- Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi first met in 2000, and they got married in 2008.
- In 2010, de Rossi legally changed her name to Portia Lee James DeGeneres, though she continues to professionally go by Portia de Rossi.
- The couple celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary in 2018.
- Recently, de Rossi publicly defended her wife amid the controversy surrounding DeGeneres’ talk show.
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Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi have been married for over a decade, and they’re one of the most-watched couples in Hollywood.
But even major fans may not know everything about the talk-show host and model’s love story.
Here’s a timeline of everything we know about their relationship.
2000: The couple first met at a party, and it was love at first sight for De Rossi.
During the couple’s first joint interview in 2009, de Rossi told Oprah she knew she was in love with DeGeneres from the first time she laid eyes on her at a party in 2000.
But she said it then took her over three years to tell DeGeneres how she felt because she wasn’t out as a gay woman.
December 1, 2004: The two reconnected at an award show.
The pair reconnected in 2004 at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles for VH1’s Big in ’04 Awards, according to The Advocate.
2005: The pair publicly announced their relationship and made their first red-carpet appearance.
DeGeneres and de Rossi made their first public appearance together at the HBO Golden Globe Awards Party in January 2005.
“Believe me, I had a very, very long and difficult struggle with my sexuality,” she said, which marked the first time she had openly spoken about her sexuality and her relationship with DeGeneres.
She continued, “I didn’t choose the fact that I was gay, but I did choose whether to live my life as a gay woman – that was the terrifying thing for me. Especially being a gay actress. I love playing all different kinds of women, and the majority of women aren’t gay, so the majority of characters aren’t going to be gay.”
Later that year, according to People, DeGeneres and de Rossi moved into a two-bedroom house together in LA.
In DeGeneres’ cover-story interview for the magazine, she told the publication, “It’s the first time that I’ve known in every cell of my being that I’m with somebody for the rest of my life.”
August 16, 2008: The couple got married after California legalised gay marriage.
In 2008, the Supreme Court of California made it possible for same-sex couples to get married. Soon after, de Rossi and DeGeneres were officially married in an intimate wedding ceremony.
“Today we have taken a giant step forward toward the ideal that all of us, with no exceptions, are not only created equal, but we each have the unalienable right to pursue our own happiness,” said motivational speaker Wayne Dyer, who officiated the ceremony according to a post on DeGeneres’ Instagram.
“With your exchange of vows today, you symbolise for many who have gone before you, who were forced to live their lives in quiet desperation, lurking in the shadows, that we as people, are truly better than we used to be,” he continued, per the post.
August 2010: De Rossi changed her name to Portia Lee James DeGeneres.
According to Entertainment Weekly, E! Online reported in 2010 that de Rossi legally changed her name to Portia Lee James DeGeneres.
However, she continued (and continues) to professionally go by Portia de Rossi.
2013: Reports that the two were having marital issues surfaced, but DeGeneres publicly denied them.
Throughout 2013, there were numerous reports the couple was having issues in their relationship, but DeGeneres quickly shut them down.
“There’s not one ounce of truth to any of it. I am very happily married. The only thing we ever argue about is who loves who more, it really is true,” she told People magazine.
February 1, 2018: De Rossi surprised DeGeneres with a gorilla sanctuary for her 60th birthday.
In an emotional moment on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in 2018, de Rossi appeared and gifted DeGeneres with a gorilla sanctuary for her 60th birthday.
In the past, DeGeneres has said that primatologist and conservationistDian Fossey, who studied mountain gorillas, is one of her heroes.
“It’s your 60th birthday, and this gift had to be really special, and it had to represent who you are and what you really care about,” de Rossi said on the show. “Not just now, but what you’ve always cared about. What you were influenced by and what has made you the amazing person that you are today.”
DeGeneres called it the best gift ever.
“It’s good to be loved. It’s profound to be understood,” DeGeneres said.
August 16, 2018: They celebrated their 10th wedding anniversary.
The pair celebrated their 10-year wedding anniversary on August 16, 2018.
February 13, 2019: DeGeneres said on her show that she surprises de Rossi every time she goes out of town.
“They put a huge heart-shaped thing of rose petals on her bed. So when she walks into the room, the whole bed is covered with a heart-shaped rose petal,” she said.
January 5, 2020: The couple attended the Golden Globes together.
At the 2020 Golden Globes, DeGeneres was honoured with the Carol Burnett Award.
Before the event, she posed with de Rossi on the red carpet.
January 26, 2020: They celebrated DeGeneres’ birthday by attending the Grammy Awards.
The couple attended another award show together later that month on DeGeneres’ 62nd birthday.
DeGeneres was asked to introduce the “Old Town Road” performance at the Grammys, during which she notably mispronounced singer Mason Ramsey’s name.
August 2020: De Rossi publicly defended her wife amid the controversy surrounding DeGeneres’ talk show.
Following these allegations, in July, Variety reported that DeGeneres’ show was under internal investigation by its parent company, WarnerMedia.
In August, de Rossi publicly showed her support for her wife with an Instagram post reading “I Stand By Ellen.”
She captioned the photo, “To all our fans …. we see you. Thank you for your support. #stopbotattacks” Other celebrities, including Katy Perry and Ashton Kutcher, have shared messages in support of DeGeneres and her character as well.
Additionally, in a recent video obtained by Page Six, de Rossi said that DeGeneres is “doing great” amid the controversy.
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