[ won-uh-bee, waw-nuh‐ ]
See synonyms for: wannabewannabes on Thesaurus.com

noun,plural wan·na·bes.Informal.
  1. one who aspires, often vainly, to emulate another's success or attain eminence in some area.

Origin of wannabe

First recorded in1980–85; derivative of (I) wanna be…
  • Sometimes wan·na·bee .

Words Nearby wannabe

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2024

How to use wannabe in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for wannabe



/ (ˈwɒnəˌbiː) /

  1. informal

    • a person who desires to be, or be like, someone or something else: a group of Marilyn Monroe wannabes

    • (as modifier): a wannabe film star

Origin of wannabe

C20: phonetic shortening of want to be

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012