When couples break up, sometimes the safest bet is to steer clear of each other. However for Hollywood actors and celebrities, this isn’t always an option. Unfortunately even when couples break up, they could still see each-others faces on the news, plastered on movie posters or right next to them if they have to work together. Sometimes these actors just need to put on a brave face, finish a project together and smile for the camera. There are some people who can work through it and even collaborate on another movie years later.
Other couples decide to do it differently. Maybe spending so much time together after the relationship ended is just too difficult. Maybe any residual resentment bubbles up and creates awkward situations. Regardless of the reason, some celebrities call it quits and creative partnerships suddenly come to an end. This can effect their workload or completely change the kind of roles or films they are used to.
Nevertheless, there are plenty of former Hollywood couples that have stayed friendly throughout the years and others who only work together when it comes to parenting.
Here are the 8 Couples Who Broke Up And Kept Working Together (And 7 That Didn’t)
14 Couple That Worked Together: Jennifer Lawrence and Nicholas Hoult
The stars of X-Men: First Class, who played the characters of Mystique and Beast respectively, met on-set back in 2011. They dated for two years before they took a break at the beginning of 2013, but got back together in July of that same year. However, they ended things for good in August of 2014.
The two had to face each other again when filming the movie’s sequel X-Men: Days of Future Past but the actors have been friendly ever since. Lawrence has had nothing but nice things to say about the British actor.
Both have clearly moved on, as Hoult has been seen out and about with model Bryanna Holly and Lawrence had been dating her director on Mother!, Darren Aronofsky.
13 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: J-LO and Marc Anthony
Jennifer Lopez and Marc Anthony started dating back in 2004 and were quickly married six months later. While they had met in 1998 and even worked on a few songs together, they didn’t become an item until Jennifer Lopez ended her engagement to Ben Affleck and Marc Anthony divorced former Miss Universe star, Dayanara Torres.
While married, the couple collaborated on several projects, including the film El Cantante in 2007, a biopic about the legendary salsa singer Hector Lavoe. Unfortunately, their destinies weren't as intertwined as they originally thought, as they announced they were separating in 2011.
The parents of twins tried working together in Q’viva, an American reality TV series in the same line of X-Factor. However, when things didn’t go as planned and the inevitable divorce was announced, they both left the show.
12 Couple That Worked Together: Charlize Theron and Sean Penn
The stars had been friends for eighteen years, before they started dating in 2013. A year later, the couple was engaged during a visit to Paris. This resulted in the couple working together on Penn’s latest film, The Last Face, where he directed Theron in the lead role.
While Penn has gone on record saying that Theron was a dream to work with, the actors weren't able to make it work.
In their last public appearance together at the Cannes festival in 2015, they appeared to be happy but split soon after. With the post production of The Last Face still in the works, Theron and Penn had no choice but to keep working together, as the movie required re-shoots and a promotional tour in 2016.
They managed to successfully finish the project together, but have since been seen ignoring each other at high profile events.
11 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor
Since they got married in 2000, this comedic couple has worked together multiple times in the past. Stiller and Taylor have appeared together in films like Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story, Madagascar, Zoolander and Tropic Thunder. They also had recurring cameos in a three episode arc of Curb Your Enthusiasm.
In May 2017, they shocked Hollywood and the world when they announced they would be filing for divorce after being married for seventeen years. While their separation was announced as a mutual decision, it's unfortunate that the talented couple wasn't able to make it work.
Despite this, they have both said they would like to remain friends and continue raising their children together. Since their announcement, Stiller and Taylor haven’t had any collaborative projects and don’t appear to have any coming in the near future.
10 Couple That Worked Together: Al Pacino and Diane Keaton
In an interview with People Magazine, Diane Keaton confessed she had a crush on Al Pacino, when they were introduced before filming The Godfather. The two began dating quickly after that and had an on and off relationship for years. Allegedly, they officially broke up after filming of The Godfather Part II in 1974.
It would be almost twenty years later that the Oscar winners would film the last instalment of the Godfather trilogy together. While not the most memorable movie compared to the first two, their performance of a divorced couple reuniting for the benefit of their children was easily the best part of the movie.
Keaton still speaks very highly of Pacino and has said before that he has the most beautiful face.
9 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman
During the 90s, the world fell in love with this gorgeous couple. The American heartthrob and the Australian beauty met on the set of Days of Thunder and were married in 1990, only a few months after Tom Cruise’s divorce to Mimi Rogers was finalized.
Two years later, the newlyweds worked together on their second film, Far and Away. In 1999, the parents of two starred in Stanley Kubrick’s final film, Eyes Wide Shut. The movie focused on a couple whose marriage hangs by a thread, when the husband goes off on some moral and sexual odyssey. Eyes Wide Shut is the last movie they worked on together, as they were divorced two years later in 2001.
Even though they haven’t worked together since, they have both amounted to great fame and success individually.
8 Couple That Worked Together: Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter
It must be weird to play the roles of brother and sister in a TV series, when you are a married couple in real life. It must be even more bizarre to keep playing those roles for a few more years, while going through a divorce. That, unfortunately, is exactly what happened to Michael C. Hall and Jennifer Carpenter while working on the crime drama Dexter.
In the show, Hall plays a forensic technician who lives in Miami and moonlights as a serial killer. His foster sister, played by Carpenter, is a cop in the same police department who suspects nothing of Dexter’s night time activities.
They actors didn’t start dating until 2007, around the filming of season 2, and then eloped in 2008. The marriage lasted for three years, ended when they go divorced in 2011. They had to work together for the final season before they parted ways for good.
7 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Kate Winslet and Sam Mendes
The British power couple were married in secret back in 2003. According to Mendes, it was a whim while they vacationed in Anguila. They had met two years before when Mendes approached Winslet about a play at the Donmar Warehouse Theater, where he was the artistic director at the time.
Mendes directed his wife alongside Leonardo Dicaprio in 2008, during the filming of Revolutionary Road. The movie tells the story of a marriage disintegrating in the 1950s.
The film was well received, but the project proved to be too much for them, as Mendes and Winslet’s relationship was on the decline. They announced their separation in 2010 and finalized their divorced in 2011.
The stars have each managed to have successful careers on their own, with Mendes helming Skyfall and Winslet receiving an Oscar nomination for her role in Steve Jobs.
7. Couple That Worked Together: Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton
Often considered the marriage of the century, this passionate romance between Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton featured frequently in gossip magazines for over ten years.
The couple started their affair while filming Cleopatra back in 1962. Their infidelities became official when a paparazzi took a picture of them cozying up on a yacht. After that, there was no hiding their relationship. They married only nine days after Elizabeth's divorce to Eddie Fisher was finalized.
Burton and Taylor went on to work together in eleven movies, including The Taming of the Shrew, Who's Afraid of Virginia Wolf? and The Sandpiper. They stayed together for ten years before their divorce in 1974. In 1975, they reconciled and remarried but this second marriage lasted less than a year.
Surprisingly, eight years later they would work together again. In 1983, Taylor and Burton headlined the Broadway adaptation of Private Lives by Noël Coward. The show ran for 63 performances and toured to major cities like Washington D.C, Chicago and Los Angeles.
6 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Amy Poehler and Will Arnett
These TV stars married back in 2003, but dated for years before that. Arnett even moved from LA to New York City while Poehler was working on Saturday Night Live. The actors frequently popped up in each other’s work when they were together, like when Arnett played a blind date for Leslie Knope in Parks and Recreation. Poehler also appeared on five episodes of Arrested Development as the Bride of Gob. They also appeared together in movies like Monster Vs. Aliens, On Broadway, Horton Hears a Who!, Spring Breakdown and as the incestuous Van Waldenbergs in Blades of Glory.
After nine years of making us laugh with their collaborations, the couple announced they would be filing for divorce in 2012. Since then, they have not worked together, yet both of them have found work in animation. Arnett has starred in Netflix’s series Bojack Horseman and Poehler voiced the Pixar character Joy, from Inside Out.
5 Couple That Worked Together: Mindy Kaling and BJ Novak
If you are a fan of The Office, you know the tumultuous relationship between Kelly and Ryan wasn’t the one you were rooting for. But behind the scenes, the actors had a romance of their own.
Kaling and Novak fell for each other when they were writers for The Office. They inspired their characters’ relationship on their own on again, off again romance. Kaling left the show in the beginning of season 8 and Novak stayed as an executive producer. The two reunited in the series finale where Ryan tries to get Kelly back by stealing someone’s baby and pretending to be a dad. This scheme somehow works, as Kelly finds this incredibly romantic.
The two have worked together since then in Kaling’s show, The Mindy Project, and continue to be best friends, as they constantly show up on the others social media accounts.
4 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Jon Hamm and Jennifer Westfeldt
Jon Hamm and Jennifer Westfeldt started dating back in 1997. During their eighteen years together, they worked on several film projects together. Their most prominent release was the indie hit Friends with Kids, which Westfeldt wrote, directed, and starred in, alongside Hamm.
They even started their own production company called Points West Pictures in 2009. The couple had decided to not marry and often spoke how a piece of paper didn’t determine the validity of their relationship. However, in 2015 Hamm and Westfeldt announced they were breaking up.
They haven’t worked together since then, their last project a co-production called The Comic Kid. Hamm has continued with his own projects, appearing frequently in Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and landing a significant role in this year’s summer hit Baby Driver. Westfeldt appeared in six episodes in the TV series Younger.
3 Couple That Worked Together: Justin Timberlake and Cameron Diaz
After Timberlake broke things off with Britney Spears, he began dating Diaz after they met at the Nickelodeon Kid’s Choice Awards. The two were a couple for almost four years before they announced they were ending their romantic relationship in 2007, despite rumours of an engagement.
The two reunited in 2010 during the filming of the raunchy comedy Bad Teacher, where Diaz plays a gold digging teacher who has her eye on the well-mannered new guy, played by Timberlake.
If they hadn’t left things on a good note, then things would have gotten really uncomfortable. When it came to film the scene where their characters finally hook up, Diaz said they aimed to make the most awkward sex scene ever.
2 Couple That Didn’t Work Together: Helena Bonham Carter and Tim Burton
This odd couple of Hollywood started their collaborations as soon as they met. Tim Burton directed Helena Bonham Carter for the first time in 2001, while filming Planet of the Apes.
They soon began dating after that and from then on, Burton took to casting her in most of his films. From minor to main roles, Bonham Carter appeared in Big Fish, Lemony Snicket’s A Series of Unfortunate Events, Corpse Bride, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd, Alice in Wonderland and Dark Shadows.
Their last project together as a couple was Alice in Wonderland: Through the Looking Glass in 2016, which Burton only produced. They announced their separation in December of that year and haven't not worked together since.
1 Couple That Worked Together: Hayden Panettiere and Milo Ventimiglia
The Heroes co-stars began dating in 2007, a year after the premiere of the hit show. The rumours of their romance started after they were seen kissing at an Emmy after-party.
The main controversy was that Ventimiglia, 31 at the time, denied the rumours of dating Panettiere since she who was only 18 then. Soon after that, they officially made their relationship public.
They dated for over two years until 2009, when they ended the relationship because of conflicting lifestyles. This makes sense, as their age gap meant that they were at completely different stages of their life.
However, Heroes was still in production, so they had to keep working together throughout the fourth and final season of the show.
Did we miss any of your favorite actor couples who are no longer together? Let us know in the comments!