Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Furness spent 27 years defending their marriage. Here's what we don't know.

By now you've probably heard the news that after almost three decades, Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Furness have ended their marriage.

In a statement released to PEOPLE they confirmed the split and urged the public to give their family time to come to terms with their new reality in private.

"We have been blessed to share almost three decades together as husband and wife in a wonderful, loving marriage. Our journey now is shifting and we have decided to separate to pursue our individual growth," they said.

"Our family has been and always will be our highest priority. We undertake this next chapter with gratitude, love, and kindness. We greatly appreciate your understanding in respecting our privacy as our family navigates this transition in all of our lives."

Watch: a look back on Hugh Jackman and Deborra-lee Furness. Post continues below.

Video via Mamamia.

In the few short hours that have passed since the announcement, articles speculating on their breakup have come in thick and fast. 

The very nature of a Hollywood split begets curiosity - there's no denying or escaping this. But at a certain point, we must realise that turning a very painful experience - celebrity or not - into public fodder up for debate is a thorny line to tread.


But this is nothing new for Jackman and Furness. They've faced this kind of public attention their whole marriage. 

Having met in 1995 on the set of ABC's Correlli, the pair instantly hit it off after starring alongside each other. One year later they were married and they began their journey trying to conceive. It wasn't an easy road with Jackman telling PEOPLE in 2017 they struggled with fertility.

"Because of her age, we started [trying] straightaway when we were together," he said. "We struggled, a couple of miscarriages, [in vitro fertilisation] it was not easy. It was difficult, obviously particularly on Deb."

Then after years of struggles, in 2000 they adopted their first child together, a son named Oscar, now 23. A few years later in 2005 they expanded their family and adopted their daughter, Ava, now 18.

But at the same time as their family was growing, the rumours began to seep in through gossip magazines and industry whispers. Tabloids were questioning Jackman's sexuality and they would not let it go.

It followed them for years. And at a certain point it was not hard to see how it would get to them.

"It's kind of tragic that these people have nothing better to do than gossip about people they don't know," said Furness in an interview with Page Six in 2011.

As the years rolled on the rumours persisted and they had to continue their public line of defence. It was unrelenting.


"It's just – the bottom line, so it's just offensive. If he was gay, fine, he would say he's gay. It has gotten so out of whack that they – it's stupid, yeah, it's annoying, because it's not true," said Furness during an interview on 60 Minutes in 2013.

Later in 2013 Jackman took a moment during an interview with Good Housekeeping to quell the constant barrage of gossip that followed them. Once again he felt compelled to put out fires that questioned the legitimacy of their relationship.

"If anyone meets my wife, they're like, 'You're all right, Hugh, but your wife is awesome.' Everyone who meets her loves her. So it's just wrong. It almost makes me sad for the people. They're obviously in a bad place," he said. 


"I don't want her perturbed; I worry for her. She's a justice freak. When she hears the gossip, she finds it hard to shut up about it. It's frustrating that she doesn't have a voice in the situation."

For years it continued this way. And now here we are.

With such a loud and fervent chorale of voices whispering about their marriage for so many years, the worry among many is whether this conjecture will take off into harmful new avenues.

The truth is we have no idea what drove them to end their marriage. They have told us a level of information they are comfortable sharing. In their words they are deciding to explore life individually. 

That should be the end of the conversation.

Over the coming days, I have no doubt that the opinions on their marriage will grow louder and there's no stopping that. But for the sake of Jackman, Furness and their children, I hope people can respect their wishes and shy away from speculation.

They've had to cop the rumour mill for decades. Perhaps now, they can finally find peace from it all.

Feature Image: Instagram.