Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver's divorce becomes official

Celebrity couple's marriage ends 10 years after they separated

Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver first entered divorce proceedings in 2011. AP
Beta V.1.0 - Powered by automated translation

A court in Los Angeles has made Arnold Schwarzenegger and Maria Shriver's divorce official 10 years after the couple separated following revelations of the actor-turned-politician's infidelity, US media reported on Wednesday.

Celebrity news site TMZ said the pair's divorce proceedings took a particularly long time because of the amount of financial assets involved.

Shriver, a journalist and niece of former US president John F Kennedy, first filed for divorce in July 2011, citing “irreconcilable differences".

Weeks later, Schwarzenegger publicly admitted to having an affair with the family nanny, Mildred Baena, who gave birth to their son in 1997.

“After leaving the governor's office, I told my wife about this event, which occurred over a decade ago,” Schwarzenegger, who was governor of California from 2003 to 2011, said in a statement to The Los Angeles Times when he and Shriver separated.

The revelation set off a tabloid frenzy, but Schwarzenegger and Shriver handled their divorce quietly and without lobbing accusations in court or in public.

It is not clear why the process took so long. There were virtually no public actions taken in the case between the initial flurry of filings in 2011 and a resumption of court moves in June.

Settlement papers say that neither owes the other any spousal support, but both have reserved the right to seek it through the court in the future.

Schwarzenegger amassed a fortune and worldwide fame playing action roles in the Terminator and Conan film franchises after a successful career as a bodybuilder.

After California suffered economic problems and widespread power cuts under the gubernatorial administration of Gray Davis, voters recalled the Democratic incumbent and elected Schwarzenegger, a Republican, to the governorship in a free-for-all election in 2003.

He has returned to acting sporadically since, with roles in Terminator and Expendables films.

Shriver was forced to resign from her position as a correspondent on the NBC show Dateline when her husband announced he was running for governor.

She resumed her work as a television journalist after her husband left office, producing stories for NBC while remaining active promoting women’s rights and reporting on and advocating Alzheimer’s awareness.

In 2018, she wrote the bestseller, I’ve Been Thinking …: Reflections, Prayers and Meditations for a Meaningful Life.

The couple, who met in 1977 and were married in 1986, have four children together.

Agencies contributed to this report

Updated: December 30, 2021, 4:12 PM