Celebrity

'My Big Fat Greek Wedding' Star Files For Divorce After 25 Years Of Marriage

In 1993, Nia Vardalos married fellow actor Ian Gomez, and it was their relationship and nuptials that inspired the hit 2002 comedy My Big Fat Greek Wedding.

The actress and writer wrote the screenplay about her own experience of falling in love and marrying a man who isn't of Greek descent like her. Both she and Gomez starred in the movie.

"Everything was overblown," she told Hollywood.com about the nuptials. "My family was furious with me because I refused to buy a wedding dress. I thought it was a ridiculous expense and I wanted to wear my mum's dress. My dad said, 'You are going to embarrass us in front of the Greek community. Everyone is going to say we couldn't afford to buy you a dress.' The limo arrived and it was like faux blue and smelled like prom vomit. Isn't that classic?"
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The critically-acclaimed romantic comedy earned Vardalos an Oscar nomination for Best Writing.

As with any couple, Vardalos and Gomez had a few bumps along the road, including problems starting a family. In 2016, the actress told People that she's had 13 failed IVF treatments, several miscarriages, and unsuccessful attempts at surrogacy.

"I felt so embarrassed that I couldn’t have a biological child," Vardalos admitted. "I wouldn’t know the emotions of what to write,” Vardalos contined. “I just said, ‘I can’t do it.’”

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In 2008, Vardalos and Gomez, who has appeared in many of his wife's movies as well as The Drew Carey Show, Reba and Cougar Town, adopted a three-year-old girl named Ilaria.

“I am so grateful and can’t imagine my life without her,” Vardalos said.

The couple also worked together on shows like The Great American Baking Show as well as the sequel to My Big Fat Greek Wedding, which was released in 2016.

Unfortunately, being great parents and having a strong working relationship wasn't enough to save their marriage. After almost 25 years, Vardalos, 55, filed for divorce from Gomez, 53.

Entertainment Tonight

The couple, who have been separated since June 29, 2017, released a joint statement confirming the sad news and asking for privacy.

"We’ve been respectfully separated for a lengthy period of time," read the statement. "Our relationship became a friendship so the decision to end the marriage is completely mutual and amicable. It is our hope that decency will prevail on the reporting of this story which will soon be yesterday’s news. Thank you for respecting our privacy."

Vardalos is asking for joint legal and physical custody of their 11-year-old daughter. She is also seeking spousal support but that will be "determined in mediation."

Entertainment Tonight

Vardalos has previously said that she had "an idea" for the third installment of My Big Fat Greek Wedding, so it's possible that the changes in her personal life will affect the movie.

It's always heartbreaking to see couples who have been together for so long part ways, but it seems like Vardalos and Gomez are making the best out of a bad situation by remaining amicable.

Awa has been writing for Shared for 3 years. She is a serial snacker who unapologetically loves celebrity gossip. Drop her a line at awa@shared.com.