What Blake Lively's Relationship With Her Late Father Ernie Was Like

Blake Lively, despite being a prominent figure in Hollywood, has managed to masterfully shield her personal life from the public eye. While the "Gossip Girl" star occasionally provides glimpses into her relationship with fellow A-lister Ryan Reynolds and their four children, the finer details of her broader personal life remain mostly private.

Blake's parents, Ernie and Elaine Lively, both of whom were active in the entertainment industry, pursued careers both as actors and also as a director and a talent manager, respectively. Ernie's illustrious 50-year career featured notable television appearances in shows like "Falcon Crest" and "Murder, She Wrote." He also notably portrayed Blake's character's father in "The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants" and its sequel. 

Elaine, meanwhile, gained recognition for her role in the '90s video game series "Return to Zork," in which her husband also featured. Ernie sadly passed away in June 2021 at the age of 74 due to cardiac complications. Beyond introducing her to the world of acting, Blake's parents have left a lasting impact, especially her father. Following Ernie's heartbreaking death, she paid a warm tribute to her dad when naming her beverage business.

Blake's company name was a sweet gesture to her father

Other than sharing a sweet father-daughter connection, Blake Lively made sure to honor her late father in a more palpable way. When the A-list celebrity introduced "Betty Buzz" in September 2021 — a novel range of sparkling mixers crafted from clean ingredients and completely free of alcohol — she unveiled a heartfelt homage to her dad in the process.

In the official press release for the brand, the actor clarified that the name was a gesture of respect to Ernie Lively, who adopted the surname Lively upon marrying Blake's mother, thereby giving up his own surname, Brown. "Any success he, or I, have experienced has been in a name that isn't his," Blake explained, emphasizing her desire for the company's success to bear a name significant to her father.

The "Gossip Girl" breakout also shared that both Ernie's mother and sister were named Betty, so the name just fit. Blake humorously added, "Also, Ernie would not be the best name for a mixer." Since her father's passing, Blake has posted a few touching memories on social media, pulling at her followers' heartstrings. Accompanied by heart emojis, she captioned a particularly sweet photo of Ernie and her husband, Ryan Reynolds, with: "My guys."

Family is the most important thing to the Gossip Girl star

While Blake Lively hasn't delved into the specifics of her family dynamics, she previously opened up about her parents' impact on her career. During a 2006 interview with Radiofree.com, the actor shared an anecdote about Ernie and Elaine Lively taking her to her sister, Robyn Lively's, set instead of straight home from the hospital, quipping, "So, literally, I've grown up on sets." 

The "Simple Favor" star elaborated on how the constant exposure to the world of Hollywood didn't initially spark her interest in the entertainment industry. Ultimately, it was her brother, Eric Lively, who nudged her to pursue acting as a career. "I didn't want to make him mad because he's such a good brother, so I just went to auditions to appease him," Blake revealed.

In a 2014 interview with People, the star also shared some insights into the close bond she shares with her mother, confirming that they speak every day, with Elaine often leaving voicemails filled with words of wisdom. Stressing the importance of family, Blake stated, "It has always been the most important thing in my life — everything I do is at the heart of it." The sentiment resonates with Ernie's legacy continuing through his daughter's endeavors.