Eagles owners Jeffrey and Christina Lurie got divorced in July 2012 after 20 years of marriage. The couple purchased the team together back in 1994 for $185 million. According to Forbes, the Eagles are now worth $2.65 billion.
A letter to team employees acquired by the Philadelphia Inquirer stated the couple “would remain close friends” and will “continue to work together as partners” and the split will have “no impact whatsoever on the ownership, the business and the operations of the Philadelphia Eagles football team.”
In the last six years since the divorce Christina Weiss Lurie has remained a visible member of the Eagles organization.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Christina Weiss Lurie Received a “Sizable Chunk” of the Eagles in the Divorce Settlement
Christina owns only a small, non-voting share of the team, according to NFL.com. Jeffrey Lurie remains the only owner with voting stock or management authority over the Eagles.
Christina is currently listed on the team website as President Eagles Charitable Foundation and Eagles Social Responsibility. A title which puts her in charge of the entire non-profit charitable wing of the organization.
Christina’s philanthropic ventures include the creation of the Eagles Youth Partnership (EYP), which has helped educate more than one million low-income children in the Greater Philadelphia region. Meanwhile in 2003, she developed Go Green, a ground-breaking initiative to better the environment by creating and sustaining programs that improve reduce the team’s impact on the planet. Christina also helped launch the Eagles Tackling Breast Cancer campaign in 2004.
For her efforts, Christina Weiss Laurie was a recipient of the 2008 Ongoing Commitment Award from the Environmental Media Association and was honored by Drexel University’s LeBow College of Business with their 2010 Business Leader of the Year award. Christina’s charitable efforts continued during Super Bowl week in Minneapolis as the Eagles Charitable Foundation presented a $30,000 check to the Special Olympics of Minneosta.
2. Jeffrey & Christina Have Two Children Together
Christina has preferred to keep her children out of the spotlight, but in an exclusive interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer, she opened up about their religion and upbringing. The couple had two children, a son and a daughter. According to PhillyMag.com, daughter Milena is a filmmaker living in New York and son Julian graduated from Harvard in 2017. Christina and Jeffrey are both non-practicing Jews and the couple did not give their children a formal religious education. Christina told the Philadelphia Inquirer: “I think he [Jeffrey] feels culturally Jewish, and he loves some of the holidays, like Passover, but that’s about as far as the religious education went.”
Despite both her parents being Jewish, Christina identifies herself as a Buddhist. She lives a healthy and balanced lifestyle and practices yoga daily. Family lawyer Dan Kaplan, who helped finalize Jeffrey’s purchase of the Eagles and then represented Christina in the divorce, told PhillyMag.com the two “never should have married.” Kaplan also claims Christina and Jeffrey are “polar opposites” in terms of style.
3. Christina Has Won Two Academy Awards and Founded Two Independent Film Companies
She won her first Oscar in 2011 as an executive producer for Inside Job, which won in the category of best documentary. The film tackled the consequences of financial corruption. Two years later, Christina took home another golden statue as an executive producer for Inocente, a short-subject documentary which details the life of a homeless teenager in San Diego. According to her IMDB page, Christina has collected 16 producer credits.
In 2012, the same year as her divorce, Christina launched the first of two independent film companies, Tango Pictures, according to a report from Deadline.com. One year later she started Vox3 Films. Christina told to Philly.com she is “trying to go Hollywood” and “it’s always interesting to try to do new things”.
Jeffrey Lurie also supports his ex-wife’s film career. According to the Eagles website, the Lurie Family Foundation helps fund Screen Pass Pictures, a documentary film company established by Christina. Screen Pass was also the company which produced Oscar-winner Inside Job. According to box office data, Inside Job had a production budget of $2 million and made $7.7 million in the theaters plus another $7.6 million in DVD and blu-ray sales.
Christina’s latest movie project was a 2016 science fiction thriller Rupture starring Noomi Rapace, a single mother abducted by a mysterious organization. The film has just a 21% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
4. Jeffrey Lurie Met Christina in the 1980’s While She Was Producing One of His Movies
I Love You To Death was a 1990 comedy film featuring Kevin Kline, Tracey Ullman and Keanu Reeves. The screenplay is based on an attempted murder which took place in the early 80’s in Allentown, Pennsylvania. Shortly after collaborating on their first movie, Christina and Jeffrey got married in Gstaad, Switzerland, in 1992. Two years later, Christina pushed the couple to fulfill her dream of owning a sports franchise, according to Philly.com.
In 1994, Jeffrey and Christina purchased the Philadelphia Eagles from luxury car dealer Norman Braman for $185 million. At the time it was the most anyone had ever paid for a professional sports franchise, the New York Times reported. The previous high had been $175 million dished out by Robert Kraft earlier that year for the New England Patriots, according to Boston.com. Meanwhile Braman had purchased the Eagles for $65 million in 1985, nearly tripling his investment on the sale to Jeffrey Lurie. In a telephone interview with the New York Times, Braman said: “I didn’t have the team up for sale, but Jeff Lurie came to me.”
Jeffrey and Christina would remain married until July 2012. According to a 2014 interview with PhillyMag.com, Christina called her divorce “amicable”. Family lawyer Dave Kaplan told PhillyMag.com that Jeffrey needed a more “loving human being” because of his difficult upbringing. Jeffrey was just nine years old when his father, Morris Lurie, died of cancer. After the two were married, Christina changed her name from Lori Christina Weiss to Christina because Lori Lurie sounded “too weird”, according to Philly.com. Christina was born in Mexico City before moving to London with her parents when she was 10 years old. She studied theater at Yale before going back across the pond to Webber Douglas Academy of Dramatic Art, which is regarded as one of the best drama schools in England.
5. Jeffrey Lurie Got Re-Married One Year After Divorcing Christine
One year after divorcing Christina, Jeffrey Lurie got remarried to Tina Lai in 2013. Tina comes from a family of Vietnam refugees who opened two restaurants and a small grocery store in West Philadelphia. In fact, Jeffrey Lurie met Tina while she was working at one of those restaurants according to PhillyMag.com. A spokesperson for the Lai family told Philly.com they were “very excited for Tina and Jeffrey” and that they would like to keep the matter personal.
Lai is the youngest of eight siblings. Her brother Benny currently runs the family’s chain of restaurants across Philadelphia including Fu Wah Deli and Grill Fish. The couple now lives in a 13-acre, four-parcel estate in Wynnewood that Jeffrey Lurie bought for $14 million in 2007, according to PhillyMag.com. Jeffrey Lurie is ranked #388 on the 2017 Forbes 400 list with a combined net worth of $2 billion.
Meanwhile in 2014, Christina told PhillyMag.com she was unsure if she would get married again. Christina added she kept the last name Lurie because “it’s who I am”. She has stayed connected to the family through her charity efforts with the Eagles including her work to raise awareness for autism research. Back when they were married, Christina provided care for Jeffrey’s brother, who suffered from autism, according to PhillyMag.com.