The year didn’t start promisingly for Cupid. Within the month of January, Amy Grant and husband Gary Chapman split, Rod Stewart and model Rachel Hunter ended their eight-year union, Dixie Chick Natalie Maines handed hubby Michael Tarabay his struttin’ papers, Jerry Hall ditched a wandering Mick Jagger (though they still appear to be constant companions), and It Couple Gwyneth Paltrow and Ben Affleck officially said ”No more.” Luckily, the parting did swing back into pairing: Geraldo Rivera split from, and later reunited with, wife C.C. Dyer; Posh Spice (Victoria Adams) scored a ring from Brit soccer star David Beckham; and Courteney Cox and David Arquette Screamed with joy at their nuptials. While fellow Friend Jennifer Aniston was regularly rumored to be wedding Brad Pitt, VIP’s Pamela Lee did love again with previously abusive, tattooed tripod Tommy Lee. If you think that’s a bizarre union, imagine the vows at Marilyn Manson and Rose McGowan’s yet-to-be-scheduled ceremony.
Some breakups surprised: Beastie Boy Adam Horovitz and Ione Skye (who later told Howard Stern she was bisexual); Stern and his wife Alison—after 21 years; Phyllis and power hubby Sumner Redstone after 52. Others caused little more than a yawn: Carmen Electra and Dennis Rodman threw in the gym towel after less than a year, ending up in a fight that brought misdemeanor battery charges (since dropped) against both. Charmed star Alyssa Milano parted with Remy Zero rocker Cinjun Tate 11 months after marrying him, while Jason Priestley broke with makeup artist Ashlee Petersen after just nine.
Other members of Young Hollywood made a statement by leaving the singles scene: Cruel Intentions costars Ryan Phillippe and Reese Witherspoon wed; Juliette Lewis married pro skateboarder Steve Berra; Starship Troopers‘ Casper Van Dien exchanged vows with Omega Code costar Catherine Oxenberg; The Wedding Singer‘s Christine Taylor found something engaging about Ben Stiller; up-and-coming directors Sofia Coppola and Spike Jonze tied the knotz; and Christian Slater and television producer/mother-of-his-son Ryan Haddon got engaged.
Other big names reentered the market: Angelina Jolie filed for divorce from actor Jonny Lee Miller; Debbie Rowe moonwalked away from Michael Jackson; likewise, sister Janet separated from Rene Elizondo Jr., her boyfriend of 13 years; Brooke Shields and Andre Agassi retreated to their own courts; and Robert De Niro and wife Grace Hightower hightailed it.
As for May-December unions: News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch, 68, wed ex-employee Wendi Deng, 32; Phil Collins, 48, got legal with onetime interpreter Orianne Cevey, 27; Don Johnson, 49, said ”I do” to schoolteacher Kelly Phleger, 30; and Jerry Seinfeld, 45, proposed to Jessica Sklar, 17 years his junior.