J.Lo and Disastrous Celebrity Couples

Dear Ms. Lopez,

If I played the smallest role in the cancellation of your wedding, I'm sorry. I never meant to do you wrong. Let me apologize and explain …

It all started when the mother of a bride who was getting married Sept. 14 in Santa Barbara called ABC to complain that your wedding was going to ruin her daughter's wedding because both events were going to take place at the same hotel.

Speculation about your secret wedding plans had been running wild. Even your fiancé — if he's still your fiancé — had been kidding reporters recently, throwing out various dates and locations, then saying he was just goofing around.

The woman who called us — Vivian Terhark of Spooner, Wis. — had heard all those "Bennifer" reports (apologies again if you find that term offensive), and she was burning mad. She told my colleague David Blaustein, an entertainment reporter for ABC Radio, she was worried that the hotel caterers would be so busy handling your wedding that her daughter would be shortchanged.

I hope you can understand this woman's concern. Of course, after all the publicity that ensued when Dave and I reported the story, your wedding was called off, so Mrs. Terhark's daughter needn't have worried. Pardon me for feeling self-conscious, but did my buddy Dave and I have something to do with it? I'm very, very sorry.

I'm sorry if it complicated your life. But don't things like this happen to you every day? Isn't it just a small part of being a wildly successful singer-celebrity-movie star with an assortment of products bearing your name?

Besides, even in the best of circumstances, you know weddings are never easy. You starred in The Wedding Planner and you've been married twice before. Something always comes up.

Ms. Lopez, I just want to wish you the best of luck. Relationships are never easy, and maybe this one was never meant to be. Perhaps it's too soon to tell.

Most of all, you shouldn't feel the slightest bit ashamed over the last-minute cancellation. Far worse has happened — especially in Hollywood.

As you know, most celebrity marriages don't last. The worst that can be said of your marriage is that it never began.

Just in case you're feeling bad, take a look at these crash-and-burn relationships. Perhaps it's wrong to rehash other people's mistakes. But as they say, that's show business.

Sincerely, Buck

P.S. Forget Gigli. You and Ben are going to do great in Jersey Girl.


Charlie Sheen and Donna Peele

Their Story: Just weeks after Sheen testified that he spent more than $50,000 in a year on Hollywood Madam Heidi Fleiss' call girls, the Wall Street star married Peele, whom he had met six weeks earlier, while filming a commercial.

The Heartbreak: Sheen found religion and dumped his wife after six months of marriage, in spring 1996. "There was a voice. Not like drug-induced voices, but there was a voice that kept telling me this will not work," Sheen told Us magazine.

The Aftermath: Sheen, 38, married former Bond girl Denise Richards last year, and they're now expecting a child. The couple will appear together next month in Scary Movie 3 — an appropriate title for a film about Sheen's sex life, though the coincidence is unintentional.

Carmen Electra and Dennis Rodman Their Story: To cap off a night of heavy drinking, the Baywatch babe and the rainbow-haired basketball star tied the knot in Las Vegas.

The Heartbreak: Rodman sought an annulment 10 days later, claiming he didn't even remember the ceremony. They were divorced in March 1999.

The Aftermath: Electra, 31, is now considering turning her next marriage — to rocker Dave Navarro — into a reality TV event. "MTV approached us," she told reporters. "We're thinking about it."

Famous for rebounds (at least in the NBA), Rodman marked his 42nd birthday in May by walking down the isle with 36-year-old Michelle Moyer, with whom he has two children.

Rodman has his own secret to marital bliss — he and his wife live in separate homes, a mile apart, in Newport Beach, Calif. "I like it that way," Rodman told reporters in May. "Michelle and the kids come over on weekends."

Robert Evans and Catherine Oxenberg

Their Story: In July 1998, the man who produced such classics as The Godfather, Chinatown and Marathon Man was smitten with actress Catherine Oxenberg, who played Joan Collins' daughter on Dynasty and appeared twice as Princess Diana in TV movies.

When Evans, 68, met the 36-year-old actress, he had recently suffered a stroke and was writing a book about his near-death experience, I Heard the Fat Lady Sing.

The Heartbreak: Within nine days, their marriage was annulled. "I forgot it had only been six weeks since I had been hit with a stroke," Evans told Variety.

The Aftermath: Now 73, Evans has divorced for the sixth time, parting in July with 34-year-old Versace model Leslie Ann Woodward. Ironically, it was not long after his latest flick, How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days. Oxenberg, 41, is married to actor Casper Van Dien and they have one child.

Drew Barrymore and Tom Green

Their Story: She was a party-hardy child star who had been married and divorced within a month to bartender Jeremy Thomas. Green was TV's leading shock comic, famous for cavorting in public in a moose carcass, interviewing his parents about their sexual fetishes, and putting his cancerous testicle on public display.

The Heartbreak: Hollywood's weirdest couple teased the public relentlessly during a 17-month courtship, once promising to marry on Saturday Night Live. They tied the knot in Malibu in July 2001. Five months later, shortly after the couple escaped a fire in Barrymore's Beverly Hills home, Green filed for divorce.

The Aftermath: Green, 32, who now hosts an MTV talk show, told People, "I've had wind that lasted longer than our marriage." He recently announced that he's placed an online personal ad on Yahoo!, while she's been dating the Strokes' drummer, Fabrizio Moretti.

Nicolas Cage and Lisa Marie Presley Their Story: He was Elvis Presley's biggest fan and she was the greatest souvenir at Graceland. They married in August 2002, days before the 25th anniversary of the King's death, and spent that night in his Memphis shrine.

Their Heartbreak: After that evening, reports emerged that Presley and Cage rarely spent time together. Five months later, he filed for divorce and she proclaimed, "We shouldn't have got married in the first place."

The Aftermath: Presley's third marriage was even shorter than her amazing 20-month union with Michael Jackson. At 35, she managed to launch her singing career while Cage, 39, earned an Oscar nomination for Adaptation.

Mike Tyson and Robin Givens Their Story: He was the youngest heavyweight champ in boxing history and she was the star of TV's Head of the Class. The couple sat side by side in a 1988 interview with Barbara Walters, in which Givens described her husband as "incredibly abusive" at times and "frightening." Police were later called to his New Jersey mansion, after he went on a rampage, hurling furniture out the windows.

The Heartbreak: They were divorced just a year after they were married, on Valentine's Day 1989.

The Aftermath: Tyson, 37, served a three-year prison term for a 1992 rape conviction. After earning more than $300 million as a fighter, he filed for bankruptcy this year. Months earlier, as part of a divorce settlement, the fighter agreed to pay his second wife, Monica, $6.5 million from future earnings.

"I've probably cheated on every woman I've ever been with … because I never respected myself," Tyson told ESPN.

Talk about losing patience with men: Givens gave marriage a second try, exchanging vows with her tennis instructor Syetozar Marinkovic on Aug. 22, 1997. They separated that same day.

A year later, she had a child with tennis player Murphy Jensen, although they're no longer together.

Julia Roberts and Lyle Lovett

Their Story: The box-office queen had been set to marry Kiefer Sutherland in 1991 but broke that off, reportedly on the eve of their wedding. Roberts finally walked down the aisle with a crazy-haired country singer. "It's true that I did get the girl," Lovett told UPI. "But then my grandfather always used to say: 'Even a blind chicken will find a few grains of corn now and then.' "

The Heartbreak: Just weeks after the March 1993 wedding, gossip pages reported that the couple rarely spent the night together, even when they were in the same city. They filed for divorce 21 months later, claiming they were still good friends.

The Aftermath: Roberts, 35, married cameraman Danny Moder last year after a four-year relationship to Benjamin Bratt fizzled. Lovett, 45, remains single.

Dennis Hopper and Michelle Phillips

Their Story: She was a singer in the Mamas and the Papas. In 1970, she split with her husband and bandmate John Phillips and showed up at the Oscars with Dennis Hopper, who had just co-written, directed and starred in Easy Rider. It was a trick-or-treat surprise that Halloween when they married.

The Heartbreak: Their marriage was over in eight days. Hopper admits that he was in a fog of drugs and alcohol for much of that time.

The Aftermath: Hopper, 67, is now married to his fifth wife, Victoria Duff, who gave birth to their first child in March. He has four other children.

Phillips didn't marry again for 30 years, finally settling down with plastic surgeon Dr. Steven Zax of Houston. She continues to act, and was a panelist a year and a half ago on the final airing of ABC's Politically Incorrect with Bill Maher.

Zsa Zsa Gabor and Felipe De Alba Their Story: A leading authority on divorce, Zsa Zsa Gabor is famous for saying, ""A girl must marry for love, and keep on marrying until she finds it." Another favorite: "I have never hated a man enough to give his diamonds back."

Of all her marriages, the strangest was her eighth, to Count Felipe de Alba, a Mexican lawyer. They exchanged vows on his yacht in 1982, 12 years after meeting at a polo match in France, with a mariachi band performing at the reception.

The Heartbreak: The band had hardly stopped playing when the union was declared null and void. Gabor was still technically married to her seventh husband, divorce lawyer Michael O'Hara, who had extricated her from her sixth marriage.

The Aftermath: Gabor's ninth marriage — to Prince Frederick von Anhalt of Germany — has been her longest. They've been together since 1986. Following a car accident, Gabor has been hospitalized for much of the past year. She told reporters on her 86th birthday that she hoped to be home soon and expected her husband to give her "something shiny."

Honorable mentions: Serial brides Joan Collins and Elizabeth Taylor, who have been married a combined 13 times (if you count Richard Burton twice); reality TV's Darva Conger and Rick Rockwell; the tattooed Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob Thornton … and Ernest Borgnine and Ethel Merman, two of the loudest people in Hollywood history, who stayed married for a whole month in 1964.

Buck Wolf is entertainment producer at ABCNEWS.com. The Wolf Files is published Tuesdays. If you want to receive weekly notice when a new column is published, join the e-mail list.