
Does anyone else see a pattern here? The Duffs and the Fannings are more alike than we realized.
Ties To Royalty: 2
Clear Hollywood Frontrunner in 2014: Younger sister, Elle. She covered Marie Claire 's May issue alongside breakout star and Oscar-winner Lupita Nyong'o, Emilia Clarke, and Kate Mara as a "Fresh Face." With the May 30 release of her huge blockbuster, Maleficent, Elle's career is set to skyrocket in 2014 and maybe even surpass the bar her older sister set.
Forgotten Older Sister: Dakota. The elder Fanning was a popular face of the 2000s and one of my fellow NYU classmates. But, while focusing on her studies, she's fallen out of the Hollywood spotlight — so much so that she was a footnote in the Fanning-Royalty announcement. Her recent film, however, Brain On Fire , might mark her return to young Hollywood as a heavyweight.
Disney Girls: Both Elle and Dakota have done work for the Big Mouse — even though Elle is the clear Disney girl of this duo after stepping into the shoes of Aurora for Maleficent. Back in the day, Dakota was the voice of young Kim Possible and voiced Lilo in Lilo & Stitch 2: Stitch Has a Glitch, filling in for the original voice actress.
Ties To Royalty: 2
Clear Hollywood Frontrunner in 2014: Younger sister, Hilary. Duff drove all of her Disney-days fans into a frenzy when she announced in April that she'd be returning to TV with the TVLand series Younger . And she blew our minds again when Duff revealed that she was recording a new album in March. Basically, 2014 was the return of Hilary Duff and proof that younger sisters are killing it.
Forgotten Older Sister: Haylie. Her movie career never really did take off and neither did that singing career — not even after co-starring with Hilary in 2006's Material Girls and dueting on "Our Lips Are Sealed." But Haylie has fallen into blissful, semi-forgotten obscurity (she's still acting) where she recently got engaged and released a cookbook The Real Girl's Kitchen . (Haylie was also a footnote in the Duff royalty revelation.)
Disney Girls: I know you know Hilary from Lizzie McGuire — she's the original Disney Channel star. But Haylie also spent some time on the Disney Channel, the elder Duff guest-starred on Lizzie McGuire, leant her singing voice to her sister for the series' movie, and appeared on That's So Raven.
Are the Fannings the new Duffs? Kind of — but Hilary's still closer to the throne.