Three-and-a -half years
42 and 31
Previous pairings: DeGeneres
had two serious relationships with women prior to Heche
dated her "Another World" co-star Richard Burgi
in the late 1980s and Steve Martin
from 1993 to 1995.
The two actresses met at the 1997 Vanity Fair Oscar Party. DeGeneres
was one month away from publicly revealing that she was a lesbian and having her character on ABC's "Ellen" come out as well. Heche
contended on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in 1997: "I was not gay before I met [Ellen.] It wasn't immediately a sexual attraction." Since their pairing, the two have been seen at every opening, every awards show.
What went wrong?:
Your guess is as good as ours. The pair released a statement Aug. 19 saying, "Unfortunately, we have decided to end our relationship. It is an amicable parting, and we greatly value the 3 1/2 years we have spent together." No reasons were cited. A source told Us Weekly that it may have been a case of very opposite personalities clashing. We'll have to wait for Heche
's upcoming memoirs to figure it all out.
Post-split romance: DeGeneres
recently ended a two-month rebound romance with with TV actress Alexandra Hedison, while Heche
has reportedly switched teams, hooking up with cameraman Coley Laffoon.
What they've said:
"No one knows what we have together, no one," DeGeneres
told TV Guide in 1997. "If Anne goes, I want to go, that's how strongly I feel." Soon after the split (not to mention her famous dazed stroll), Heche
accepted an award for her directorial efforts in HBO's "If These Walls Could Talk 2," which co-starred DeGeneres
. According to Reuters, Heche
covered her face with her hands when she mentioned her ex's name, then composed herself and said, "No matter what you've heard, I love Ellen DeGeneres
. She is a genius . . . a marvelous woman so dear to my life, and I love her." But neither have denied that their publicized romance has been full of hardships. Said Heche
to the London Times in 1998: "I was naive, hugely naive. I fell in love and I didn't believe people would care … The Hollywood community and friends and family backed away."