This list of movies that started off-screen romances might astound you, simply because it seems like everyone who co-stars in a movie together winds up hooking up. That’s not necessarily true, but some of these high profile relationships did indeed begin on film sets. Some of the best actors and actresses of all time have found love at work. In some cases, they went on to star together in these movies with real family members playing fictional families, too.
Do the relationships formed between co-stars off screen last? Sometimes, but not always. Just like any relationship, some will stand the test of time and others will falter. Whenever celebrities are involved, though, the failures are usually filled with high drama. Julia Roberts and Keifer Sutherland met and fell in love on the set of the movie Flatliners, but she later left Sutherland at the altar. Matt Damon and Minnie Driver got together while filming Good Will Hunting, but they didn’t last. And yeah, there’s that whole Warren Beatty and Madonna Dick Tracy thing – basically a five-minute affair. Beatty, by the way, later met his future wife, Annette Bening, on the set of Bugsy, and they’ve been together ever since.
Now, success-wise, a lot of movies started off-screen romances that had real staying power. Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor fell in love while filming one of the best epic movies of all time, Cleopatra, and their love spanned decades. The same goes for Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart, who fell for each other on the set of To Have And Have Not (they never married, but they had a decades-long love affair). And yes, who could forget the affair between Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn, who got together while filming Woman of the Year in 1941. That relationship lasted for the rest of Tracy’s life.
Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor appeared together in the 1963 film Cleopatra. Taylor played the title role and Burton played her lover, Mark Antony. Burton and Taylor were both married to other people when they started their affair, but divorces quickly followed.
In 1964, Burton and Taylor married for the first time. They divorced in 1974, but the following year, they were remarried. This time, the marriage lasted less than one year.
Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem appeared in the 2008 film Vicky Cristina Barcelona. Bardem played the seductive artist Juan Antonio, and Cruz played one of his many lovers, Maria Elena.
Cruz and Bardem were married in 2010, and they have two children together, Leonardo (born 2011) and Luna (born 2013).
Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman appeared together in the 1990 film Days of Thunder. Cruise played hot-shot race car driver Cole Trickle, and Kidman played Dr. Claire Lewicki, the doctor who took care of Trickle after he was involved in a car accident.
Cruise and Kidman were married from 1990-2001. They have two adopted children together, Isabella Jane (born 1992) and Connor Anthony (born 1995).
Lauren Bacall and Humphrey Bogart appeared together in the 1944 film To Have and Have Not. Bogart played Harry Morgan, a fishing boat captain who reluctantly helped smuggle people out of the country for the French Resistance. In the meantime, he started a romance with singer Marie ‘Slim’ Browning, played by Bacall.
Bacall and Bogart were married from 1945 until Bogart’s death in 1957. The couple have two children, together Stephen Humphrey Bogart (born 1949) and Leslie Bogart (born 1952).
Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt appeared together in the 2005 film Mr. & Mrs. Smith. They played a married couple, John and Jane Smith, who both secretly worked as hired assassins.
Pitt was married to Jennifer Aniston throughout the filming of Mr. & Mrs. Smith, inspiring some speculation that Pitt actually cheated on Aniston as he started a relationship with Jolie. Aniston filed for divorce, and Pitt and Jolie began their relationship. Pitt and Jolie have six children together and married in 2014, only to announce their divorce two years later.
Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward appeared together in the 1958 film The Long, Hot Summer. Newman played Ben Quick, a man on the run hired by a wealthy plantation owner in a small town in Mississippi. Quick fell in love with the plantation owner’s daughter, Clara Varner, who was played by Joanne Woodward.
Newman was married to Jackie Witte during the filming of The Long, Hot Summer, but once he fell for Woodward, the couple quickly divorced. Newman and Woodward were married for 50 years, from 1985 until Newman’s death in 2008. They have three children together, Elinor Teresa (born 1959), Melissa “Lissy” Stewart (born 1961), and Claire “Clea” Olivia (born 1965).
Spencer Tracy and Katharine Hepburn appeared in the 1942 film Woman of the Year. Tracy and Hepburn played married journalists Sam Craig and Tess Harding, who dealt with issues both at home and on the job.
Spencer Tracy remained married to his wife, Louise Tracy, throughout his adult life. He started his affair with Katharine Hepburn in 1941, and he made efforts to keep the relationship private so as not to embarrass his wife. The couple continued seeing each other until Tracy died in 1967. Hepburn even took several years off of acting to care for Tracy at the end of his life.
Johnny Depp and Winona Ryder appeared together in the 1990 film Edward Scissorhands. In the film, Depp played Edward, a sensitive young man who was made by an inventor to have scissors for hands. Ryder played Kim, a young woman who grew to love Edward despite his unusual appearance.
Depp and Ryder were engaged in the early ’90s. Depp was so sure that the relationship would last that he got a tattoo that said “Winona Forever” on his right arm. Depp is now engaged to his Rum Diary co-star Amber Heard. Ryder went on to date musician Dave Pirner and Good Will Hunting actor Matt Damon, but she never married.
Heath Ledger and Michelle Williams appeared together in the 2005 film Brokeback Mountain. Ledger played Ennis Del Mar, a ranch-hand who was secretly involved in a same-sex relationship with his friend, Jack Twist. Williams played Del Mar’s suspicious wife, Alma.
Ledger and Williams were in a relationship from 2004-2007. They had one daughter together, Matilda Rose (born 2005). Ledger overdosed on prescription medication and died in 2008.