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Reese Witherspoon and Ryan Phillippe Split

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Although the PR guy typically avoids Hollywood gossip, Academy Award-winning actress Reese Witherspoon has apparently separated from her husband, actor Ryan Phillippe. The couple are splitting after seven years and two children, seven-year-old Ava and three-year-old Deacon.

Witherspoon and Philippe's relationship started in 1999, after co-starring in Cruel Intentions after they reportedly met nine years ago at Witherspoon's 21st birthday party. They were married on a farm in South Carolina while Reese was six months pregnant with their first child.

Their publicists released a joint statement indicating that both wished to have their privacy respected and that their dedication to their family and children remained paramount. The separation appears to be mutual and possibly even amicable. According to USA Today, the couple have been having problems since 2005 when news surfaced that they were seeking counseling, something Witherspoon admitted to in December on the Oprah Winfrey Show.

Pop Candy blogger, Whitney Matheson, pointed out the couple was one of the longer Hollywood items and one of the most predominant celebrity couples where the woman was the more famous spouse. Matheson said, “We could only come up with four: Oprah (with Stedman since 1986), Madonna (married since 2000), Dolly Parton (married since 1966) and Meryl Streep (married since 1978).”

A CNN report confirmed no one event triggered the separation, but a series of events added up to the news today. TMZ, a celebrity website, broke the story originally and reported Witherspoon contacted the same divorce lawyer who represented Jennifer Aniston, Roseanne Barr, and Lisa Marie Presley.

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  • Baronius

    That’s sad. Hollywood has never been known for its great role models. I mean, look at the names in your article, both the successes and failures. There are some real wierdos. It was nice to see a successful marriage in young Hollywood, but I guess that’s over.

    “Cruel Intentions” reminds me of another celebrity couple where the woman (Sarah Michelle Gellar) has had bigger success than the man (Freddie Prinze Jr.). I’m not sure that such marriages have a worse track record than the average actor/actress pairing.

  • Mady

    I didn’t even know about the split until I watched, “The Daily 10″, and they said, “…more reasons for the Reese-Ryan split.” I literally shouted, “WHAT?!” It’s so sad. I wonder what happened. Usually in these relationships, it’s Hollywood and the tabloids that force them to split. I’m so sad for both of them. I hope they’ll reconcile. Just imagine what Ava and Deacon are feeling. That’s horrible– the split is still shocking to me.

    Mady