Ever since actress Jamie Lee Curtis made her film debut in the 1978 horror movie “Halloween,” she’s been a well-known leading lady in Hollywood. She’s also Hollywood royalty, with her parents, Janet Leigh and Tony Curtis, major stars from the Golden Age of Hollywood era. Curtis’s career has seen her win a Golden Globe Award and a BAFTA, while she’s also been immortalized on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
But outside of her professional career, she’s also been lucky in her private life too. The actress is married to director Christopher Guest, and together, they have two adopted children, Annie and Ruby, who previously came out as transgender. Curtis revealed this in the August/September 2021 issue of AARP Magazine, and she said that she’d first asked Ruby for permission.
The magazine further reported that Ruby planned to get married to her fiance in 2022, and Curtis planned to officiate the wedding — both of which successfully happened. Both of Curtis’s children with Guest have eschewed Hollywood — Ruby works as a game designer, whereas Annie is a dance instructor.
Curtis and Guest’s marriage is one for the ages — they’ve been married for over 35 years! They have both led very interesting lives. They’ve proven they’re in it for the long haul, but in various interviews, Curtis has opened up and admitted it isn’t always easy. In fact, she summed up how they make their marriage work in two words — “don’t leave.” It might sound unromantic, but her honesty about how to keep a marriage going is simple and has clearly worked.
Jamie Lee Curtis, Christopher Guest (1985), (Ron Galella, Ltd./Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images)
The couple’s romance started over three decades ago when a then-25-year-old Curtis was flipping through Rolling Stone magazine and saw a photo of Guest, which she later wrote about in O Magazine. He was in a feature about his movie “This Is Spinal Tap,” and Curtis pointed to his photo and told her friend that she would marry that man.
Well, unfortunately, it wasn’t so easy. The actress made the first move and called Guest’s agent and left her details but heard nothing back. She told Hello! in 2021:
“I think it’s crucial to put yourself in the path of love. Look, I reached out to his agent. I left my number. He didn’t call me by the way.”
But soon after, they ran into each other at a restaurant in LA, and things picked up from there. Curtis wrote in O Magazine:
“As I sat down at Hugo’s, I glanced up and found myself staring straight at Chris, three tables away. He waved to me as if to say, ‘I’m the guy you called.’ I waved back: ‘I’m the woman who called you.’ A few minutes later, he got up to leave. Standing 20 feet away, he shrugged his shoulders and put up his hand as if to say, ‘I’ll see ya.’ As he left, I looked down at my plate.”
Thankfully, Guest called her that time, and they went on their first date a few days later. Within the next month, they fell in love, and he proposed not long after. The couple was married on Dec. 18, 1984, just over four months after their first date. Clearly, they just knew they were right for each other. Fast forward almost 40 years later, and the Hollywood couple has maintained a relationship among the ups and downs of stardom.
Speaking of love and transformations, Curtis opened up in the August/September 2021 issue of AARP in a profile about her romance with Guest, with whom she shares children Ruby and Annie. Five months after she saw Guest’s photo in the magazine, the couple was married, as she elaborated in a 2015 interview.
“I married Chris five months after seeing his picture in Rolling Stone. I said out loud to my friend, the late, great Debra Hill, ‘Oh, I’m going to marry that guy,’” Curtis explained in a conversation with Sigourney Weaver for Interview Magazine:
“It was a picture of Chris with Michael McKean and Harry Shearer from ‘Spinal Tap’, but just as regular guys. Debra said, ‘Oh, I know him, and he’s with your agency. I tried to get him in a movie.’ So I called the agent, left my number, but Chris never called me. And then I ran into him at a restaurant.”
In her interview with AARP, she explained that her love hasn’t faltered as she enters her twilight years. She even goes as far as to describe herself as “a deep, serious romantic.”
And given that Curtis wrote Guest a song for their 35th wedding anniversary with the adorable lyrics, “I feel safe when I drive up and see that you are home,” it seems like these two really are in love. It shows that Curtis and Guest share a rare and beautiful love that is not often seen in Hollywood.
Curtis’s fantastic advice on a long-lasting marriage was imparted during a Today interview in 2015 when she said:
“Don’t get divorced. It’s a fascinating thing. I could write a book on marriage called ‘Don’t Leave.’”
Christopher Guest, Jamie Lee Curtis (2007), (Kevin Winter/Getty Images)
According to The Guardian, Guest had a fascinating childhood as he was born to an aristocratic English father, who was an editorial director at the United Nations. Guest’s mom was an executive at CBS, so Guest divided his time between the US and the UK as a child. He learned about many different cultures because of this. On top of that, Guest also holds a very interesting title. He told The Guardian:
“I’m a baron. I’m Lord Haden-Guest. And yes, that’s a novelty. Born into it by accident, obviously. And then your dad dies and you’re the next one.”
However, Guest explained that being in the House of Lords was not like what most people would think. “Most of these people had no money,” he said. “They didn’t have the country houses. They were regular people who had regular jobs. They were well informed, and lending their expertise.”
Guest and Curtis have both led fascinating lives separately, so it’s not hard to see why they work so well together, despite being “opposites.” Curtis spoke about this with AARP, as she elaborated:
“That’s the long marriage. It’s the safety of knowing his car is in the garage, that I’m not alone, and that he’s here.”
The couple even lovingly has that Rolling Stone photograph hanging in their house, Guest told The Guardian, as an homage to their early days. Curtis wrote in O Magazine:
“Chris and I have a wonderful, complicated, imperfect life. And a very real marriage. I’ll never know why I thought we’d understand each other when I saw his photograph. Hidden in that smirk, I think, was a little secret that only I knew.”
Christopher Guest, Jamie Lee Curtis (2019), (JNI/Star Max/GC Images/Getty Images)