| Ford with Flockhart: Buying happiness
Jan. 19: After securing a record £22 million picture deal to revive Indiana Jones in a fourth film, Harrison Ford has divorced his wife of 18 years in a settlement estimated to be costing him £50 million.
The deal has raised eyebrows even in Hollywood, where costly divorces are the norm.
The 61-year-old former carpenter is apparently anxious to maintain his romance with actress Calista Flockhart, although any marriage to her will undoubtedly include a prenuptial agreement.
That relationship has been under strain in recent weeks. Flockhart, 39, has pulled out of a London production of Eugene ’Neill’s Anna Christie because of “upheavals” in her private life.
The role, that of a woman who attempts to keep unsavoury details of her work from the man who is anxious to marry her, would have been her West End debut.
The lack of a prenuptial contract has meant that Ford’s second wife, Melissa Mathison, has managed to secure what is thought to be the film industry’s costliest divorce settlement.
Tom Cruise’s parting from Nicole Kidman is said to have cost him £46 million. Michael Douglas paid his ex-wife, Diandra, £37.5 million before his marriage to Catherine Zeta-Jones. Bruce Willis is said to have given Demi Moore £38 million for a divorce.
It appears that Ford has been forced to not only pay his former wife £7.85 million in cash, over a period until 2006, but to split earnings with her from the royalties of his hit films, now that they are on video and DVD.
She is also to get a share of all the future royalties from films he made while they were married, including two Indiana Jones films, The Fugitive, Air Force One, Witness and Patriot Games. Missing will be his earnings from Star Wars, which was contracted in 1976.
Mathison, 53, won an Oscar nomination as the screenwriter of the 1982 film E.T. The Extra-Terrestrial. She met Ford in 1976 while she was an assistant director on the set of Apocalypse Now.
Ford is said to have agreed to pay maintenance of £200,000 a year each for the couple’s children, Malcolm, 16, and Georgia, 13, until they either marry or reach 21.
Flockhart and her adopted son, Liam, moved in with Ford last year.