Denzel Washington’s Marriage Is Still Going Strong After Over 40 Years, Despite Temptations

denzel washington's marriage

In an industry where temptations abound and long-lasting marriages are rare, two-time Academy Award winner Denzel Washington's marriage is perhaps his greatest success!

Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta Pearson married on June 25, 1983, and over 40 years later, their marriage reigns supreme in Hollywood and outside the entertainment capital of the world.

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Married Since 1977

Denzel and Pauletta met in 1977 on the set of Wilma. The two soon began dating, but Pauletta did not rush down the aisle with Denzel. Though the highly acclaimed actor may not have achieved his current-day movie success by 1977, his good looks, charm, and talent were certainly evident. Still, Denzel had to ask Pauletta to be his bride not once but three times!

The two joked about the actor's three marriage proposals in a 2013 interview with Access Hollywood, revealing that Pauletta declined Denzel's first two proposals, finally saying "yes" on the third.

"It was three times?" Denzel asked Pauletta.

"It was three times. I know with age sometimes things [go], the mind [goes]," she teased.

"Why was it twice...Why would I have to ask again?" Denzel asked. Pauletta quipped back, "Because I said no!"

Success Brings Temptatioins

Mr. Washington's film resume is extensive, starring in dozens of movies, including Philadelphia, The Equalizer, Man on Fire, Remember the Titans, Training Day, Courage Under Fire, and many more. Of course, success like that brings temptations-other women and financial extravagances. However, Denzel and his bride have put family first to create an enviable marriage and a happy home.

In an interview with People, Denzel shared that there were "too many things;" he couldn't name just one thing that he appreciates about wife Pauletta. He said, "What pops into my head: security, food, a beautiful home. The difference between a house and a home, it's a big difference."

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He continued, "You can buy a house, but that doesn't make it a home – and not to say a man can't make a home a home, but my wife has made our house a home and raised these beautiful kids and protected them and sacrificed for them, she did the heavy-lifting."

Pauletta and Denzel have four grown children. John David, Katia, Olivia, and Malcolm have all embarked on careers in the entertainment business. And, while Pauletta is also a talented actor and musician, having appeared in Beloved, Philadelphia, and She's Gotta Have It, she has put her own career second to raising and supporting her family.

Denzel Washington’s Marriage is a Special One

Denzel once shared, "She has been the consistent one. She has given the daily religious instruction. She was the one taking them to school, while I was out providing." Pauletta acknowledged that it's a team effort, saying, "It takes a lot of sacrifice on both parties' part."

Denzel (69) and Pauletta (72) demonstrate profound respect for one another, neither taking credit for their success-instead recognizing the contributions of one another throughout their long and happy marriage.

Over the years, the Crimson Tide star has stated, "You know, they say behind every great man there’s a great woman. Well, my wife is in front of me. I’m following her."

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Clearly, Denzel Washington and his wife Pauletta have a solid and long-lasting marriage!

While Mr. Washington's body of work is phenomenal, he and Pauletta recognize that their family is the most important legacy they will leave behind. They are both superstars in our book!



"Marriage should be honored by all, and the marriage bed kept pure, for God will judge the adulterer and all the sexually immoral." Hebrews 13:4

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