The 36 Most Scandalous & Heartbreaking Celebrity Breakups (PHOTOS)

Adriana Velez | Aug 20, 2015 Love & Sex
The 36 Most Scandalous & Heartbreaking Celebrity Breakups (PHOTOS)

Why do we care so much when celebrity couples split? Maybe it's because we project our own dreams of true love on them. At any rate, some of these partings have been especially difficult -- for us! Whether it's because of scandals or just because they seemed so perfect together, here are the worst celeb breakups we remember.

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  • Jennifer Garner & Ben Affleck


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    Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck's divorce was supposed to as civilized and amicable as Gwyneth Paltrow's conscious uncoupling. But rumors that Affleck had an affair with the couple's nanny have sabotaged their public displays of happy co-parenting.

    More from The Stir: Guide to Surviving Jennfer Garner & Ben Affleck's Divorce

  • Miranda Lambert & Blake Shelton


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    Miranda Lambert and Blake Shelton's divorce quickly turned into a sour country western song as each accused the other of cheating. Shelton demanded Lambert remove her 15 rescue animals off her ranch.

    More from The Stir: Miranda Lambert & Blake Shelton Split, Leaving Country Music Fans Singing the Blues on Twitter

  • Amy Poehler & Will Arnett


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    Oh no, we almost couldn't take seeing funny duo Amy Poehler and Will Arnett divorce after nine years of marriage. Amy and Will have been amicably sharing custody of their two little boys.

  • Anne Hathaway & Raffaello Follieri


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    Anne Hathaway's romance with Italian businessman Raffaello Follieri turned into a nightmare when he was arrested for fraud and money laundering. He was accused of stealing money meant to build Catholic churches, of all things!

  • Brandi Glanville & Eddie Cibrian


    Image via John Shearer / Staff / Getty Images

    Real Housewives star Brandi Glanville's split with Eddie Cibrian is the stuff of legends. His affair with country star LeAnn Rimes turned into the Real Deal, leading to two messy divorces and never-ending squabbles over the kids.  

  • Camille & Kelsey Grammer


    Image via Jason Kempin / Staff / Getty Images Entertainment

    He's so charming on televsion, but Kelsey Grammer's divorce with Camille was protracted and fierce. The two fought bitterly over money and child custody for nearly two years.

  • Christie Brinkley & Peter Cook


    Image via M. Von Holden / Staff / Getty Images Entertainment

    Christie Brinkley's very public divorce with Peter Cook revealed the cad had an affair with an 18-year-old and that he spent thousands of dollars on Internet porn. 

  • Courteney Cox & David Arquette


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    We loved these adorable two as a couple! But Arquette's struggles with substance abuse were simply too much. The two are famous for remaining devoted friends after their divorce and co-parenting their daughter amicably. Arquette got sober and remarried, and Cox became engaged in 2014.

  • Demi Moore & Ashton Kutcher


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    Ashton was 25 and Demi 41 when they started dating, which wouldn't have raised eyebrows if their genders had been reversed (right, Bradley Cooper?). They started off cute, tweeting funny messages to each other. But alas, cheating rumors (Ashton) and time took their toll and the two divorced after six years of marriage.

    More from The Stir: Ashton Kutcher Finally Files for Divorce

  • Denise Richards & Charlie Sheen


    Image via Whittle / Splash News

    Richards and Sheen were married for only five years, but they've been brawling so long it seems like a decade. Richards accused Sheen of death threats; he fought her wishes to include their two daughters in her reality television show. But in the past couple of years the two have reconciled and seem even ... friendly! 

  • Elin Nordegren & Tiger Woods


    Image via L. Cohen / Contributor / Getty Images

    Swedish Nordegren and the star golfer's marriage lasted about six years before going up in flames of scandal. Tiger was revealed to be one prolific philanderer, a reputation that follows him still today. Nordegren walked away with $100 million and their two kids.

  • Gwyneth Paltrow & Chris Martin


    Image via Kevin Mazur / Contributor

    We have Gwyneth Paltrow and Chris Martin's divorce to thank for popularizing the term "conscious uncoupling." The two have been incredibly gracious and civil with each other since their divorce, co-parenting amicably and setting a new high bar for something the rest of us had previously been perfectly content to just muddle through. Thanks a lot, you guys.

    More from The Stir: Gwyneth Paltrow & Chris Martin Announce They're Splitting

  • Halle Berry & Gabriel Aubrey


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    Together Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubrey were so spectacularly gorgeous you could burn out your retinas just looking at them. But their split led to a nasty custody battle over their daughter. Berry became involved with actor Olivier Martinez and the two men fought each other and filed restraining orders against each other. Photos of Aubrey's pummeled face hit tabloids and let's just say, he looked a lot less pretty.

  • Heather Mills & Paul McCartney


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    Four years after McCartney's beloved wife Linda died of cancer he married model Heather Mills, who had lost one leg in an accident. They had a daughter together. Their divorce got ugly when Mills accused McCartney of abuse and cruelty. She represented herself (with her sister) in court and ended up with almost the same settlement McCartney offered her in the first place.

  • Jennifer Aniston & Brad Pitt


    Image via Mario Anzuoni / Splash News

    Angelina Jolie stole Brad from Jen -- or that's how the story goes. Pitt filmed Mr. and Mrs. Smith with Jolie and their epic romance took off from there. 

  • Kate & Jon Gosselin


    Image via Amy Sussman / Stringer

    Proud parents of twins and sextuplets the Gosselins starred in their own reality TV show, Jon & Kate Plus 8. It all came crashing down when Kate accused Jon of infidelity and initiated their divorce. The two fought over their TV show, with Jon torpedoing plans for a Kate-only spin-off. Meanwhile, TLC sued Jon for breech of contract.

  • Katie Holmes & Tom Cruise


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    Tom Cruise seemed a little too excited when he jumped off a sofa with glee announcing his engagement to Katie Holmes on The Oprah Winfrey Show. Over time Holmes reportedly became increasingly disturbed by her husband's commitment to Scientology and its possible effects on their daughter, Suri. Her escape from Cruise was as stealthy as a Mission: Impossible movie. She asked for, and won, sole custody of Suri.

    More from The Stir: Katie Holmes & Tom Cruise Are Divorcing & We're Jumping Off the Couch With Joy

  • Kelly Rutherford & Daniel Giersch


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    Rutherford filed for divorce from her German businessman husband Giersch when she was pregnant with their second child. Their temporary joint custody agreement shattered when Giersch's visa was revoked and he was deported on allegations of fraud and arms dealing. The two have been fighting for custody of the children ever since, with the children spending most of their time with their father in Monaco. Rutherford's efforts to bring her children back to the U.S. have been heartbreaking.

  • Kim Bassinger & Alec Baldwin


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    Baldwin and Bassinger's six-year marriage ended in -- you guessed it -- a bitter custody battle over their daughter Ireland. It also marked a stalling period in Baldwin's career. He later told The Guardian, "I was staring off a cliff for six years." Later a voicemail in which Baldwin called his daughter a "rude, thoughtless little pig" became public. But the two have long since reconciled.

    More from The Stir: Alec Baldwin & Daughter Ireland Poke Fun at That Time He Called Her a Pig

  • Kim Kardashian & Kris Humphries


    Image via Jackson Lee / Splash News

    Kim and Kris rocked their marriage hard for a whole seven weeks! Wow, what's their secret for such long-lasting love? We really want to know.

  • LeAnn Rimes & Dean Sheremet


    Image via Splash News

    About that split between Eddie Cibrian and Brandi Glanville? The "other" woman LeAnn Rimes was awful sorry about cheating on husband Dean to be with Cibiran. Her following album, Spitfire, was largely about the tumultuous period in her life. Oh yeah, also she and Brandi have this EPIC feud going on.

  • Madonna & Sean Penn


    Image via Kevin Mazur / Contributor/ Getty Images Entertainment 

    Madonna and Sean Penn split up after he allegedly tied her to a chair and beat her up, and for that time he hit her with a baseball bat, and that time he chased her out of a hotel room, and that time he threatened to shave her head. WHY WOULD YOU DO THAT TO MADONNA? How dare he?

  • Madonna & Guy Ritchie


    Image via Janet Mayer / Splash News

  • Miss Piggy & Kermit the Frog


    Image via Splash News

    When Piggy and Kermit announced their split the summer of 2015 many of us said, "AGAIN?" 

    More from The Stir: Miss Piggy & Kermit the Frog Have Officially Split -- But They'll Get Tons of 'Swipe Rights' With These New Tinder Profiles

  • Nigella Lawson & Charles Saatchi


    Image via Dave M. Benett / Contributor / Getty Images

    Lawson divorced Saatchi after he was photographed choking her and jabbing her in the face at a restaurant. He later tried to pass it off as playfulness, but the celeb chef fled their home and they divorced soon after. Good riddance to him, Nigella!

  • Reese Witherspoon & Ryan Philippe


    Image via Russ Einhorn / Splash News

    These two were so freakin' adorable together! The couple had two children together before they divorced after seven years of marriage. Philippe later said maybe they were just too young, especially for a Hollywood marriage.

  • Rihanna & Chris Brown


    Image via Splash News

    Rihanna and Chris Brown's romance ended in 2009 after he beat her up in a car leaving a Grammys night party. Photos of Rihanna's bashed face went public and we were outraged, but Rihanna seemed to have a hard time resisting Brown after that, though they did eventually split up for good. Rumors of a rekindled romance surface from time to time.

  • Robin Wright & Sean Penn


    Image via Russ Einhorn / Splash News

    We thought Penn had finally settled down and reformed when he married Robin Wright. Their marriage lasted 14 years, give or take some separations and drawn-out divorce proceedings. Wright later described their marriage as "exciting and difficult." Penn, ever the gentleman, described it as a "fraud" and claims that he never felt loved so I guess we know who the real grown-up in that relationship was.

  • Sandra Bullock & Jesse James


    Image via Andy Fossum / Splash News

    The world said "ugh, why???" when Sandra let Jesse James into her life. And then we found out James cheated on Bullock mere weeks into their marriage and got his side-lady pregnant. And we were disgusted but also kind of relieved that she was finally unloading this unworthy man.

  • Tina & Ike Turner


    Image via Chris Walter / Contributor / Getty Images

    Ike's cocaine use, controlling ways, and physical abuse were behind the split of this incredible musical duo and marriage. They had a giant last blowout that started in a plane, continued in a limo, and ended in a hotel room. Tina fled the hotel and then filed for divorce. She went on to become HUGE in the 1980s and is still admired for her talent, showmanship, and dem legs.

  • Vanessa Paradis & Johnny Depp


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    We were all terribly sad with this pretty, pretty couple split up after 15 years together. Depp and French actress Vanessa Paradis never married, though they share two children. 

    More from The Stir: Johnny Deep & Vanessa Paradis Splitting -- Let's Protest!

  • Whitney Houston & Bobby Brown


    Image via Gary Kaplan Video LLC / Splash

    Houston and Brown's 14-year marriage was so tumultuous fans were amazed that it lasted as long as it did. Infidelity, drug use, domestic violence -- they dealt with it all before finally divorcing in 2007. Sadly Houston died in 2012 and their daughter, Bobbi Kristina, died in 2015.

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