This couple was together for nearly three decades and was considered one of the strongest in the world of actors, so their divorce has caused quite a stir in the media.
Hugh Jackman and Deborra-Lee Furness met in 1995 on the set of an Australian TV series called “Correlli,” where they played the lead roles. For a young actor who had just graduated from drama school, this job was his debut, while the charming blonde was already a well-established star at the time.
It was Furness’s talent and experience in the film industry that immediately attracted the young Hugh, who, by the way, was 13 years younger than his co-star. According to Hugh, he felt an attraction to the actress from the moment they met, and just two weeks after getting to know her, he knew that she would be his “one.”
And that’s what happened: four months after starting their relationship, Jackman proposed to Deborra-Lee, and on April 11, 1996, the couple got married in Melbourne, the actress’s hometown. At that time, they also agreed not to be apart for more than two weeks. However, this rule played a cruel joke on them after 27 years of marriage.
On September 15, 2023, Jackman and Furness announced their divorce. In their statement, they thanked each other for the years they spent together in love and harmony, emphasized the importance of family (they have two adopted children, 23-year-old Oscar and 18-year-old Ava), and refrained from discussing the reasons for their divorce.
It quickly became known online that the decision to divorce was not spontaneous. In fact, 54-year-old Hugh and 67-year-old Deborra-Lee had been heading in this direction for several years.
“Over the past few years, the love they had for each other turned into a friendship that disintegrated during the coronavirus pandemic. Quarantine didn’t help their marriage; it only exacerbated the problems and conflicts they had previously managed to smooth out as smart and experienced people. They worked on their relationship, but it didn’t work out… Hugh realized that the magic they once had had disappeared. But it’s important to understand that for Deborra-Lee, this was not an unpleasant surprise or a shock; she herself realized that it was better for them to part ways,” an insider told The Daily Mail.
It seems that Deborra-Lee couldn’t handle the burden she willingly took on when she walked down the aisle with a young, aspiring actor. Jackman never denied that he saw his wife as his main support and pillar. However, as the years went by, Furness found it increasingly difficult to fulfill this role – after all, age and the desire to finally live for herself, rather than constantly be a strong shoulder and a reliable support for her superstar husband, took their toll.
“I am married to the greatest woman alive. She’s amazing. We are best friends, and we share everything. She’s very smart… We met when she was already a big star, and I was a nobody. So we shared everything, all the ups and downs, and we always will,” Hugh shared in an interview with Smooth Radio in February 2023.
However, the number of problems Deborra-Lee had to regularly deal with only grew over the years. In 2013, her husband received a serious diagnosis – basal cell carcinoma, a type of skin cancer. Furness played a crucial role in timely detecting the illness by urging Jackman to see a doctor about a growth on his nose.
In 2020, when the world was in the grip of the coronavirus and the couple found themselves locked under the same roof for several months, which was a real test for their marriage, Furness had to provide extra comfort to Jackman, who struggled with the forced career pause. Dealing with Jackman’s desire to attend social events and actively use social media added to her responsibilities. However, Deborra-Lee had long said goodbye to unrealistic ambitions and hoped for a more private life away from the paparazzi.
Meanwhile, in interviews, she continued to be asked if she realized how lucky she was to be the chosen one of a superhero. In a conversation with Australian journalist Anh Do for his program “Brush With Fame” in early 2020, it seems that Deborra-Lee, for the first time, couldn’t hide her irritation and said something like this: “Oh, I’m so lucky, as if I won the lottery! People don’t realize how rude and ignorant such questions and assumptions sound. Like he’s such a hunk, a stud, a super-star… But all of that is Hollywood glitter, it has nothing to do with reality.”
It seems that Furness, after providing necessary support to her husband during a challenging period, eventually chose to focus on herself. It is presumed that the couple started preparing for their divorce well in advance. The first thing they did was rent out their luxurious mansion in the Hamptons. They spent about six years renovating it, and Deborra-Lee called the construction a dream of her lifetime. Perhaps now she dreams of something else – and something suggests that this woman, whether with someone or on her own, will certainly achieve it.