If you have ever wondered how the renowned Hollywood figures Michael Keaton and Diane Keaton are related, then you are wrong. Both actors are actually not related at all! The reason they share the same surname is simply a coincidence. Michael Keaton and Diane Keaton have no familial ties, but they share a last name for the same reason.  Despite their same names, it is quite intriguing when you learn how both actors got their names. Let’s explore the fascinating story behind their names.

Michael Keaton and Diane Keaton are not related even in their surnames

Michael Keaton is recognized as an accomplished actor in the entertainment industry. With a career spanning more than several decades, he has gained recognition for his versatile acting skills and memorable performances in films such as Batman and Birdman. 

Michael Keaton during a public event
Michael Keaton

On the other hand, Diane Keaton has been a respected figure in the industry, highly acclaimed for her role in The Godfather and movies like Annie Hall and Manhattan. It is certain that both actors have carved their own path in their career, showcasing the talent and versatility that truly defines their success.

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Interestingly, it is obvious to speculate that both actors have blood ties. In reality, they have no familial ties. But the common factor between them is that neither of their last names, ‘Keaton’, is associated with their family background; in fact, they acquired the surname by very different means.

Michael Keaton was initially known as Michael Douglas

Although many people don’t know that Michael Keaton originally went by the name Michael Douglas, if anyone assumes he has any connection with the Wall Street actor, you are again wrong.

A still of Michael Keaton in Birdman Movie
Michael Keaton in Birdman Movie

Born in 1951, when he moved to Los Angeles, he encountered an actor and another TV host in the Screen Actors Guild, both of whom had variations of the same name, which eventually prompted him to reconsider his name. In a conversation with an episode of The Late Show, Keaton said,

And somebody said, ‘Well, you know, you’ve got to change your name.’ And I said, ‘Well, I don’t really want to change my name.’ I’m very proud of my name… I said, ‘Why?’ ‘Because there are two other guys in the union.’ So I changed my name.

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It was also rumored that he had chosen the Keaton out of inspiration from Diane Keaton. However, while speaking to People magazine( Distractify), he took the name “on a whim”. “It was just in the K’s in the alphabet, and I thought, ‘It’s close enough,” he explained.


Diane Keaton got her name after her mother’s maiden

Diane Keaton
Diane Keaton

Actress Diane Keaton’s original name was Daine Hall. However, after moving to New York City to pursue her career. She joined the Actors’ Equity Association, where she changed her name to Keaton because there was already an actress with the name.

Diane Hall changed the name to Keaton taken from her mother’s maiden. According to Vogue, Keaton, explained it in her autobiography, Then Again. 

“It dawned on me I could keep it all in the family by using Mom’s maiden name”

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A still of Diane Keaton in Annie Hall
Diane Keaton in Annie Hall

However, there is an interesting twist in the story. According to People, Keaton’s real surname, “Hall”, was inspired by Woody Allen when he wrote Keaton’s film Annie Hall, for which she won an Oscar in 1978. Allen wrote the role specifically for the actress, whom he had dated previously since Annie was her nickname.

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