Not every dramatization you see on television is fiction. Indeed, entertainment history has shown us that portraying a character can sometimes bleed into reality. It’s surprisingly common for couples to be put together for a TV-show plot line only to find themselves hooking up in real life too. These 40 couples found love at the workplace but in the most public way possible – in the celebrity spotlight.
40. Eliza Taylor and Bob Morley (The 100)
When Eliza Taylor and Bob Morley announced they’d wed in June 2019, it sent fans of their show The 100 wild. Because the actors had kept their relationship secret for six years, despite fans clamouring for the romantic feelings of their characters Clarke Griffin and Bellamy Blake to come to fruition. In the end, they got what they wanted, albeit in a totally unexpected way.
39. Jared Padalecki and Genevieve Cortese (Supernatural)
Genevieve Cortese guest starred in the fourth season of Supernatural as the demon Ruby, who engaged in a twisted affair with demon hunter Sam Winchester, played by Jared Padalecki. Then the two actors fell in love in real life and recently celebrated their tenth wedding anniversary. They have three children: Thomas, Shepherd and Odette.
38. Melissa Benoist and Chris Wood (Supergirl)
September 25, 2020 saw the announcement of Melissa Benoist and Chris Wood’s first child: Huxley Robert Wood. It has been a happy few years for the couple, who met on the set of Supergirl when Wood was brought in to play Mon-El. They started dating in 2017 and were married in September 2019.
37. Emily VanCamp and Josh Bowman (Revenge)
On Revenge, Emily VanCamp and Josh Bowman played a couple whose rollercoaster relationship included a phony pregnancy, a marriage, and a divorce. But in real life their love has been much simpler. In late 2019, VanCamp posted on Instagram about their anniversary, writing, “Almost one year married but today marks eight years together. Thanks to this human for making life the greatest adventure…” Aww.
36. Jason Segel and Linda Cardellini (Freaks and Geeks)
Jason Segel and Linda Cardellini were an item for several years after the cancelation of Freaks and Geeks, where they played the romantically linked Nick and Lindsay. Segel channelled some of this real break-up pain into his movie Forgetting Sarah Marshall. He was careful to explain that Marshall, played by Kristen Bell in the movie, wasn’t solely based on Cardellini, though. Actually she was plucked from his entire relationship history.
35. Charlie Heaton and Natalia Dyer (Stranger Things)
Playing teens Jonathan Byers and Nancy Wheeler in Netflix’ supernatural drama Stranger Things brought Charlie Heaton and Natalia Dyer together. But they kept their union secret for a while. In 2019 Dyer spoke to Refinery29 about working with your partner, saying, “It’s an interesting thing to work with somebody who you go home with. It’s always really fun.”
34. Ross Lynch and Jaz Sinclair (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina)
Netflix’ Chilling Adventures of Sabrina was recently canceled, much to fans’ chagrin. But actors Ross Lynch and Jaz Sinclair’s real-life relationship shows no signs of slowing down. They met playing love interests Harvey and Roz on the show. In late 2019 Sinclair posted a picture of their characters dancing together on Instagram, accompanied by the caption, “I love the way the room disappears when we’re together.”
33. Téa Leoni and Tim Daly (Madam Secretary)
Téa Leoni and Tim Daly played Elizabeth and Henry McCord for all six seasons of CBS’ Madam Secretary. Their on-screen marriage translated into real-life dating in 2014, and they are still going strong. In 2019 show creator Barbara Hall told Entertainment Weekly, “They are the most perfect couple, and it really is a wonderful thing to have been part of.”
32. Charles Melton and Camila Mendes (Riverdale)
Charles Melton and Camila Mendes play Reggie Mantle and Veronica Lodge on teen drama Riverdale. Their characters had a steamy romance when Veronica wasn’t with her usual squeeze Archie, and this translated into a real-life relationship that lasted 18 months. The actors quietly broke up, but they didn’t dismiss the possibility of a reunion at a later date. Which is nice.
31. Matthew Rhys and Keri Russell (The Americans)
When Keri Russell was asked by Town and Country magazine about her romance with The Americans co-star Matthew Rhys, she mentioned the attraction of the spy world the show operated in. She and Rhys played married KGB agents, and they went on to have one son together in real life. She said, “It was a fun, sexy place to live in for years, especially being with someone I was so in love with.”
30. Jerry Ferrara and Jamie-Lynn Sigler (Entourage)
Jerry Ferrara played Turtle on Entourage, the HBO comedy drama set in Hollywood. In the show’s fifth season, Turtle dated Jamie-Lynn Sigler, the actress who played Meadow on The Sopranos. Sigler played herself, of course, and their on-screen romance bled over into real life, with the pair dating from 2008 to late 2009. Who’d have thunk it?
29. Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos (All My Children)
This celebrity couple met on the set of All My Children way back in 1995 when they played lovebirds Hayley Vaughan and Mateo Santos. They got married in 1996 and have welcomed three children together. In recent years, their relationship may have been tested by Consuelos’ relocation to Vancouver to film Riverdale, though.
28. Ben McKenzie and Morena Baccarin (Gotham)
The on-screen love affair of Detective Jim Gordon and Dr. Leslie Thompkins in Gotham turned into a real life marriage for actors Ben McKenzie and Morena Baccarin in 2017. And McKenzie told James Corden he believed their first meeting was on the set of that show, but Baccarin revealed they had actually met years before on The O.C.. McKenzie laughed about being the idiot who blew off the, “gorgeous, sophisticated, intelligent” Baccarin.
27. Jennifer Garner and Michael Vartan (Alias)
In terms of celebrity relationships, Jennifer Garner is best known for her marriage to Ben Affleck, which sadly ended in divorce. But Affleck wasn’t the first co-star Garner got together with, as she dated her Alias love interest Michael Vartan in 2003. And in 2018 she showed that the two actors were still on good terms, when she posted a picture of them together on Instagram for his 50th birthday.
26. Tom Hardy and Charlotte Riley (Wuthering Heights)
Hollywood megastar Tom Hardy met his wife Charlotte Riley when they played tempestuous lovers Heathcliff and Catherine Earnshaw in a 2009 ITV adaptation of classic novel Wuthering Heights. She wasn’t sure about him at first, telling the Daily Mail that when he first invited her to share some tea, “It wasn’t love at first cup.” It all worked out though, as they now have two children, and Riley is also stepmother to Hardy’s first son Louis.
25. Crystal Reed and Daniel Sharman (Teen Wolf)
Playing lovers Allison Argent and Isaac Lahey on Teen Wolf became very real for actors Crystal Reed and Daniel Sharman. They were together for more than a year but broke up in 2013. Reed told Us Weekly that she went to Paris to get over the breakup while listening to Alanis Morissette’s Jagged Little Pill album.
24. Chase Stokes and Madelyn Cline (Outer Banks)
Chase Stokes and Madelyn Cline shot to fame in 2020 as John B and Sarah Cameron on Netflix’ teen mystery Outer Banks. They told the world that they had gotten together in real life in June. Stokes told TODAY that they began the relationship after the filming of season one wrapped, adding that it’s, “super-cool to be part of something with your partner and watch the success of it together.”
23. Taylor Lautner and Billie Lourd (Scream Queens)
Taylor Lautner and Billie Lourd played an item on Scream Queens and reportedly dated for eight months in real life. It came at a tumultuous time in Lourd’s life, as her mother Carrie Fisher and grandmother Debbie Reynolds both died not long after she and Lautner got together. A source told People magazine in 2017 that, “They aren’t together anymore but they are still friendly. She’s really focused on her work right now.”
22. Helen George and Jack Ashton (Call The Midwife)
Helen George and Jack Ashton’s characters in Call The Midwife led a doomed romance, but in real life their relationship has gone from strength to strength. Ashton told The Express that his decision to leave the show soon after he and George moved in together was beneficial. He said, “leaving the show probably kept us both sane because can you imagine living and working with someone?”
21. Michael J. Fox and Tracy Pollan (Family Ties)
In 1985 Tracy Pollan began playing Ellen Reed, the girlfriend of Michael J. Fox’s Alex P. Keaton in the sitcom Family Ties. She told People magazine in 2018 that she initially found Fox cocky, but when they reunited later for Bright Lights Big City, a romance blossomed. They married in 1988, have four children and the relationship stayed strong throughout Fox’s long battle with Parkinson’s disease.
20. Sebastian Stan and Leighton Meester (Gossip Girl)
Playing the loved-up couple Carter and Blair, Sebastian Stan and Leighton Meester were mainstays on the show Gossip Girl. They also dated for two years in real life too, before breaking up in 2010. Speaking to Seventeen magazine in 2010, Leighton is quoted as saying that the split was “really sad” and “really hard.”
19. Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries)
Beginning as friends before shacking up, The Vampire Diaries’ Ian Somerhalder and Nina Dobrev also got close in real life. Their on-screen romance throughout the show bled into their personal lives before the two went their separate ways. Dobrev revealed to Entertainment Weekly in 2016 that she still sees him as a close friend, explaining, “I love him and the friendship is still strong and I think he’s great and I care about him. And that didn’t change.”
18. Kat Dennings and Nick Zano (2 Broke Girls)
During the making of the comedy series 2 Broke Girls, Kat Dennings and Nick Zano’s complex relationship carried over into the real world. The two dated for a while before breaking it off in 2014. Dennings then embarked on a high-profile romance with singer Josh Groban, before announcing their split in 2016
17. Scott Speedman and Keri Russell (Felicity)
The J.J. Abrams and Matt Reeves TV drama Felicity was released in 1998 to widespread critical acclaim. What you might not know, though, is that show stars Scott Speedman and Keri Russell converted their on-screen relationship into a real-life one. They dated each other from 2000 to 2001.
16. Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna (Veronica Mars)
Of all the TV couples on this list, undoubtedly the longest-lasting partnership is that of Harry Hamlin and Lisa Rinna. They’ve been married since 1997, so this year marks their 20th year together. In Veronica Mars, the two love birds played the married couple Aaron and Lynn Echolls.
15. Ginnifer Goodwin and Josh Dallas (Once Upon a Time)
Ginnifer Goodwin and Josh Dallas were loved up in the ABC show Once Upon a Time – and that affection manifested itself in reality. They played Snow White and Prince Charming on the series. And they finally saw their own fairy tale come true when they married in 2014. They also have two sons together.
14. Alexis Bledel and Vincent Kartheiser (Mad Men)
Alexis Bledel and Vincent Kartheiser have a very inconspicuous relationship in real life, quite different from their depictions in Mad Men. The two deceptive characters hook up on the show, going behind their partners’ backs in the process. In reality though, they are much more innocent. They secretly married in 2014 and had their first child in 2015.
13. Jennifer Morrison and Jesse Spencer (House)
The on-screen relationship between Cameron and Chase in House was pretty perfect. Sadly, the real-life equivalent wasn’t. Replicating their characters’ plot lines, Jennifer Morrison and Jesse Spencer got together off-screen. Unfortunately, it didn’t go as planned and their wedding was called off. However, their characters on the show stayed together until the end, meaning Morrison and Spencer had to go through with the marriage on screen. Ouch.
12. Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer (True Blood)
Playing two lovers on the raunchy hit TV show True Blood, Anna Paquin and Stephen Moyer delivered stunning performances that drew audiences into the show’s gothic themes. However, things were also passionate between the two in real life from the first pilot to their marriage in 2010. They are now proud parents of twins.
11. Blake Lively and Penn Badgley (Gossip Girl)
Sebastian Stan and Leighton Meester weren’t the only Gossip Girl couple to make a splash off-screen. As Serena and Dan, Blake Lively and Penn Badgley also got together in the real world. However, life imitated art again when the couple split up.
10. Rachel Bilson and Adam Brody (The OC)
The OC was an incredibly popular show in the mid-00s, with fans enthralled by the romantic happenings of Summer and Seth. Playing the two roles were Rachel Bilson and Adam Brody, who were actually dating for three years outside of the show. Their love only lasted for half a season on-screen, so at least it lasted longer in the real world.
9. Amy Poehler and Will Arnett (Arrested Development)
Surely the funniest couple on this list, Amy Poehler and Will Arnett were the perfect choices for Arrested Development’s wacky twosome Gob and his unnamed wife. They were already married before they got the parts, but announced their split in 2012. Clearly a heart-wrenching separation, Poehler wrote in her book Yes, Please, “You aren’t allowed to feel special, but no one knows the specific ways you are in pain.”
8. Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco (The Big Bang Theory)
Fans of The Big Bang Theory will be well aware of Penny and Leonard’s will-they/won’t-they history, but they probably don’t know about Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco’s real-life two-year fling. It was only recently revealed by Galecki, who said he didn’t mention anything before in fear of it ruining people’s perceptions of the two characters.
7. Sophia Bush and Austin Nichols (One Tree Hill)
One Tree Hill had its fair share of emotional drama – and Sophia Bush and Austin Nichols were often at the heart of it. The on-screen pair also had a successful relationship off-screen before breaking up in 2012. It lasted six years – an eternity in Hollywood terms.
6. Kit Harington and Rose Leslie (Game of Thrones)
There is a weird kind of chemistry between Jon Snow and Ygritte in Game of Thrones, and that could be down to the pair’s real-life affection for each other. Kit Harington and Rose Leslie had been dating since 2012 – and then later married in 2018.
5. Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak (The Office)
Fans of The Office will be well aware of Mindy Kaling and B.J. Novak’s on/off relationship throughout the series, but it turns out that it’s fairly reminiscent of the two’s real-life romance as well. Yes, their close friendship developed into something more, but they both insist it’s behind them now. Kaling told Howard Stern in 2014, “It was years and years ago that that break-up happened. I was so sad.”
4. Katie Holmes and Joshua Jackson (Dawson’s Creek)
Dawson’s Creek was a beloved 1990s television show – and so was the blossoming relationship between Joey and Pacey. However, you might not know that their real-life counterparts briefly dated during the making of the show. While their off-screen romance might not have been as long-lasting as their on-screen one, they still think fondly on their time together. Katie Holmes even told Rolling Stone in 1998 that Joshua Jackson was her first love!
3. Lea Michele and Cory Monteith (Glee)
Lea Michele and Cory Monteith were utterly believable love interests in the musical show Glee, so it was little surprise when the pair actually got together in 2012. However, their time together was tragically cut short when Monteith passed away in 2013 as a result of an accidental drug overdose.
2. Jennifer Garner and Scott Foley (Felicity)
Felicity co-stars Scott Speedman and Keri Russell weren’t the only ones getting together outside of the show. Indeed, Jennifer Garner and Scott Foley also replicated their on-screen portrayals, tying the knot in 2000 before calling it a day in 2003.
1. Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis (That ’70s Show)
There was very apparent chemistry between Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis during their stint on the popular sitcom That ’70s Show. As Kelso and Jackie, the two’s believable relationship played a big role in the show’s success. So it’s little surprise that in 2012, the two would fall for each other in real life, eventually leading to their marriage in 2015. Kutcher was even Kunis’ first ever kiss!