Actor Rowan Atkinson was divorced from his wife of 25 years in 65 seconds by a court in London over his “unreasonable behavior.” The Mr. Bean star had been married to make-up artist Sunetra Sastry since February 1990. That all ended in a little over a minute on November 10 when the couple were granted a quickie divorce. They have two children together, Lily and Benjamin. The pair had been living apart since Atkinson filed for the separation in February 2014.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Atkinson, 60, Is Now Dating a 32-Year-Old Actress
Sastry and Atkinson split in February 2014 when he began dating Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts graduate Louise Ford, reports the Daily Mirror. Ford and Atkinson had been starring in the play Quatermaine’s Terms on London’s West End in 2012. The plot of the play deals with a lonely middle-aged college professor. Atkinson said about his role in the play:
It’s well known that tragedy and comedy are close bedfellows. It’s rare, though, that you see them placed in such intimacy. Like most tragic figures, Quartermaine is unaware of his own tragedy.
What I love about him is his optimism. You don’t tend to feel much sympathy for pessimistic people, but those who retain their optimism, despite the sadness of their lives, are interesting, engaging and sympathetic.
2. Sastry & Atkinson Met While She Was a Make-Up Artist on the Legendary Historical Comedy Series ‘Blackadder’
The couple were first introduced when Sastry was working a make-up artist on the second season of Atkinson’s legendary Blackadder in 1986. At the time, Atkinson was romantically involved with actress Leslie Ash. He married Sastry in New York City’s famed Russian Tea Room in February 1990. Actor Stephen Fry served as Atkinson’s best man, according to a Guardian profile in 2008.
3. Atkinson & Sastry’s Beautiful Daughter Lily Is an Aspiring Actress
One of the couple’s children, Lily Atkinson, 20, is an aspiring actress. The couple’s other son, Benjamin, is 22. Lily became a viral sensation when she appeared, looking stunning, at a movie premiere with her parents in 2012. According to her IMDB page, she’s appeared in two movies with her father.
4. Stephen Fry Has Said That Sastry Was One of the Few Women He Found Himself Attracted to
In his 2010 autobiography, openly gay actor Stephen Fry admitted that he’s “90 percent gay” and that one of the women he’s been attracted to his Sastry. That’s despite serving as the best man for her wedding. In his book he wrote about her saying:
[Sastry] was bright, funny and as captivatingly alluring as any girl I had met for years. I was quite seriously considering asking her out on a date when Rowan timidly approached me one morning during rehearsals for the second (Blackadder) episode and asked if I would mind swapping make-up artists with him.
‘Don’t you like the one you’ve got?’ I said. ‘N-no, it’s not that, she’s splendid’. He (Atkinson) gave me a look of uncharacteristic intensity. ‘Oh!’ I said, as the penny dropped.
He adds that she frequently mocks him for not asking her out but Fry knows “how happy she and how right it was that [he] stayed silent.”
5. Atkinson Hasn’t Appeared in a Movie Since 2011