Kai Knapp's Birth Came with Questions over Paternity – Meet Alexis Knapp's Daughter with Ryan Phillippe
Alexis Knapp gave birth to her daughter, Kai Knapp, in July 2011. The birth followed the split between Alexis and Ryan Phillippe and was surrounded by rumors about the identity of the father.
Kai Knapp, now 11 years old, is the daughter of a pair of Hollywood actors and has been in the spotlight since before she was born. Kai is her mother, Alexis Knapp’s, first child, and her father, Ryan Phillippe’s, third.
The story of Kai’s birth was surrounded by many interesting details. When the news about the 33-year-old actress’s pregnancy broke, questions over her child’s paternity spiked and continued to circulate right up until the birth.
Alexis and Kai Knapp attend the Premiere of Netflix's "Green Eggs and Ham" at Hollywood American Legion on November 3, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
When Did the World First Hear about Kai?
In March 2011, it was announced that Alexis – known for her role in the “Pitch Perfect” movies – had a baby on the way. The actress was due to give birth in June 2011, while the identity of the father was still up in the air.
It was divulged that Phillippe was not convinced and wanted a paternity test. While there was no public confirmation as to the identity of Kai’s father, Alexis happily welcomed her pregnancy. A source reportedly said:
“She has been telling people he is the father.”
Kai’s parents dated for a few months in 2010 before going their separate ways. Shortly after their split, Alexis discovered that she was expecting. However, when she told the father-to-be, he was already dating Amanda Seyfriend.
Alexis Knapp and daughter Kai Knapp attend the NERF Challenge World Premiere at L.A. Live Event Deck on December 5, 2019 in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
When Was Kai Born?
Not long before Kai’s due date, Alexis and Phillippe were spotted for the first time together since the news of her pregnancy. The ex-lovers were seen grabbing coffee in Los Angeles at a Coffee Bean.
Still, the public questioned whether he was the father. Amid the pregnancy rumors, an insider made it public that Phillippe had known about the pregnancy from the very beginning. Kai was born on July 1, 2011, making her zodiac sign Cancer, represented by the crab.
Despite the rumors, he was reportedly ready to take full responsibility if Alexis’ child was proven to be his.
Kai Knapp and Alexis Knapp attend Netflix Family Summer, presents Los Angeles Premiere of "The Sea Beast" at Autry Museum of the American West on July 9, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
Alexis named her baby girl Kailani Merizalde Phillippe Knapp, sharing the same middle name as her and the first half of her last name with her father. While Kai does share a name with him, sources revealed:
“The section of the [birth] certificate that officially lists the baby’s father is left blank.”
However, Phillippe was reportedly present during the birth of his daughter. After the delivery of their beautiful baby girl, an informant reported that “mom’s doing great!” while Kai’s father was understood to be completely aware of the circumstances.
Alexis Knapp and daughter Kailani attends the Colgate Optic White Beauty Bar at Nine Zero One Salon With Skintimate, Fake Bake and Cetaphil, Produced by BMF Media on June 1, 2012 in West Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
Despite the rumors, he was reportedly ready to take full responsibility if Alexis’ child proved to be his. Almost a year after giving birth, Alexis sat down for an exclusive interview with E! News.
“They always come out looking like the dads…because men are just like fat and puffy and can’t open their eyes too much.”
During an interview in June 2012, she again gushed over her little one. The actress was all smiles as she boasted that Kai was really close to walking and that she always said her name.
Alexis Knapp and daughter Kailani attend the Colgate Optic White Beauty Bar at Nine Zero One Salon With Skintimate, Fake Bake And Cetaphil, Produced by BMF Media on June 2, 2012 in West Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
Kai Is Rarely Seen on Public Platforms
Phillippe’s daughter is nowhere to be seen on his Instagram, but he oftentimes uploads photos of his other two children whom he shares with actress, Witherspoon. In early June 2022, Phillippe posted a carousel of his son’s homeschool graduation.
Kai has two half-siblings from her father’s side, one sister and one brother.
Kai’s mother has privatized her Instagram account, making it difficult to ascertain whether she still shares pictures of her daughter. Before doing so, however, she posted a selfie with Kai in which she implied the girl's outfit was enough to make her patriotic.
The photo captured the mother and daughter, side-by-side, beaming brightly into the camera. With her gummy smile, Kai was dressed in an American flag bikini. The little girl looked just like her mother in the sweet photo.
Alexis and Kai Knapp attend the Skate Experience in Minionwood to celebrate the release of "Minions: The Rise Of Gru" at Milk Studios Los Angeles on June 24, 2022 in Los Angeles, California. | Source: Getty Images
Kai Has Siblings
Kai has two half-siblings from her father’s side, one sister and one brother. Phillipe and Witherspoon tied the knot in 1999 and welcomed a daughter in the same year and a son four years later. In 2008, the couple decided to part ways and filed for a divorce.
Ava Phillippe, now 22 years old, is their oldest child and was born just after her parents married. Witherspoon revealed that Ava was named after the American actress, Ava Gardner. Ava has a good relationship with her parents and appears to be a carbon copy of her mother.
Deacon Reese and Ava Elizabeth Phillippe attend The Hollywood Reporter's Power 100 Women in Entertainment at Milk Studios on December 11, 2019 in Hollywood, California. | Source: Getty Images
18-year-old, Deacon Phillippe, is the former married couple’s youngest child. Deacon is a musically-gifted artist, but acting is also “definitely something [he’s] interested in.” Similar to his sister, Deacon is also very close to his parents.
Although Kai is Ryan Phillippe's youngest child, the actor has not yet publicly discussed his daughter on social media or in interviews. Kai remains Alexis’ only child to date.