Jason Bateman in a scene from
Trying to have a baby? You could go the old-fashioned way but that takes careful planning and serious luck. You could try to adopt but if you're not a heterosexual married couple with a hefty savings account, you might have your work cut out for you. Then there's IVF, the painful and expensive insemination process that isn't always a guarantee.
If none of these options are working, don't give up. If we've learned anything from movies, it's that children appear in the darndest ways. Take for instance this month's The Switch, where Jennifer Aniston employs a turkey baster to do her dirty work. And ends up likely getting pregnant with her best friend's baby, even though he wasn't the recruited sperm donor. Sound implausible? At least a sperm and egg are involved.
If you want to get yourself a child, the old-fashioned movie way, the first rule of thumb is: don't act like you want one. Then, employ the following approaches...
#1 : INHERIT ONE
That's right, babies are often left in wills. But only to single women who are obsessed with their careers and have no interest in having children. Usually the benefactors want to keep it a surprise for the new parents so the news is delivered via complete stranger. In "Baby Boom" a newborn is gifted via distant cousin. And in "Raising Helen," Kate Hudson gets a gaggle of screaming kids after her sister passes away. Sure her older sister, played by Joan Cusack, is already a veteran mom and a safer bet for the orphaned children, but she doesn't need to learn a valuable lesson about love as badly.
#2: LIVE IN A CHILD-FRIENDLY HOME
Sometimes just moving to a residence that allows children is all you need to get yourself a set of twins. In "Old Dogs", Robin Williams finds out he fathered two kids seven years back but, you know, never knew. When his ex ends up in prison, he's left to care for the kids. Only problem is he lives in a kid-free condo (possibly in Nazi Germany?). That's when John Travolta's character lucks out by having a home that allows children. Funny how life works.
#3: OPEN THE DOOR
You never know. Sometimes there's a baby in a basket with a note. That's how "Three Men" got one.
#4: HAVE SEX ONCE
It worked for Katherine Heigl's character in "Knocked Up." Seth Rogan's character was even a major stoner in pretty crappy shape. But the unlikelihood of their union was just that extra ingredient to spark fertility.
#5: ASSOCIATE WITH A VIOLENT CROWD
Sharon Stone managed to bypass the rigorous adoption process in "Gloria" by becoming embroiled in a gang-related shooting that left a 7 year-old orphaned. By most standards she's not an ideal parent, but the poor, traumatized kid who witnessed the bloody massacre doesn't care. Neither do child services. (Warning: the clip contains graphic language and bad acting.)
#6: INJECT ARNOLD
IVF doesn't work for everyone. But I'll tell you who it does work for: Arnold Schwarzenegger. In "Junior", a radical fertility drug has the Governator complaining about swollen ankles and morning sickness.
#7: HAVE SEXUAL TENSION
In the upcoming rom-com "Life As We Know It," Katherine Heigl's character can not stand Josh Duhamel's character. I mean he really pisses her off in that way that suggests she's attracted to him but doesn't know it. Know who knows it? Their mutual best friends, who tragically die. Their legacy was to hatch a genius plan to leave their child to the dueling couple who will no doubt end up one big happy family.
#8: GET A ROOMMATE
You never know their back-story. They may just leave you with a kid. That's how Adam Sandler wound up with a precocious 5-year-old in "Big Daddy". The boy claims to be the son of his roommate --who ends up leaving town. Jackpot! Kid claimed without any of that annoying paperwork.