10+ Facts About Michael Douglas And Catherine Zeta-Jones' Relationship Fans Didn't Know

If anyone has proven that age is just a number, it's Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones.

The pair have been together since 1996, 25-year age gap be damned. They've weathered several storms during this time, including a cancer diagnosis and even a brief separation.

Want to learn more? Here are 10+ facts about their relationship that fans didn't know.

1. They first met in 1996 at the Deauville Film Festival in France.

It was then-couple Antonio Banderas and Melanie Griffith who introduced them after Douglas asked to meet the Zorro actress.

"I was a little nervous because I didn't quite know what he wanted to meet me about," she told Larry King in 2001.

But when she saw him in his hotel lobby, he walked right past her.

"I said to my brother, who was there at the time, 'I guess he doesn't really want to meet me that much, because he just walked right past me and he didn't even know it was me!'" she said.

2. Michael almost ruined his chances with Catherine after he made a bad joke.

Within 30 minutes of meeting Catherine at dinner with Antonio and Melanie, he did something you never should.

He told her, "You know, I'm going to be the father of your children."

Not surprisingly, Catherine was offended and abruptly left. We would have ran, too!

Douglas thought he lost her forever.

But he thankfully did damage control the next day by sending her flowers and an apology.

3. They share the same birthday.

While they're vastly different in age (Michael is 76; Catherine is 51), they do have this in common: they were both born on September 25.

“Twenty-five years apart, the same day, but who’s counting?” Michael told Ellen DeGeneres in 2019.

4. Michael proposed when they both had the flu.

How romantic!

This took place on New Year's Eve in 1999. Since they were both so sick, Zeta-Jones jokingly said "no" to the antique Fred Leighton 10-carat diamond ring, which is estimated to be worth $1 million.

5. They had a huge Plaza Hotel wedding in 2000.

Their wedding, which reportedly cost $1.5 million, was attended by A-listers Jennifer Aniston, Whoopi Goldberg, and Tom Hanks.

Recently, Catherine revealed to the Daily Mail that she hadn't seen their wedding photos until 2020.

"I looked at the proofs and that was it–I never made an album," she said.

Since she got the photos from their photographer recently, she's been sharing tons of pics on social media in celebration of their 20th anniversary.

6. They have two children together.

They had their son, Dylan, four months before their November 2000 wedding. Three years later, they welcomed their daughter, Carys, in April 2003.

Douglas also shares a son, Cameron, with ex-wife Diandra Luker.

7. In 2009, Cameron was arrested and charged with possession of methamphetamine.

He spent five years in prison for conspiracy to distribute drugs and possession.

Douglas took this hard, as he revealed in an interview with Today that he had been “a bad father.”

8. Their secret to a lasting marriage is honesty.

“Both Michael and I have a very open relationship,” Zeta-Jones told the Today show.

The need for this comes from having a relationship in the public eye. “You’ve got to be open and honest and share things that probably people at the drug store wouldn’t share over the counter.”

9. They recently celebrated their 20th anniversary.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the couple kept their celebration low-key.

“We won’t be doing any great big party," the actress told People. Instead, she said that she will let her husband "passionately kiss her" and then she'll put her mask back on.

10. They've shared the screen together.

In 2000, they both starred in the crime drama, Traffic, which also starred Benicio del Toro, Dennis Quaid, and Don Cheadle.

Catherine has said that she wants to make another movie with Michael again.

11. They had a brief separation in 2012.

Problems in their relationship caused them to live apart: Douglas at their Manhattan residence and Zeta-Jones at their estate in Bedford, N.Y.

Despite this, Douglas always remained hopeful for a reconciliation.

"Sometimes people take a little bit of a break, but it doesn't necessarily mean that's the end. I'm very hopeful," he said on *The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon*.

He never even took his wedding ring off!

Thankfully, they eventually got back together.

12. Catherine was by Michael's side when he was diagnosed with throat cancer in 2010.

At first, she took it really hard. "

I really thought, 'You are going to have to wipe me off the floor,'" she told Stella magazine about learning the news.

"I thought I didn't have the tools to cope," she continued.

"But it's amazing where the strength comes from—from family and friends, from strangers supporting us."

When Douglas attended the Golden Globes in January 2011, he declared that he was cancer-free.