The Smash star, 43, quietly separated from screenwriter Daniel Zelman last year (11) and reportedly moved on to date her TV co-star Will Chase, who ironically breaks up her TV marriage on hit drama Smash.
Messing and Zelman met in college in 1990 and have an eight-year-old son, named Roman. Messing has started legal proceedings in Los Angeles to finalise the split.
She has cited "irreconcilable differences" for the break-up and is requesting spousal and child support, according to court documents obtained by TMZ.com.
Messing has hired top celebrity lawyer Neal Hersh to represent her in court.
The actress recently opened up about the heartbreaking split, telling U.S. magazine Ladies Home Journal, "Twenty years. It's a very long time." And she attributed the couple's move to New York, where she filmed Smash, for the split: "When I say the move to New York was traumatic, it was traumatic because every aspect of my life was going through a huge change."
A kids’ movie without the cheeky jokes for adults is like a big juicy BLT without the B… or the T. Madagascar 3: Europe’s Most Wanted may have a title that sounds like it was made up in a cartoon sequel laboratory but when it comes to serving up laughs just think of the film as a BLT with enough extra bacon to satisfy even the wildest of animals — or even a parent with a gaggle of tots in tow. Yes even with that whole "Afro Circus" nonsense.
It’s not often that we find exhaustively franchised films like the Madagascar set that still work after almost seven years. Despite being spun off into TV shows and Christmas specials in addition to its big screen adventures the series has not only maintained its momentum it has maintained the part we were pleasantly surprised by the first time around: great jokes.
In this third installment of the series – the trilogy-maker if you will – directing duo Eric Darnell and Tom McGrath add Conrad Vernon (director Monsters Vs. Aliens) to the helm as our trusty gang swings back into action. Alex the lion (Ben Stiller) Marty the zebra (Chris Rock) Gloria the hippo (Jada Pinkett Smith) and Melman the giraffe (David Schwimmer) are stuck in Africa after the hullaballoo of Madagascar 2 and they’ll do anything to get back to their beloved New York. Just a hop skip and a jump away in Monte Carlo the penguins are doing their usual greedy schtick but the zoo animals catch up with them just in time to catch the eye of the sinister animal control stickler Captain Dubois (Frances McDormand). And just like that the practically super human captain is chasing them through Monte Carlo and the rest of Europe in hopes of planting Alex’s perfectly coifed lion head on her wall of prized animals.
Luckily for pint-sized viewers Dubois’ terrifying presence is balanced out by her sheer inhuman strength uncanny guiles and Stretch Armstrong flexibility (ah the wonder of cartoons) as well as Alex’s escape plan: the New Yorkers run away with the European circus. While Dubois’ terrifying Doberman-like presence looms over the entire film a sense of levity (which is a word the kiddies might learn from Stiller’s eloquent lion) comes from the plan for salvation in which the circus animals and the zoo animals band together to revamp the circus and catch the eye of a big-time American agent. Sure the pacing throughout the first act is practically nonexistent running like a stampede through the jungle but by the time we're palling around under the big top the film finds its footing.
The visual splendor of the film (and man is there a champion size serving of it) the magnificent danger and suspense is enhanced to great effect by the addition of 3D technology – and not once is there a gratuitous beverage or desperate Crocodile Dundee knife waved in our faces to prove its worth. The caveat is that the soundtrack employs a certain infectious Katy Perry ditty at the height of the 3D spectacular so parents get ready to hear that on repeat until the leaves turn yellow.
But visual delights and adventurous zoo animals aside Madagascar 3’s real strength is in its script. With the addition of Noah Baumbach (Greenberg The Squid and the Whale) to the screenwriting team the script is infused with a heightened level of almost sarcastic gravitas – a welcome addition to the characteristically adult-friendly reference-heavy humor of the other Madagascar films. To bring the script to life Paramount enlisted three more than able actors: Vitaly the Siberian tiger (Bryan Cranston) Gia the Leopard (Jessica Chastain) and Stefano the Italian Sealion (Martin Short). With all three actors draped in European accents it might take viewers a minute to realize that the cantankerous tiger is one and the same as the man who plays an Albuquerque drug lord on Breaking Bad but that makes it that much sweeter to hear him utter slant-curse words like “Bolshevik” with his usual gusto.
Between the laughs the terror of McDormand’s Captain Dubois and the breathtaking virtual European tour the Zoosters’ accidental vacation is one worth taking. Madagascar 3 is by no means an insta-classic but it’s a perfectly suited for your Summer-at-the-movies oasis.
Rumours emerged in February (12) suggesting the Oscar winner had checked into a drug rehab centre in her long fight to stay clean, prompting the Paper Moon star's representative to reveal she was seeking "supervision" for painkiller use following back surgery.
Further speculation swirled last week (ends20May12), with editors at Radar Online claiming O'Neal had "developed an addiction to prescription pills" - but she's now hit back at the gossip, insisting the reports "could not be further from the truth".
She tells GossipCop.com, "I am on a great path - focused, happy and healthy."
The screen veteran has received much public backlash for his hands-off relationship with his kids as three of his four children - Tatum, Redmond and Griffin - have struggled with drug and legal issues over the last several years.
O'Neal recently opened up about his guilt and failure as a dad during an interview with U.S. breakfast show Today earlier this month (May12), but his sports broadcaster son Patrick O'Neal disagrees - and has come forward in a bid to help repair his dad's public persona.
During an appearance on U.S. news show Access Hollywood on Wednesday (09May12), the 44 year old said, "I'm real proud of my family... I'm real proud to say that Ryan O'Neal is my father and I'm real proud of my childhood and growing up how I grew up. The perception of my father as a bad parent (is something)... I have to argue...
"I have never stepped forward (to talk about this), I am a pretty busy guy... (but) I'm not on the payroll of my father so I'm here on my own volition to support my father and tell him that I love him."
The retired sportsman earned his doctoral degree in Education from Barry University and he accepted his award during a commencement ceremony at the James L. Knight Center in Miami.
Wearing the school's traditional cap and red gown, which had been custom-made for the towering star, the former Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers player had to bend down on one knee so his professor Dr. David M. Kopp could place a light blue hood around his neck in recognition of his studious achievements.
Accepting the degree, he said, "Everyone thinks this is honorary. But this is not honorary. I put in four-and-a-half hard years staying up late at night, studying, reading, rewriting papers Dr. Kopp marked up."
He then gave the audience a laugh as he picked up Kopp, to the cheers of his fellow graduates, and later posed for photos with his doctorate.
O'Neal, 40, dropped out of high school as a teen, but he decided to get serious about his studies in 2000 and enrolled at Louisiana State University to earn his bachelor's degree.
He then took an online program and studied for his master's, before working on his doctorate.
O'Neal's sons Griffin and Redmond are currently incarcerated in jail and rehab for drug-related issues, while the actor's daughter Tatum has battled drug abuse for years.
The Love Story star recently blamed the children's mothers Joanna Cook-Moore and Farrah Fawcett for their woes, but during an appearance on Access Hollywood Live on Wednesday (02May12), he accepted the full brunt of the blame.
He said, "That was unfair of me. I'll take credit for it all... I'm the father.
"I take the full responsibility for as much of it as I can. Some of this they were able to do on their own."
Earlier this week (begs30Apr12), O'Neal confessed to being a bad dad, admitting he could have done better when his kids were growing up.
During an interview on U.S. breakfast show Today on Tuesday (01May12), the actor said, "I wasn't trained."
The couple endured a tumultuous 30-year romance before the Charlie's Angels beauty passed away in 2009, and O'Neal admits his youngest son's troubles started at an early age when he witnessed their regular arguments.
The pair soon learned to keep their bust-ups away from their child's eyes after he wandered in to one altercation with a knife pointed at his chest when he was just six years old.
Speaking of his fiery relationship with Fawcett, O'Neal tells CNN's Piers Morgan, "She went into a bathroom and I punched the door and the door collapsed and hit her in the eye and I broke my hand. I was looking at her eye and she was getting ice for my hand, those kinds of things were horrible. And one time we were close to a fight and Redmond came into the room with knife and held it to his heart and said, 'If you don't stop I'll plunge it into myself.' It was awful, just awful.
"He was exposed to two people who loved each other very much and it confused him, this was not what he was used to. It was the decision he decided to take to stop us."
The Love Story star has been diagnosed with stage two prostate cancer and recently revealed he is also battling skin cancer on his face and ongoing chronic leukaemia.
And he's hoping a doctor in Ventura can literally freeze his biggest health threat "to death".
Appearing on U.S. news show Access Hollywood, the actor says, "It's a new method that has been developed... and they freeze the part of the prostate that's cancerous.
"Hopefully, it freezes and then drops off but I don't know exactly what happens."
O'Neal will begin treatment on 10 May (12).
The Love Story star has delayed vital treatment on his grade two prostate cancer so he can promote his new memoir about his life with late girlfriend Farrah Fawcett - and he accepts the decision could prove costly to his health.
In a candid interview with U.S. news show Access Hollywood on Tuesday (01May12), O'Neal said, "The book cried out to be sold and so I decided to do that first and then I'll address my cancers... I feel fine."
Asked by host Billy Bush if he cares whether he lives or dies, O'Neal stated, "I don't, frankly. I've lived a nice long life."
But he does have a plan, adding, "Starting on May 10th I'm going to freeze my prostate."
And O'Neal revealed that his cancer woes aren't solely linked to his prostate.
Wearing a bandage on his nose, he explained, "I'm not done and I'm not that beaten down but... I have three cancers at the moment - on my face, in my prostate and I have chronic leukaemia, so I'm not so sure if I should get subscriptions to magazines for more than a year at a time."
The Love Story star is father to son Griffin and daughter Tatum from his first marriage to the late Joanna Cook Moore, while he is also dad to Patrick, with second wife Leigh Taylor-Young, and his youngest child Redmond, from his relationship with Farrah Fawcett.
Griffin, who was born in 1964, is currently serving a 16-month jail sentence for a charge of driving under the influence of drugs, while Redmond is battling substance abuse issues in court-ordered rehab, and Paper Moon actress Tatum, who has long struggled with drug addiction, sought professional help for the use of painkillers following surgery earlier this year (12).
O'Neal has endured a strained relationship with each of his kids over the years, and only reunited with Tatum in 2011 following years of estrangement.
The 71 year old, who has been diagnosed with prostate cancer, accepts that he could have done better as a dad - but he insists his kids can no longer blame him for their struggles as they are all grown-ups.
When asked whether he considers himself a bad father during an interview on U.S. breakfast show Today on Tuesday (01May12), he replied, "Looks like it, doesn't it? Sure looks like it. I suppose I was. I wasn't trained.
"(But) these are not children, anymore. Griffin is 45 (sic), Tatum is 49. Who's the other one? Oh yeah. Redmond is 27. At some point they have to take hold of their own existences."