One of Hollywood’s most famous couples hasn’t been a couple for quite some time. In a stunning reveal, Jada Pinkett Smith said that she and Will Smith have been separated for seven years. In an interview on the Today Show to promote her new memoir entitled Worthy, the actress dropped the news that she and her husband of nearly 25 years have lived “separate lives” since 2016.
While Pinkett didn’t single out one particular catalyst for the split, she said the pair “were just exhausted with trying” and decided to part ways as a couple. They made the decision to remain together on paper when she “couldn’t go through with” a legal divorce.
Pinkett and Smith have maintained the public appearance of a married couple since the separation, appearing together at industry functions such as award shows and movie premieres. Both have also spoken about their marriage in numerous interviews, even denying rumors of issues over the years.
One of those joint appearances ended in controversy when Smith walked onstage at the 2022 Oscar Awards and slapped Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke about Pinkett’s shaved head. Minutes later, he was given the Academy Award for best actor for the drama King Richard. While Smith escaped criminal charges, he was issued a decade-long ban from the award show and had numerous film projects put on hold or canceled.
The separation also predates the public scandal involving a relationship between Pinkett and Smith’s family friend/R&B singer August Alsina. In 2020, the pair discussed the “entanglement” on an episode of Pinkett’s Facebook show Red Table Talk, making Will the subject of numerous memes.
Pinkett told People she and Will are “still figuring it out”
“We just got deep love for each other, and we are going to figure out what that looks like for us,” she said.