Lily Allen has reason to Smile these days. Too bad it may come at the (literal) expense of her latest beau.
The English singer-songwriter is at the center of the latest bitter multimillion-dollar celebrity divorce in the U.K. (coming so soon after those of Paul McCartney and Madonna/Guy Ritchie). This one is between a major power couple of the art world: multimedia artist and filmmaker Sam Taylor-Wood and dealer Jay Jopling.
When Jopling and Taylor-Wood announced their divorce in September, they claimed that there were no other parties involved. They also told the media that the divorce was going to be completely amicable for the sake of their two daughters and that they even planned to continue living together in their London home until they worked out their settlement.
However, celebrity blogger Perez Hilton has reported that the situation has changed indeed. The revelation of Jopling’s current affair with Allen, 23, has upset Taylor-Wood so much that she has moved out of the marital home and now may fight for half of her husband’s fortune.
“Sam has said that the situation at the moment is very, very hard,” an anonymous friend of the artist told Hilton, according to her January 18 column. “Sam could not believe it when Jay started dating Lily Allen… as they had agreed neither of them would start dating until the dust had settled.” The source added: “Sam also felt very publicly humiliated.”
British tabloid The Sun first revealed the affair in a January 3 story, which included photos of Jopling and Allen (who have a 22-year age difference between them) cozying up to each other while on vacation in St. Barts, an island in the Caribbean. The paper quoted another source who said: “Jay moved in the same circles as Lily’s father, so they have known each other for a number of years. They went on a series of dates towards the end of last year and really hit it off.”
According to Hilton, even veteran pop icon Sir Elton John (a long-time friend of Taylor-Wood) is angry about the Jopling-Allen hookup. “He’s appalled that Jay has put Sam through this,” Hilton quoted yet another insider as saying, “and has vowed never to buy another piece of art from [Jopling’s] gallery again.”
Jopling and Taylor-Wood married in 1997. Allen has previously been romantically linked to Ed Simon of the Chemical Brothers.
Sam Taylor-Wood, 41, is best known for a 2002 video portrait of soccer superstar David Beckham sleeping, and for collaborations with dance-music duo Pet Shop Boys. She has made films and video portraits of other celebrities, including Sir Elton John and Robert Downey Jr. She was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1997.
Lily Allen is best known for her hit singles “Smile”, “LDN”, and “Oh My God” and for her 2006 album Alright, Still. Her second album, It’s Not Me, It’s You, comes out in the U.K. and North America in February.
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