Courtney Cox and David Arquette have separated. David has been photographed with another woman.
Called it long, long before Courtney began talking about being in marriage counseling.
When Courtney and David got married, Courtney changed her name to Courtney Cox Arquette. They even changed her credit on Friends. At some point recently, she seems to have dropped the Arquette, but it was too late.
People get married all the time. Many of them (most of them women) take their partner’s last names. Actors, however, hardly ever change their professional names when they marry. Especially when they’ve already established a career under their stage name. Paul Newman never asked Joanne Woodward to change her name. Nor did Hugh Cronyn asked Jessica Tandy to change hers.
As far as I can tell, a well-known actress who changes her professional name to her husband’s is guaranteed to divorce.
Robin Wright Penn.
Jada Pinkette Smith (wait for it).
Portia DeGeneres? (I suspect Portia does not intend to use DeGeneres as her professional name, in which case, she and Ellen are safe. Also, Portia de Rossi DeGeneres? You’re kidding, right?)
Who have I forgotten? List them in the comments.
So why do some famous actors change their names? It’s a red flag of insecurity. The husband (sorry, Ellen!) feels insecure about marrying a woman whose career is farther along than his. He worries that he’s being eclipsed. He tags his new wife with his last name to make sure she goes nowhere without him.
And don’t forget her insecurity! She tells herself that changing her established professional name is no big deal. She’s not willing to risk losing the man over a name. Unfortunately, she doesn’t understand that the name is symptomatic of something so much larger. And she doesn’t consider that a man who’d leave over a name most likely has other issues that will stand in the way of a successful marriage.