It’s an old adage that love will find you when you least expect it. Celebrities, who have their love lives parsed and picked over by the public and media outlets, might find it even more difficult to find something genuine when they’re surrounded by people who are either good at faking their emotions or those who kiss up to them in order to get ahead on their own terms. Sycophants don’t often make for strong relationships.
Plus, acting is a difficult gig if you’re with someone who doesn’t understand it or is too insecure to move past it. After all, if you’re kissing or simulating something intimate with a co-worker – even when it’s done under the least romantic conditions – it can still rub a person the wrong way. It makes sense that celebrities choose to date those in the business, right?
Well, that’s not always how things end up!
Sometimes, celebrities find love in the most unlikely of places – or, rather, the most normal of places: a bar, a restaurant, the gym, a party. You know, places us regular folk have been known to visit, no VIP pass required.
These 20 celebs managed to find something special with civilians just like us, giving us a little more hope that we might one day find the same.
20 Aaron Paul And Lauren Parsekian
Aaron Paul was riding a wave of newfound fame and major critical success thanks to his role as Jesse Pinkman on the TV show Breaking Bad when he met Lauren Parsekian at the Coachella music festival. According to Paul, it was there that the two had their first kiss – atop a Ferris wheel – and fell in love, as Us reports.
While Paul is the bigger name in the couple, Parkesian is no slouch herself! The beautiful blonde is an activist and film director. She's also the co-founder of the Kind Campaign, which aims to eradicate bullying. They married in 2013 and in February 2018, they welcomed a daughter, Story Annabelle Paul.
19 Zoë Saldana And Marco Perego
Thanks to major roles in sci-fi juggernauts like Avatar, the rebooted Star Trek series and the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise, Zoë Saldana has become more of a household name than her artist husband Marco Perego. Unlike her last relationship (which lasted 11 years), Saldana and Perego decided to wed just a few months after they began dating, Boomsbeat reports. In a reversal of tradition, Perego decided to adopt his much more famous wife’s surname, making the couple Zoë Saldana-Perego and Marco Perego-Saldana! They have welcomed three sons together, twins Cy and Bowie in 2014 and Zen in 2017.
18 Ellen Pompeo And Chris Ivery
How’s this for a meet-cute that’s worthy of a rom-com? Grey’s Anatomy star Ellen Pompeo met husband Chris Ivery while at a grocery store back in 2003! It was two years before Pompeo would strike gold with the soapy medical drama, while Ivery worked as a music producer – but it wouldn’t be long before Pompeo’s star far eclipsed her husband’s. (In fact, her character, Meredith Grey, was originally set to have a relationship with Preston Burke, played by Isaiah Washington, but Pompeo felt the interracial dynamic hit a little too close to home!)
The couple quietly wed in new York City in 2007 with Mayor Bloomberg as their witness, and the two have three children together.
17 Patrick Dempsey And Jillian Fink
Another alum from the Grey’s family, Patrick Dempsey met his wife Jillian Fink when he walked into her salon all the way back in 1994. According to Fink, when she saw the name “Patrick Dempsey” under her appointments, she thought it was a joke, as Vogue reports. In fact, it took three years of regular haircuts before the two got together, since both were involved with other people at the time. They ended up marrying in 1999.
It wasn’t always smooth sailing for the TV neurosurgeon and the makeup artist/hairstylist. There were accusations of infidelity on the set of Grey’s (rumoured to be a reason as to why his character was killed off), Jezebel reports. Fink filed for divorce, only for the two to reconcile.
16 Anne Hathaway And Adam Shulman
In all fairness to Adam Shulman, his title is officially actor/jewelry designer, but, despite the acting credits, he's nowhere near the caliber of Anne Hathaway, her Hollywood pedigree, and her Oscar, which makes him decidedly the more “normal” of the pair.
Having met in 2008 at the Palm Springs Film Festival through a mutual friend, Hathaway apparently informed said friend that she was going to marry him. As Vogue reports, she said,
“I knew from the second I met him that he was the love of my life.”
Clearly, Shulman felt the same, as he used his jewelry knowledge to propose with an ethically-sourced six-carat diamond ring, and the two tied the knot in 2012. They welcomed a son in 2016.
15 Natalie Portman And Benjamin Millepied
Benjamin Millepied might not be an actor or a famous celebrity, but his career has him working closely with A-listers, like wife Natalie Portman, whom he met on the set of her Oscar-winning hit Black Swan. He was hired as a choreographer for the dance-heavy film, as Insider reports. The two began dating in 2009 and Portman announced her pregnancy and engagement to Millepied in 2012. They have two kids.
From 2014 to 2016, the family lived in France where Millepied was named the director of dance of the Paris Opera Ballet.
14 Seth Meyers And Alexi Ashe
In a bit of serendipity, the now husband and wife met somewhere romantic – at someone else’s wedding, as Bustle reports. Seth Meyers’ Saturday Night Live costar and fellow funnyman Chris Kattan were tying the knot in 2008 when he met Alexi Ashe, whose sister just so happened to work in set design at the NBC show!
Ashe – who is a human rights lawyer – and Meyers wed in 2013 in a ceremony at Martha’s Vineyard that was covered by Vogue and reportedly, Ashe had food poisoning but still managed to make it down the aisle!
13 Jimmy Fallon And Nancy Juvonen
Another late-night host who comes from the SNL family, Jimmy Fallon met his wife, producer Nancy Juvonen, while on the set of the movie Fever Pitch in 2007.
Juvonen was a close friend and longtime partner of star Drew Barrymore, giving her some Hollywood cache among the rich and famous. As Pop Sugar reports, Drew was the one who set them up on the set of the movie!
Just a few months later, the couple married and has since welcomed two daughters, Winnie and Frances.
In a weird twist that could have been taken as a bad sign, Fallon had an accident in 2015 that almost caused his ring finger to be ripped off his hand! It was repaired with microsurgery, as CNN reports, probably making everyone sigh with relief!
12 Tina Fey And Jeff Richmond
Tina Fey is clearly a national treasure: beautiful, funny and sharp – Jeff Richmond is certainly one lucky guy! And he must know it – the two have been together since 1994.
Two years after starting at Chicago’s Second City, Fey and Richmond began dating. At the time, Richmond was a pianist who later became Second City’s music director and then eventually the composer for Fey’s successful TV show, 30 Rock. While Fey was still a working comic before becoming the powerhouse she is now, the two have stuck by one another. As Insider reports, they got married in 2009 before welcoming two daughters, Alice and Penelope.
11 Paul Rudd And Julie Yaeger
Paul Rudd is basically ageless, having only gotten handsomer as he’s gotten older but failing to lose any boyish charm, which makes us think that his relationship with former publicist Julie Yaeger has some real magic in it!
The pair met at work, like normal folk do, when Rudd moved to New York. Apparently, Yager would help the actor run errands and Your Tango reports that Rudd asked her out to lunch just a couple of days later, under the guise of learning more about the city. They wed in 2003 and have two kids together.
10 Joseph Gordon-Levitt And Tasha McCauley
Okay, Joseph-Gordon Levitt may be the more famous of the two, but his wife, Tasha McCauley, is pretty darn impressive when you look at her list of accomplishments! As the CEO of Fellow Robots, which is at a NASA Research Park in Silicon Valley, and the director of the company GeoSim, McCauley has proven herself more than capable of kicking major butt! She’s also tri-lingual and has, along with Gordon-Levitt, insisted on keeping their relationship and marriage under wraps. The two wed in 2014 and have welcomed two sons, whose names they have also kept private.
9 Jessica Alba And Cash Warren
Jessica Alba first came into the celebrity scene as the pouty-lipped buxom beauty in the TV show Dark Angel before taking on similar roles that promoted her as a hot body and not much else. Fortunately, we know that the actress has a big brain and business skills to boot, thanks to the launch of her incredibly successful lifestyle billion-dollar brand, The Honest Company.
Alba met producer Cash Warren on the set of Fantastic Four in 2004 and they married in 2008, as Harper's Bazaar reports. They have three children together, daughters Honor and Haven and son Hayes, and seem just as in love as they were in the beginning!
8 Jerry Seinfeld And Jessica Sklar
While Jessica Sklar is more of a famous name now, having taken her husband’s last name and become Jessica Seinfeld, that wasn’t always the case.
Vogue reports that at the time, Sklar worked in PR and was filling up her water bottle at the gym when actor and comedian jerry Seinfeld approached her, cracking jokes to make her laugh. Sklar was a newlywed (to someone else) and wasn’t feeling it but, a short while after meeting Jerry, ended her first marriage and began dating Seinfeld!
The two ended up marrying in 1999 and have since welcomed three children to their family. Sklar, now Jessica Seinfeld, has gone on to become a philanthropist and author, and has written four cookbooks.
7 Eddie Redmayne And Hannah Bagshawe
Is it a thing for Brits to meet their future spouses during a school-organized fashion show? (Looking at you, Prince William and Kate Middleton!) Because that was the case for actor Eddie Redmayne and his future wife Hannah Bagshawe, who went to neighbouring schools and didn’t meet until Redmayne walked the runway in all his “pasty, freckly” glory, as Vogue reports.
The two had a slow-burning relationship that began with a friendship that lasted for 12 years before they became a couple in 2012, making their red carpet debut together at the Les Misérables London premiere. They married in 2014 and welcomed a daughter named Iris in 2016. They also recently welcomed another child, called Luke.
6 Christian Bale And Sibi Blazic
He might have said previously that he didn’t want to get married, but it took meeting assistant Sibi Blazic at Winona Ryder’s barbeque to change his mind. (Christian Bale didn’t go for the big Hollywood wedding, and the pair instead eloped to Las Vegas in 2000, where they were wed by an Elvis impersonator!)
The famous method actor understands that it takes a lot to be married to him, and commended Blazic for sticking by him. As Vogue reports, he said, “[My wife] had to be married to so many different characters over our marriage. I know that it would be truly impossible to do it without her. She’s such a good, strong woman.”
The couple has two children together.
5 Vince Vaughn And Kyla Weber
Vince Vaughn, as the fast-talking, goofy, tall guy in a multitude of comedies, has found his fair share of on-screen love, but off-screen, he settled for someone who was a lot more down-to-earth than the A-listers he rubbed elbows with.
Vaughn was introduced to Calgary-born real estate agent Kyla Weber at a wedding in 2008, and was tentative about pursuing her since she was his friend’s wife’s best friend since childhood, which would have made any potential breakup awkward, Vogue reports. Instead, after developing a relationship over email and phone calls, the two married in a small ceremony in Illinois in 2010 and have since had two kids together.
4 George Clooney And Amal Alamuddin
George Clooney was one of the most sought-after bachelors in Hollywood, dating a slew of famous and beautiful women but never settling down. He’s an Oscar winner, an actor, producer, and director, and now, thanks to his marriage to Amal Alamuddin, a husband and father!
Let’s talk about Alamuddin for a second, because she’s even more impressive than her famous husband. An Oxford-educated human rights attorney who has taught at the Ivy League Columbia University, Alamuddin met Clooney when a friend came over and brought Alumuddin with him. So, he didn't even have to leave the house, as Harper's Bazaar reports.
They started chatting and started to realize they were more than friends, before getting wed in 2014. They have twins.
3 Alec Baldwin And Hilaria Thomas
For his first marriage, actor Alec Baldwin kept within his circle, wedding actress Kim Basinger and having a daughter together. For his second time around, though, Baldwin opted for a civilian over someone famous, which is how he came to be with Hilaria Thomas.
The couple was introduced at a vegan restaurant in 2011 when Thomas was working as a yoga instructor at a studio she opened upon graduating from New York University. She was 27 at the time and Baldwin admitted that his opening line to her was “none too clever," as Vogue reports. However, something must have clicked, because they ended up moving in together five months later, as The Daily Mail reports.
They tied the knot in June 2012 and have since had four children together.
2 Matt Damon And Luciana Barroso
Matt Damon once called himself “lucky” for falling in love with a “civilian”, and from the sounds of their first meeting, it does look like kismet that these two got together! Luciana Barroso already had one daughter from a previous relationship and was working as a bartender in Miami when Damon entered the building during a break from filming the movie Stuck On You after being dragged out by friends.
“I literally saw her across a crowded room and eight years and four kids later, that’s my life,” Damon told Ellen DeGeneres in 2011.
Barroso and Damon married in December 2005 and renewed their vows in 2013 in a ceremony in St. Lucia.
1 Reese Witherspoon And Jim Toth
Another famous face whose first marriage to another celebrity didn’t quite pan out, Reese Witherspoon found love in a “normal person” for her next trip down the aisle. (She was previously married to actor Ryan Phillippe, with whom she shares two children.)
Jim Toth and Witherspoon met at a party in 2010 when the talent agent intervened when the actress was being badgered by a drunk guest who was getting in her face and slurring his words, Vogue reports. The couple ended up hitting it off and married the next year in March 2011. They welcomed a son, named Tennessee, in September 2012.
References: Vogue, BuzzFeed, Insider, Us, Jezebel, Bustle