Love is blind. It's impossible for people to control who they fall in love for, even if the match-up seems unlikely. A study published by the Society for the Psychology of Women shows that romantic partners with an age gap larger than ten years experience social disapproval. Conventionally people tend to believe a relationship will have a better chance of succeeding if both partners are from the same generation.
In Hollywood, there are many successful couples who are close in age such as Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos, Margot Robbie and Tom Ackerley, Cobie Smulders and Taran Killam, or Kathryn Hahn and Ethan Sandler. While most men and women prefer a partner to be closer in age to them, with the average age difference between married couples being three-and-a-half years, many successful relationships happen between people who exceed the ten-year age difference.
Being a parent can be challenging but being a parent in Hollywood while maintaining a relationship, particularly one with a big age gap may seem insurmountable. However, although these 20 celebrity parents have big age gaps, most of them have managed to make it work through dynamic long-term relationships, or at the very least strong co-parenting skills when things didn't actually work out. These are 20 celebrities who say that love has no age.
20 Beyoncé & Jay Z: 12 Years
Jay Z was practically a teen by the time his Queen Bey was born, but they have never let their 12-year age difference get in the way of their relationship.
Beyoncé once told Oprah in an OWN interview, “We were friends first for a year and a half before we went on any dates. We were on the phone for a year and a half, and that foundation is so important for a relationship. Just to have someone who you just like is so important, and someone [who] is honest.” The couple tied the knot in 2008 and have three kids together, maintaining their marriage, even if Beck with the good hair tries to meddle.
19 Harrison Ford & Calista Flockhart: 22 Years
Calista Flockhart credits her 16+ year relationship with Harrison Ford with humor. The star told Closer Weekly,
“The truth is, I sometimes feel very much older than Harrison”, even though he is more than 20 years her senior.
The duo is raising son Liam Flockhart, and are still truly, madly, deeply, in love with each other. Ford knew instantly he was in love telling Hello! Magazine in 2003, “Romantic love is one of the most exciting and fulfilling kinds of love and I think there is a potential for it at any stage of your life. I was not surprised that I was able to fall in love, and I wasn’t surprised that I did.” The two tied the knot in 2010.
18 Blake Lively & Ryan Reynolds: 11 Years
The two first met onset when they were cast as leads in one of Reynolds' least successful movies, Green Lantern, but Reynolds was still married to Scarlett Johansson and Lively was dating her Gossip Girl co-star Penn Badgley. After their other relationships broke up, it didn’t take the couple long to come together, and for Ryan to take Blake home to Vancouver to meet his family. After just a year of dating, the two were married. When the two aren’t lovingly ribbing each other on social media, they’re raising their two gorgeous daughters, who made their first public appearance when Reynolds was given a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
17 Michael Douglas & Catherine Zeta-Jones: 25 years
In true celebrity fashion, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones met at the French film festival care of fellow celeb Danny DeVito in 1998 because Douglas ‘had to meet her’.
Not too long after he notoriously told the Welsh beauty, “I want to father your children.”
The couple has two children together, Dylan and Carys, and despite taking some time off in 2013 to work through some speed bumps they remain a strong couple since reconnecting a year later. In talking about supporting his kids and taking on children Douglas said, “They’ve seen good fortune but they understand it’s really about… if they have that joy of performing and want to do it, then great. It’s not easy. Second generations are rare in terms of success. Or third generations.”
16 Cheryl Cole and Liam Payne: 10 years
While they went their separate ways earlier this year, this couple first met during X-Factor in 2008 when Liam was just a teen, and Cheryl was well into her 20’s. The two later reunited when One Direction played X-Factor in 2015. They were spotted canoodling during an ad break during the filming, and the couple soon went public about their romance, which moved quickly. In 2017, the pair gave birth to their son Bear, but unfortunately, the two were feeling the demands of work travel combined with parenthood and decided to call it quits. They are now working hard at co-parenting.
15 Annette Bening and Warren Beatty: 21 years
At 54-years-old, Warren Beatty famously wouldn't settle down with anybody -- at least until 1991 when he met a 33-year-old Annette Bening on the set of the film Bugsy. Beatty told People of the first time he met his wife, “I remember losing interest in the garlic chicken I was eating within 20 seconds and the garlic chicken had been very good.” Beatty says his reluctance to settle down had more to do with the uncertainty of divorce than the one of marriage -- that is until Annette came along. The two have had four children together, which Beatty says is the biggest, and the best thing that has happened to him, his kids, “and their mother.”
14 Stephen Moyer and Anna Paquin: 13 years
Love was in the cards for Vampire Bill Compton and Sookie Stackhouse, both on the set of their famous vampire show and in real life. Despite a 13-year age difference, the two connected immediately when they were auditioning and ended up having dinner together each night thereafter until their friendship blossomed into something more. Paquin told Red,
“If you’re going to spend the rest of your life with someone, you want it to be the person you want to hang out with all the time. We have a lot in common but, when it comes down to it, if that person isn’t really your buddy as well, for me, I don’t think that would work.”
The two are happy parents to girl/boy twins Poppy and Charlie Moyer.
13 Amal and George Clooney: 17 years
George and Amal met in Lake Cuomo, Italy in 2013, when they were introduced by a mutual friend. The former silver fox lady’s man told the Hollywood Reporter of now wife Amal, “I thought she was beautiful, and I thought she was funny and obviously smart.” George proposed during a romantic dinner with a seven-carat diamond, and the two were wed in Italy. When asked about having kids, twins Alexander and Ella in 2017 George said, “We didn’t plan on it. We never talked about it until after we were married, which is funny. There was an assumption that we didn’t want them."
12 William H. Macy and Felicity Huffman: 12 years
Shameless star William H. Macy is proud of his marriage, he bragged to Us Weekly saying,
“I’m the luckiest guy, I won the lottery. I love being married to Felicity. I love being married, I really like it. Although I have [messed] it up before. I just got lucky. There’s no secret, I got lucky.”
Despite a 12-year age difference the two have now been married for over 20 years and have two lovely teen daughters Sofia and Georgia. Huffman agreed and shared some of the secrets of their long-term success saying, “As a father, I love that he always tells the truth. As a husband, I love that he cherishes me.”
11 Amber Tamblyn and David Cross: 19 years
In a real-world chance encounter, this pair of lovebirds met on a plane from Houston to Louisiana. Tamblyn told The Huffington Post, “He was in the seat next to me and I was like, ‘Oh my God, that’s David Cross!’" The two were wed in 2016 and had their first child, a little girl in 2017. People were outraged when the couple posted the child’s name as a joke on social media, "David and I are proud to announce the birth of our daughter, Dauphinoise Petunia Brittany Scheherazade Von Funkinstein Mustard Witch RBG Cross Tamblyn-Bey jr.," showing that they have the same sense of humor even though there are nearly 20 years between them.
10 Hayden Panettiere and Wladimir Klitschko: 13 years
After nine years together, maybe an age difference was one of the things that broke up Hayden Panettiere and Wladimir Klitschko, who have a 13-year age gap between them. The two met at a book launch for a friend when Hayden was just 19 and Wladimir was 33. Hayden told Ellen,
“I know that I'm small, but he's large. That's how we met. I said, 'You're huge.' And he said, 'You're tiny.' And that was it."
Sources close to the former couple say that they are working hard to successfully co-parent their daughter Kaya, and both maintain mutual respect and friendship since the split.
9 Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Jason Statham: 20 years
It’s been nearly a decade since this couple got together. With 20 years between them, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Jason Statham have worked hard to keep their personal life and romantic relationship very, very private. They first debuted as a couple at a Vanity Fair Party. As reported by Celebs Now, in 2016 Jason joked with the press about their wedding, “We’re very happy. She’s a great girl. You’ll be the last to see [the photos]!” The couple has a son, Jack Oscar Statham and continues to keep their private life very private, perhaps that’s why things have worked out so well for them.
8 Hilarie Burton and Jeffrey Dean Morgan: 16 years
People were surprised when AMC star Jefferey Dean Morgan and One Tree Hill star Hilarie Burton became an item after a double date set-up with Supernatural co-star Danneel Ackles. The two have 16 years between them, but that hasn’t stood in the way of their happiness, as the couple has been together for nearly 10 years (which is like a lifetime in celebrity years). They gave a rare interview with E! News about their first child Augustus in 2010 with Dean Morgan providing a candid look into his experience with fatherhood, "It's been spectacular... a lot of not sleeping, and then our one adult night we come here. This is (interview) our date. Can you believe it?"
7 Hugh Jackman and Deborra Lee-Furness: 13 years
Hugh Jackman has been with his wife, Deborra Lee-Furness since the 1990’s and appreciates the wisdom of a woman 13 years his senior, but also loves her fun side. Jackman told People Magazine, "I'm literally the adult in the relationship. She's just like a little kid. I'm the [one saying], 'Babe, this is not a legal parking spot'. 'Oh, come on, Mr. Goody- Goody' ... I've always believed that in marriage you know you're going to go through some crazy ups and downs."
Jackman says when he is at the Oscars he always looks out to his wife in the audience. The couple is parents to two lovely adopted children, Oscar and Ava.
6 Camila Alves and Matthew McConaughey: 13 years
Many of us thought that Matthew McConaughey was going to be a lifetime bachelor, at least until he met his now-wife Camila Alves at Hyde Lounge Club in 2006. He was there with his bromance buddy Lance Armstrong and Alves recognized Armstrong for his celeb status, not McConaughey. After five years together, Matthew proposed on Christmas Day telling People Magazine, “She got the ring, I took a knee and asked her to marry me and take my name. After a bit, she conceded… thankfully.” Lucky number 13 seems to be working for the couple who now have three children together, son Levi, daughter Vida, and youngest son Livingston.
5 Megan Fox and Brian Austin Green: 13 years
Maybe Megan Fox grew up watching 90210 and always had a crush on Brian Austin Green for his dorky yet lovable character, David Silver. The Transformers star married a man 13 years her senior in Hawaii in 2010. Age may be an issue for the couple, who have had a tumultuous on and off relationship over the years, despite having three children together. Fans were confused when the two announced a split in 2016, and then Megan appeared at events sporting another baby bump. They got back together yet again and appear to be living the happy family life again, so maybe love can overcome anything.
4 Matt Bomer and Simon Halls: 13 years
Famous Hollywood publicist Simon Halls met Matt Bomer in 2008 and were together for two years before the couple, 13 years apart in age, decided to tie the knot and make it official. Halls has three sons born via surrogacy and was waiting for the right person to complete his family, then along came Bomer. Simon kept mum on his orientation publicly until the two married in 2011, which came as a surprise to many people. The couple had a small and private ceremony. They work together to help raise three wonderful sons, and in their spare time participate in social volunteerism.
3 Viola Davis and Julius Tennon: 12 years
Twelve years apart in age has not stopped the romance between Viola Davis and Julius Tennon, who work hard to keep things romantic. On IG, the star posted a photo and captioned, “My life got sweeter, richer the day I met you. I love you like a big ole dog!!! Happy 14 years my love, my heart.” The couple met on the set of the TV show City of Angels and expanded their family in October 2011 when they adopted their daughter, Genesis. Tennon has two other kids from a previous relationship, that brings their happy family up to five.
2 Brad Pitt & Angelina Jolie - 12 Years
While they’re not together now the spark between the couple was noticeable in the film Mr. & Mrs. Smith where the pair met. Both were married to other people, Jolie to Billy Bob Thornton, and Pitt to Jennifer Aniston at the time, but their relationships didn’t last much longer, and both quickly filed for divorce. In an interview with Vogue Jolie said,
“I think we found this strange friendship and partnership that kind of just suddenly happened. I think a few months in I realized, 'God, I can't wait to get to work.”
Soon they were together and Jolie announced a pregnancy, and shortly afterwards, Pitt adopted Jolie’s children, and they were the next big power couple. Things ended in 2016 in a bitter divorce, we don’t know what happened, but maybe the 12-year age difference played a part
1 Adam Levine & Behati Prinsloo: 10 years
One decade-long age difference wasn’t going to stop Adam Levine and Victoria Secret model Behati Prinsloo from being together. The May-December romance was made official in a 2014 wedding ceremony in Mexico. In 2016 they announced they were expecting their first child, daughter Dusty Rose. When talking to Ryan Seacrest on his radio show Prinsloo talked about being an only child herself and wanting to have a big family. She joked,
"I want to have 100 kids. I want to have more kids than would be socially responsible.”
The couple welcomed their second daughter, Gio Grace, in February 2018.