Owen Wilson may be the funniest guy in the biz, but he's also a father to three children. However, he's never laid eyes on his youngest, Lyla, who is already four years old - and people are asking why...
Destined for Success
He's one of Hollywood's finest actors and probably one of the funniest guys out there. Owen Wilson has been in the game for over 25 years, and his career only continues to skyrocket.
Born in Dallas, Texas, Wilson always knew he was destined for success one day. And as it so happens, he was not the only Wilson child to make it to Hollywood; you might know his brothers, Andrew and Luke Wilson. Acting must have been in their genes!
Rise to Fame
After getting expelled for cheating, he landed at the University of Texas at Austin to receive a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. And as it so happens, his roommate was the one and only Wes Anderson. The two would become not only great friends, but frequent collaborators.
Together they co-wrote Wilson's breakthrough role in the 1996 comedy Bottle Rocket. It was clear from very early on that Wilson and Anderson's relationship was electrifying, and the two went on to work together in 8 feature films. It was also obvious early on that Wilson was destined to be a comedic Hollywood star.
The Funny Guy
After Bottle Rocket became a big success, Anderson and Wilson were unstoppable. Together they wrote the scripts for Rushmore and The Royal Tenenbaums, Anderson's next two directorial movies, which they earned an Oscar nomination for! And from there, his acting career just kicked off.
Admiring his talent early on, Ben Stiller cast him alongside comedic geniuses Jim Carrey, Jack Black, Matthew Broderick, and himself in The Cable Guy. From there, he began working with every big name in the industry, from Jackie Chan in Shanghai Noon to Will Ferrell and Stiller in Zoolander.
New Career Heights
The early 2000s were a particularly hot time for Wilson, as he was getting cast in practically every major comedy film. Besides Zoolander being a phenomenal box office hit, Wilson partnered up with fellow comedic legend Vince Vaughn for one of the best comedies out there, Wedding Crashers. Who doesn't love Wedding Crashers?
He even collaborated with his brothers in The Wendell Baker Story before landing the iconic role as the voice for Lightning McQueen in all three Disney films, Cars. Wilson was on top of the world, and not one comedy in Hollywood didn't have his name attached to it.
He Can Do It All
But besides being the funniest guy in the room, the actor has also taken on quite a variety of roles in his career, proving that he is more than just one "funny guy" character. In 2011, Wilson starred in Woody Allen's Midnight in Paris, a rom-com, yes, but very different from his previous roles.
Wilson takes on the character of Gil, a nostalgic writer looking to finish a novel and instead gets whisked away into the great city of Paris. The movie became Allen's highest-grossing film, earning the actor a Golden Globe! A few years later, he exercised his action/thriller capabilities in the beloved movie, No Escape.
Always Good to Be Around
Besides being the acting extraordinaire he is, Wilson is an all-around loved guy. Anderson said, "If kids were picking teams, he might be good at whatever the sport is, but I think he'd be picked even quicker than his talent at the sport would suggest, just because people want him on their team." He added, "people are drawn to him."
And we can see it! Even Jennifer Aniston has nothing but good things to say about her Marley & Me co-star. "Owen and I volleyed back and forth really well together. I remember laughing a lot, and I love nothing more than someone who can make me laugh. It's the key to my heart."
And although he may appear on screen as the loud yet lovable goofball, those who know him know that yes, of course, he's hilarious, he's actually so much more. "He's deceptively intelligent and sometimes even hides his intelligence and how well-read he is," Wes Anderson says.
"He surprises you in the course of getting to know him," he adds. "People might underestimate him sometimes." And those who do know him know what a wonderfully intelligent individual is. They also know that he tends to keep his private life very private...
So when it came to his romantic relationships, the actor often kept his leading ladies on the down low. The Zoolander actor dated Sheryl Crow after meeting on the set of The Minus Man in the 90s, as well as actress Gina Gershon and the lovely Demi Moore. Sit tight, because we're only getting started...
The actor was rumored to be dating Kate Hudson back in 2006 on and off, although neither one of them ever confirmed (or denied) the rumors. The two were spotted together on the red carpet together for their film You, Me and Dupree, but it wasn't until years later that Hudson admitted to Drew Barrymore, "I've been there with a Wilson."
Enter Jade Duell
Following his low-key relationship with Hudson, the actor met Jade Duell, a former police officer, US Federal Air Marshall, and employee of the department of homeland security. So how did these two love birds cross paths exactly? Well, they met on a flight!
Owen was filming the romantic comedy film, How Do You Know? in 2009 when the two met on a flight from Los Angeles to Washington D, C. However, they always kept their relationship very private, and it lasted about two years. Duell is also the actor's first baby mama!
About a year into their relationship, Jade became pregnant! She gave birth to Robert Ford Wilson in January 2011 in Maui at the actor's $8 million seaside home. However, the couple's spark died out soon after, and the new parents called it quits five months later.
Regardless, they are very much involved in each other's lives today as co-parents. Although Wilson rarely opens up about Robert, whom he calls Ford, he's previously shared with Ellen DeGeneres that "he's a big Jackie Chan fan" and that he's quite "fearless!"
A few years later, Wilson was spotted dating Caroline Lindqvist. The Night at the Museum star had allegedly known Lindqvist for years before they were rumored to be dating. However, Lindqvist, a personal trainer, was married to plastic surgeon Ritu Chopra at the time of their relationship.
Despite the ambiguity of their timeline, with Lindqvist tying the knot in 2004 and only finalizing her divorce nearly a decade later, the couple had welcomed Wilson's second son into the world in 2014 after being together for about a year.
Baby Number Two!
Wilson and Lindqvist welcomed their son, Finn Lindqvist Wilson, into the world in January 2014. The Wedding Crashers star tends to keep Finn well out of the spotlight, but once joked to Ellen DeGeneres back in 2017 that he "seems like he might be a little stuntman in training!" We'd love to see it!
Despite keeping both of his sons out of the media, Owen is apparently a wonderful father to Ford and Finn. An inside source told Us Weekly that he "has maintained a warm and close relationship with their mothers" throughout the years as co-parents.
So, we know the Wedding Crashers actor kept things friendly with both of his baby mamas, but things were going to look very different for baby mama number three. Wilson had been dating Varunie Vongsvirates for almost five years when the news broke that she was pregnant.
Vongsvirates works as a business development representative for American Addiction Centers and works out of Los Angeles. Seeing as though Wilson keeps his life so private and has no social media, it's unclear how the two met; however, they broke up shortly after she fell pregnant.
Baby Number Three
Varunie was ready to tell the world she was pregnant, and that's precisely what she did. The expecting mother took to Instagram to share with her 33,000 followers that she was ready to pop! "Say hello to Lyla. 3 months to go!" she captioned an ultrasound picture.
People immediately questioned whether the baby belonged to Owen Wilson. After all, the two had been dating for a number of years. Following her Instagram announcement, Varunie told Us Weekly that Wilson was, in fact, the father of her child.
However, Vaurnie also shared that upon telling Wilson he was the father, the Marley & Me actor immediately denied it. "When Varunie told Owen she was pregnant, he was not happy about it, and that was the last time they ever spoke," a source told Radar. According to the same source, he even changed his phone number.
After finding out the breaking news, Owen requested a paternity test to get rid of any questions about who, in fact, the child's father really was. And well, the paternity test proved Owen wrong, and Lyla was born on October 9, 2018, with Owen nowhere near Vaurnie's side.
Even though the paternity test confirmed Lyla is, in fact, Owen Wilson's daughter, he has yet to meet her. Vongsvirates openly shared with Daily Mail that her baby daddy is keeping his distance from Lyla and herself, and it's been a disappointing situation all around.
She explained to the publication that she'd asked the actor multiple times to meet their daughter and get to Lyla, but apparently, he has no desire to. The situation was made crystal clear when Owen checked the "no visitation box" in court, asking for no custody obligations over his daughter.
Fatherhood, Only on Screen
Vongsvirates is not backing down, either. In her exclusive interview with Daily Mail, she blatantly told the publication, "Lyla is in need of a dad. Ironically, Owen Wilson keeps landing parent parts and portrays a father in his newest film despite never meeting his own kid." Ouch.
His ex-beau is referring to his latest romance comedy movie, Marry Me, which came out last year. Wilson plays Charlie Gilbert, a teacher, and single dad, who falls in love with a pop star, played by Jennifer Lopez, and the two live happily ever after.
"Lyla Needs a Father"
Despite the many attempts at reaching out to her former beau, Wilson has yet to appear in Lyla's life. In her interview with Daily Mail, Vongsvirates told the outlet what she would say to Wilson if she could, starting with "she's incredible" and "you're really missing out."
The new mom continued to share that she looked just like Wilson, with her blonde hair and big blue eyes. And overall, "Lyla needs a father." But an inside source shared with Us Weekly that "He does not want to visit [and does not] want any custody of her," leaving them at a crossroads.
Despite Owen not being in the picture, Varunie still celebrated all of her daughter's milestones. Most recently, she posted a sweet photo of her and Lyla celebrating her fourth birthday, captioning the photo, "Happy birthday to my sweet girl!"
Unfortunately, Owen has missed out on all four of her birthdays. The single mom told Daily Mail in 2019, "Owen has never met Lyla. Never." Despite her pleading with the actor, he has made it pretty clear that he's not interested in getting to know his daughter.
However not involved he is in her daughter's life, he's still coughing up a whole lot of thousands in child support! The Marley & Me actor is paying $25 thousand a month for Lyla Aranya Wilson in child care, in addition to his financial responsibilities for both of his sons.
Having three different baby mamas is no cheap task, but to Vongsvirates, it's a lot deeper than money. She told Daily Mail, "he helps financially, but it's never been about that." At the end of the day, a monthly check doesn't replace love or being an active father figure, and that's what Varunie and Lyla are looking for.
Sources confirm that in addition to child support, Owen Wilson has paid about $35 thousand for Varunie's "labor coach" plus about another $35 thousand or so in legal fees. Wilson has also been ordered to pay for Lyla's health insurance, which he reportedly signed her up for under his Screen Actors Guild policy.
An inside source told Us Weekly that Wilson would absolutely "fulfill all of his obligations to support his child" after the paternity test was completed. However, for the time being, it looks like he is only willing to provide financial support to Lyla and Varunie.
Why Not Meet Lyla?
Although he may be providing financial support for his love child, Owen Wilson is not involved in his daughter's life. And the big looming question everyone has is why? Well, audiences have come up with plenty of theories about why he has a problem getting to know his daughter, Lyla.
Some fans figured that Owen just didn't want any more children, plain and simple. He already has two sons from two different women, paying thousands of dollars in child support every year. Others believe he holds a grudge against Varunie for blatantly disregarding his feelings over the sit.
Relationship With His Sons
Despite Wilson being an absent father to Lyla, he is very much in the picture with his sons, Ford and Finn. Although he chooses to keep his personal life entirely private, the actor has shared adorable anecdotes about his relationship with his sons on various television shows.
In an interview with Ellen DeGeneres, the Wedding Crashers star told the host he can "already sort of see how they're gonna be as teenagers." The actor shared that "anything Ford says is just, like, the funniest thing ever," but when he makes a joke, "it's like crickets." Ah, to be a dad.
As for his parenting techniques? The actor revealed to Jimmy Kimmel that he could be "pretty strict about manners and everything" with his sons. But he believes he's "not unreasonably strict" either and thinks of himself as more "old-fashioned" than anything else.
He told the host, "You know, I've said to both of them, 'I don't care what Uncle Woody and what Uncle Willy do, there's no smoking pot in this house. My house, my rules.'" His house, his rules! The actor added he hopes that Ford and Finn will use their competitive edge for more useful things, like getting good grades in school!
Pregnant on Purpose?
Wilson has clearly developed a loving and trusting relationship with his boys, making it even more difficult for Lyla and Varunie to step back and watch from the outskirts. Varunie and Wilson dated on and off for five years, and now the exes don't communicate at all.
Some fans theorize that Varunie actually got pregnant on purpose and that he possibly didn't even know, while others claim she told him when she was four weeks pregnant. Some theorize that she pressured him into marrying her, and even if they didn't tie the knot, he would be as involved in Lyla's life as he is with the boys.
Others believe his absentee status could be related to his previous mental health battles. After years of struggling with depression, in 2007, the actor attempted to take his own life. Wilson opened up about the tough topic years later in an interview with Esquire, explaining that his brother, Andrew, really helped him through it.
People believe his mental health battles are another contributing factor to why he was not ready to take on another child. However, the actor revealed that he has been "feeling pretty appreciative" recently, and even with all those ups and downs, he's continued to ride the wave for as long as he can.
Leaked Court Documents
Considering that Wilson keeps his personal life so private, it is unclear what exactly happened in court between him and his ex, Varunie. However, recent court-leaked documents suggest there actually might be a lot more going down than anyone could have thought.
According to the documents, there was a paternity test conducted, confirming that Owen is Lyla's biological father. However, some quote the paternity result saying, "the alleged father is not excluded as the biological father of the fetus," meaning the DNA match on her birth records might not be 100%.
Gets More Complicated
So according to the verbiage on Lyla's birth records, Wilson is likely her father, but it is also not totally promised. And well, that's not the end of it. After their day in court, the actor declined any visitation rights with Lyla, and it's his reasoning that has left audiences bewildered.
Wilson apparently wrote on the paperwork his reason for turning down any visitation rights was that he was unsure of the child's paternity results. So, even though there are documents that prove he is most likely her father, the actor is still apprehensive about moving forward as her father.
In a 2021 interview with Esquire, the actor made it really clear that he has a relationship with Finn and Ford and not with his four-year-old daughter, Lyla. He told the outlet he lives close by to his boys and their mothers, seeing them often, indicating that he has them on a "single-dad schedule."
And in response, he earned a whole lot of backlash from audiences after hearing how active he is in his son's life and how absent he is in Lyla's. One Instagram user wrote even though she's a big fan of his, but she's "lost all respect for him" after he "abandoned his daughter." And well, many of the comments echoed this sentiment.
With all the recent backlash surrounding Wilson and his daughter, the Marry Me actor has yet to make any comments on the subject. The 54-year-old is very involved in his nine and twelve-year-olds' lives, but unfortunately, Lyla has yet to receive the same love.
Maybe one day, Wilson will have a sudden change of heart and decide to connect with his daughter and take the chance to get to know her. But, until then, the actor is focusing on his career (after all, he has a whole lot of thousands to pay in child care every month).