Daniel Craig won’t leave ‘great sums’ to his kids: ‘I think inheritance is quite distasteful’

Daniel Craig at arrivals for The Nationa...

Daniel Craig has two children. He has an adult daughter, Ella, who is in her twenties and lives in New York, I believe. Ella is from his first marriage. Then he and Rachel Weisz welcomed their daughter in 2018. We still don’t have that child’s name, but people confirmed that they did welcome a girl. Rachel also has a son with her ex Darren Aronofsky too. So, there are three kids in the mix in the Weisz-Craig household, even though one of those “kids” is now an adult. Well, good luck to Ella, Henry and Mystery Craig, they’re not going to get anything from their father/step-father by way of inheritance. Daniel Craig is joining a long(ish) line of rich dudes who don’t believe in leaving their fortunes to their kids.

Daniel Craig has said he won’t leave a single penny of his $125m fortune (£108m) to his children when he dies, as he finds the idea of inheritance “distasteful”. Speaking to Saga magazine, he continued: ‘I think inheritance is quite distasteful. My philosophy is to get rid of it or give it away before you go.’ I don’t want to leave great sums to the next generation.”

[From The Independent]

There’s a difference between “no inheritance whatsoever” and “I don’t want to leave great sums to my kids.” Which is it? I suspect that all of his kids probably will inherit some money, perhaps even through a trust, but yeah, he’ll spend the bulk of his fortune or leave it to charity. I have mixed feelings about inherited money… I can definitely see how leaving vast fortunes to your kids will screw them up for life, no doubt. But I inherited a tidy sum when my father passed away, and that’s my “emergency fund/walk-away/I don’t need anyone” money. It’s not Daniel Craig-level or anything, but I love having it in the background, knowing that I’ll be okay. I feel like if a parent can do that for their child, that’s a really good thing in general. And if it’s through a trust, just set it up so your kid only inherits it at an older age, like 30-plus.

I should also say this: one of the best things, I believe, that a parent can do for their kid is help them out with education costs. While Daniel doesn’t talk about that, I get the feeling (from his previous interviews) that he financed Ella’s complete education, including going to college in New York.

2018 Night of Opportunity Gala

Photos courtesy of WENN.

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24 Responses to “Daniel Craig won’t leave ‘great sums’ to his kids: ‘I think inheritance is quite distasteful’”

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  1. Hmp says:

    This is tricky to me. On the one hand I understand his thinking, but on the other hand, kids who are usually raised with such wealth are worse adapted than their peers both emotionally and in terms of knowing how to forge their own way. There is some stunting that often goes on with growing up in those conditions. So In some ways they are worse off with no inheritance than the average person would be. I’m probably not communicating that right, but I have seen it give people a handicap developmentally so many times.

    • runcmc says:

      Case in point: Tori Spelling

      It’s hard to sympathize with her but this is exactly what happens to (some) people who are raised fabulously wealthy and are left with nothing. There’s a certain schadenfreude to it of course, but it is sad to see that lifestyle. Like, I have way less money than what Tori has squandered but I’m satisfied and happy with my lot in life, and my partner and I live well within our means. We likely don’t stress about money anywhere near as often as her family and we have WAY less.

  2. Case says:

    I don’t think there’s anything wrong with making sure your child will be comfortable after you’re gone. Money for education, travel, and so they don’t struggle when they’re building a young family is a beautiful gift to leave behind. That doesn’t have to be a huge sum of money, but I don’t see anything wrong with making your kids’ lives a little easier in some ways.

    But then again, I’m biased — I have wealthy grandparents who will not share a cent without major strings attached, even when their children and grandchildren are genuinely having financial troubles. They have the ability in life to make their loved ones’ lives a little easier and choose not to, and I find that so terrible. My parents, on the other hand, who have far, far less than my grandparents, are very generous and would help any family member without a second thought. So I’ve sort of been brought up to see the beauty in sharing and helping where you can, and how awful it is to be greedy with your wealth.

    • Silas says:

      I agree. There is an undertone sometimes where the person seems more focused on control of their money than how it can help other people.

    • lucy2 says:

      Comfortable, yes. $125 million? No.
      He can leave them enough money for several generations to live comfortably, and still donate the bulk of his fortune.

  3. Silas says:

    Aren’t there laws in some European countries mandating that you have to leave at least some of your money to your kids?

    And “give it away” can means lots of things.

  4. FHMom says:

    These celebs and other rich people who do not plan to leave their children money were raised a whole lot differently from how I was raised. My very hardworking dad, who was born poor during the Depression, always told me and my siblings that he was working hard to leave something for us so that we would have a better life than him. Now he didn’t die super rich or anything, but he made enough to pay for undergrad degrees for 3 children. He owned a paid off house where my mom still lives. He even had a college fund for his grandchildren. I am extremely grateful for all he did for me and my siblings and my kids during his lifetime. And even though he passed away 5 years ago, I still miss him so much and wonder what he would think when certain situations arise.

    • Veronica S. says:

      I wonder if some of that thinking stems from living in a country with decent social safety nets, to be honest. An inheritance to somebody living in a country with nationalized healthcare, subsidized college, proper wages, childcare, etc. is a world of difference to somebody living in America (or another place lacking those privileges) where medical bills are the largest source of bankruptcy and college bills can run in the hundreds of thousands. In other words, that inheritance is just money on top of money, rather than serving as the barrier between living decently and potential poverty.

      • FHMom says:

        Interesting theory. We Americans do need a certain amount of income to afford health care, education, etc. I am sure that is part of it.

  5. Natalee says:

    This is something only rich people say.

    • JennyJenny says:

      YES! I live a very comfortable life and if there’s anything left when it’s my time, I will gladly leave it to my children.

    • Ange says:

      Ehhh I don’t know, I’ve seen a swelling movement among boomer gen parents to spend everything and not leave much for the kids. My parents while not rich and certainly not boomers in the stereotypical sense are like that and I don’t mind, they earned it they can spend it.

  6. Aang says:

    I agree. I just listened to a Finnish woman being interviewed about a book she wrote outlining Scandinavian lifestyles. Her point is that by taxing at higher rates and making sure that everyone has equal opportunities you create more freedom for everyone. Adult children are not bound to their parents because they want or need money. Parents are not dependent on adult children because old age pensions are enough to live on and healthcare is provided. The relationships are allowed to exist without the coercion or manipulation that comes with being dependent on someone. The estate tax should be very high on amounts over a few million. Dynastic wealth is destroying society.

    • SiennaTerre says:

      Interested to learn more about the book you mentioned here and also the interview she conducted too!

      • aang says:

        The podcast that I heard the interview on is called Pitchfork Economics. Its great. Hosted by billionaire venture capitalist Nick Hanauer. He’s a billionaire that doesn’t believe in trickle down economics and warns that the growing wealth inequality will end in bloodshed if not curtailed. The woman’s name is Anu Partanen and the book is called The Nordic Theory of Everything.

      • lucy2 says:

        Thanks for sharing that, both of them sound like interesting people I’d like to know more about.

    • N.N says:

      “Dynastic wealth is destroying society.”

      lol I said the same thing!

      Thanks for the podcast and book rec, btw!

  7. Becks1 says:

    My guess is that he will give some money to his kids through a trust or even just money during their lives (if he pays for education, buys them a house, etc they’d be pretty well set). I always take it with a grain of salt when people say they aren’t going to leave any of their wealth to their kids, because they usually mean they are still giving them money in other ways, just not in their will.

  8. IntheKnow says:

    “Mystery Craig”. LOL.
    Kaiser just gave someone ideas for a name. Not me of course, I have a dog and that is all I will have. Thank g-d!

  9. Awkward symphony says:

    I kinda agree with him on this one! He’s not saying he wont give his children anything but he’s being responsible for them in pushing them to manage their expectations and reliance on his fortune. That way they can even achieve something without his help/money.

  10. LoonaticCap says:

    I understand his sentiment. Leave some for education maybe but don’t stunt them.
    I was raised and always lived comfortably but I couldn’t get as much as pocket money as a teen, or money to do anything. My dad is stingy. I studied in another country and he gave me so little money I sometimes had to ask my sister for help.
    It taught me to never expect anything from him and not to think of inheritance. But it also hurt me deeply. So… Just at least guarantee education and living expenses. Don’t cut off your children.

  11. KinChicago says:

    I think he may also be seeing some of the incredibly entitled behavior of chldren of celebrities… the addictions, abuse and financial irresponsibility is sobering for anyone to witness.

  12. N.N says:

    I see where he’s coming from and… I gotta say I agree with him on this one.

    Dynastic wealth is destroying our society, and trust fund babies are the worst.

    Also, he probably saw what a lot of celeb/rich people’s kids are like and said NOPE!

  13. Barbara says:

    He’s going to be like Bill Gates and ONLY leave each kid $10 million. Boohoo.