Helena Bonham Carter split with Tim Burton in 2014 after 13 years together. The couple made six films during the course of their relationship, and had two children together, but they never officially married. There were often rumours the pair didn’t even live together during their relationship, but the Harry Potter and The Crown actress later cleared that up as being untrue.
And despite never making their partnership official and getting married, Carter referred to her break-up from filmmaker Burton as a “divorce”.
The couple were never public about why they chose not to marry, but years after the split Carter spoke more candidly about the split and the heartbreak it caused.
“With divorce, you go through massive grief—it is a death of a relationship, so it’s utterly bewildering. Your identity, everything, changes,” she told Harper’s Bazaar.
“I could write a thesis on what’s happened,” The Crown actress has also told RED in another interview. “[I]t is all-absorbing when a relationship breaks down, but I think we’re coming through it.
“I think we’ll have something very precious still. Our relationship was always somewhat special, and I think it’ll always remain special.”
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“We did find each other,” Carter went on. “And really, the mark of a successful relationship shouldn’t be whether you’re there forever after.
“Sometimes you’re not meant to be forever together. Sometimes you have to come to terms with the fact that that was it.
“But that was a gift, a massive gift. We gave each other children and a lot more else.”
The star went on to say she and Burton might have been “better” and still able to “give” to each other apart and not living together, thus clearing up the rumour they never had.
“Which we did by the way,” she clarified. “Because everyone seemed to think we didn’t, but that was a load of myth.”
Yet another unusual aspect of the couple’s relationship was that they actually lived in adjoining houses rather than one open space.
“My house looks like something out of Beatrix Potter,” the actress has said in the past, “but if you go over to his house, you’re in a totally different place.
“He’s got slime balls and dead Oompa-Loompas lying around, and skeletons and weird alien lights.”
The actress will be playing the role alongside Olivia Colman as her on-screen sister Queen Elizabeth II.
The Crown airs on Netflix later this month.