Sarah Russi, a 26-year-old model has come into the spotlight recently for being in a relationship with 54-year-old retired child actor Mason Reese.
The couple has been dating for the past seven months, has exchanged “I love you’s,” and has even been introduced to each other’s parents and family. If Mason and Sarah are still together in two years, they have plans to get married. They even want to get promise rings tattooed around their fingers.
Mason and Sarah have done interviews and appeared on television to talk about, and in some cases defend their relationship.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Sarah Initiated Contact by Friending Mason on Facebook
According to an interview on This Morning, Sarah heard about Mason from a friend, who told her he was a child actor. Sarah looked up his work and found him to be very interesting. She sent him a friend request on Facebook, which he accepted. After he liked a few of her photos, they began talking.
Mason showed up at a convention Sarah was at, where the two talked for hours, leading Sarad to ditch the man she was with to hang out with Mason.
“At most, to me, it was innocent, playful flirting,” Mason said in the interview. “I didn’t think that this really beautiful, young adult model would find anything remotely fascinating about a 54-year-old old man.
That night, Mason made a promise to Sarah, saying he would call her every day while he was away in Los Angeles, where he would be for the next month. He followed through and the pair have been practically living together in his New York apartment ever since.
2. The Couple Has Been Dating for the Last Seven Months
The pair recently appeared on a reality spin-off of “Extreme Love” called “Love don’t Judge” where they gave a glimpse into their relationship. There is a 28-year difference in age between Sarah and Mason, which leads to some hostility when they are out in public.
“When I first met Mason, I thought he was the most adorable person on the planet,” Russi says in the clip.
Sarah likes older men because they are more mature. She says she likes the way they look, including that she is attracted to grey hair and bald guys. However, while Mason describes himself and “nice” and “fun to be around,” he doesn’t think that he is in Sarah’s league whatsoever.
Mason told Sarah he loved her within the first week of their relationship, but according to Mason, she said it back pretty quickly. Nevertheless, outsiders have judged her for being with Mason for all the wrong reasons.
3. Reese is a Well-Known Child Actor From the 1970s and 1980s
In a video clip from his YouTube page, a much younger Reese can be seen singing a song atop a giant cootie toy in the Macy’s Day Parade in 1975.
According to his IMDb page, Reese was everywhere between the years of 1969 to 1984, becoming a “pop icon” of the time. He starred in over 75 commercials, promoting products like Underwood Deviled Ham, Post Raisin Bran, and Dunkin’ Donuts. Seven of Reese’s commercials won Clio awards, including the coveted best male actor Clio.
In addition, Mason was also a guest on countless variety and talk shows. He appeared on the Mike Douglas Show over 25 times and co-hosted thrice. Mike claimed that Mason received the highest ratings in the history of the show, surely thanks to his charm and sense of humor. Mason also appeared on the covers of every major magazine including T.V. Guide.
Reese worked as an entrepreneur for 20 years, owning bars and restaurants around New York City, but has since retired and is now living “a life of leisure.”
4. Sarah Does Adult and Webcam Modeling
In their “Love Don’t Judge” episode, Sarah talks about her career as an adult and webcam model, saying that it’s not just a sexual thing for her, that she enjoys getting to know to people.
While Mason gets uncomfortable sometimes, he is very supportive of Sarah and her “camming.”
Sarah has also worked as a sugar baby in the past, which is one of the reasons she gets upset when people suggest she is dating Mason for his money. Sarah “can go out and date 20 guys who will give an allowance,” but says she is happier being in a relationship with Mason than getting paid $300 to go out to dinner.
“Sarah has never asked me for a penny,” Mason says in the episode. “Never.
5. People Are Reacting to the Relationship on Social Media
One Twitter user tells the couple to ignore the haters.
Another user remembers Mason from his commercials and extends congratulations.
Another user believes that the couple cherishes each other, and says the negative comments are from jealous people.
Another user can’t help but call Sarah a “gold digger.”