Zeta-Jones could walk away with €13m in break-up
Star couple 'taking time apart' after battling illness
After almost 13 years together, two children and battles with depression and cancer, Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones have decided to split.
Zeta-Jones's publicist said: "Catherine and Michael are taking some time apart to evaluate and work on their marriage."
The couple were last publicly photographed together in April, when they attended the 40th Annual Chaplin Award Gala in New York City.
According to reports, they decided to take some time apart after Michael returned from the Cannes Film Festival screening of Behind The Candelabra.
Douglas and Zeta-Jones tied the knot in 2000 at Manhattan's Plaza Hotel at a star-studded ceremony with Jack Nicholson and Martha Stewart in attendance.
They had reportedly signed a pre-nuptial agreement that entitles Zeta-Jones to €1m for every year of their marriage.
The couple have two children, Dylan (13) and Carys (10).
Their marriage has been put under considerable strain in the past few years due to personal hardships.
Douglas successfully battled throat cancer in 2010, while Zeta-Jones has struggled with bipolar disorder, for which she sought treatment in 2011 and again this April.
"This is a disorder that affects millions of people and I am one of them," she said in 2011.
"If my revelation of having bipolar has encouraged one person to seek help, then it is worth it."
On Friday, Michael Douglas is expected to attend the Deauville Film Festival in France, where he first met Catherine in 1998, introducing himself by saying: "I want to father your children."
While most critics believe a divorce is imminent, sources close to the couple say they are determined to work through their difficulties.
Catherine, who won an Oscar for her performance in the 2002 musical Chicago, has said she finds divorce repulsive.
"I will never get divorced, never.
"I grew up in a small, strictly Catholic fishing village on the coast of Wales.
"The people there have a different attitude to life than those in Hollywood – people stick together more."
Douglas divorced his first wife, Diandra Luker, in 2000.
The couple separated in 1995 after more than 20 years of marriage. She was granted €33m in the divorce settlement.
The Wall Street star came under fire in June for reportedly blaming the development of his cancer on oral sex.
Apparently Zeta-Jones was less than impressed with his comments.
Catherine is currently staying in New York, while Michael has been spotted on Sardinia.