Directors Who Found Love (Or Lust) On Set With Their Stars

Lights, camera, and lots of action.

-By Danielle Kent

Filming a movie is no simple task–it requires late nights and early mornings, often without breaks. Is this seemingly grueling environment conducive to getting it on? These director and actor pairings sure thought so. Check out this list of famous couples who found love– or just lust– on-set. Some couples have been lucky like Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw, who’ve been together now for 25 years! Others, errr, not so much (sorry K-Stew and Rupert Sanders). Get ready for lights, cameras, and LOTS of action.

  • Aaron Johnson and Sam Taylor-Wood

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    The romance between the now-husband and wife started when Sam directed Aaron in the 2009 John Lennon biopic Nowhere Boy. At the time of filming Johnson was 18 while the director was 42. The couple made it official when they wed in 2012 and changed their names to Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Sam Taylor-Johnson, respectively. They have two children together Wylda Rae and Romy Hero, and two children from Sam’s previous marriage.

  • Quentin Tarantino and Vanessa Ferlito

    When you think of a powerhouse director like Quentin Tarantino, widely-known hits like Pulp Fiction and Kill Bill most often come to mind. Tarantino has had his share of flops, though; namely his collaboration with fellow film director Robert Rodriguez– Grindhouse. This box-office failure did have a silver lining for Quentin as it was on the set that he met his rumored girlfriend, Vanessa Ferlito. Tarantino is known for dating his leading ladies and neither confirming nor denying their relationships. So is he with Vanessa? And more importantly, was he ever in cahoots with his self-proclaimed muse, Uma? If you ask Quentin, mum’s the word.

  • Robert Rodriguez and Rose McGowan

    Speaking of Robert Rodriguez, he’s another director who has an affinity for his leading ladies. He and actress Rose McGowan also met on the set of Grindhouse and began a romance that lasted several years. It’s adorable if you ignore one minor detail: Rodriguez was still married. Though the director would eventually legitimize their relationship by divorcing his wife and proposing to McGowan, the couple called it quits before ever walking down the aisle. Many Rodriguez fans viewed McGowan as the figurative Yoko Ono to his John Lennon, blaming McGowan for the stall in his career as a director. Since the split McGowan has also thrown her fair share of jabs, claiming that Rodriguez “doesn’t know” how to direct when he leaves his home state of Texas. Ouch.

  • Len Wiseman and Kate Beckinsale

    Prior to meeting actress Kate Beckinsale, Wiseman was happily married to a kindergarten teacher. Not surprisingly after meeting Kate on the set of Underworld, Wiseman found it difficult to resist Esquire’s Sexiest Woman Alive. Beckinsale was also technically unavailable as she had been in a long-term relationship with actor Michael Sheen, but when has that ever stopped a Hollywood romance from forming? A year later, Wiseman and Beckinsale were married. Eleven years later, the couple split seemingly out of nowhere citing irreconcilable differences despite rumors of infidelity.

  • Paul W.S. Anderson and Milla Jovovich

    Although most of these actor and director pairings have ended in heartbreak, this couple has beat the odds. Paul W.S. Anderson’s directorial tell has been his affinity for video game film adaptations –score one for the nerds– and after meeting on the set of his first Resident Evil film, Milla Jovovich and Paul hit it off. They were married in 2009 and have since lived happily ever after with their two children.

  • Tim Burton and Helena Bonham Carter

    Tim Burton has gotten quite the reputation for being, for lack of a better term, a total weirdo. His weirdness has translated into success at the box office, though, with classics like Beetlejuice raking in millions. Like many of these directors, Burton shows loyalty to his actor friends by frequently recasting them, and for a long time his once domestic partner, Helena Bonham Carter, was one of these stock characters. The two were together from 2001 to 2014 and during that time they had two children and made five movies. Though the pair has since split, fret not; their past love affair is commemorated every time we re-watch Helena and Johnny Depp cook pies made of human flesh.

  • Rupert Sanders and Kristen Stewart

    Snow White and the Huntsman was the first feature film directed by Rupert Sanders and critics agreed that it did a great job at showcasing Kristen Stewart’s range as an actor. Unfortunately, the film also marked the dissolution of both Sanders’ marriage and Stewart’s relationship with her Twilight costar, Robert Pattinson. During the making of Snow White, Sanders and Stewart began an extramarital relationship that was eventually covered by every gossip magazine on the planet. Stewart even publicly apologized to Pattinson and the media at large for the indiscretion, but the damage had been done (and Team Edward was heated).

  • Woody Allen and Diane Keaton

    Woody Allen is known for being a director who is not afraid to take risks, but he has also been quite controversial when it comes to his romantic endeavors. Allen famously left his partner Mia Farrow to dive into a new relationship with her adopted daughter, Soon-Yi Previn. However, his most lucrative relationship was with actress Diane Keaton, who he met while directing his Broadway show Play It Again. Though their romantic relationship was short-lived, the couple remained close and Keaton went on to star in Allen’s Academy Award-winning Annie Hall. An amicable break-up in Hollywood that developed into a successful working relationship– who knew that was possible?

  • Steven Spielberg and Kate Capshaw

    Steven Spielberg’s short-lived marriage to Amy Irving ended in 1989 with one of Hollywood’s most costly divorce settlements– Irving walked away with a cool $100 million. After licking his wounds, Spielberg went on to direct Indiana Jones and The Temple of Doom. During filming Spielberg found love again. He met one of the film’s stars, Kate Capshaw, on set and the two have been happily married since 1991. Throughout the span of their now 25-year marriage they have had six children. And for those curious about the current state of Spielberg’s finances, his net worth is valued at around $3.6 billion. An impressive recovery.

  • Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor

    Most consider Ben Stiller to be just an actor and comedian, but many are unaware that he once attempted to make the switch to behind-the-scenes after directing and starring in his television pilot called Heat Vision and Jack. The pilot never made it to air–though it has since gone viral– but the project was not a complete loss for Stiller as it allowed him to meet his future wife, Christine Taylor. The duo has gone on to share the screen in comedic classics like Zoolander and Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story though both have taken some time off from acting to focus on raising their two children.

  • Cybill Shepherd and Peter Bogdanovich

    Shepherd’s personal life has been an emotional roller coaster that has played out over the span of many years in a very public way. Her acting career, however, could be described as serendipitous. Peter Bogdanovich saw the young Shepherd’s stunning Glamour cover and knew that he needed this relatively unknown model to be the star of his upcoming film, The Last Picture Show. Though it was short-lived, this working relationship and eventual romance marked the beginning of Shepherd’s often tumultuous but never boring career in Hollywood. Who needs networking when your modeling pictures do the talking for you?

  • Roger Vadim and Brigitte Bardot

    In a similar vein, Roger Vadim ripped out a modeling picture of then 15 year-old Brigitte Bardot from an issue of Elle and knew he needed her as his muse. Vadim went on to court Bardot quite aggressively, ignoring her family’s very vocal disapproval. Despite their nearly 10-year age gap, the couple continued have a whirlwind romance and married in 1952. They both got their big break working together on the classic French film …And God Created Woman— Vadim was finally viewed as a critically-acclaimed director and his star, Bardot, became a timeless sex symbol. Although their relationship fizzled and they eventually divorced, the two remained friends until Vadim’s death in 2000.

  • Danny Boyle and Rosario Dawson

    Rosario Dawson began dating director Danny Boyle after being cast in his psychological thriller, Trance. “From the outside it looks like there’s a lot of dissimilarities, but we actually have a lot in common,” said Dawson when asked about the relationship. Apparently something was lacking, though, because the couple was visibly distant by the time the Trance press junket rolled around, later confirming that they had mutually agreed to part ways. Dawson is adamant that there are no hard feelings and has since praised Boyle for his talent as a director.