Ellen and Anne were the Brad and Angelina of the late 1990s. They seemed to turn up everywhere and photos of the "It Couple" appeared on a regular basis. Perhaps the media's fascination was due to the novelty back then of an out, same-sex celebrity couple. Perhaps this constant attention took its toll on them, because after three years together Ellen and Anne announced their break-up on August 21, 2000.
Heche, 11 years DeGeneres' junior, claimed she was never truly a lesbian and shortly after their break-up married a man. (She had also dated a string of men before her relationship with DeGeneres.) The end of that relationship also got attention because of a nasty child custody fight in which Heche was portrayed as being mentally unstable. The media had a field day with Heche and her tabloid-worthy troubles. Her 2001 memoir was titled, somewhat appropriataely, Call Me Crazy.
DeGeneres' career has skyrocketed since her split with Heche. She's hosted the Emmys once and Academy Awards twice; been a judge on American Idol; was the voice of the fish Dory in the animated hit movie Finding Nemo; been a spokesperson for American Express, Cover Girl cosmetics and JC Penney; and her Daytime talk show has been on the air since 2003. Since 2004 she's been in a relationship with actress Portia de Rossi (15 years her junior) - which has also gotten its share of publicity - but not nearly as much as the relationship with Heche.
Since the break up Heche's career has been spent largely on TV, including roles in Nip/Tuck, HBO's Hung and the short-lived ABC series Men in Trees. She also appeared in the revival of the Broadway musical Twenthieth Century, which earned her a Tony nomination. She's presently in a relationship with her Men in Trees co-star Justin Tupper (pictured, left) who she had a child with three years ago.