Steve Martin has had a wildly successful career as an actor, comedian, and writer. In his 50-plus years in the industry, Steve has ruled the stand-up comedy scene and starred in a variety of films. He’s even written plays (Picasso at the Lapin Agile in 1993), novellas (Shopgirl in 2000 and The Pleasure of My Company in 2003), and articles (publications include The New Yorker.) He has five Grammy Awards under his belt, as well as a Primetime Emmy, an Honorary Academy Award, a Mark Twain Prize For American Humor, and an AFI Life Achievement Award.
He’s notably played fathers in many films as well, from Father of the Bride to Cheaper by the Dozen. But the iconic star has also had success in his personal life. He’s been married twice, once to Victoria Tennant, from 1986-1994, and later to Anne Stringfield, who he married in 2007. He’s now the father to one beautiful nine-year-old daughter named Mary, though details about her have been closely guarded for years. Here’s what we know about the legendary comedian’s only child.
1. Her mother is a writer
Mary was born to the Planes, Trains, & Automobiles star, 76, and Anne, 50, after they’d been married for several years. Anne is a professional writer and a staffer at the prestigious publication The New Yorker, per Steve’s Wikipedia page. The match makes a lot of sense, given Steve’s increasing interest in writing over the years. In fact, his Wiki page states that he wrote “various pieces” for The New Yorker throughout the 1990s.
2. She shares a name with her maternal grandmother
Though details on her birth are scarce, we do know that Mary was born in December 2012. “They’ve had a baby, and how they kept it a secret nobody knows,” a source told the New York Post back in February of 2013. “Steve’s very private. They are thrilled. They worked hard to have the baby.” Her name, later revealed to be Mary, is the same as Steve’s mother, Mary Lee. The elder and younger Marys unfortunately would never meet — Steve’s mother died in 2002, five years before his daughter was born.
3. Steve considered some unconventional names for her
Steve famously kept his little girl’s name under wraps for years. But in a hilarious April 2013 interview with David Letterman, he joked about some less conventional names for his daughter. “We’ve thought about the name quite a bit. Conquistador,” he quipped on the show, per US Weekly. “What do you think? I didn’t want to go with one of those Hollywood weird names. Conquistador is a statement.”
4. She was timed around Steve’s remarkable career
Steve made no secret of the fact that he didn’t become a father until he felt he would be a good one. “I think if I’d had a child earlier, I would have been a lousy father because I would have misplaced my attention on my career,” Steve told AARP magazine back in 2017. “I am very forthcoming with her, and it’s great. She’s giving me way more than I’m giving her.”
And in 2021, he admitted that he wasn’t always as keen on fatherhood as he is now — but a certain 1989 movie helped change that.
“I was not a kid person and when I did Parenthood, I would see these kids, who were like little freakish things, and I’d realize: ‘They’re not so bad; I actually like them,’” he told The Irish Times. “So, it did pave the way to an understanding that I would like children. Now, I see a kid and I’m staring at it like: ‘Oooh! Ahhh!’ Especially a little toddler.”
5. She’s her dad’s priority
Now that Steve’s career is well-established, he explained to Australia’s Daily Telegraph what life is like with Mary. “Oh, it’s fantastic … you have all the time in the world,” the Only Murders in the Building star told the publication in a 2020 interview. “You’re all set and secure in life, and you’re not building your career. Now, I’m just hanging around the house playing with [my daughter]. It’s great.”