A speech and a mysterious envelope: Why everyone is talking about Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis.

Don't Worry Darling is one of 2022's most anticipated films for a few reasons. 

The upcoming thriller is the second full length directorial project of Olivia Wilde, whose first was the critically acclaimed Booksmart.

There has been plenty of focus and interest over the supposedly uh, liberal, use of sex scenes, which Wilde has talked up as focusing on female pleasure. 

The film is led by Florence Pugh, one of Hollywood's biggest rising stars, and the supporting cast features a number of familiar faces like Chris Pine, Gemma Chan and even Dita Von Teese.

Then there's the Harry Styles factor, of course. Especially because this was the film in which the 28-year-old musician and Wilde met and began a relationship following the end of her long-time partnership with Jason Sudeikis. Styles plays Pugh's husband, who she suspects is hiding something from her; something really sinister.

So yes, it's a pretty solid recipe for box office success.

There is a problem, though.

In the week in which promotion for the movie, due to be released in September, really kicked off, Wilde's personal life has taken a very public turn that has overshadowed her major professional moment.

While Wilde, 38, was on stage presenting at an industry event, an unidentified woman walked up on stage and presented her with a manila envelope labelled 'personal and confidential'.


At first, there was plenty of speculation and theories about what the envelope contained. But now we know: Deadline have confirmed it was legal custody documents from her ex, Ted Lasso star Jason Sudeikis, 46.

Wait. What?

This week, Wilde appeared at CinemaCon, a major event on the industry calendar where studios often unveil details on their upcoming, must-see box office features.

It marked a major kick-off of promotion for Don't Worry Darling, coinciding with the first teaser image showing Styles and Pugh lying in bed together as the young 1950s couple.

On stage, she praised Pugh and Styles, and talked up her passion for the film calling it a "love letter to the movies that pushed boundaries of ambition" in front of 4000 industry insiders, media and executives. 

Then, someone else walked up on stage to give her a manila envelope.

"Is this for me?" Wilde asked. "Is this a script?"

Image: Getty.

She opened the envelope, read the top page and said "Okay, got it. Thank you", before returning to her prepared comments without missing a beat. 

She continued her speech without appearing too rattled, despite what was probably a major shock.

It was a bizarre moment, playing out among the crowd with a frenzied confusion like something straight out of an absurdist Hollywood screenplay.


Afterwards, rumours swirled about the contents of the envelope until Deadline confirmed she had been served legal documents relating to the custody of her and Sudeikis' two children, Otis, eight, and Daisy, five.

What does this mean?

It is similar to what we see in TV and movies: being served means you are being summoned to court.

An independent person, called a process server, is paid to deliver a subpoena or summons. The papers need to be delivered in person and there is usually a deadline.

If the process server has trouble tracking down the person they need to serve - and Wilde has been spending a lot of time in London recently, so that is a possibility - then they can go to extreme lengths like this to get the documents where they need to be.

Often, the person on whose behalf the papers are being served (so, Sudeikis in this situation) aren't aware of exactly how the papers are making their way there.

A source told Variety that Sudeikis was just as surprised by this very public moment as everyone else.

"Papers were drawn up to establish jurisdiction relating to the children of Ms. Wilde and Mr. Sudeikis," the source said.

"Mr. Sudeikis had no prior knowledge of the time or place that the envelope would have been delivered as this would solely be up to the process service company involved and he would never condone her being served in such an inappropriate manner."

Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis' relationship.

Wilde and Sudeikis met at a Saturday Night Live finale party in 2011. At the time, Wilde had separated from her ex-husband Tao Ruspoli and Sudeikis had split from his filmmaker ex-wife Kay Cannon.

After that, they kept running into each other for months until Wilde's friend finally gave the actor her number.


Two years after meeting, the pair announced they were engaged in 2013. 

Olivia Wilde and Jason Sudeikis in January 2020. Image: Getty.

A year later in April 2014, the actors welcomed their first child together, Otis. They later welcomed their second child, Daisy, in October 2016.

When news of the couple's split surfaced in November 2020, reports claimed that the break-up was "amicable".

In early 2021, Sudeikis thanked his ex-partner in his speech at the Critics Choice Awards.

"I want to thank my kids, Otis and Daisy. I want to thank their mum, Otis and Daisy’s mum, Olivia, who had the initial idea for this as a TV show," Sudeikis said.

Likewise, Wilde congratulated Sudeikis for the win on Twitter, writing: "I hope this means we all keep wearing hoodies when the ceremonies are in person next year."


But in a July 2021 GQ profile, Sudeikis admitted that he still doesn't have clarity about the end of their relationship.

"I'll have a better understanding of why in a year," he shared, "and an even better one in two, and an even greater one in five, and it'll go from being, you know, a book of my life to becoming a chapter to a paragraph to a line to a word to a doodle."

The Ted Lasso star also acknowledged that the last year had been hard, and that he's still trying to understand what to "take away" from his split from Wilde.

"That's an experience that you either learn from or make excuses about. You take some responsibility for it, hold yourself accountable for what you do, but then also endeavour to learn something beyond the obvious from it," he said.

"I think if you have the opportunity to hit a rock bottom, however you define that, you can become 412 bones or you can land like an Avenger. I personally have chosen to land like an Avenger."

What now?

Wellllllll... there is obviously some sort of legal issue going on between the former couple.

But besides that (which is definitely not our business and will hopefully be resolved without any further issues for the sake of Otis and Daisy), the incident has raised some security questions.

CinemaCon will reevaluate its safety protocols.

"To protect the integrity of our studio partners and the talent, we will reevaluate our security protocols," head of CinemaCon Mitch Neuhauser told Variety. "We will act accordingly because it's the right thing to do. We want to do the safe, proper thing."

It will also be interesting to see if this impacts the rollout of Don't Worry Darling.

Tangentially, it may also increase (the already very high) speculation about Styles' third album Harry's House, due out on May 20.

Fans believe there will be references to his relationship in the new music. His lead single 'As It Was' featured the line "Leave America, two kids follow her" which they took as a reference to him and Wilde splitting their time between Los Angeles and London.

Feature image: Getty.

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