In Depth

Twitter reacts to Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux split

‘The gossip industry cannot resist an opportunity to invent’, couple say in pointed statement

Jennifer Aniston and Justin Theroux have announced their separation, two and a half years after getting married.

The decision to part ways "was mutual and lovingly made at the end of last year,” the couple said in a statement released yesterday through Aniston’s publicist.

“Normally we would do this privately, but given that the gossip industry cannot resist an opportunity to speculate and invent, we wanted to convey the truth directly,” the statement said.

The former Friends star - the second-highest paid actress in the world last year, according to Forbes - married fellow actor Theroux in a closely guarded private ceremony at their Los Angeles home in August 2015, after a three-year engagement.

However, rumours of discord in the marriage dogged the couple. Speculation of a split reached fever pitch last week when Theroux remained in New York while Aniston celebrated her 49th birthday with a coterie of female friends in Malibu, California, People reports.

Describing the split as “two best friends who have decided to part ways as a couple, but look forward to continuing our cherished friendship”, the statement continued: “whatever else is printed about us that is not directly from us, is someone else's fictional narrative”.

Aniston has hit out at the media in the past after enduring years of speculation over her love life and plans - or lack thereof - to have children.

In a 2016 op-ed, she hit out at tabloid culture, ABC reports, saying she had “worked too hard in this life and this career to be whittled down to a sad, childless woman. 

Nostalgic millennials noted that the separation, which comes five months after ex-husband Brad Pitt’s split from Angelina Jolie, means that both halves of the quintessential turn-of-the-noughties power couple are now back on the dating market:

However, others urged a reality check:

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