Bright Side

How Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem Realized They Were Made for Each Other 15 Years After Their First On-Screen Kiss

It took 15 years and the completion of 2 movies for Penélope Cruz and Javier Bardem to realize that they had found their better half. They’re an Oscar-winning Spanish couple that had the lucky chance of falling in love at the beginning of their careers. Destiny (and Woody Allen) reunited them again at the right time to start their love story behind the scenes.

Here at Bright Side, we want to share with you how these actors finally fell in love many years after they met for the first time.

1. Once upon a time in 1992...

They met for the first time in 1992 and had a troubled affair in front of the camera. Penélope Cruz was only 16 years old when she accepted to appear in a film for the first time. It was Jamón Jamón and her costar was Javier Bardem in his early twenties. In his role, he tried to win her heart. Bardem explained years later that even if nothing happened then, there was obvious chemistry between them.

2. They parted ways.

When she turned 20, Cruz moved to New York City to study English and ballet. Both she and Bardem continued developing their careers and entered into other relationships. Cruz started a booming Hollywood career and had a romance with Tom Cruise after they met while filming Vanilla Sky, while Bardem earned his highly-acclaimed role in No Country for Old Men.

3. Woody Allen set the scene for the crush to occur.

The film Vicky Cristina Barcelona reunited both of them under the direction of Woody Allen. It was then that Bardem caught Cruz’s attention. He has recognized that during the shoot, neither of them dared to make the first move. They wanted to keep it professional until the very last day of filming. Luckily for them, a friend threw an end-of-filming party and well, the rest is history, as Bardem explained.

4. To start dating was a mediated decision.

There were some doubts about their relationship. Bardem has confessed that he hesitated at first, particularly while they were filming the scenes full of intense arguments in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. The role Cruz played, which was an overwhelming and passionate woman, had impressed him in such a way that he wondered if he really wanted that kind of character in his life. However, those scenes were only fiction and their actual life together is a haven of peace.

5. As their love blossomed, they hit sweet spots in their careers.

The same year they fell in love, Javier Bardem won an Oscar in 2007 for his role in No Country for Old Men. The very next year, Penélope Cruz received her own Oscar for the role she played in Vicky Cristina Barcelona. This was a sweet moment in both their personal and professional lives, just in time for their relationship to begin. It really was a dream come true!

6. They secretly got married on Johnny Depp’s private island.

In 2010 at Cannes, Javier Bardem won the “Best Actor” award for Biutiful and wanted to dedicate a few words to his sweetheart. “To my friend, my partner, my love. Penélope: I owe you a lot of things and I love you very much,” the actor said. Maybe those words were a way of asking her to marry him. But their wedding was held in complete privacy and all we know is that the actor Johnny Depp was the host of the ceremony at his house in The Bahamas.

7. We waited 3 years for them to make a public appearance together.

From the beginning, the 2 actors decided to be very discreet in their relationship. We only could see them holding hands in 2010 after 3 years of being together. As a result of their love, in 2011 and in 2013, the couple experienced the birth of their 2 children, Leo and Luna. They still were determined not to show them in public and have never released a photograph with them. Cruz said that their privacy is sacred and both she and Bardem have recognized that they strive to separate fiction from their relationship reality.

8. “The most wonderful traveling companion”

Although they don’t usually talk about their relationship, we’ve recently heard them express their love for each other. Cruz had said that Bardem was the most wonderful traveling companion she could have. “He was included in my dreams and is here with me,” claimed the actress. Bardem has described her as a woman that has “loving blood” as a way to express how passionate she is for everything and how much he is attracted to it. There’s beauty and being seductive — and for him, Cruz has both.

9. They’ve shown that they are a strong couple both in front of and behind the camera.

Now, as husband and wife, they repeat their experience as co-stars. In both Everybody Knows and Loving Pablo, we can see that there’s a lot of trust between the actors. Even if it’s not something they want to do all of the time, they don’t close the door to sharing protagonism if the occasion calls for it.

10. Their family and the things they stand for are priorities that strengthen their love.

Their main priority is to raise their kids, but they’re also committed to environmental and social causes. Cruz directed a documentary about childhood leukemia and has posed for ads supporting PETA’s anti-fur campaign. Meanwhile, Bardem has become an Antarctic defender. He has recently joined a Greenpeace research expedition as part of a campaign to create a vast Antarctic ocean sanctuary. Activism and protecting their family intimacy help them to keep the flame of love burning bright.

Don’t you think that there was an element of destiny in their love story? Do you know of any other actors that are meant for each other?