Mamma Mia, whether you love it or hate it, you have probably heard of the famous musical comedy before. The plot revolves around Donna Sheridan, a single mother that had her fun through Europe after graduating high school. That is until she finds out she is pregnant with her daughter, Sophie, but has no idea who the father is: Sam, Bill, or Harry. Sophie's dad is never actually revealed in the movies, but fans have come up with speculations as to who they think the actual father is, so without further ado, let us analyse all the options.
Played by Colin Firth, Harry Bright is an English banker who succeeded a company from his father, and most importantly, one of Sophie's potential fathers in Mamma Mia.
He met Donna in Paris and followed her all the way to the island. Donna describes him as very sweet and understanding while they were together (maybe even too much so). We find out Donna was the first woman he ever loved, and the last, when seen after the wedding with a man from the island.
When Harry finds out about the possibility of being a father, he is absolutely thrilled and immediately offers financial support to both Donna and Sophie.
It is possible to identify some similarities genetically between Harry and Sophie (they are both quite adorable) and while there is certainly a chance that Harry is the father, most fans think this is very unlikely due to the small time frame and backstory the producers created for him.
Interpreted by Stellan Skarsgård, Bill Anderson is a Swedish writer and adventurer, and another one of Sophie's potential fathers.
From a purely physical standpoint, Bill and Sophie are very similar, seeing as they are both blonde-haired with blue eyes… During his first conversation with Sophie, we learn that she is named after his great-aunt, Sophia. In another conversation at Sophie's bachelorette party, Bill asks how Donna was able to afford her place and Sophie reveals she got the money from his aunt Sophia. Bills then adds, "I always heard her money was left to family." Finally, in the first film, Sophie was supposed to sing 'The Name of the Game' with Bill, but it was cut from the theatrical release. If the scene had stayed in the film, it would've been the only duet Sophie sang with one of her potential fathers, demonstrating just how important Bill was to her.
Last but certainly not least, Sam Carmichael, played by Pierce Brosnan is an American Irishman that works as an architect and is Donna's one true love, however, this does not mean he is necessarily Sophie's father. From what we can observe in the movies, Sophie seems to have the deepest connection with Sam, and in the song ‘Our Last Summer’ all the potential dads are shown exhibiting traits they could’ve passed down to Sophie to hint that any of them could be the father. However, only Sam exhibits something that Donna couldn’t have given Sophie, “Harry is musical, as is Donna. Bill is an adventuress, as is Donna, but Sam is artistic, which Donna is never shown as being, so by the narrative logic of the filming, Sam is the baby daddy.” - according to a devoted fan on TikTok (Sarah)
So, who is the actual father? While we can never be 100% sure, I would argue Bill is. As much as the hopeless romantic inside me wants to believe it's Sam, it just seems too obvious to be true, seeing as he goes on to marry Donna at the end of the first film.
In conclusion, and as corny as it sounds, it doesn't really matter who Sophie's real father is since they all love her equally, in fact, the reason why I and most other Mamma Mia fans all love the films so much has very little to do with finding out who Sophie's real dad is, and more to do with the fact that none of them want to know who the real dad is (by taking a paternity test). Mamma Mia is a romance in that aspect, it is a film surrounded by love, both romantic and non-romantic.