We don’t know what’s happening as 2023 progresses closer to its end, but another star couple is calling it quits, to the shock of many.
British actress and beauty Jodie Turner-Smith is pulling the plug on her relationship with actor and former Dawson’s Creek heartthrob Joshua Jackson. The couple wed in December 2019 and would have celebrated four years of marriage this December. According to documents obtained by TMZ, she filed the paperwork, citing “irreconcilable differences” as the reason the two are going their separate ways. She is seeking joint custody of their 3-year-old daughter, Juno, and the site says while there was no prenuptial agreement in place, she wants there to be no spousal support allowed for either party.
The couple’s reported date of separation is September 13, one day after the last time they were spotted out together at an event.
These two seemed so locked in that this split is truly a shock, but alas, you never know what’s going on behind closed doors. Take a look back at their love story and journey to this point by checking out our relationship timeline below.
The two are spotted out for the first time in November. They were photographed holding hands in LA, flashing wide smiles. The story of where they met has been all over the place, from his birthday party to Usher’s birthday bash to a charity event. Wherever they were, they certainly hit it off based on the stories they shared over the years about their relationship’s beginning. “First of all, I saw him before he saw me, and when I saw him, I was like, ‘I want that,’” she said in 2021. Later that year he shared, “It was sealed with a kiss that night and then we didn’t leave each other’s sides for, well, three years now.”
By the next summer, the two were very serious about each other. They were so locked in, they decided to get a marriage license, picking up the papers in Beverly Hills. Around the time that news came out, they made their relationship Instagram official, with Turner-Smith sharing a photo of the two staring into each other’s eyes with the caption, “Two people who only fancy each other a little bit.”
They made their debut on the red carpet as a couple in November of that same year at the premiere of her film Queen & Slim in Los Angeles. She rocked what looked like an engagement ring while he wore a band on his ring finger.
By the next month, not only had it been revealed that they were married, but it was also announced that the couple were expecting their first child together. Two months later she shared that she realized she was ready to have a child with Jackson because he was the life partner for her. “I don’t think you’re ever ‘ready’… but there were definitely certain boxes I wanted to tick before committing to it,” she shared via Twitter. “The most important for me: being w/ sum1 I knew would be a great life partner. Life has many variables, but once I knew I’d met the right person, I felt unafraid.”
In April of the next year, a month after revealing that she was having a girl, the pair welcomed their first child, daughter Juno. Their reps shared the good news, commenting that “Both mother and baby are happy and healthy.” She gave birth at home due to it being the early days of the pandemic, and for another big reason. “I wanted her to be in a place where she felt like she was being heard at every step along the way, rather than having to go through that filter of being a Black woman interfacing with the American medical system,” he shared in 2021.
More details about the couple’s relationship and how they found themselves as husband and wife came out in 2021 as the two became more comfortable opening up about it all. The most interesting tidbit was that it was Turner-Smith who popped the question. “She asked me, yeah, on New Year’s Eve,” he said on The Tonight Show that year. “We were in Nicaragua. It was very beautiful, incredibly romantic. We were walking down the beach, and she asked me to marry her.” A month later, he clarified, after a lot of commentary online, that he proposed to her, too. “She has a biological father and a stepdad, who’s the man who raised her. [I said], ‘You have to give me the opportunity to ask both of those men for your hand in marriage.’ And then, ‘I would like the opportunity to re-propose those to you and do it the old-fashioned way down on bended knee,’” he said. “So, that’s actually how the story ended up.”
The couple partnered together with some major brands, including a major holiday campaign with J. Crew and Motorola for the Razr phone. For the latter campaign, ESSENCE spoke to the couple, who talked about how they encourage one another. “Well, I can say how he encourages me when I have negativity and doubt, which is that he always tells me to be nice to myself. You know, he’s always there reminding me that what I need to do is be kind to myself and I just love that,” she said in May 2022. “It’s always this beautiful reminder that really grounds me and lets me see what is important and what is real. Also cuddles. Yeah. Lots of cuddles.”
Initial grumblings about the status of the couple’s relationship arose after the two unfollowed each other for a short time on Instagram. But they seemed to sidestep the rumors, sharing their gorgeous J. Crew holiday ad photos and moving forward.
He shared that while they were quite the captivating couple, at home, they’re like the rest of us. “The most surprising thing is that it’s a lot more homey than it looks like from the outside,” he said. “It’s very, very baby-oriented and family-oriented inside the house.” He added of family life, “It’s pretty spectacular, honestly. Mama does love a dress up and I don’t mind getting dressed up and standing next to her. But this having a kid thing together is pretty magical.”
The couple’s seemingly solid relationship came to a shocking halt after it came to light that Turner-Smith filed for divorce. Neither party has spoken about the split yet, but we wish the best for both of them and especially for their daughter.