Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones make up one of the most iconic couples in Hollywood. Douglas, the son of famous movie star Kirk Douglas, became quite the actor himself. In the late ’80s he starred in memorable films like Wall Street and Fatal Attraction and, by the ’90s, he added Basic Instinct to his repertoire. In the year 2000, he starred in Wonder Boys and married Zeta-Jones, an incredible actress 25 years his junior — to the day. Zeta-Jones quickly became a household name after her role in the movie The Mask of Zorro.
As of this writing, the couple has been married nearly 18 years. As Hollywood marriages often seem to age in dog years, this union has certainly stood the test of time — and fame. Over the course of their marriage, Douglas and Zeta-Jones have welcomed two children: a son and daughter. At just 15 years old, the pair’s daughter is the spitting image of her mother. Here’s everything you need to know about the youngest Douglas — and at the end, we’ll reveal what she looks like today.
Welcome to the world, Carys
On August 8, 2000, Douglas and Zeta-Jones welcomed their first child together, Dylan Michael Douglas. "Mother, baby and father are all doing very well," Douglas’ website announced (via News24). Less than three years later, Zeta-Jones had another child, this time a girl. East Valley Tribune announced the news, writing, "The Oscar-winning actress gave birth to Carys (pronounced KEHR’-is) Zeta Douglas on Sunday morning in Ridgewood, N.J., near the couple’s Manhattan home."
While the name may sound like an unusual choice to us Americans, Carys is a common female name in Wales, where Zeta-Jones is from. Nameberry says the name means "love" — aww. The same year that Carys was born, Zeta-Jones was awarded her "Oscar-winning" title for her role in the musical comedy Chicago. Though she was eight months pregnant at the time, Zeta-Jones performed a Chicago-esque duet with Queen Latifah at the 2003 Oscars ceremony. Carys would eventually learn just how cool her mom was — and still is.
She loves her big bro
Spacing children a couple years apart seems practical enough. It enables your children to have built-in playmates after all, right? Yes and no. A study cited by The New York Times found that if your first-born child has reached the age of two when the younger child comes along, feelings of resentment can form. Further research showed younger siblings that are born at least two years later than the first-born child will experience some negative effects to their self-esteem. Spaced at a distance of two and a half years, this could’ve been the case for Dylan and Carys. Thankfully, the results of this study doesn’t seem to apply to the young Douglas siblings.
Throwback photos posted to Carys’ Instagram page show the siblings as adorable — and happy — little ones. On her big bro’s eighteenth birthday, Carys shared another photo from their childhood and wished Dylan a happy birthday, calling him her "best friend." Recent pictures of the duo show they’re just as close today as they were back then.
She used to think her dad was a "pancake maker"
It must be quite an experience when children of celebrities find out the level of fame their parents have achieved. Discovering that your mom is the Catherine Zeta-Jones and your father is the Michael Douglas sounds like it’d be mind-blowing but, for Carys, it was just… confusing.
When she was little, she lived with her parents and brother in Bermuda, some 3,000 miles from Hollywood. Since she was so far removed from the acting scene, she didn’t exactly understand what her parents — especially her father — did for work. "I thought my dad was a pancake maker," Carys admitted in an interview with Town & Country, "I didn’t know he was an actor. Honestly."
Although this is probably hilarious to Carys in retrospect, there is some basis to thinking her dad had a career in pancake-making. When interviewed by the Boston Herald in 2015, Douglas himself acknowledged his skill, saying, "I can make great pancakes." Pancake-maker, A-list actor — a man of many talents.
Fame wasn’t always easy for Carys
When Carys and her family moved from Bermuda to a very different kind of island — Manhattan — it became clear that her parents were celebrities. Though not quite the epicenter of the movie industry, the Big Apple was still crawling with paparazzi. "I hated it," Carys told Town & Country, "I used to get really upset." She told of how photographers would "jump on the subway" and position themselves directly in front of her. As she was only around six years old when this started happening, it was bewildering, and likely terrifying, to say the least.
Despite her young age, Carys recognized the need to turn her attention inward. She explained to the magazine, saying, "That’s when I knew, ‘If this is going to be what it’s like, I need to focus on who I really am, and this is going to be something that’s just going to happen, and I can’t do anything about it.’"
Her mom is one of the "most important women" in her life
The mother and teenage daughter relationship may be difficult at times, but Zeta-Jones and Carys have proved that it can also be quite amazing. On Carys’ birthday, Zeta-Jones took to Instagram to share two photos of her daughter over the years. The mom of two wrote, in part, "15 years ago, I was given the most precious gift, my darling daughter Carys. The gift that keeps on giving! I love you, thank you for being you."
One month later, Carys returned the love on social media, sharing a photo of both her mother and grandmother. "Elegance, poise, hearts full of gold, the most important women in my life — mommy and nanna. I thank you both for the gift of life and unconditional love," the teenager wrote in the Instagram caption. As Valentine’s Day in 2018 neared, Carys posted another photo of her mom, this time calling Zeta-Jones "mama" and her "forever valentine." Can you handle the cuteness?
She’s still a Daddy’s girl
When Carys was born, her mother was in her early thirties, but her father was nearing 60. "I never anticipated starting a family at my age," Douglas told The Guardian back in 2010, when Carys was just seven years old. The then 66 year old explained, "I’m not driven like I once was — these days I am consumed with being a father and with my responsibilities as a husband." He explained that he enjoys being a stay-at-home parent while Zeta-Jones works, adding, "I cherish this time."
It seems Carys cherished their time together as well. In a throwback photo from that same year, seven-year-old Carys and her father can be seen smiling at Carys’ first New York Rangers game. Carys captioned the photo in part: "Dad, you inspire and full-heartedly love everyone around you! I love you endlessly!" Carys’ relationship with both of her parents is undoubtedly — and remarkably — strong.
She has plenty of talents
Speaking with E! News, Zeta-Jones revealed her daughter’s plethora of talents. "She is a wonderful actress, a wonderful singer, and pianist," the actress explained. Douglas told Extra how Carys hones her talents, which includes going to a performing arts camp for the third year in a row. Will Carys follow in her famous parents’ footsteps and become an actor? It’s certainly possible. "She wants to get into the business, in all its capacity," her mom further told E! News. At the time, Zeta-Jones said that acting was her daughter’s passion. "I’ve schooled them in that [business]," she said.
As you can imagine, having two high-profile celebrities as parents would certainly help Carys to determine if she wants to pursue acting as a career. If not, though, she can surely find a way to channel her many other talents in order to form a successful profession for herself, whether in — or outside — Hollywood.
She may look like her mom, but she’s "pretty individual"
When you look at older photos Carys has shared of her mom and photos that Zeta-Jones herself has shared from her earlier days, you’ll feel as if you’re actually looking at Carys. There’s no denying a strong familial resemblance between this mother and daughter. But, just because they practically look like twins, they aren’t necessarily alike beneath the surface.
"This is your mini me," E! Live from the Red Carpet at New York Fashion Week told Zeta-Jones, referring to Carys standing at her side. "Yeah, well, she’s pretty individual," the teenager’s mother clarified. Zeta-Jones further added, "She’s strong and smart and has good morals and good judgement, which for a [then] 14 year old, you never quite know what you’re gonna get." She’s not wrong.
Although it was Carys’ first time attending New York Fashion Week, she said she could see fashion becoming a part of her life in the future.
Big plans for the future
Since attending her first fashion show, her love of fashion has only grown. "Fashion has been so important in my life, because my mom is like a fashion icon to me," Carys told Town & Country. Although the teenager has only acted in school productions thus far, she did confirm her mom’s earlier remarks by saying she’s interested in forging a path in Hollywood. But she hasn’t always felt that way.
"When I was younger I didn’t like the idea of having this name attached to me, this kind of ‘Douglas dynasty’ stuff," she explained. It bothers her that people assume things are given to her as opposed to earned. Instead, she said she actually feels the "need to constantly prove myself to people — that I am not just my parents’ daughter."
Carys also wants to attend an Ivy League school and even dreams of becoming a doctor. The 15-year-old summed up her ambitions when speaking to E! Live, saying, "Actress, model, brain surgeon — we’ll see!" And that we will.