Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor split after 17 years of marriage

'Our priority will continue to be raising our children as devoted parents and the closest of friends'

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor have confirmed that they're separating after 17 years of marriage.

The couple, who have starred together in movies including Dodgeball, Tropic Thunder and Zoolander, announced their split in a joint statement to Entertainment Tonight, which read: 'With tremendous love and respect for each other, and the 18 years we spent together as a couple, we have made the decision to separate.'

'Our priority will continue to be raising our children as devoted parents and the closest of friends. We kindly ask that the media respect our privacy at this time.'

Ben and Christine have two children together: daughter Ella, who was born in April 2002, and son Quinlin, whom they welcomed in July 2005.

The pair met while filming a pilot called Heat Vision and Jack for Fox television network, although the show never aired.

They became engaged in November 1999, and tied the knot the following year in a romantic oceanfront ceremony in Kauai, Hawaii.

In December 2013, Ben said to Parade magazine of their early relationship: '[Our] relationship was a gradual thing that happened over a quick period of time, maybe seven or eight months.'

'We just started hanging out with each other and it developed into, "Wow, this feels great. I really like this person. I think I love this person. I really do - I love this person." It hit me out of the blue.'

He added that parenthood had been a new learning curve for him, telling the title: 'When your wife is pregnant for nine months, you get used to the idea of pregnancy.'

'Obviously, you know where it's leading, but it almost becomes this abstract idea; and then suddenly the next time you go back to the house, you have another person living with you. Who you've just met. Your child.'

'I was thinking moment to moment: Just get her from the baby carrier to the crib. It's a short distance but a huge change.'


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