Don’t Mind the Age Difference

So I was watching The Proposal the other night on FX (it was airing for the umpteenth time), and I couldn’t stop thinking about the 12 year age difference between Sandra Bullock and Ryan Reynolds. Now there’s been a lot of paparazzi photos of the two of them and their “secret Texas wedding” and other crap filling the the hole of Hollywood tabloids. But my thoughts went more to the age difference we see between pairings in movies, not tabloids or “real life” or in Hollywood.

Here are some that I thought of:

Pairing: Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz

Movie(s): Vanilla Sky and Knight and Day

Age Difference: 10 years

While Mr. Cruise is 16 years senior to his wife Katie Holmes, he is a surprising 10 years older than Ms. Diaz. I actually saw Knight and Day before Vanilla Sky, and I assumed there was maybe a 5 year difference between the two. After all, both have been acting for a long time. What I didn’t realize is that they’re actually 10 years a part. Even funnier, Penelope Cruz, a past girlfriend of Cruise’s and also a Vanilla Sky star who played opposite him in that movie, is 12 years his junior.

 

Pairing: Bradley Cooper and Julia Roberts

Movie: Valentine’s Day

Age Difference: 8 years

Playing two characters who sit next to each other on a plane, Cooper looks far younger than Roberts, even in Valentine’s Day. She being 8 years his senior, perhaps people were glad to find out that his character was gay, particularly for Eric Dane (understanding, ha). Cooper isn’t a stranger playing against older woman, however–he also plays against Sandra Bullock in All About Steve (age difference: 11 years).

 

Pairing: Colin Firth and Lúcia Moniz

Movie: Love Actually

Age Difference: 16 years

Although Moniz is relatively unknown in the U.S., she plays a small role in the film, with much of her dialogue in it being Portuguese. This surprising and odd pairing made it all the weirder to see the two end up together because the age difference wasn’t only significant, it was also very visible, even in spite of the roles they played.

 

Pairing: Gerard Butler and Katherine Heigl

Movie: The Ugly Truth

Age Difference: 9 years

In the movie The Bounty Hunter, Butler plays opposite Jenn Anniston, who is the same age as he is. In The Ugly Truth, he and Heigl end up together, despite their 9 year age difference. The almost decade isn’t as apparent as some couples since Heigl is taller, making her appear older. On Grey’s Anatomy, she’s nearly a decade younger than all of her costars.

 

Pairing: Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie

Movie: The Tourist

Age Difference: 12 years

This was one of the most surprising age differences for me. Her romantic link (not marriage) to Brad Pitt (who’s soon to be 48 this month) as well as her overall, general look, make her appear older. I was surprised to learn she is still well in her 30s. Both she and Cameron Diaz appear older than what they are, perhaps partly because they have been acting for a long time.

 

Pairing: Shia Labeouf and Michelle Monaghan

Movie: Eagle Eye

Age Difference: 10 years

Although there might have been only a slight hint of a romantic possibility at the very end of the movie, both Labeouf and Monaghan starred in this unsuccessful (while still enjoyable) thriller. Monaghan has one of the most interesting histories of movie pairing from Shia Labeouf in Eagle Eye to Tom Cruise in Mission Impossible 3 to Patrick Dempsey in Made of Honor.

 

Pairing: Viggo Mortenson and Liv Tyler

Movie: Lord of the Rings trilogy

Age Difference: 19 years

Perhaps it works well that in the story: Mortenson’s character Aragorn is really an 87 year old ranger who is the last left of a dying breed of people who live exceptionally long, yet do not look as old as they are. This huge age difference actually works very well with Tyler, who is also a model, playing a pure and delicate looking elf in the films.

 

Pairing: Steve Carell and Anne Hathaway

Movie: Get Smart

Age Difference: 20 years

Similarly to LOTR, Hathaway plays a character that is actually older than she appears, but had plastic surgery that now makes her appear younger than what she actually is. One of the strangest pairings, both in personality and age difference, Hathaway and Carell sorta worked well together in this film.

Have you ever noticed any strange pairings and just wondered what the heck the director was thinking? Were you ever stunned after seeing a movie only to realize the leads were more than a decade a part?

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9 thoughts on “Don’t Mind the Age Difference

  1. The thirteen year age gap between Will Ferrell and Zooey Deschanel in Elf just seems too wierd to me. Even if Ferrell is an innocent man-child elf, they look like there is about 20 yrs between them!

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  2. Nice one! Yeah, forgot about that one. She looks younger than she is, and he looks older than he is. Would definitely agree with you there. She’s played against a few other older guys too, like Jim Carrey (18 years) in “Yes Man” and Mark Wahlberg (9 years) in “The Happening.”

    Just thought of another weird pairing, again with Steve Carell–him and Emily Blunt in “Dan in Real Life” (21 years!).

    And let’s not forget about a really weird upcoming one in “New Years Eve”: Jon Bon Jovi and Katherine Heigl (16 years).

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  3. Yeah, I completely agree. Some of these people put together are from completely different generations. Steve Carell could be Anne Hathaway’s or Emily Blunt’s dad, because he’s THAT much older than them. Yet actors like Carell get paired with young actresses and actresses like Heigl always get placed with much older actors. It’s the pairings with the young actors and older actresses that always make me wonder the most though (Sandra Bullock with Ryan Reynolds in “The Proposal” and with Bradley Cooper in “All About Steve”).

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  4. YEEEES! It always bugs me to see these massive age difference that no one seems to pay attention to. Eric Bana and Rachel McAdams in The Time Traveler’s Wife (10 years) is one a few years ago and soon they want to pair Jennifer Lawrence with Bradley Cooper in The Silver Linings Playbook (15 years).

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  5. I’m glad it bothers other people too! I tend to complain often about it, but people always give me a similar response such as “Well, what do you expect . . . it’s Hollywood.” Forgot about that one–nice! Wow, Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper? Seems like a really ODD pairing, much less too big of an age difference.

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