10 Couples Who Spent More Than Half a Century Together, and Here Are the Secrets of Their Blessed Relationship
Marriage is all about love. However, when people spend several decades with each other, it is always curious whether they have an additional secret to successful family life. Although the paths of the heroes of our article were not easy, the ability to find compromises, appreciation towards each other, and pure love lead them into a happy life together.
We at Bright Side adore the lifetime-long love stories of these celebrities, and we want to share them with our readers.
1. Samuel L. Jackson and LaTanya Richardson Jackson
Samuel L. Jackson and his wife, LaTanya Richardson, met in college long before Jackson starred in the iconic Pulp Fiction and became Nick Fury in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The couple has been together ever since. At the beginning of their relationship, they made a pact to stay together no matter what.
They got married several years after, and this year they celebrated 42 years of making it official. “Love you for keeping me on my toes and on the beat for 18,250 days. You make my soul sing. Don’t change the tune; we’re not done dancing,” wrote the actor.
2. Christopher Walken and Georgianne Walken
The Hollywood legend, Christopher Walken, has a career he can be proud of. He starred in more than 100 movie and TV shows, received various awards, including an Oscar for his role in The Deer Hunter, and continues working today. However, not just his career but his marriage is also something he should be praised for.
Walken and his wife, Georgianne, met in 1963 and have been together ever since. They don’t have any children, preferring to focus on their careers, each other, and development. However, they do share a kitty named Bowtie.
3. Dolly Parton and Carl Thomas Dean
Despite the brilliance and vividness of Dolly Parton’s image, her husband, Carl Thomas Dean, whom Parton married in 1966, prefers to stay out of the limelight.
Such a big difference in lifestyles may seem to cause misunderstanding between the couple. However, Parton believes that it is what makes them happy. “They say that opposites attract, and it’s true,” she said. “We’re completely opposite, but that’s what makes it fun. I never know what he’s gonna say or do. He’s always surprising me.”
4. Bob Newhart and Ginny Newhart
Bob Newhart, a comedian and a TV show host, has such a long-lasting career that he received his first Emmy Award in 2013, at the age of 84 years. His wife, Ginnie, has been by his side for nearly 60 years throughout his life path. Talking about why their marriage is so strong, Ginnie explained: “I don’t know whether it’s our generation — divorce was just not in our vocabulary.”
“Like anybody, we had fights, and we had some pretty good ones. But I was never happy being apart from him, and he was never happy being apart from me. When we both cooled down, I’d say, ’I’m miserable,’ and he’d say, ’I’m miserable. OK, let’s end this.’” she said.
5. Bonnie Bartlett and William Daniels
William Daniels, who starred in Boy Meets World, has been married to his wife, a two-time Emmy Award winner, Bonnie Bartlett, since 1951.
In 2017, Daniels opened up, speaking about why their relationship has been that strong for more than half of the century. “She, I think, is a marvelous actress and has won two Emmys,” he said. “And I’m an actor, and she can look at my work and sometimes say, ’Bill, you know I don’t think you’re doing what you want to do there,’ and she’s absolutely right. So we help each other, and we respect each other, and that’s the ingredients I think that makes a successful relationship.”
6. Kirk Douglas and Anne Buydens
Hollywood star, Kirk Douglas, who acted in the iconic Spartacus and his wife and producer, Anne Douglas, first met on the set of the film Act of Love in 1953. Both of them were in relationships with different people at the time, but they got together the next year. In 2017, Kirk jokingly called Anne “the most difficult woman I ever met” because she refused to go out with him even though he was a “big movie star.”
However, eventually, he could win her over when he stopped taking himself too seriously. “That’s what got me,” Anne said. “It was showing me that he was able to do things that are not expected from him.” As for Kirk, he said that he knew he would be “lost without her.” Kirk and Anne were married for 65 years until the day Kirk died at the age of 103.
7. Ron Howard and Cheryl Howard
Sometimes, the relationship lasts so long that even the couple itself can’t believe it could work out.
Ron Howard, an American director and actor, had his first date with his wife-to-be, Cheryl Alley, when they were just 16 years old. They have been together ever since, and got married in 1975. “I felt really lucky when we met,” Howard shared. “It’s crazy — we were teenagers; it shouldn’t have worked. We got married young, that shouldn’t have worked either, and yet it really and truly has.”
8. Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip
The fairy-tale-worthy romance of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip began 5 years before Elizabeth ascended to the throne, when she was yet just a teen.
Their relationship was not always smooth. To become a part of the royal family, Philip had to give up his naval career and Greek and Danish royal titles. However, for their entire marriage, the Queen was thankful to the man she fell in love with as a teen girl. “He is someone who doesn’t take easily to compliments, but he has, quite simply, been my strength and stay all these years,” the Queen said, celebrating their 50th anniversary of marriage in 1997.
9. Alfred Hitchcock and Alma Reville
For the great director Alfred Hitchcock, who produced such outstanding movies as Psycho and The Birds, the love of his life, Alma Reville, was not only a wife. She was the most important collaborator to Hitchcock. They married in 1926, were together for 53 years, and throughout this period, Alma “consulted him on everything during the production, from re-writing scripts to casting to editing the film.”
10. Michael Caine and Shakira Caine
When it comes to why Michael Caine and his wife Shakira’s romance has been this strong throughout their lifetime, there is only one answer — it was love at first sight.
Michael saw Shakira in a commercial in 1971 and thought that she was “the most beautiful [woman] he had ever seen.” He fell for her instantly and was ready to fly wherever she was to meet her. It turned out, they both lived in London and had a common friend, who introduced them to each other. They have been together ever since.
Whose story was the most touching to you? How long have you been together with your loved one?