Earlier this week, news broke of the split between Heidi Klum and Seal after seven years of marriage. We loved their musings in the press: her annual parties, their annual marriage vow renewal rituals and their constant expression of love within their marriage. There’s talk of his anger being the cause of the split and there are arguments that suggest that it’s her success that is causing a rift in the marriage. In the last year, Heidi’s career has slightly eclispsed that of her husband — earning over $20M from her clothing line, her TV shows and her ongoing stint as the host of Project Runway. While I myself am a Seal fan, there’s something to be said about the pressure on a celebrity marriage when the woman outshines the man. I’d say there is a curse where this is true – the curse of the Best Actress Oscar in the 2000s proves this point wholeheartedly; in almost 80% of the cases, when success finds the wife, the husband naturally ends up finding the door.
Some of the Best Actress Oscar winners from the last decade who’s win closely preceeded or followed a public breakup:
- Julia Roberts (Erin Brockovich) – Mild case here as her date was Benjamin Bratt, but they did not end up together for very long.
- Halle Berry (Monster’s Ball) – Rumour has it that she is poised to give marriage another try, but we all remember the scandal that surrounded her split from Eric Benet. Allegations of sex addiction and infidelity followed them around and proved to be another failed attempt at love for the Hollywood actress.
- Sandra Bullock (The Blind Side) – Jesse and Kat and that was that. Days after she wins the Oscar the sordid affair leads to the press.
- Reese Witherspoon (Walk the Line) – Her split with her Cruel Intentions costar (Ryan Phillippe) was also met with some scandal. Luckily she has since remarried and appears to be happy with Jim Toth.
- Nicole Kidman (The Hours) – Nicole’s career was on the rise when she was nominated for Moulin Rouge a year earlier, however, it was clear that her success, focus on her career was having a strain on her marriage to Tom Cruise. They both have moved on and have additional children with their current spouses.
- Hilary Swank (Million Dollar Baby) – Who knew that someone who was on Beverly Hills, 90210 would win an Oscar? Anyway, her marriage dissolved also.
- Charlize Theron (Monster) – Her long time partnership would also dissolve after nearly 10 years.
- Kate Winslet (The Reader) – Kate and her Director husband and father to her children would also split, not long after her double Golden Globe and Oscar winning year. She has since added more hardware to her shelf, winning for Mildred Pearce, and has since moved on.
I do not believe you can say that 100% that the relationship is doomed when the wife outshines the husband. I cannot imagine the pressure of being under the kind of scrutiny celebrities have to go through in order to please people like me and the general public. One thing is certain, all relationships are subject to failure if in the presence of success of failure, support is no where to be found.