Renee Zellweger is dating a college friend that she’s known for two decades

Did you know that Renee Zellweger has had a boyfriend for the past few months? Unlike her relationship with Bradley Cooper, Renee and her new dude Doyle Bramhall II seem to be okay with the occasion pap-ing. To be fair to them, it doesn’t feel like they’re calling the paps and telling the photographers where to be. But maybe that’s naïve of me? Maybe Renee wants everyone to know that she has a boyfriend when everyone is paying attention to her ex Bradley Cooper and his Oscar campaign.

Anyway, these are some pics of Renee and Doyle on Sunday in LA, coming out of a yoga class. Would you like their backstory? According to sources, Doyle and RZ went to college together at the University of Texas (Austin), and they’ve been friends for more than two decades. She’s 42 – he’s 44. A source claimed that “they didn’t date” in college, but they kept running into each other over the years, and they completely reconnected late last summer. Doyle is described as a “guitarist/producer” which…? Okay. Doyle also dated Sheryl Crow at some point. A source tells Us Weekly, “Renee’s really happy and has a new life.”

I think he’s cute in a normal-guy way. He’s the kind of guy that I would notice in the gym and obsess about for an hour and then I would probably forget him as soon as my workout was done. I think the dude head-band might be a dealbreaker, but I’m sure I’ll get some headband-defenders in here, yelling at me about how their boyfriends/husbands totally wear knit sweat-headbands and it’s super-sexy, right? But I will say this – Renee looks happy, doesn’t she? I could totally see her settling down with a “normal” guy.

Photos courtesy of Fame/Flynet.

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78 Responses to “Renee Zellweger is dating a college friend that she’s known for two decades”

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  1. brin says:

    I knew she was seeing this guy but I didn’t know she had known him from the past. I hope she’s happy, she deserves to be.

  2. laura says:

    Renee is 43 she will turn 44 april 25, get your facts straight;)

  3. Hookem says:

    If you are Texan, you know who he is. He’s a hell of a musician and his father is a legend.

  4. kibbles says:

    I never thought that Renee would settle down with a vapid Hollywood hunk. She seems like an intelligent and educated woman who wants a guy who is more into his “art” or intellectual conversation more than his looks. This match appears genuine and she looks happy. For some reason when I saw these pictures I just thought that this would have been Renee’s type if she hadn’t become a famous actress. This is the kind of guy she’d be settled with in Austin if she had chosen an alternative life as a yoga instructor or an acting professor.

  5. Launicaangelina says:

    Ha! My BF wears a headband when working out too, never knit though. I guess I never thought about it. Actually, he likes cutting the sleeves off of old t-shirts and using the sleeves as headbands. Lol

  6. GossipG says:

    he’s not laughing at all.she looks happy.he looks ashamed.

  7. lucy2 says:

    That’s kind of nice. She doesn’t seem so into the Hollywood scene, a lower key guy is probably a good fit for her.
    Head band bad.

  8. annabelle says:

    I don’t know why this pleases me, I have no feelings about RZ either way, but it does. I guess I’m just a sucker for non contractual love.

  9. JM says:

    She looks like Melissa Gilbert in these pictures…

  10. Jayna says:

    What’s normal? He’s a musician, and for all we know he could be a player in his own life. I hope he’s a great guy, because she seems to live her life with a lot of integrity and has put out some great quality work. She’s in her forties and deserves a long-lasting love, which is the only thing she’s been unlucky in.

  11. Em says:

    When I tore my eyes away from the dude-band I noticed that she seems to have had a lot of work done. Her face looks…tight. Like it would hurt to smile any bigger. But yeah I don’t mind her – she deserves a good guy, as long as he’s not a fame whore or as douchey as most guys in dude-bands.

  12. L says:

    He only gets a pass from me because it’s clear they’ve just come from working out. Headbands like that are only okay if you’re working out or performing on stage to keep your hair off your face (and not creating a sweaty hair curtain)

    Now anywhere else? No.

  13. mln76 says:

    I know plenty of hippy dudes who wear headbands to yoga and I always find it an endearingly dorky thing to do.

  14. Astrid says:

    Why does Renee always look like she’s crying? Something about her face. But I”m glad she’s found someone.

  15. chia says:

    “He’s the kind of guy that I would notice in the gym and obsess about for an hour…”

    Thank god I’m not the only one that does this!

  16. Kate says:

    Long term friendship is the best foundation. Similar ages is good, too. I hope this works out for her.

  17. minime says:

    Argh…this dude head-band thing! Today at the supermarcket I saw at least 3 guys using one and I tought “please don’t let this be a new trend”…and now it’s here also. At least he was coming from sports, what makes a lot more sense then simply using it as a fashion statment…

  18. lylaooooo says:

    what is goning on with her face..i think she knows she has a weird little thing on and she´s covering with hair

  19. Sal says:

    What’s going on with her career these days? I feel like she used to be an Acadet darling and now she’s just fallen off the face of the planet.

  20. Holden says:

    LOL, they both look like they got done sweating their balls off in a work out, I would hate for my picture to be taken at that moment. That said, she looks as happy as she can since she can’t move her face, and that’s great.

  21. NeoCleo says:

    They really look happy together. Hope this is the one for her.

  22. valleymiss says:

    He had her at “Headband.” ;-)

    Seriously, his headband is cheesy but I’m gonna defend it. When I work out, I HATE it when hair is touching any part of my face. I would never work out without a ponytail, and I always have headbands or bobby pins or barrettes available to get the bangs outta my face.

  23. valleymiss says:

    Ok, I just googled him, and as a Prince fan, I *thought* his name was familiar! Bear with me here…Doyle’s ex-wife is Susannah Melvoin (twin sister of Wendy Melvoin of Wendy and Lisa, formerly part of the Revolution which was Prince’s backing band). Prince and Susannah were engaged at one point, and Prince wrote “Nothing Compares 2 U” and “The Beautiful Ones” about her.

    According to Susannah’s wiki page, she and Doyle married in 1997 and had a daughter in 2001, but as of recently are separated. (I’m going to assume that they’re legally divorced now, since he also dated Sheryl Crow before dating Renee.)

    So, Renee could be a stepmom someday!

  24. kate says:

    did reneee get some new funbags?

  25. Anna says:

    how wonderful! A fantasy relationship, knowing the guy for years, being friends, and then, all of a sudden you fall in love.

    He’s looks hot to me. Maybe Renee can give him some style. She certainly does NOT seem the type to care about what someone wears. Oh, I hope it’s love. ♡

  26. apsutter says:

    I’m happy for her. I believe the blinds about her having some depression and mental issues because she completely fell off the radar. Hope she’s putting her health first and it’s probably good she’s dating a long time friend and someone not in the Hollywood grind.

  27. Maritza says:

    I’d say these two have more posibilites of a lasting relationship than any other celebrity guy she may meet. She hasn’t been lucky so far, I hope this the one.

  28. Jilli says:

    They look good together. Both are pretty darn fit and this guy has some nice legs. His headband has a practical purpose. Why shouldn’t a man wear somethimg to keep his hair out of his face? Hell! If he wanted to wear it for grins and giggles good for him. Good luck to them.

  29. Camille (TheOriginal) says:

    She looks happy, good for her! I hope this one works out.

  30. Bijlee says:

    She looks like JLaw in some of these pictures.

    • ZenB!tch says:

      I like Renee, she seems as nice and normal as one can be for a celeb brainwashed into being a size 0 – but I’ve never thought she was particularly beautiful.

      This is why I don’t get why everyone thinks J-Law is beautiful. SHE LOOKS JUST LIKE RENEE!

  31. KellyinSeattle says:

    Good for her; but her personality seems a little flat.

  32. dinpb says:

    Happy for her, she looks great and not into the hollywierd life!

  33. anti-icon says:

    He dated Sheryl Crow? Well, Renee is a GIANT STEP UP.

    Go girl.

  34. Aqua says:

    Glad to read so many positive comments about someone so I’ll add my own.Hope it all works out for her.

  35. eliza says:

    He is adorable! And they are an adorable couple. I hope he’s the one and they live happily ever after.

  36. april says:

    I like her. She looks good in these photos. She deserves to find a good guy.

  37. JuJuBee says:

    Doyle Bramhall II has been Eric Claptons’ second guitar on tour for years. The man is an amazing guitarist and it’s a crime how little fanfare he has. I doubt they met in college, because of an old interview where he says he dropped out in 9th grade and he wishes he had finished HS. Such a weird thing to lie about.

    • valleymiss says:

      I’m thinking the explanation for this is that Doyle didn’t actually go to college, but he played in Austin a lot where Renee went to college. She probably went to some of his shows and met him that way. The lines of gossip got crossed to turn it into “They went to college together,” when it’s that she met him while she was going to college.

    • Arlene R. Weiss says:

      I remember that interview very distinctly & if I recall it was a video interview on so no, Doyle did not attend college and he seemed regretful that he didn’t finish HS and told the audience it in retrospect he wished he had. I am also surprised that all the celebrity magazines keep saying he went to college with Renee. PR spin by Renee maybe or maybe some tabloid writer didn’t get their facts right and check their sources first and then all the other celebrity magazines just copied the incorrect info? One explanation might be that Doyle & Charlie Sexton, while in the Arc Angels, used to hang out at the U Of T restaurant, The Paradise Cafe, which inspired their song on the 1992 Arc Angels album. In the lyrics they sing about how they would go there for a bite to eat and the rowdy, partying college kids would drive them nuts! So I am thinking maybe that is how Doyle met Renee or she attended some of the Arc Angels shows or they ran in some of the same Austin crowds. BTW, I’m a big supporter of Doyle’s music and have interviewed him several times for Vintage Guitar Magazine. Happy he’s playing Crossroads Guitar Festival this year again with Clapton & touring with Clapton this spring.