Oscar hopefuls Rosamund Pike, Felicity Jones and Julianne Moore – be warned. There is a persistent belief – stretching back to the early days of the Academy Awards – that actresses who win soon end up in Splitsville, U.S.A. The number of women who have broken up with their husbands or boyfriends shortly after winning an Oscar is truly stunning. Check out RadarOnline.com’s list of the actresses who became single ladies within three years of taking home the big award.
Kate Winslet is another actress who became a single lady within a year of Oscar glory. The Brit star walked away a winner in February 2009 after getting the Best Actress Academy Award for The Reader. Fast-forward to March 2010 and she announced she had recently quietly separated from her second husband director Sam Mendes. Their divorce became final that October.
Sandra Bullock barely had a week to celebrate her Oscar victory (for The Blind Side) in March 2010 before rumors surfaced that her then-husband Jesse James was allegedly having numerous affairs. In January – when she picked up her SAG Award – she praised James from the stage saying, “I love you so much, and you’re really hot.” Six months later their divorce was finalized.
Halle Berry has a reputation for having bad luck with men, period. So is it any surprise that she didn’t escape the supposed Oscar curse? Within months of winning the Best Actress Academy Award for her performance in Monster’s Ball in March 2002, her then-husband Eric Benet was in Meadows rehab clinic, allegedly, to treat sex addiction. She filed for divorce two years later and their split was official in January 2005.
She’s brilliant, funny and incredibly accomplished. Why would anyone split from Emma Thompson? Ask actor-director Kenneth Branagh. Two years after his wife won a screenwriting Oscar for adapting the Jane Austen novel Sense and Sensibility in 1993 the darlings of British film were no longer a couple.
She’s now happily married to Brat Pitt, but Angelina Jolie’s second marriage – to actor Billy Bob Thornton – dissolved in 2003, three years after she won an Oscar for her supporting role in Girl, Interrupted. Thornton and Jolie started dating shortly after meeting on the set of the 1999 film Pushing Tin.
Given that she was married eight times, the Oscar curse could hardly be blamed on the end of all of Elizabeth Taylor’s marriages. She took home the little golden man three times – in 1961 (Best Actress for Butterfield 8), 1967 (Best Actress for Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?) and 1993 (for her humanitarian work). She divorced singer Eddie Fisher four years after her first Oscar to marry Richard Burton, whom she divorced (for the first time) seven years after taking home the second Academy Award. But she split with her seventh husband Larry Fortensky in 1996, just three years after winning for her charity work.
Bette Davis was another Hollywood legend who didn’t require an Oscar to curse her four marriages. She divorced her first husband Harmon Nelson in 1938, two years after she won her first Best Actress Academy Award for her work in Dangerous. She wasn’t even married to her second husband Arthur Farnsworth when she won again in 1939 for Jezebel. So his 1943 death cannot be blamed on Oscar.
Claudette Colbert divorced her actor husband Norman Foster in August 1935 – six months after picking up the Best Actress Oscar for It Happened One Night.
Jane Fonda is another actress who, within a year of celebrating her first Oscar win, was signing divorce papers. The actress won a Best Actress Academy Award in 1972 for Klute. She divorced her first husband – actor-director-writer Roger Vadim – in early 1973.
The fact that he was a gay man married to a straight woman may have had something to do with Peter Allen’s 1974 split from wife Liza Minnelli. Nevertheless, just a year earlier the actress was celebrating her Best Actress Oscar for the musical Cabaret.