Photo: @chrissyteigen via Instagram
For many parents, screen time offers a precious break from parenting—and this is true for famous moms and dads, too. Whether it's educational shows, classic cartoons or the latest Disney movies, we're all looking for a little time to ourselves while Nanny TV takes on the role of activity coordinator. And in case you were wondering, celebrities are just as susceptible to a Disney earworm (there's no escape!).
Not only that, but movie night can also be a great bonding experience for families—a chance to spend time with your little ones, learn about what they’re into and connect with them.
Looking for some new programs to add to your rotation? Here are the cartoons and movies celebs swear by (and, in some cases, offer up as cautionary tales. We're looking at you, Cocomelon).
Nobody can escape Cocomelon, and Shay Mitchell knows that more than anyone. The Canadian actress shared a hilarious TikTok showing 2-year-old Atlas throwing a tantrum with the caption: “My daughter when I turn off cocomelon.” The YouTube channel, famous for its nursery rhymes, has over 134 million subscribers and more than 128 billion views. And the show’s ability to irk parents is second to none! Speaking to TP, Shay also revealed that Atlas’ top three movies were Coco, Encanto and Mulan. “She can watch them a million times over,” she said.
Even Royal babies can’t get enough of The Octonauts! Of two-year-old Archie’s future career aspirations, Prince Harry said, “When I talk to my son Archie about what he wants to be when he grows up, some days it’s an astronaut, a pilot...or Kwazii from Octonauts.” The show’s resident daredevil, Kwazii is an orange cat whose eyepatch is a sign of his mysterious pirate past.
Chrissy Teigen and John Legend’s three-year-old, Miles, was absolutely mesmerized by the new Looney Tunes-style Tom and Jerry. And on her first day of Kindergarten, five-year-old Luna held up a sign that said her favourite movie is Scooby-Doo.
In 2020, Cardi B famously had beef with British children’s cartoon Peppa Pig, for teaching her two-year-old Kulture to jump into the show’s beloved “muddy puddles” whenever she finds them. “My baby been watching peppa pig and now Everytime she sees a wet puddle she wants to stomp on top of it,” the rapper tweeted, lamenting that her toddler’s UGG boots were ruined. If we spent that much on baby boots we’d be pissed too!
Nothing beats a classic, and Drew Barrymore knows that more than anyone. The actress talked about getting her daughters, Frankie and Olive, into some “vintage” Tom and Jerry and being delighted by how much they love it. “They live for it!” Drew told People. “There is a real oddity to the humour, it’s kind of deep and dark and weird.”
Actress Eva Mendes talked about “binging” Bluey, the adorable animated Australian series about a family of Blue Heeler dogs, with her daughters during the pandemic. “They love Bluey! Bluey is huge in our house. Huge,” Eva told Now to Love. The star herself got the chance to voice a guest character in an episode of Bluey in 2021.
Australian actress Rose Byrne told The Daily Telegraph that she was grateful for the company of Sesame Street and Bluey during the pandemic as she isolated with her partner and two sons, Rocco and Rafa, at their New York home.
The Rock sympathized with parents whose kids were obsessed with Moana. The actor, who voices Maui in the hit film, shared a video on Instagram of his toddler Tiana forcing him to sing along to “You’re Welcome” while the movie played. The caption reads, “And for the 937th time today she wants daddy to sing along with Maui. She has no idea, we’re the same person. And I have no idea what day it is anymore, but I am sure it’s one that ends with Y. To all the mama and papa bears out there going thru it - we understand.”
Even royals need a little screen time sometimes to keep their kids entertained. Over the years, Prince William and Kate have shared some of Prince George and Princess Charlotte's favourite shows and movies. The list includes British classics like Fireman Sam and Peppa Pig, as well as popular films like The Lion King, Coco and How to Train Your Dragon.
Josh Gad gave a public apology on Jimmy Kimmel Live! to everyone who was sick of Frozen’s “Let it Go” after getting a taste of his own medicine with Encanto. “I understand now. I’m ashamed. I’m sorry,” joked the actor, who voiced Olaf in Frozen, after complaining about the “We Don’t Talk About Bruno” fever that has taken over his daughters.
In 2019, Kylie Jenner shared her love for The Little Mermaid with then-one-year-old Stormi, who she recorded dancing along to “Under The Sea” on her Instagram story. Kylie went on to dress up as the Little Mermaid for Halloween that year.
Singer-songwriter and TV host Kelly Clarkson admitted to watching some of her toddlers’ favourites in her downtime. Kelly doesn’t shy away from a few eps of Butter Bean’s Cafe, PJ Masks or Barbie movies—even when her kids aren’t around. River Rose and Remy Alexander’s latest obsession is DC’s Aquaman. “My children love that film,” she told Today, “I’ve almost got the script memorized.”
Ryan Reynolds joked that his middle daughter, Inez, is “super into villains,” while chatting with Kelly Ripa and Ryan Seacrest on Live with Kelly and Ryan. The actor added that Inez’s favourite character from Beauty and the Beast is Gaston.
Keira Knightley joked about her then-toddler Edie’s love for Paw Patrol in a 2019 interview. “It's like toddler crack, isn’t it?” said Keira on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. She added that Edie, who is a tough critic to please, used to impersonate characters from the show with her mother and judge Keira’s acting skills. Tough crowd!
John Stamos and Caitlin McHugh went all out for their son’s first birthday. The couple planned a Curious George-themed party with all the bells and whistles. Talking to Us Weekly, John even joked about bringing a live monkey so little Billy’s day would be truly unforgettable. Unfortunately, no actual monkeys were present at the birthday party, but father and son did rock a pair of matching Elvis outfits to mark the occasion on Instagram.
In a 2018 interview on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, Mila Kunis talked about her children’s love for Bubble Guppies, Paw Patrol and Peppa Pig. The mother of two joked, “listen, Paw Patrol, Bubble Guppies, we are in, so if you want to send me some swag, totally cool.”
Jimmy Fallon and Tyler Perry bonded over how fed up they were with their kids’ favourite shows, Paw Patrol and Dora the Explorer. “They watch it so much that I hate the show,” said Jimmy before he started singing the Paw Patrol theme, joined by Tyler. Jimmy added, “I've seen every Dora the Explorer episode ever and I’ve explored so much with Dora.” To which Tyler responded with, “Yeah, yeah, I kind of want to choke Dora.”
In 2017, preschooler North West spoke for herself in her very first interview in Interview. When asked about her favourite show, the then-four-year-old said it was Shimmer and Shine.