Catherine Zeta-Jones Credits 'Long-Lasting Humor' for 20-Year Marriage
Catherine Zeta-Jones is opening up about the secret behind her 20-year-marriage to Michael Douglas. In a new interview with the WSJ. Magazine for their My Monday Morning series, Zeta-Jones says the couple has “never, ever lost our sense of humor.”
“First of all, we have a lot of fun together. My husband is 25 years older than me; that’s not a secret. With any relationship, it wouldn’t be normal if there weren’t any ups and downs. The constant is love and respect. We’ve never, ever lost our sense of humor, and we enjoy each other’s company,” the Oscar-winning actress reveals.
Zeta-Jones adds that their flexible schedules as actors has allowed them to spend more time together.
“…Unlike so many couples, we’ve never had a 9-to-5 job where it’s consistent. We’re either on or we’re off. I’m really working 16 hours a day, or I’m not. He’s doing the same, or not. So we’ve had in our relationship huge amounts of time where we’ve been just us,” she explains. “We lived on the island of Bermuda for 12 years bringing up our kids. We respect each other’s space, and our humor is just long-lasting.”
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The couple celebrated their 20th wedding anniversary in November. Douglas shared a story on Instagram about the first time he met his wife back in 1998.
“I’m at a screening in Hollywood at somebody’s house, and they’re showing Zorro. And I’m watching this movie and I go, ‘Wow, who is this girl? She’s incredible,'” the two-time Oscar winner recalled in an audio recording he posted alongside a photo from their wedding in 2000.
“A month later, I’m at the Deauville Film Festival… and I see on the schedule, the next day at the festival, they’re gonna have Zorro there!” Douglas said, explaining that he then asked his assistant to find out if Zeta-Jones was planning on attending, and if she’d like to grab a drink with him.
“So they get back to me, they say, ‘Yes, Ms. Zeta-Jones is going to be here, she’s only going to be here for one night. She’s in the middle of shooting this movie Entrapment with Sean Connery, but would love to see you and have a drink,'” he explained.
“So the next day she arrives, along with Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith, and I have a drink with her. It was everything I hoped for!” he continued. “Then she invited me to dinner with her company, and I’m thinking, ‘This is lookin’ good.'”
After dinner, Zeta-Jones had to run off to a press junket for her movie, and Douglas said that, if she was interested, he’d be in the bar if she wanted to grab a drink after the screening.
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“Sure enough, I must have been batting a thousand because after the movie, I’m sitting in the bar, and like Lawrence of Arabia, this mirage comes through the lobby,” Douglas said. “I’m thinking, ‘Oh my goodness!’ We sit down and we have a little night cap.”
While things seemed to be going really well, Douglas admitted that he used a pick-up line that very nearly derailed their future relationship.
“I probably made a big mistake, but I looked at her and said, ‘I’m gonna be the father of your children.’ And she looked at me and she said, ‘I’ve heard a lot about you. I guess it’s all true. Goodnight.’ And she left,” he recalled. “Then she left [the festival] early the next morning.”
“I thought I had completely blown it, but I’m happy to say we [later] made contact, and the rest is history,” concluded Douglas, who went on to welcome two children with Zeta-Jones — 20-year-old son Dylan and 17-year-old daughter Carys.
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