Heath Ledger and Michelle Williams split

09/02/2007 at 07:46 AM ET

The parents of one of our favorite celebrity children — Matilda Rose, 22 months — have split. Friends of actors Heath Ledger, 28, and Michelle Williams, 26, confirm that they separated a few weeks ago. The couple have been engaged since Michelle became pregnant with Matilda in 2005. They met on the set of Brokeback Mountain in 2004. We don’t usually post about splits, but as they are one of our reader’s favorite celebrity parents and couples, we are making an exception.

While Heath and Michelle are no longer together, they are committed to raising their daughter.

They have a beautiful daughter and they are both committed to being great parents.

Heath is currently filming Dark Knight in LA, and Matilda is with Michelle while she films Synecdoche in NYC.

Source: US Weekly; People

Thanks to CBB readers Susie, Kelsey and Kathrin.


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Showing 66 comments

Katie on

I can honestly say I did not see this one coming. They made such a great couple and seem like very down to earth people, totally centred around their family. While other splits are never a suprise (i.e. Phillipe family) I am really shocked.

tink1217 on

thats too bad. they were really sweet together.

phenyl on

Aw, didn’t see that coming 😦

blue_butterfly on

Genuinely sad to hear this – they seemed so solid!

It doesnt sound ominous, so lets hope they remain good friends for Matildas sake

Keila on

Aw – so sad… They truly are a favorite, and it comes as a little surprise to me, but oh well… Hoping for all the best.

MommyX1 on

Oh my god! Wow, how unexpected.

lydia on

Gosh,just recently we though they were expecting, but instead they are separating. It is sad, I did not see this coming.

Natalie S. on

Awe how sad, I actually like this couple.. I hope this is just temporary and they find each other again.. If not, as long as they both are happy with whoever crosses their path..

yaosa on

I am sorry to read that:-(

They seemed like such a low key and easy going couple. I’m sure it wasn’t/isn’t an easy decision.

I wish them both well and enjoy to see pics of Matilda as she grows.

Jody on

I am sorry to hear this, but the thought of this did cross my mind from the past couple of posts of them.

PSB on

Can’t say this is surprising at all. Michelle hasn’t looked happy in a photo in months. Sad to hear about it though – they were such a cute couple and seemed well-suited to each other.

Naomi Watts must be hugging her baby and fiance and gloating.


Ahhh there is no confirmation from them whether this is true or not, US is just speculating, claiming a unamed source. No rep or Heath and Michelle have confirmed they split.

monica on

Thats soo sad, I love this couple. Matilda is soo adorable.

Nausicaa on

That’s a shame. They were cute, and they seemed so happy and down-to-earth. I really didn’t see this one coming. It seemed like not too long ago they were perfectly happy. This split just seemed to come out of nowhere. Poor Matilda.

syd on

Just wanted to point out that according to US weekly, their reps could not be reached, this quote is from an unnamed “source” and it is not their official announcement… But, nonetheless, it may be true after all, I was just pointing it out because I know Sarah likes to mark the rumors and I guess this may technically be a rumor if its not from their representative directly…

That being said, I hope its not true, I love this couple! But they have always been so private so we may never actually hear anything from them about it.

Sarah’s note (Monday): Thanks Syd — I do like to mark the rumors! πŸ˜‰

lola on

some couples you expect to break up, but not this one.
I am really sad for them, they seemed to really love each other and their daughter. I hope they get some support and find their way back to each other!

gabriella on

I’m not surprised, most celebrity couples eventually end up broken up.

April on

Woah! I didn’t see that coming! That’s too bad, but I suppose they must have their reasons.

Kristen on

Sigh. I suspected that they had split up, because there have been no pictures of them together with Matilda lately, but it’s still sad to hear it confirmed. I guess it was kind of telling that they’d been engaged for two years and had a child together but never married. They made a beautiful couple, but hopefully they’ll still do a great job raising Matilda together.

plannbb on

Noooooooooooooooooooo! Noooooooooooo!
I swear, Hollywood must really be the most difficult place to stay together. These two are the last two people I thought would break up. Sad.

J.M. on

Oh that’s ashame but yet just another hollywood couple with a child who can’t make it work. Sad.

Hope they remain good friends for the sake of their child.

sigh on

They sure waited a long time to announce this.

I knew they would never last.

Meg on

Wow! This is right up there with Reese and Ryan– totally unexpected! I hope they can stay civil for Matilda’s sake.

Nadège on

Wow, this is very surprising and seemed to come out of nowhere. I feel so bad for them all, especially little Matilda. I hope that they can remain as peaceful as possible for her sake. 😦

Charity on

I wondered about this when they weren’t together last week and were flying Matilda from one parent to another! I’m so sad to here this but I’m glad they are keeping it amicable for the baby’s sake.

Rose on

I’m pretty open minded, but I always find it strange when long-term couples put off marriage or stay engaged indefinitely.

It often seems to be a warning sign that the relationship won’t last.

Sad to hear this news — these two seemed like a pretty normal, grounded couple.

NicoleM on

You have got to be kidding! It’s a shame..

Liza on

Wow. Totally didn’t see that coming.

KF on

Wow, I’m really shocked and sad to read about this, they seemed so happy and well-suited for each other (albeit this isn’t based on anything except photos and gossip sites since I obviously don’t know them at all!). I’m sad for Matilda, too, that’s really too bad. I wish all of them the best, though, and I’m sure they’ll continue to take fabulous care of their little one despite this.

happy on

That’s really terrible. But I can’t say I am surprised. I haven’t seen a picture of them together and looking happy for a while.

Aitch on

I am shocked! What very sad news!

Fynn on

Sigh. It was sweet while it lasted.

anon on

I’m sorry to read about the break up. But i think Heath and Michelle didn’t know each other very well, they only knew each other/were together about 6 months before she got pregnant… I feel sorry for Matilda, now she should be their no.1 priority!

CandiceC on

Oh, my heart just sank when I read that. How sad for little Matilda.

MuffThumb on

I hate to admit it, but this really doesn’t surprise me. My only wish is that they remain cordial for Matilda’s sake.

FC on

Damn! I did like this couple and the family they had. But, I wish them the best in the partnership of raising their daughter.

Miss155 on

I just cant believe this!! I wish both of them the best. God Bless!!

melanie on

oh, that’s too bad! 😦 i hate break ups.

Beach Boy's Mom on

I was hoping they’d be making an announcement of a different sort. Bummer!

MMM on

This is sad, I really liked them together, but it happens to the best sometimes.

Gabrielle on

This makes me really sad. I hope they are able to be wonderful parents to their beautiful daughter.

Steph on

Wow, I am shocked I was even expecting them to announce a baby #2 sometime soon. That’s too bad.

Katie on

Ahhh, that’s a shame! That made such a cute couple. I wish both of them the best and am glad they can put aside what has happened between them and raise their daughter.

gabriella on

I’m not surprised, sadly very few celebrity couples last now.

Lola on

don’t let this be true!

karen on

soooooo sad! i loved them together.

sinclair on


Say it ain’t so….Sorry to hear the news, Michelle and Heath.

Never saw it coming–not that I know them, personally!

Ans on

Wait, correct me if I’m wrong:
Isn’t this a report from a magazine? Reps for Michelle and Heath haven’t made a statement yet… shouldn’t this be listed as “Rumor”?
If the news is true, that’s sad. I can’t say I’m surprised though.
Hope both parents remain in Matilda’s lives as much as they were before the split.

Sarah’s note: I just corrected Shannon’s post as it does say they made a statement, when it fact they did not. Sorry it’s taken so long — I was away for the weekend. However, we’ve heard from our sources that they’ve definitely split, so we did not mark it as rumor.

Kori on

You never ever know what goes on behind closed doors. My husband and I separated last month and our friends still cannot believe it….but for us it was suffering for years. some people are very good at keeping to themselves with issues…..

emma on

Sad news but i’m not all that surprised either – not becuase i hadn’t seen any pics of them together in recent months more because their relationship would have probably just been a ‘onset/offset’ fling had Michelle not got pregnant. I’m also wondering whether Jen & Ben will spilt up for the same reason – they seem to have got engaged & married because of Jen’s pregnancy plus i hardly ever see photo’s of them as a family. I would really hope not though as i love that family!

Ans on

Is there a reason why my other comment wasn’t posted? It was just a question about the source and then a message about Matilda and her parents.

Ans on

Do my comments not work?

Emily on

Can’t say I’m surprised lol!

Rarely have they been in the same city the past few months. Also with all the drama they created getting together has got to be karma. πŸ˜‰

suri on

This came as no surprise. They always looked miserable together. My daughter and I had a bet and I said no more than 3 years and she said before Matilda’s 2nd b-day.

Maya on

I agree – I don’t understand this new Hollywood trend of first getting pregnant and then (maybe) getting married. It leads to very unstable relationships.

meghan on

yeah – i am not particularly surprised… they haven’t looked happy in photos together for a while, not to mention that the most recent photos of matilda have been her being shipped between nyc and la with her nanny to visit her parents separately. and people is reporting this is true on their site as well – for whoever was still skeptical…

Jen on

Have they really split? Maybe this is just a rumor since they are both working on films in separate areas and have not been seen together lately.

PSB on


I think Ben and Jen are here to stay personally. They may have gotten married because of the pregnancy, but I believe they dated for a year before she got pregnant. Also, they knew each other from costarring in a film a few years earlier.

This is not to say people who get married young are doomed–but I think once you reach your 30’s, you have probably gotten a lot out of your system and are more ready to settle down and have a better idea of what works/doesn’t work for you in a relationship. Some people get married early and have great marriages, but a lot of people grow apart as they change with age (like Heath and Michelle). I have seen loads of happy family photos recently on CBB of Jen and Ben on vacation with Matt’s family, loading groceries in a parking lot, and shopping at the Farmer’s Market. Check the archives!

Campbell on

Just goes along w/ the divorce rate in the US. (yes, I know they weren’t married) Unfortunately, very little actually SHOCKS me. I wish all three of them happiness and good health.

Amber on

I’m not shocked at all. I believe it was fun in the beginning, but I think they really only stayed together because she got pregnant.

Anna on

“Everyday I just fall deeper and deeper in love with both my girls.” Let’s hope it’s just a rumour and that sentence still stands.

Jen on

Regarding a comment about Naomi Watts from an above poster, I highly doubt she is gloating at Heath while holding her own baby and man.

She seems to be a better person than that. She has a new baby and her love to focus on, not the sad times of an ex.

lauren on

if no one saw this coming you are blind this has been obvios for months because they hevnt been with each other in six months apart from one time and they looked misserable and it has been obvious since the last few times they have been together because they havnt been happy really since the middle to end of 2006 but i wish them both good luck but more heath because he is totally hot

Nelly on

Naomi was dumped for Michelle who then went and got ‘accidently’ pregnant, of course she’s gloating. Naomi had been 2 years with Heath and they had spoken of having babies, Heath led her on, and didn’t know how to get out of the situation so he gets involved with Michelle, then Michelle goes and has a baby. Boy that must have really hurt poor Naomi. They say though that the person who laughs last laughs loudest….and that’s so true in this case.

L's Mom on

I realize this is five years too late, Nelly, but quit spreading lies about Heath Ledger. I cannot stand the way people do this, especially because he is dead and no longer here to defend himself. Get your facts straight! Heath Ledger did NOT leave Naomi Watts for Michelle Williams. They split up BEFORE he started filming Brokeback. Even the director, Ang Lee, stated that, from his perspective, Heath getting involved with Michelle W. was his way of “getting OVER Naomi”, as if to say that they had ALREADY split. Also, even before he died, Naomi Watts has always spoken highly and nicely about Heath. There are also paparazzi pics out there of Heath Ledger with Naomi’s brother, Ben, in January of 2005 and he even photographed Heath Ledger for some of his photoshoots to promote Brokeback in 2005. Have you no shame? Where exactly do you get your info. from??? I get mine from the actual FACTS that can be verified.

L's Mom on

To add to my previous post, Nelly, I found the quote from her that I was looking for:

“I think it’s about life experience and not about age. I fell in love with a soul and a person and his life experience was rich enough that it stimulated me. I have nothing but good things to say about my romance with Heath Ledger. We loved each other. I’m close with his family; he’s close with mine. He is a friend and we’ll always remain in contact.”—Naomi Watts to Allure magazine in November 2004.

Need I say more? No, but I will. As you can see, she made this statement LONG before he died. I should also add that those paparazzi photos I mentioned above were taken at Heath Ledger’s new Sydney home in Jan. 2005, while he was dating Michelle Williams, so she was obviously there. Like Ben Watts is going to hang out with a guy who, according to you, left his sister for another woman when that supposed “other woman” is there? Yeah, sure. Bottom line: if you’re going to make a claim like that about someone, you need to have some facts to back it up. Rant over.