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9 Milestone Celebrity Birthdays in February

Cheers to Joe Pesci, Yoko Ono and other stars celebrating big ones this month

spinner image left yoko ono at jackson park in chicago illinois right blythe danner attending the tomorrow man screening in new york city new york
Daniel Boczarski/Getty Images / Photo by Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

Feb. 3: Blythe Danner, 80

spinner image blythe danner at the tomorrow man new york screening in new york city new york
Roy Rochlin/Getty Images

A two-time Emmy and one-time Tony winner, Blythe Danner is perhaps just as well known for her real-life role as Gwyneth Paltrow’s mom as she is for her acting roles, which also tend to run maternal these days: She’s played matriarchs in everything from Will & Grace and the Meet the Parents franchise to the 2021 Netflix animated kids’ show Ridley Jones. In November, she revealed that she’s in remission from the same rare form of oral cancer that killed her husband, director Bruce Paltrow, two decades ago. “I remember I looked up at heaven and said to Bruce, ‘Are you lonely up there?’” she recalled to People. “It’s a sneaky disease. But I’m fine and dandy now. And I’m lucky to be alive.”

Feb. 4: Oscar de la Hoya, 50

spinner image oscar de la hoya at the eleventh annual sugar ray leonard foundation in beverly hills california
Amy Sussman/WireImage

After winning a gold medal at the 1992 Summer Olympics, the Golden Boy of boxing and 11-time world-title holder has written books, released a clothing line and even earned a Grammy nomination for his Latin pop album. His 2021 appearance on The Masked Singer, on which he performed as the Zebra, put him back in the national spotlight. Last year, he was scheduled to return to the ring in a bout against Vitor Belfort, but he had to drop out at the last minute due to a COVID-19 diagnosis. Now, he jokes that he “dodged a bullet” by not fighting the former UFC champion and is instead happy to “sit back and relax and grow some gray hairs promoting fighters.”

Feb. 8: Mary Steenburgen, 70

spinner image mary steenburgen at the u s ireland alliance sixteenth annual oscar wilde awards in los angeles california
Gregg DeGuire/FilmMagic

An Oscar winner for 1980’s Melvin and Howard, Steenburgen has enjoyed a quite unexpected second act in recent years: She woke up from general anesthesia after minor surgery hearing music all around her, and she’s since become a surprisingly successful songwriter, signing a publishing deal with Universal and writing the Critics’ Choice Movie Award-winning song “Glasgow (No Place Like Home)” from the 2018 film Wild Rose. This May, she returns to the big screen with Book Club: The Next Chapter, which sees her reteaming with Jane Fonda, Diane Keaton and Candice Bergen.  

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Feb. 9: Joe Pesci, 80

spinner image joe pesci at the premiere of netflixs the irishman in hollywood california
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Few actors can glide as seamlessly between menacing (Goodfellas) and hilarious (My Cousin Vinny) as the Newark-born Oscar winner — and he’s especially in his element when he’s towing the line between both ends of the spectrum in the same role (Home Alone). In 2019, he came out of semi-retirement to collaborate with Robert De Niro and director Martin Scorsese for the fourth time with The Irishman, landing his third Academy Award nomination in the process, and he’s next set to star opposite Edie Falco and Saturday Night Live (SNL) breakout Pete Davidson in the Peacock sitcom Bupkis, a fictionalized version of Davidson’s life.

Feb. 17: Michael Jordan, 60

spinner image michael jordan of the charlotte hornets speaking as part of the n b a paris games in twenty twenty in paris france
Garrett W. Ellwood/NBAE via Getty Images

One of the most dominant athletes in the history of American sports, His Airness transcended the game of basketball at every turn, starring in movies (Space Jam), landing a record-breaking endorsement deal with Nike and later earning the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2016. He leaped back into the spotlight with the Emmy-winning 2020 ESPN Films docuseries The Last Dance, which saw everyone from Larry Byrd and Kobe Bryant to Bill Clinton and Barack Obama waxing poetic about the legend’s impact. Coming up: a movie from Ben Affleck and Matt Damon about Nike’s pursuit of a sneaker deal with the star player that led to the birth of the Air Jordan.

Feb. 18: Yoko Ono, 90

spinner image yoko ono at the tenth anniversary celebratio nof the beatles love by cirque du soleil in las vegas nevada
JB Lacroix/Getty Images

The Tokyo-born peace activist and avant-garde artist has spent half a century dodging rumors that her relationship with John Lennon broke up the Beatles — a widely held (and problematic) belief challenged in 2021 with the release of the Peter Jackson documentary The Beatles: Get Back. Her work was recently celebrated in a retrospective at the Kunsthaus Zürich called “This Room Moves at the Same Speed as the Clouds,” and artists as diverse as David Byrne, Sharon Van Etten and Yo La Tengo paid tribute to the two-time Grammy winner with last year’s covers album Ocean Child.

Feb. 20: Charles Barkley, 60

spinner image charles barkley at h b o premiere for four part documentary shaq in atlanta georgia
Prince Williams/Wireimage

The legendary king of rebounds, “Sir Charles” more than earned his honorific title with a résumé that included two Olympic gold medals, two inductions into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame (once as an individual, once as a member of the Dream Team) and 11 turns as an NBA All-Star — not to mention four go-arounds as an SNL host. Following his retirement, Barkley has become a fan-favorite studio analyst on TNT, earning four Sports Emmy Awards for his work, and producers clearly aren’t ready to let go of a good thing: In the fall, he signed a 10-year contract extension with the network.

Feb. 21: William Baldwin, 60

spinner image william baldwin at the twenty twenty filming italy in los angeles california
Michael Tullberg/Getty Images

The third Baldwin brother enjoyed a stretch of hits in the ’90s that included the firefighting flick Backdraft, the psychological horror film Flatliners and the erotic thriller Sliver, which led to him winning the MTV Movie Award for most desirable male. In recent years, his roles have skewed more toward indies and B-movies, and last year, he appeared in a trio of holiday films, including The Good Witch of Christmas, A Royal Christmas on Ice and The Case of the Christmas Diamond.

Feb. 26: Michael Bolton, 70

spinner image michael bolton performing during inagural gateway celebrity fight night in phoenix arizona
Phillip Faraone/Getty Images for Gateway Celebrity Fight Night Foundation

You might not suspect that this soft rock crooner got his start in a heavy metal band that once opened for Ozzy Osbourne. Bolton’s famous, of course, for his adult contemporary sound, which has earned him a pair of Grammys and seven Top 10 singles on the Billboard Hot 100. The New Haven-born singer represented his home state in NBC’s American Song Contest with the single “Beautiful World,” a song that he wrote to reflect the times, he explained to the New York Post: “It’s not meant to suggest that somebody’s going to wave the wand and all of a sudden everything’s going to be beautiful,” he said. “To the contrary, we’re the ones who have to make it a beautiful world.”

 

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