The true Hollywood story of Catherine Zeta Jones & Michael Douglas

Catherine Zeta Jones and Michael Douglas are synonymous with one another. They are known for many things, perhaps it is their stellar acting careers, their family background, their past before they met, or the fact that they is 25 years between them. Their age gap is significant but it doesn’t seem to bother them in the least, if anything, it seems to make their relationship stronger. Catherine shot to fame with her role in The Mask of Zorro, while Michael was recognized for his role in One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, a role which earned him an Academy Award for his production work.

The lives of the Douglas’s is one that is enviable. They have two children together and travel the world whenever possible. However, with the good also comes the bad. Both Catherine and Michael have felt the negative aspects of fame with the constant hound of the paparazzi, as well as battled their own health issued in the limelight. Michael has battled stage IV throat cancer, while Catherine has, and will continue to, battle bipolar II disorder. Both of them had a lot to take on at the time of their medical issues, so much so that the stress of it all tore their relationship up.

Catherine and Michael made it through their separation as better people and a stronger couple. They are together today because of what they went through, which they both say made them more appreciative of who and what they have in their lives. It takes something horribly hard to happen to you in order to regain some perspective. We have a feeling that through this walk back at the life of these two love birds, we are going to love their professional work even more.

Age gap

There is a 25-year age gap between Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta Jones. While it is not a big deal these days, it was when the two got together – it was all anyone could talk about. Michael had been married once before and had one son, Cameron Douglas, with his first wife, Diandra Luker. Catherine had never been married and had no children. Despite their differences, the two hit it off right off the bat.



Catherine and Michael have been married since 2000. The 17-year marriage was not without its ups and downs but the two are still together today and are talking about how they make their marriage work in the spotlight. The key, for them, is to keep things real and keep sight of what is important. The familial priorities came into sharper focus when both Catherine and Michael were dealing with their own health issues.


Separation and second try

During their marriage, there was a when the two thought their time together was over. In 2013, Michael and Catherine announced that they were separating after 13 years of marriage. They decided to live apart but not make any legal decisions at that time. It was at that time that the two were both battling their own demons – Catherine with her own mental health issues and Michael with a cancer diagnosis.



Catherine and Michael have two children together – Dylan Michael, born August 2000, and Carys Zeta, born April 2003. As a family, they do everything together and make sure that the lives of their children come first and are protected from the media spotlight no matter what. Until 2009, and in order to keep some distance from Hollywood, the family lived in Bermuda. In 2016, the family moved to Upstate New York.


First comes love, then comes marriage

Michael and Catherine met at the Deauville Film Festival in France back in August of 1998. They were introduced by mutual friend Danny DeVito. A year and a half later, the two were engaged. Catherine and Michael married at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on November 18th, 2000. The ceremony cost a mere $2 million and was a dubbed the ‘wedding of the year’.


A statement of love

Now, Michael is 72 years old and Catherine 47, the couple is closer than ever. Of the separation a few years ago, Michael said, “If one is going out the door, no matter how hard you try, (a split) is going to happen. But I think if you’re fortunate enough to take a look and you want to make it work, then I think you can succeed… And it makes you tighter than before.”


Michael’s life before Catherine

Prior to 1998, when Michael met Catherine, he was married to Diandra Luker (who was also much younger than him) and had a very strong film career going. He had a whole life when he met Catherine, and had already been in hit films like Hail, Hero!, Wall Street, The American President, The Game, and A Perfect Murder. He even managed to get into a serious skiing accident that had him home for three years.


First divorce settlement

Michael’s first and only divorce was to Diandra Luker. Their divorce made waves in Hollywood but not because people were surprised they were divorcing, but due to the fact that Luker was getting one of the biggest divorce settlements Hollywood had ever seen – $45 million to be exact. Diandra walked away from that marriage with enough money to rest for the rest of her life.


Substance abuse

In 1992, way before Michael even knew of Catherine’s existence, he had already taken up an issue with the bottle. It was the same year that his hit film Basic Instinct came to theaters. Michael spent one month at a rehabilitation facility for alcoholism and substance abuse at Sierra Tucson Center. He allowed the fast world of Hollywood to suck him under, only to finally get a handle on things that year.

MICHAEL DOUGLAS as Uncle Wayne in New Line Cinema’s romantic comedy “Ghosts of Girlfriends Past,” a Warner Bros. Pictures release, starring Matthew McConaughey and Jennifer Garner. PHOTOGRAPHS TO BE USED SOLELY FOR ADVERTISING, PROMOTION, PUBLICITY OR REVIEWS OF THIS SPECIFIC MOTION PICTURE AND TO REMAIN THE PROPERTY OF THE STUDIO. NOT FOR SALE OR REDISTRIBUTION.

Catherine’s life before Michael

The movie that got Catherine on the Hollywood radar happened the same year as she met Michael. Since she was so much younger than him, he had managed to accomplish a whole lot more than her before they met. In 1998, Catherine played the role of Elena Montero in The Mask of Zorro. This was the film that put her on the map. She followed up that film with Entrapment and The Haunting in 1999.


Globe trotters

Michael and Catherine are not only huge fans of their own passionate careers, but love to travel the world together as a family when their work schedules permit. They go to film festivals all over the world, travel to countries like England, China, the Caribbean, and globetrotting all over the place. To them, the most important thing is to do things together.


Michael’s cancer battle

Back in 2010, Michael announced to the world that he was had been diagnosed with throat cancer. His cancer was diagnosed at the latest stage, stage IV. He underwent radiation and chemotherapy treatments. Michael went to several American doctors who failed to diagnose him properly, only in Canada did they finally find the culprit of his ailment. The reason for his cancer, as Michael said, was a combination of smoking, substance abuse and stress.


His outlook on life and family

Michael’s cancer battle gave him a whole new outlook on life, as well it should have. He said, “Once I started coming out the other end of stage four, it gave me a whole new appreciation (of life).” He continued, “Family gives me more purpose than any other thing in my life.” Catherine, Dylan, Carys and eldest son, Cameron were everything for Michael when he was looking towards recovery.


Cameron Douglas

Speaking of Michael’s eldest son… Cameron Douglas is in his late 30s and is an actor just like his father. Cameron has been in films like Mr. Nice Guy, It Runs in the Family, National Lampoon’s Adam & Eve as well as Loaded. He has starred in films alongside his father and grandfather, Kirk Douglas. Sadly, Cameron has also been involved in legal and criminal issues…


Cameron’s woes

In addition to acting, Cameron has also been arrested for illegal substance possession and selling. Cameron spent five years in jail for possession of illegal substances. It was at that time that his father, Michael, said that it was his fault and that this happened because he was “being a bad father.” Michael said that Cameron “was going to be dead or somebody was gonna kill him. I think he has a chance to start a new life, and he knows that.”


Cameron – today

These days, Cameron is doing a whole lot better, with a new purpose in his life – his girlfriend and their unborn child. Now that Cameron has a new life to expect, he is trying his best to keep it together. He has sadly relapsed in recent months but is said to be given a second chance, something his father and grandfather hope he takes seriously.


Catherine’s mental health diagnosis

In 2011, Catherine announced that she was diagnosed with bipolar II disorder. The trigger for the onset of the disorder was that of her husband’s cancer diagnosis, stress and depression. Catherine decided to go public with her mental health issues due to the fact that she wanted to put it in the forefront of the public’s sight. She checked herself into a mental hospital twice, in 2011 and in 2013, for treatment.


Catherine in her own words

On her bipolar disorder, Catherine said, “The fact that there was a name for my emotions and that a professional could talk me through my symptoms was very liberating. There are amazing highs and very low lows. My goal is to be consistently in the middle. I’m in a very good place right now.” Initially, the couple wanted to keep her mental health issues private, but it became too much for her to bear.



Catherine has used her fame to put a spotlight on the issue of bipolar disorder. She said, “I’m not the kind of person who likes to shout out my personal issues from the rooftops but with my bipolar becoming public, I hope fellow sufferers will know it is completely controllable. I hope I can help remove any stigma attached to it, and that those who don’t have it under control will seek help with all that is available to treat it.”


A better couple for it all

Between Michael’s cancer and Catherine’s mental health, the two have been through the wringer. What was initially a lot of stress on their relationship and led to a short break, eventually led to a reunion and a relationship that is much closer and stronger than ever. In an interview with Daily Mail, Michael said, “It can’t be a one-way street,’ he said. ‘But I’m crazy about her. And yeah, I think every couple has their difficult times. ‘The only problem is, as you well know, we’re all in the public eye, and it tends to get a little more exposed than most.’ He added: ‘We’re back stronger than ever.”


Stronger marriage

One of the first things that Michael said to Catherine was, “I want to father your children.” As outlandish as that is, he knew then and there that he loved her and wanted to be with her. Today, the couple, who is better than ever and have been there for one another through thick and thing, do not take each other for granted, or their lives for that matter. Every day is a gift to them.


His net worth

Michael Douglas is worth an astounding $300 million! His fortune comes from his many years in the entertainment industry and the incredible amount of success he has had. Michael has been in a long list of successful films, as well as endorsement deals, investments and property ownership. He has donated much of his fortune over the years, with this impressive amount remaining thereafter.


Her net worth

Catherine’s net worth currently stands at $45 million. Catherine has been in blockbuster films which have earned her a pretty penny, as well as a the face of brands and products galore. She has invested her money wisely over the years. This net worth does not include her husband’s money, as the two have an agreement between them. Catherine is also in no need of anyone else’s money, so it seems.


Dylan and Carys Douglas

Dylan and Carys Douglas are Michael and Catherine’s children, and Cameron Douglas’s younger siblings. Dylan is 17 years old and Carys is 14. The teens are very much their parent’s children and enjoy spending time with their parents all over the world. The family is a very tight knit one and does everything together. The 72-year-old Michael very much enjoys his time with his younger children and is a very hands-on parent.



Catherine and Michael have been avid philanthropists for years. In 2013 alone, they donated $3 million to the Elton John AIDS Foundation. Some of the other foundations that they have donated to are UNICEF, Melanoma Research Alliance, Cancer Research Institute, and Worldwide Orphans Foundation. Since the issue of cancer has it close to home, they donate a lot of their money towards research.


Kirk Douglas

Kirk Douglas is Michael’s father and the head of the Kirk family dynasty. The Hollywood family started with Kirk, who is still alive and kicking at 100 years old! Kirk and his wife Anne Douglas (who is also 98 and still alive) are still happily married after over 60 years. Kirk has been nominated for three Academy Awards throughout his career and has won an Oscar for Lifetime Achievement. He has also received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.


Catherine’s social media

Catherine has almost one million Instagram followers! Her profile line reads, “Catherine Zeta-Jones Family. Travel. Decor. Fashion. My life through photos, curated by yours truly!” She loves showing her followers into her world of fine living and family. As famous as she is, she does indeed know the important things in life. We also can’t help but think of how well-kept she is!


Catherine’s upbringing

Catherine was born in Swansea, Wales. It was said that Catherine was super hyperactive as a child, which is why her mother enrolled her in dance classes. While initially a working-class family, they won £100,000 in a bingo tournament, enabling Catherine to continue her dance and ballet lessons. She began appearing in stage performances in school, which not only got her local attention but landed her on a talent show.


Persistent Catherine

She moved to London before she finished her schooling and worked hard to find acting jobs. Of her years in London as a teen, she said, “I would queue up for auditions and then change my costume or put on a different leotard and audition again. It might take me two tries, but I always got the job. I figured out what they wanted.” Persistence paid off for her.


Michael’s introduction to acting

Michael’s introduction to acting came very differently than Catherine’s, after all, his father is Kirk Douglas. Before his big break, Michael got his undergraduate degree in drama from the University of California, Santa Barbara. He also studied acting at The American Place Theatre with Wynn Handman. He got his start in television and only then made the transition into film.