When Janet Jackson revealed that she had given birth to her first child, Eissa, at the age of 50, she sparked outrage on social media; many narrow-minded critics – including Piers Morgan – claimed that she was “too old” to have a baby, and that her decision to start a family “at such an advanced maternal age” was “selfish”. Bizarrely , the tabloids have failed to make the same ageist argument about 55-year-old George Clooney, who recently confirmed that he’s expecting twins with international human rights lawyer, Amal Alamuddin.
With the actor having spoken out for the first time about his impending fatherhood this week, we decided to take a closer look at the “juggling act” he faces – in a bid to even the scores...
Ah, parenting; it’s probably one of the only professions in the world that is as demanding as it is rewarding. And, as many working dads will know all too well, achieving that perfect work-life balance is the ultimate juggling act.
However we imagine things will be even trickier for George Clooney; not only will the silver-haired actor have his hands full with two babies, but he’s also set to take on all the challenges of fatherhood at the ripe old age of 56.
Read more: Can men really hope to ‘have it all’?
Which, as many have helpfully pointed out, means that he will be 74 when his kids eventually fly the nest for university.
Appearing on the French program Rencontres de Cinema, Clooney – flaunting his enviable figure in a sleek navy ensemble – looked the picture of health, thanks to his glowing golden tan and carefully-styled hair.
However, when asked about becoming a “later life” dad, Clooney’s face crumpled as he admitted that he is, of course, nervous about what the future holds.
Particularly as his fellow ‘dad friends’ have been less than supportive of his advanced parenting choices.
“All of my friends who are my age have already done this, and their kids are all grown up,” he said, with a brave smile. “Their kids are all away at college.”
“[When I told them] it got really quiet, and they all just started making baby crying noises,” he recalled. “And the whole table just busted up laughing.”
However Clooney, who has a bevy of awards and acting accolades under his expensive leather belt, has decided to ignore the naysayers.
“Yeah, it’s gonna take a lot of getting used to,” he said, “but that’s life.”
Clooney went on to add that he has found a source of inspiration in 89-year-old French actor Jean-Paul Belmondo, who had a child with his second wife, Nathalie Tardivel, when he was 70.
“I’m feeling a little better about being 56 by the time [the twins are born],” he said bashfully.
“We are really happy and really excited. It’s going to be an adventure, [and] we’ve sort of embraced it all… with arms wide open.”
It remains to be seen how the Oscar-winning star will cope with the late-night feeding routine, or how the lack of sleep will take its toll on his radiant skin and svelte figure.
Sources* close to the actor says he has no idea what he’s in for, tackling fatherhood at such an advanced age.
“Let’s face it, George is just too old for this,” says one. “Sure, he’s in amazing shape but it just all seems a little too selfish.
“I’m all for dads having kids later in life but this takes the biscuit.”
To which, we can only say – good luck George! You’re going to need it, wethinks…
*sources completely made-up: let’s stop with the age-shaming, guys