Monica Bellucci has announced that her marriage to star actor Vincent Cassel was over.
The actress’ announcement follows weeks of speculation about the couple’s increasingly tempestuous relationship.
In April, Monica Bellucci, who shot to fame in films like The Matrix Reloaded and The Passion of the Christ, told Grazia magazine: “Marriage, we never know how long it will last…Today, it works, but in a year, I don’t know.”
On the same month, Vincent Cassel told Closer magazine: “My wife and me are very different animals. This is probably the key to our relationship after 18 years together…We don’t seek other people’s approval.”
Monica Bellucci, 48, met Vincent Cassel, 46, in 1996 on the set of Gilles Mimouni’s film L’Appartement.
They were together for three years before marrying in a quiet ceremony in Monaco, on the French Riviera.
Vincent Cassell is hugely popular in his home country of France, where he first leapt into the public imagination in La Haine (Hate), a film about delinquents on a troubled Paris housing estate.
Both actors said they had split by “mutual agreement” following 14 year of marriage which produced two daughters, 7-year-old Deva, and 3-year-old Leonie.
Vincent Cassel and Monica Bellucci, who was born in Italy, had been leading independent lives for a number years, keeping their own respective apartments in Paris and Rome.
Vincent Cassel also spent a great deal of time alone in Brazil.
The split marks the second marriage failure for Monica Bellucci, who was with Italian photographer Claudio Basso for four years, before divorcing him in 1994.
Monica Bellucci is currently away working in Serbia, while Vincent Cassel is thought to be in France.
Vincent Cassel’s spokesman told AFP: “Vincent Cassel confirms that he has agreed to separate from his wife Monica Bellucci.”