Maternity leave? Not for these A-list stars! These actresses continued acting right on through their pregnancy thanks to some creative cover-ups.
Julia Roberts's pregnancy during the filming of "Oceans Twelve" actually resulted in a rewrite of the original script. The new role for Roberts had her playing a woman pretending to be pregnant in order to steal a fancy bejeweled egg.
Sarah Jessica Parker
Sarah Jessica Parker filmed season five of "Sex and the City" while pregnant with her first child. In order to hide her growing baby bump, the costume department put her character, Carrie, into lots of flowing dresses, and camera angles were manipulated to draw attention away from her bump. The season was also cut after eight episodes so that Parker could go on maternity hiatus.
Season three of "Scandal" features a very pregnant Kerry Washington, but in the storyline, her character, Olivia Pope, is not pregnant. Writers managed to hide the growing bump under winter coats and large purses, but ultimately the season had to be cut from 22 episodes to 18 in order to accommodate Washington's pregnancy. Speculation over her waist size during the show's run made her one of the most talked about pregnant celebrities of the year.
Reese Witherspoon was five months pregnant when she began filming Mira Nair's "Vanity Fair." The actress managed to hide her baby bump well with some smart tricks from the costume department. Witherspoon's character Becky Sharp dons 1820s period costumes, which include corsets and the obligatory heaving bosom, both perfect for concealing a baby bump.
Helena Bonham Carter
Helena Bonham Carter was pregnant during the 2007 filming of "Sweeney Todd," but her bump was hidden quite well by her costumes; it turns out tight corsets can hide all manner of issues. There was one side effect of her pregnancy that producers weren't able to hide though: Bonham Carter's breasts noticeably change sizes throughout the film.
"Mad Men" went in an unusual direction when dealing with January Jones's fifth season pregnancy. Rather than trying to camouflage her bump, her character, Betty, was written as having gotten extremely fat. Body doubles and even a fat suit was used as her character spent the season battling her sudden weight gain.
Alyson Hannigan was pregnant during the majority of filming for the fourth season of "How I Met Your Mother." Luckily for the actress, much of the filming was during the winter and her bump could be hidden in large jackets. Her pregnancy was played for laughs at times as well: the episode "The Possimpible" featured Hannigan showing off her bump in the guise of having eaten too many hot dogs.
Hannigan wasn't the only pregnant actress on HIMYM: co-star Cobie Smulders also announced her pregnancy during the show's fourth season. Show producers joked that the program had the largest purses on television in order to hide the bump, and one scene even had to be re-done completely in order to shoot Smulders from behind a wall to keep her belly from attracting too much attention.
When Jane Krakowski discovered she was expecting in 2011, "30 Rock" producers decided not to write her pregnancy into the script. Speaking about her character to Ryan Seacrest at the 2011 Golden Globes, the actress said, "No one thinks Jenna would be a fit mother." Her growing bump was disguised through the winter filming with baggy clothes and jackets.
"Friends" producers faced a unique challenge when it came to Courtney Cox's pregnancy. The hit sitcom had already established that Cox's character, Monica, and her partner, Chandler, were unable to conceive, and an adoption story line was already in progress when Cox got pregnant. The show managed to hide her bump by dressing the actress in uncharacteristically loose clothing for most of the season.
During the sixth season of "Will & Grace," actress Debra Messing became pregnant. The show's producers struggled to cover the bump since Messing's character usually wore more fitted clothes, and audiences could easily tell when she started wearing muumuus. Messing wound up getting written out of five episodes due to the difficulty in hiding her pregnancy.
When Ellen Pompeo became pregnant during the sixth season of “Grey’s Anatomy” her character, Meredith Grey, was not. Eventually, Meredith was temporarily written out of the show so Ellen could have some time away to recover.
Julia Louis-Dreyfus became pregnant twice during the long run of "Seinfeld." Her first pregnancy occurred between seasons and only required a bit of creative writing to keep her out of the script for a couple of episodes; her character was said to be on a European holiday. Her second pregnancy was hidden pretty successfully by the classic baggy clothes trope.
When Gossip Girl” star Kelly Rutherford actress announced she was expecting, the TV show employed all of the traditional methods to hide it. Many of Rutherford’s scene featured her wearing loose clothing and props to hide her baby bump.
During the second season of “Parks and Recreation” Amy Poehler become pregnant. Due to her pregnancy, the production schedule of the show had to be changed. Filming of the third season started immediately after season two in order to give her a break when she had her son.