After splitting from husband Chris Martin back in March, Gwyneth Paltrow has officially moved on to Glee co-creator Brad Falchuk. The two met on the set of the long-running Fox series — in which Paltrow has played recurring character Holly Holliday since 2010 — and have recently taken their relationship to the next level, reportedly enjoying flirty dinners in L.A. and Utah getaways over the last four months.
But who is the 43-year-old Falchuk and why should we care about him? Well, besides the fact that he was able to score an A-list celebrity like Paltrow, Falchuk is pretty awesome himself. Here’s five things you didn’t know about Gwynnie’s new man.
1. He’s BFFs with Ryan Murphy.Falchuk and Murphy met while working on Nip/Tuck, the FX series about a controversial plastic surgery center the latter created in 2003. As their friendship grew, the two went on to write a television pilot called Pretty/Handsome, which got bought by FX — but was not picked up to series — and ultimately led to their co-creation of Glee. After Glee became a huge phenomenon, Falchuk and Murphy gave birth to another smash-hit, American Horror Story. The rest is TV history.
2. His own health scare inspired Glee‘s classic “Wheels” episode.
In 2008, Falchuk woke up with a numbness in his left arm. After getting an MRI, he learned that he had a tumor on his spinal cord and underwent emergency spinal surgery, fearing he might never be able to walk again. “I went from getting the complete wrong diagnosis that either would have maybe paralyzed or killed me to getting the right surgery, to waking up and being able to walk,” Falchuck recalled.
This life-changing experience heavily influenced the ninth episode of Glee‘s first season, in which the members of New Directions must perform in wheelchairs to help them learn how hard Artie, their wheelchair-bound teammate, works every day of his life.