Relationships are tough, and sometimes, even ones that people might think are the perfect fit end up being not quite right. Most people discover this at some stage in the dating process, but unfortunately, some people discover it when they're already way past that, on their way to getting married.
It's better to call off a wedding before it happens than to go through the process of a divorce, but still—whether a person is the one left at the altar or the one pulling the runaway spouse-to-be and leaving someone at the altar, it's an incredibly difficult situation.
While it happens from time to time in real life, it also happens sometimes in Hollywood—and, given how much the tabloids love to share juicy gossip, it doesn't stay hidden for long if someone decides to break up a relationship right before the wedding.
Still, it makes sense—even though they seem larger than life at times, celebrities are still human beings with real emotions and feelings and doubts. Even they make errors in judgment when it comes to love—it's not always straightforward!
Here are 10 celebrities who were left at the altar and 9 celebrities who pulled a runaway bride at the last moment.
19 Shakira's Longtime Partner Left Her 2 Weeks Before The Wedding
Nowadays, Shakira is a happy married mom with soccer player hubby Gerard Pique by her side and totally devoted to her. She seems completely happy with her life, but did you know that she was once left at the altar?
The Colombian songstress dated lawyer Antonio de la Rua for several years back in the day, and the two were even set to get married.
Then, a mere two weeks before the wedding, he broke things off between them. Ouch! Well, while it can't have been easy to live through, perhaps it at least gave Shakira some great material for songs in the future.
18 Gwyneth Paltrow Ran Away From Brad Pitt, If You Can Believe It
They've both had a ton of high profile relationships in the years since, but once upon a time, Gwyneth Paltrow and Brad Pitt were one of Hollywood's golden couples. In fact, they were well on their way to getting married! Even though he was young, Pitt knew he had found the right woman, so he had already gone on his bachelor party with his buddies and had the wedding all planned out. Then, Paltrow pulled a runaway bride and decided to cancel the whole thing. Understandably, it took Pitt a few months to get over it—that's a tough situation.
17 Tara Reid Was Dumped By Carson Daly Right Before The Wedding
There was a time when Tara Reid and Carson Daly were the quintessential '00s couple. They were everywhere in their individual careers, and the world was surprised when the two got together and started dating. However, they seemed to be in love, and even started to plan their wedding. Things were going well until suddenly, they weren't—Daly called things off, and Reid was understandably pretty devastated. After that situation, Reid went on a bit of a spiral, becoming a party girl and making some questionable decisions, and we have to wonder how much her heartbreak contributed to those choices.
16 Evan Rachel Wood Thought She Wanted To Marry Marilyn Manson...
Evan Rachel Wood stunned many fans when she started dating shock rocker Marilyn Manson back when she was just a 19-year-old starlet, but the two seemed to have a solid relationship. They even got engaged, but a few months after their engagement Wood realized she had made a mistake and decided to call it all off. As she spilled in an interview with Net-A-Porter.com, "I thought I was in love...he was just what I needed, because I felt really free with him. And that freedom was attractive." It wasn't, however, attractive enough to make her walk down the aisle at 19. Fair enough!
15 Laura Dern Was Set To Marry Billy Bob —Then He Angelina
It's hard to believe that Laura Dern was once engaged to actor Billy Bob Thornton, but back in the '90s, she was—they were happily engaged and set to get married. Then, as happens often to celebrities, Dern was called away to work on a movie.
She was blissfully in love and likely planning the wedding to her wonderful fiance—or, so she thought.
As she told Talk Magazine, "I left our home to work on a movie, and while I was away, my boyfriend got married and I've never heard from him again." Yikes! It turns out, which she was away working, Thornton decided he'd proposed to the wrong girl and ended up straight up marrying Angelina Jolie in a spontaneous ceremony.
14 When Jude Law's Truth Emerged, Sienna Miller Bolted
At one point, Jude Law and Sienna Miller seemed like the perfect couple. They were British, they were beautiful, and they seemed blissfully in love. Unfortunately, when wedding bells were on the horizon and they were planning on taking that next big step, some issue emerged about Law that caused Miller to change her mind. She pulled a runaway bride and called it all off, leaving him for good. The two ended up dating again a few years later for a while, but it didn't work out because the pain of the past just impacted their relationship too much. Talk about a tough situation!
13 Jay Baruchel Was Dumped By Fiancee Alison Pill
Canadian actor Jay Baruchel and his former fiancee Alison Pill may not have been front page tabloid news, but they are both celebrities with steady careers under their belts. So, when they got engaged, the world noticed—and though they had a two year engagement, that's not uncommon in Hollywood, where celebrities' schedules often don't quite line up and make planning large events like weddings a bit difficult. However, in those two years, Alison Pill apparently changed her mind and called it all off. Baruchel took to Twitter to share his pain, saying "alone again, naturally. Heartbroken. I won't be on twitter for awhile gang. Getting dumped rules." Poor guy!
12 Julia Roberts Pulled A Real Life Runaway Bride With Kiefer Sutherland
Julia Roberts once played the leading role in the movie Runaway Bride, so it only seems fitting that she experienced it in real life once, Back when she was just in her 20s, Roberts was dating actor Kiefer Sutherland, and the two were well on their way to walking down the aisle.
The date of the ceremony was approaching, all of Hollywood was excited about the union between the two superstars, and things seemed perfect.
Then, Roberts got cold feet and called off the wedding, starting to date someone else just two weeks later. Yikes! That can't have been easy for Sutherland to deal with.
11 Naya Rivera Found Out Her Wedding Was Off On The Internet
Naya Rivera felt like she finally met her perfect match when she started dating Big Sean, and soon the two went from dating to engaged.
They were well on their way to planning a spectacular wedding when, suddenly, Big Sean decided he wasn't really marriage material.
Rivera spilled some of the juice in her autobiography, saying that "I learned that I was no longer getting married from the internet, and at the same time as the rest of the world. Not only were we no longer getting married, but apparently, we weren't even together anymore." We have to admit, that's definitely one of the lowest possible ways to dump someone. At least be man enough to tell them to their face!
10 Katie Holmes Wasn't Impressed With How Chris Klein Was Changing So She Ran
Katie Holmes is well known for her marriage to actor Tom Cruise, but did you know that she once almost walked down the aisle with an entirely different actor? Back when she was starting out in the industry, she dated actor Chris Klein for about five years. After quite some time together, they got engaged, and they had the wedding plans well underway.
However, Holmes realized somewhere along the line that she had made a mistake, and ended up calling off the wedding just months before it was about to happen.
Then, shortly after, she ended up marrying actor Tom Cruise.
9 Emilio Estevez Was Going To Marry Demi Moore...
It's hard to picture them together now, but back in the '80s, Emilio Estevez and Demi Moore were an item. They were both '80s superstars with thriving careers, and fell head over heels in love and got engaged. Unfortunately, Moore realized somewhere along the way that Estevez just wasn't the right guy for her, and she left him. To make things even worse, she married actor Bruce Willis not too long after the break-up, essentially driving home to Estevez that the issue wasn't getting married—it was getting married to him in particular. He's obviously recovered since then, but it must have been a pretty devastating blow at the time.
8 Kat Von D Was Set To Marry Jesse James Before Changing Her Mind
Many people already felt a fair bit of animosity towards Jesse James for what he did to Hollywood's sweetheart Sandra Bullock, so when Kat Von D decided to walk out on their wedding, there were definitely Sandy fans who were kind of happy that James got a taste of his own medicine.
The two had a tumultuous relationship where Kat ended up pulling a runaway bride during the wedding planning process, though the two later got back together and split once more.
Von D later canceled another wedding before eventually taking the plunge—perhaps she just needed to make sure she had the right guy!
7 Lance Armstrong Proposed To Sheryl Crow, Then Broke It Off Before The Wedding
When these two first started dating, the world was a little bit confused. After all, what did a country singer and professional cyclist have in common? However, they dated for about two years, blissfully in love, before Armstrong popped the question and they began their wedding plans.
Then, after about a year of being engaged with the wedding near on the horizon, Armstrong decided that he didn't want to take that walk down the aisle after all.
Allegedly, he discovered they were just in different stages of their lives and he wasn't quite ready to take that next step. If that was the case, why propose?!
6 Kelly Rowland Was Embarrassed To Break Her Engagement
Kelly Rowland proved just how tough it is to pull a runaway bride when you're a celebrity and everything from your engagement to your wedding plans has been highly publicized. Rowland was engaged to NFL player Roy Williams back in the '00s.
She realized somewhere along the way that she didn't want to go through with the wedding—but it wasn't easy to break it all off shortly before the I-do's.
As Rowland said, "it was so hard and embarrassing because everyone knew. I'd posed for the front cover of a magazine in my wedding dress and it was on sale!" Luckily, she had her girls to lean on and managed to get through it.
5 Rachel Hunter Was Totally Blindsided By Fiance Jarret Stoll
It's not unusual for professional athletes and actresses/models to get together, and that's exactly what happened when hockey player Jarret Stoll and model Rachel Hunter fell in love. The two started dating and eventually took the next step and got engaged.
They began planning a wedding and were going to get married in 2009 when, all of a sudden, Stoll decided he didn't want to get married after all.
This revelation came a mere two months before the wedding. As most people who have planned a wedding can assume, Hunter was pretty much just finalizing all the little details at that point, and was absolutely heartbroken.
4 Elle King Literally Skipped Her Wedding And Just Sprinted
Elle King surprised fans when she got engaged to a guy she had only been dating for two weeks, and then surprised fans once again by skipping out on her wedding. King's engagement was super public, and she even appeared on Say Yes To The Dress, picking out her perfect gown. Then, a video surfaced on her Instagram where King said she skipped out on her wedding and "married Rock&Roll instead," deciding to go out on tour with heavy metal band The Eagles of Death Metal. Talk about a whirlwind! Perhaps she learned her lesson about rushing into relationships from that whole situation.
3 Alec Baldwin Abandoned Janine Turner Her Before The Wedding
Many people have heard about some of the questionable things Alec Baldwin has done over the years, but did you know that he once left someone at the altar? Baldwin and Janine Turner were an item way back in the '80s, and they were set to get married. Turner's career was heating up, thanks to her role on Northern Exposure, and things seemed to be going really well in her life. After all, her hunky actor boyfriend had proposed and they were making wedding plans! While she's since admitted that the decision was for the best and that they weren't the right fit, she confessed that at the time, "the breakup was very, very painful. I loved Alec very much, so it was devastating."
2 Petra Nemcova Pulled A Runaway Bride On Jamie Belman
Petra Nemcova has certainly had some tragedy in her love life over the years, so when she and Jamie Belman were set to walk down the aisle, the world was happy that she'd finally found her perfect match. The ceremony was booked, she had her gorgeous Marchesa dress all picked out, and things were going well—until they weren't. At the last minute, Nemcova called it all off, and the couple simply released a statement saying that they had separated. Nemcova still hasn't come out and confessed what exactly the reason behind the sudden decision was, but it certainly can't have been an easy one.
1 Kesha Ni'cole Nichols' Fiance Left Her Literally 2 Hours Before The Wedding
Okay, this one is probably the most heartbreaking situation—poor Kesha Ni'cole Nichols! She was set to marry NBA player Richard Jefferson, and they had a lavish wedding planned. She was getting the final touches done on her make-up, all ready to stun her groom, when he called her two hours before they were set to walk down the aisle and called it off. Uh, excuse me? The worst part is, since Jefferson waited so long to call many of his guests and inform them, they started showing up. Talk about a horrible situation! Nichols ended up getting some money back to make up for the expense of the canceled wedding, which seems fair.
Sources: Elle, Ranker, Madame Noire