All of the Most Surprising Celebrity Breakups of 2019

From billionaires married for 25 years to the happiest-seeming of young newlyweds, here are the celebrity breakups that either truly shocked or at least unfolded in fairly spectacular fashion

By Natalie Finn Dec 12, 2019 11:00 AMTags
Watch: 5 Celebrity Couples That Didn't Make It in 2019

In a world where so much is disputed, it's an irrefutable fact that couples break up every year, all year long, without fail. And this year is no exception. Not everyone who kissed at midnight on Dec. 31 will be repeating the ritual as the ball drops on 2019 and ushers in 2020.

Most of the parting of ways, agreements to disagree and dissolution of marriage happens in private, to people whose names you will never know.

But sometimes it happens to Kylie Jenner, or Miley Cyrus, or Jeff Bezos—names who everyone knows. (Or at least we'll bet you know at least one out of three, whichever one it may be.)

The Pop Culture Moments That Defined 2019

So as the sun gets ready to set on another year—on a whole decade in fact—it's time to take stock of which celebrities decided to end 2019 without the person they started it with. 

Not all of those couples, though. The list of who flitted in and out of each other's lives is as good as endless. Instead, here's a sampling of breakups, whittled down to the ones that either fully shocked or at least seemed to come out of nowhere at that particular moment in time.

You may have predicted all, some or none, but here were the most end-of-an-era splits of 2019:


MacKenzie Bezos & Jeff Bezos

The world was stunned by the revelation, not only that the richest-man-in-the-world founder of Amazon and his wife of 25 years—who helped get the company up and running from the time they were first shipping books out of their garage in Seattle and is now a billionaire in her own right following their divorce settlement—had separated, but that he was already carrying on a relationship with another woman. And not only another woman, but Lauren Sánchez, former Good Day LA co-host and wife of top Hollywood agent Patrick Whitesell. And not only that, but that the National Enquirer claimed to have intimate photos of Bezos, swiped from their text exchanges and mysteriously shared with the tabloid.

In turn, the whole mess was first revealed by Bezos, when he took to Medium to inform the Enquirer that their shady tactics wouldn't work on him. 

Brie Larson & Alex Greenwald

They were the toast of award season 2016 leading up to Larson's Best Actress Oscar win for Room, and they got engaged a few months later. But after more than five years together, they called it all off in January.

Tristan Thompson & Khloe Kardashian

It didn't look great when Thompson was embroiled in a cheating scandal right before the birth of their daughter, True, last year, but call the optimists disappointed when Khloe—who acknowledged his screw-up and tried to move past it—was informed that he got too friendly with Kylie Jenner's longtime bestie Jordyn Woods—who of course was a friend of Khloe's, too—during a party one night at his house. Khloe cut the NBA player loose in February, but they remain amicable co-parents.

Zachary Quinto & Miles McMillan

The world-traveling duo went their separate ways after almost six years together, and, while one of the two dogs they had appears to live with Miles (Quinto isn't on Instagram, but he's been spotted walking the other) we wonder who got custody of their Architectural Digest-worthy New York apartment.

Wendy Williams & Kevin Hunter

Though a fair amount of people in Williams' life were rooting for this turn of events, it still came as a surprise when the talk show host finally pulled the plug on her 21-year marriage—two years after it became public that he had a longtime girlfriend, but not all that long after he admitted to fathering her child

Michelle Williams & Phil Elverum

The Fosse/Verdon star dropped a bombshell in the pages of Vanity Fair last year, revealing that she'd be married to singer-songwriter Elverum, who was recently widowed, by the time the story was published. And she was.

Alas, by the time Williams won an Emmy in September for her performance as Gwen Verdon, she was back to bringing best friend Busy Philipps as her date after she and Elverum amicably separated at the beginning of the year.

Anna Camp & Skylar Astin

The Pitch Perfect co-stars fell out of harmony somewhere along the way after marrying in 2016, and they announced their split in April.

Joey Fatone & Kelly Baldwin

The former 'NSYNC member has been with girlfriend Izabel Araujo for four years, but only in May did he and his spouse of 15 years start divorce proceedings—six years after they first reportedly separated. He and Baldwin have two daughters together.

Daniel Gillies & Rachael Leigh Cook

The She's All That star and her husband announced in June that they were divorcing after 15 years of marriage. They have a son and a daughter together.

Allison Williams & Ricky Van Veen

After almost four years of marriage, they mutually decided it was time to get out.

Katie Holmes & Jamie Foxx

They put in so much effort, jumped through so many hoops, to keep their nearly six-year relationship between them, all leading up to this one darn red carpet picture taken at the Met Gala in May, only to decide, "nah, maybe not."

Sarah Palin & Todd Palin

The former first gentleman of Alaska filed for divorce from the ex-governor in September after 31 years of marriage, citing "incompatibility of temperament" that made it impossible to keep living together. They have five children together, only one of whom, son Trig, is still a minor.

Meg Ryan & John Mellencamp

They tried, a lot, over the course of this decade. But in the end, the actress and the rocker couldn't make it work for the long haul. "Meg ended it," a source said in October. "It got exhausting for her to deal with."

It would have been Mellencamp's fourth marriage if they got hitched, and Ryan's second.

Ian Ziering & Erin Ziering

The BH 90210 star—whose "Ian Ziering" character in the meta-reboot of the hit '90s drama broke up with his wife—is divorcing his real-life wife of more than nine years, with whom he has two children. "With our hectic work schedules we could not be busier, and over the last few years have grown apart," the actor said in a statement in October. "She is one of the most incredible women I have ever met and the best mom to our kids."

Alan Ferguson & Solange Knowles

Beyoncé and Jay-Z were on shaky post-elevator ground when they made a strong showing of togetherness at her sister's wedding in New Orleans. Less than five years later, and the blushing bride and groom from that celebratory day are no longer together.

Eva Amurri & Kyle Martino

They were expecting their third child together when they announced their separation in November, barely two weeks after marking eight years of marriage.

Emma Roberts & Evan Peters

Their topsy-turvy relationship, including a sometimes-engagement, seemingly ended for good in February.

Geoffrey Arend & Christina Hendricks

The quintessential "oh, wow, I didn't know they've been married for years!" couples split up after 10 years of marriage. They're amicably sharing custody of their dogs, Triscuit and Zou Zou, and Arend has added another cockapoo named Tati to the fold at his place.

Brody Jenner & Kaitlynn Carter

Surprise! It turned out that a ceremony they took part in last year wasn't a legal marriage ceremony at all, but their split coming after five years together was still sad. Or, for the best.

"Brody and Kaitlynn have had issues since the start of their relationship," a source told E! News. "They did not have a good foundation for marriage because neither of them trusted one another."

Onward and upward for both moving forward, then.

Adele & Simon Konecki

The father of her son Angelo put breakup songs on the back burner for the 15-time Grammy winner, but they grew apart and confirmed their separation in April. Adele filed for divorce in September.

Travis Scott & Kylie Jenner

These two decided in October that they needed some space, so they've been living in separate houses while co-parenting daughter Stormi—though often together, such as when Travis joined Kylie and her family for Thanksgiving in Palm Springs. And while the latest is that they're not yet a full-on couple again, be prepared for some action on that front in 2020.

Sheletta Capital & Anthony Mackie

The childhood sweethearts and parents of three actually divorced last year, but no one knew until November.

Jay Tucker & Niecy Nash

The When They See Us star and her husband of eight years just up and split on us in October. Nash has three children from a previous marriage.

Meghan King Edmonds & Jim Edmonds

The Real Housewives of Orange County star and the retired baseball player had a rocky couple of years (out of five years of marriage, total) and the drama isn't over yet, what with suspicion still swirling that Jim stepped out on Meghan with their nanny—an accusation he firmly denies

Odette Annable & Dave Annable

The adorable pair, who have a daughter together, announced their separation in October after nine years of marriage.

Gage Edward & Jeff Lewis

Anyone who kept up with Flipping Out knew that these two had their disagreements, but two years after becoming dads to daughter Monroe together, their nine-year relationship imploded and, according to Jeff, their split has been sadly contentious as they try to hammer out a custody arrangement.

Liam Hemsworth & Miley Cyrus

They just got married last December after spending most of the last decade together, spurred to take the plunge after their house burned down, bonding them ever more tightly. But ultimately, marriage wasn't for Miley, and they announced their separation in August. Liam filed for divorce less than two weeks later.

Irina Shayk & Bradley Cooper

The model and the actor-filmmaker looked as close as ever over awards season, when Cooper's A Star Is Born was in the mix and "Shallow," his duet with Lady Gaga from the film, was in constant rotation. But by June they had split up, and they're continuing on as co-parents of daughter Lea de Seine.

Ah, love, it ebbs and flows like the tide. And in 2020, the sand will shift beneath our feet again with all new hookups, engagements, marriages and—yes—the inevitable splits.

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