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50 of the longest celebrity marriages

  • 50 of the longest celebrity marriages

    “'Til death do us part,” the saying goes, and yet most celebrity marriages are lucky if they make it past the 10-year mark. Are these high-profile unions done in by hectic work schedules? Ego clashes? Perennial access to a range of carnal desires? The answer, of course, is all of the above (and then some). Yet some celebrity couples manage to buck the trend entirely, staying the marital course through thick and thin. What keeps them together?

    The secret, according to some of the world’s most tenacious celebrity spouses, boils down to communication and proximity. Being a celebrity couple often means spending extended time apart—with no limit to potential distractions—so it's important to reconcile those gaps with some serious togetherness. A little leeway in the fidelity department probably doesn’t hurt, either.

    Today, Stacker pays tribute to the celebrities who defied tradition by getting married and staying married. We've specifically retrieved data from Wikipediawhich uses newspaper articles and other news sources to list out the longest celebrity marriages as of Nov. 20, 2018. May each one serve as a role model for future famous and non-famous marriages alike.

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  • #50. Ann-Margret and Roger Smith

    Dates of the marriage: 1967—June 4, 2017 (his death)

    Length: 50 years

    Roger Smith was a popular TV actor in his own right before he met legendary Swedish singer and actress Ann-Margret in 1965 on the set of “Once a Thief.” The two got hitched in a Las Vegas hotel room in 1967, and Smith retired from acting soon after that to focus exclusively on managing Ann-Margret's career. It was thus a partnership in every sense of the word, and one that endured (and thrived!) for half a century.

  • #49. Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman

    Dates of the marriage: 1958—September 26, 2008 (his death)

    Length: 50 years

    As the handsome, blue-eyed star of films like “Cool Hand Luke” and “The Sting,” Paul Newman ranks among the most desirable lead actors in Hollywood history—making his 50-year second marriage to award-winning actress Joanne Woodward all the more impressive. Not only did the two stars have three children together, but they also mutually oversaw numerous philanthropic endeavors and collaborated on more than 10 films.

  • #48. Julie Warren and John Forsythe

    Dates of the marriage: 1943—April 1, 1994 (his death)

    Length: 50 years

    Fans of classic television will recognize actor John Forsythe from his role as Blake Carrington on the hit 1980s drama “Dynasty.” He also provided the voice of Charlie in the original “Charlie’s Angels” television series and its two film adaptations. Forsythe and his wife Julie Warren had two children together and stayed true to their marital vows until Allen passed away in 1994.

  • #47. Betty Davis and Ben E. King

    Dates of the marriage: 1964—April 30, 2015 (his death)

    Length: 51 years

    Before he was the famous crooner behind songs like “Stand By Me,” Ben E. King (formerly Ben Nelson) was a member of a Harlem doo-wop group called The Four B's. It was in this group that he met his future wife, Betty Davis, a songwriter who was also the sister of two of Four B's, Billy and Bobby. Davis and King married in 1964, raised three children, and stayed together until King’s death in 2015.

  • #46. Jean Speegle Howard and Rance Howard

    Dates of the marriage: 1949—November 25, 2000 (her death)

    Length: 51 years

    Representing the fusion of some mighty talented DNA, Rance Howard and Jean Speegle Howard married in 1949 and gave birth to future Hollywood icon Ron Howard in 1954. Ron went on to produce four children of his own, including actress Bryce Dallas Howard. Rance has a pretty impressive resume in his own right, having starred in films such as “Cool Hand Luke,” and “Chinatown,” along with roles in a number of his son’s movies. He and Jean were married for more than half a century before her death in 2000.

  • #45. Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn

    Dates of the marriage: 1942—September 11, 1994 (her death)

    Length: 52 years

    Over the course of their enduring marriage, seasoned actors Hume Cronyn and Jessica Tandy appeared together frequently on stage and screen. The pair even played a married couple in the early 1950s production of the award-winning Broadway play, “The Fourposter.” Their most iconic co-billing came in 1985, when they played retirement home residents in the movie “Cocoon,” later reprising their roles for a 1988 sequel.

  • #44. Linda and Vince McMahon

    Dates of the marriage: 1966—present

    Length: 52 years

    Linda and Vince McMahon today are collectively worth more than $2 billion, but things started out decidedly different. The couple fell in love as teenagers and married when Linda was just 17, had two children, and encountered a string of financial setbacks that resulted in a 1976 bankruptcy filing. Linda and Vince eventually found their calling in the world of wrestling entertainment and turned WWE into a global empire. Meanwhile, they’re still together after more than 50 years.

  • #43. Mitzi Gaynor and Jack Bean

    Dates of the marriage: 1954—December 4, 2006 (his death)

    Length: 52 years

    Mitzi Gaynor was a multi-talented actress, singer, and dancer who starred in movie adaptations of “There's No Business Like Show Business” and “South Pacific.” Jack Bean was a powerful Hollywood player who went on to become a real estate mogul and business manager. Together, the couple enjoyed a half-century marital bond so strong that Gaynor later said they “were like one person."

  • #42. Barbara Sklar and Don Rickles

    Dates of the marriage: 1965—April 6, 2017 (his death)

    Length: 52 years

    Comedian Don Rickles might have risen to fame by way of his off-color jokes, but the truth is he was a romantic at heart. He married his agent’s secretary, Barbara Sklar, in 1965, and the two stayed together until his death. Less than a month before he passed away, Rickles sent out a final tweet: “We are celebrating our 52nd Wedding Anniversary March 14th. Happy Anniversary my dear wife, Barbara. You are my life.”

  • #41. Nancy Davis and Ronald Reagan

    Dates of the marriage: 1952—June 5, 2004 (his death)

    Length: 52 years

    Nancy Davis and Ronald Reagan (or “Ronnie,” as she liked to call him) met while they were both in the midst of fruitful Hollywood careers. Of course, their acting careers would only serve as the first act of their enduring relationship, which resulted in two children and a substantial political legacy. It could even be said that Reagan’s respective tenures as governor of California and president of the United States would not have been successful without his wife's support, approval, guidance, and participation.