Ranking the Longest and Shortest Marriages in Hollywood History

By Edene SoffrinLast Updated Apr 7, 2020 3:56:55 AM ET
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Hollywood marriages may be glamorous, but they still involve some stress and require hard work. The odds certainly don’t seem to favor the rich and famous when it comes to lasting relationships. Some regrettable marriages only lasted a few hours or a few days! In some cases, fans have even placed bets on how long a particular marriage will last.

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Occasionally, a famous couple manages to beat the Hollywood curse and remain happily married — but it’s rare. Curious who deserves praise for going the distance and who deserves a timeout for immediately throwing in the towel? Let’s take a look at our ranking of the shortest and longest marriages in Hollywood history.

Britney Spears and Jason Allen Alexander, 55 Hours

2004 was an interesting year for Britney Spears. After a failed relationship with *NSYNC singer Justin Timberlake, she decided on a whim to marry her childhood friend, Jason Allen Alexander, in a Las Vegas chapel. However, Spears later realized they made a mistake, and they changed their minds after only 55 hours.

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Alexander claimed, "She just came out and asked me. She was like, ‘Well, let’s get married.’ And I was like, ‘Sure. You know, let’s do this.’ I went with my feelings. I was in love with her. I feel like she felt the same way."

Dennis Rodman and Carmen Electra, 9 Days

Sometimes, you wonder why celebrities got married when they were clearly incompatible. In 1998, Chicago Bulls player Dennis Rodman married Baywatch star Carmen Electra in Las Vegas. The two were not suited for marriage and split nine days later.

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Rodman’s publicist questioned if he was "deeply intoxicated" during their wedding, but the couple insisted they were deeply in love. Electra commented, "It’s easy to get caught up in a moment. You think it’s romantic, but then you realize, ‘God, we did it in Vegas?’ It’s like getting a cheeseburger at a fast food restaurant."

Cher and Gregg Allman, 10 Days

Cher’s love life will always be associated with her first marriage to Sonny Bono, but four days after finalizing that divorce in 1975, she married rock musician Gregg Allman in a Las Vegas hotel room. Ten days later, Cher filed to dissolve the marriage due to Allman’s heroin and alcohol problems.

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However, they reunited one month later and had a son together, Elijah Blue, born in 1976. Unfortunately, it still didn’t last, and they split for good in 1977. Allman commented, "There was no future for us because she has that constant paranoia of (my) going back to alcohol."

Eddie Murphy and Tracey Edmonds, 2 Weeks

The first couple on our list who didn’t get married in Las Vegas, comedian Eddie Murphy and film producer Tracey Edmonds exchanged wedding vows in Bora Bora in 2008. Two weeks later, they decided not to move forward with a wedding in the United States.

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The couple commented, "After much consideration and discussion, we have jointly decided that we will forgo having a legal ceremony, as it is not necessary to define our relationship further." They called their Bora Bora wedding a "symbolic union," but they decided to remain friends.

Drew Barrymore and Jeremy Thomas, 2 Months

Fans were shocked when Drew Barrymore suddenly married Welsh bar owner Jeremy Thomas in 1994 after just six weeks of dating. The 19-year-old considered their romance "old-fashioned," and Thomas promised he "didn’t marry her because she was Drew Barrymore. I married her because she was cute!"

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While this seems like an adorable love story, Barrymore filed for divorce two months later. Not much has been said about their marriage. The actress also didn’t have much luck with her second marriage to comedian Tom Green, which lasted less than a year.

Kim Kardashian and Kris Humphries, 2 Months

Kim Kardashian met former NBA player Kris Humphries in 2010 while filming Kourtney & Kim Take New York. They were married in a lavish and televised ceremony a year later on August 20, 2011. Fans were intrigued by their romance, but it didn’t last very long.

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Kardashian notoriously filed for divorce 72 days into their marriage. She cited "irreconcilable differences," but news outlets have long suspected the marriage was merely a publicity stunt to promote the Kardashian family’s brand and their reality series. So, was their short-lived marriage just for show? We will probably never know the answer.

Nicolas Cage and Lisa Marie Presley, 3 Months

Nicolas Cage’s 2002 wedding to Lisa Marie Presley, daughter of the "King of Rock and Roll," Elvis Presley, still doesn’t make much sense. Cage was a devoted Elvis Presley fan, but that’s certainly not enough to merit a marriage to Presley’s only child. They got married in Hawaii, but three months later, Presley filed for divorce.

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Although they didn’t stay together, Presley later said they remain good friends. She commented that they came from similar situations and backgrounds. They seemed like a perfect match, so it was a bit surprising to see how quickly they fell out of the "newlywed phase."

Pamela Anderson and Kid Rock, 4 Months

It’s hard to keep track of Pamela Anderson’s numerous marriages, including her most recent January 20, 2020, wedding to director Jon Peters. She’s famous for her tumultuous relationship with singer Kid Rock. In 2006, they married during a booze-fueled yacht party in Saint-Tropez.

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At the time of their wedding, Anderson said, "I feel like I’m finally free. I’m in love." However, four months later at the premiere of Borat, in which Anderson had a cameo role, the couple agreed on their divorce and practically raced each other to the courthouse. Rock beat her by 53 minutes.

Renée Zellweger and Kenny Chesney, 4 Months

After four months of dating, actress Renée Zellweger and country music star Kenny Chesney tied the knot in a romantic ceremony on the Caribbean island of St. John. The couple appeared to be in love, but four months later, they obtained an annulment. Zellweger mysteriously claimed the reason for their split was "fraud."

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Fans speculated a great deal over what Zellweger meant by "fraud," finally prompting the actress to comment that it was "simply legal language and not a reflection of Kenny’s character." While the pair have kept details of their brief marriage private, Zellweger called it the "biggest mistake of my life."

Bradley Cooper and Jennifer Esposito, 5 Months

It’s unfortunate how quickly some marriages fall apart, especially in Hollywood. A few Hollywood marriages last forever, while far more only last a few months. In October 2006, Bradley Cooper became engaged to actress Jennifer Esposito. They married in December, and five short months later, she filed for divorce in May 2007.

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Cooper is private about his first marriage, but he commented, "It was just something that happened. The good thing is, we both realized it. Sometimes, you just realize it." It’s true that there doesn’t seem to be any hard feelings between the pair.

Chad Michael Murray and Sophia Bush, 5 Months

One Tree Hill fans were ecstatic when they found out that stars Sophia Bush (Brooke Davis) and Chad Michael Murray (Lucas Scott) got married in real life in 2005. Their characters were in love, and it appeared the onscreen romance transferred offscreen — as it often does in Hollywood. However, the couple split five months later.

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Their divorce didn’t hurt their popular series, but Bush felt humiliated and brokenhearted. She commented, "We were two stupid kids who had no business being in a relationship in the first place." Perhaps Lucas and Brooke were a better couple than the real-life stars.

Melanie Griffith and Don Johnson, 6 Months

Melanie Griffith was just 14 years old when she met actor Don Johnson in 1972, and he was eight years her senior. They started dating and even lived together in a rented house. Johnson proposed on Griffith’s 18th birthday, and the two married in 1976, only to divorce six months later.

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In an interesting plot twist, that wasn’t the end of their relationship. They reunited and remarried in 1989, and their daughter, actress Dakota Johnson, was born later that year. While this second marriage lasted longer than their first attempt, they eventually divorced in 1996, for good this time.

Elizabeth Taylor and Conrad “Nicky” Hilton, 8 Months

Elizabeth Taylor is notorious for her countless marriages and love affairs. Married a total of eight times (twice to Richard Burton), Taylor’s first marriage to Conrad "Nicky" Hilton wasn’t exactly a happy affair. The actress and heir to the Hilton Hotels chain tied the knot in 1950 in a lavish wedding organized by MGM Studios.

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In the weeks after their wedding, Taylor (just 18 years old) realized she made a grave mistake. She shared few interests with Hilton, and he was also abusive and a heavy drinker. They divorced eight months later in what ultimately became the shortest of her marriages.

Jennifer Lopez and Cris Judd, 9 Months

In 2001, Jennifer Lopez tied the knot with her former backup dancer, Cris Judd. She previously had a public relationship with rapper Sean Combs, otherwise known as P. Diddy. After that relationship ended, Lopez tried finding happiness, but it wasn’t with Judd.

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Nine months into their marriage, the couple divorced. Judd commented, "You know, it’s very tough. Your privacy is breached. You’re no longer a normal person." We hope Lopez has better luck with her next attempt down the wedding aisle with her upcoming marriage to former New York Yankees star Alex Rodriguez.

Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth, 9 Months

Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth didn’t exactly have the easiest on-again, off-again relationship for 10 years. After meeting on the set of The Last Song in 2009, the couple seemed to have a strong relationship, even though it was rocky at times. In December 2018, they finally exchanged vows in an intimate ceremony.

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It seemed the couple was finally solid, and we could admire their relationship. Nine months later, however, the pair separated. It only took Hemsworth 11 days to file for divorce, citing "irreconcilable differences." We can no longer say they define "relationship goals."

Faith Hill and Tim McGraw, 23 Years and Counting

Now, let's take a look at the flip side of the coin and praise the longest celebrity marriages, starting with Faith Hill and Tim McGraw. The country music power couple met in the spring of 1996 and were instantly attracted to one another, so they began dating. They married in October 1996, which may have seemed fast, but they now have a lasting marriage and three daughters: Gracie, Maggie and Audrey.

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The couple has often collaborated on projects during their marriage. They continuously show us how adorable they are together. McGraw reflects on his marriage: "I’m lucky to have her. She’s the light of our whole family’s life. She keeps everything going for us."

Warren Beatty and Annette Bening, 27 Years and Counting

Warren Beatty had a reputation as a playboy and womanizer before he settled down with his Bugsy co-star, Annette Bening, in 1992. Even though he is 21 years older than Bening, their marriage has remained strong for 27 years, and they have four children: Stephen, Benjamin, Isabel and Ella.

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Beatty knew Bening was "the one" the first day he met her. While meeting for lunch, he knew she would become an essential part of his life. He said, "I remember losing interest in the garlic chicken I was eating within 20 seconds."

John Travolta and Kelly Preston, 28 Years and Counting

Grease and Saturday Night Fever star John Travolta met actress Kelly Preston in 1987 while filming The Experts. They were married in 1991, and they have three children: Jett, Ella Bleu and Benjamin. It seems like the couple has a good marriage, but it hasn’t always been easy.

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Following their son’s (Jett) unexpected death in 2009, the couple decided it was best for them to regularly attend marriage counseling. Travolta stated the therapy helped their marriage, and they were able to support each other during their grieving period, which is critical for a relationship to survive.

Michael J. Fox and Tracy Pollan, 31 Years and Counting

Michael J. Fox first met his wife, Tracy Pollan, when she played Ellen Reed on his popular 1980’s sitcom, Family Ties. At first, nothing happened between them. Pollan commented, "It wasn’t that I wasn’t attracted to him. I was just dating someone else."

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Fox added, "And it wasn’t that I wasn’t attracted to her. The guy she was dating was just bigger than me." They officially started dating in 1987 and married a year later. They have four children: Sam, Esme, Aquinnah and Schuyler. Pollan has supported Fox throughout his long battle with Parkinson’s Disease.

Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick, 31 Years and Counting

Everybody cut footloose! Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick seem to have the secret to a happy marriage. While they fell in love on the set of the 1988 PBS special Lemon Sky, they actually met when Sedgwick was 12 years old. Bacon was performing in a play, and she saw the performance.

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Bacon shared, "A little girl was in there who had just seen the matinee, and her brother said, ‘You like that actor? Go tell him you liked him,’ and it was Kyra." They have been married for 31 years and have two children together, Travis and Sosie.

Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, 31 Years and Counting

Everyone probably wishes they were married to Tom Hanks, but Rita Wilson would be a fool to let him go. The down-to-earth actor met his wife in 1981 on the set of his short-lived sitcom, Bosom Buddies. However, sparks didn’t fly until 1984 when they co-starred in the movie Volunteers. They tied the knot in 1988 and have two sons together, Chester "Chet" and Truman.

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Their marriage has remained strong throughout the years, including when Wilson was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015. She remarked, "I was so amazed, so blown away by the care my husband gave me…Who knew it would make you even closer?"

Jamie Lee Curtis and Christopher Guest, 35 Years and Counting

It was love at first sight for Halloween actress Jamie Lee Curtis and her screenwriter-director husband, Christopher Guest. In 1984, Curtis was flipping through pages of a Rolling Stone magazine when she saw Guest’s picture. She told her friend, "I’m going to marry that man."

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Curtis called Guest, but he never responded to her messages. Months later, they met at a Hollywood restaurant, and it was his turn to call her. They walked down the aisle less than six months later. Together, they adopted two children, Annie and Thomas, and the rest is history.

Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne, 37 Years and Counting

Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne have one of the more unique marriages on our list. They met in the early 1970s when her father, Don Arden, managed Ozzy’s famous heavy metal band, Black Sabbath. Sharon took over his management as a solo artist in 1979, and the two started a public romance.

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The couple married in 1982 and have three children together: Aimee, Kelly and Jack. Their marriage certainly hasn’t been easy. It has been plagued by alcohol, drug use, violence and a public reality series, The Osbournes. Despite these challenges, the couple has remained married for 37 years.

Meryl Streep and Don Gummer, 41 Years and Counting

Meryl Streep met and married sculptor Don Gummer in 1978, six months after the death of her longtime boyfriend, John Cazale. They have four children: Henry, Mary "Mamie," Grace and Louisa. The actress has been mostly private about their marriage, but she thanked her husband during her 2012 Oscar acceptance speech.

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Streep remarked, "First, I’m going to thank Don, because when you thank your husband at the end of the speech, they play him out with music, and I want him to know that everything I value most in our lives, you’ve given me."

Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward, 50 Years

Paul Newman became known for his devotion to his wife, Joanne Woodward, and their family. They met in 1953 when he starred in the Broadway production of Picnic. She was an understudy. They were married from 1958 until Newman's death in 2008 and were one of the first Hollywood couples to choose to raise their family outside California in Westport, Connecticut.

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Together, they have three children: Elinor "Nell," Melissa "Lissy" and Claire "Clea." Newman was committed to Woodward and their children. He famously remarked, "Why go out for a hamburger when you have steak at home?" Swoon.

Bob and Ginny Newhart, 56 Years and Counting

Comedian Bob Newhart was introduced to his wife, Ginny, by fellow comedian Buddy Hackett. The two instantly hit it off and were married in 1963. Both members of the Roman Catholic Church, they have always valued their marriage and their four children: Robert, Timothy, Jennifer and Courtney.

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Newhart commented on his marriage: "I’m most proud of the longevity of my marriage, my kids and my grandchildren. If you don’t have that, you really don’t have very much." It’s rare for a Hollywood marriage to last more than 50 years, but the Newharts seem to have nothing to worry about.

James Garner and Lois Clarke, 57 Years

Old Hollywood film star James Garner met his wife, Lois Clarke, at a party in 1956. Fourteen days later, they got married! Garner commented, "I was just absolutely nuts about her." Clarke had a daughter, Kim, from a previous marriage, and the couple had another daughter together, Greta "Gigi."

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Their marriage wasn’t always the easiest, and they occasionally separated during their 57-year union, but they always reunited. Garner said, "Marriage is like the Army. Everyone complains, but you’d be surprised at the large number of people who re-enlist." The couple was married until Garner’s death in 2014.

Martin and Janet Sheen, 58 Years and Counting

You might not know much about Martin (Estevez) Sheen’s marriage to actress and producer Janet (Templeton) Estevez, also known as Janet Sheen, but their marriage has remained rock solid for 58 years. They first met when Janet studied art at the New School for Social Research in New York City.

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They married in 1961 and went on to have four children together: Emilio Estevez, Ramon Estevez, Charlie Sheen and Renee Estevez. The Sheens have a mostly private marriage, but they have always supported each other and their children’s careers — no matter what.

Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara, 61 Years

Comedian Jerry Stiller met fellow comedian Anne Meara inside an agent’s office. Meara was upset with a casting agent, so Stiller took her out for coffee — and the rest is history. They were married in 1954 and have two children, Amy and actor-comedian Ben Stiller.

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Together, Stiller and Meara formed a comedy team that performed on numerous variety programs, including The Ed Sullivan Show, throughout the 1960s and 1970s. They even had their own short-lived sitcom, The Stiller and Meara Show. They were married for 61 years until Meara’s death in 2015.

Kirk Douglas and Anne Buydens, 65 Years

One of the most prominent stars of Hollywood’s Golden Age, Kirk Douglas met producer Anne Buydens while filming the 1956 film Lust for Life. They were married in 1954 until his death in 2020 and have two children, Peter and Eric. Douglas’ famous son, Michael Douglas, was from his first marriage to actress Diana Dill.

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In a strange twist for a lasting marriage, Douglas and Buydens had a fairly open marriage, with Douglas having many affairs. He was honest about his infidelities with Buydens, who accepted them. She explained, "As a European, I understood it was unrealistic to expect total fidelity in a marriage."