Does everyone already know that Florence Pugh, 23, is dating Zach Braff, 44?

Zach Braff spotted hand-in-hand with a mystery girl in NYC!

I’ve only come onto the Florence Pugh fandom recently. I saw Midsommer over the Thanksgiving holiday and now I GET IT. She’s wonderful! She’s incredibly talented. She’s also Amy in Little Women, and she plays Black Widow’s sister Yelena Belova in Black Widow next year. Everything’s coming up Florence, and that’s great for a 23-year-old British actress. But since I’m new to this fandom, I only just learned that she’s dating Zach Braff. Seriously. What’s more shocking, that she’s dating Zach Braff or that Zach Braff is 44 years old? Here’s the kicker: they’ve been dating for much of this year and it’s barely registered with anyone before now. There was a sighting of them together in New York (you can see the photos here):

Florence Pugh stuck close to boyfriend Zach Braff on a shopping trip in New York City over the weekend. The pair were seen holding hands as they walked around the SoHo area of Manhattan. Pugh, 23, and Braff, 44, kept warm in long coats, with Braff keeping his unzipped. On Saturday, the pair were spotted separately at the New York premiere of Little Women. And in early November, the actors attended the Marriage Story premiere in New York, where they posed separately on the red carpet. Prior to those two appearances, the couple was seen grocery shopping at a Hollywood-area Whole Foods in October, and holding hands in New York City in April.

Braff and Pugh worked together in the recent short film In the Time It Takes To Get There, which starred Pugh and Alicia Silverstone and was developed by Braff. The short film made its debut the same month the two were spotted together for the first time. Braff is next set to direct the British actress in the upcoming The Secret Ingredients of Rocket Cola, according to Collider. The movie follows two twin brothers over decades as they are separated and live different lives, only to come together to save the company of the woman they both love.

[From People]

SINCE APRIL. That’s how quickly Florence became a thing this year – back in April, she was just some unknown young actress whom paparazzi couldn’t identify. Now she has a fandom and that fandom is like “oh honey, please not Zach Braff.” I mean… maybe he treats her well and he’s lovely to her and he’s the perfect boyfriend. But he’s 44! And she’s 23! I can’t.

Actress Florence Pugh wearing a Galvan dress and Irene Neuwirth jewelry arrives at the Los Angeles Premiere Of Netflix's 'Marriage Story' held at the Directors Guild of America Theater on November 5, 2019 in West Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, United

Photos courtesy of WENN, Backgrid.

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77 Responses to “Does everyone already know that Florence Pugh, 23, is dating Zach Braff, 44?”

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  1. emmy says:

    Maybe nobody cared.

    I saw The Little Drummer Girl recently and while I’m a Skarsgard girl, the age difference between those two bothered me even on screen. Where we’re used to it. I really did not like it at all because she looked like his daughter, frankly. He’s in his early 40s. So this just doesn’t look great to me but whatever. Hollywood is weird.

    • CER says:

      the 20 year age difference in LDG is also in the books, though the characters are slightly older.

    • lucy2 says:

      I felt it was kind of part of the story though, that she was younger and naive and got roped into all kinds of stuff because of it.

      I actually though she was older than 23, so that is a big jump in age to Braff’s 44. It may also be because I find him very annoying though.

    • emmy says:

      Yes, absolutely, it made sense and was part of the plot but it was still uncomfortable. As it was supposed to be. It’s just that he looked as much like her father as Braff does in these pics. Only hotter.

  2. Darla says:

    When I was 27 I fell in love with a 46 yo man. Madly in love. We married. It lasted 8 years. We did not have children. In many ways it was the most storybook type love affair I ever had. I can’t say that at the time I thought there was a power imbalance. But…I did leave him. Near the end I could see where he was controlling me without my realizing it. We started fighting a lot because I was breaking free by pursuing an eventually very successful career, and also becoming politically active which he had contempt for. If I had known then what I know now, I would never have allowed the first kiss to happen. So when I see this here, I do get anxiety in my stomach. But I can’t judge, because I once did the same thing.

    • Michael says:

      Your story sounds like it should be in script form. Maybe you should get it written down before somebody steals it. The premise would make a great movie about self discovery and all that. Way better than that “Eat Pray Love” crapfest from a few years ago

    • Viktoria says:

      This pretty much sounds like my story….26 fell in love with a man 16 years older. He treated me like a queen, we actually had a lot of interests in common and everything was fairytales and roses. Until it was not. When we got together I always made clear I wanted kids even though he already had 2 young boys from his previous marriage. He said of course we will have kids. 4 years later and he got a vasectomy without telling me because he thought I invested too much time and energy in my career (which he also did at my age btw!) and I did not invest enough time into taking care of his kids since I sometimes also work weekends …I still stayed for a while because I was madly in love but I never looked at him the same and eventually realized that he was just trying to control and manipulate me. So now at 31 I have to start all over again while all my friends already got married and start having children. If I had known then what I know now…no money in the world would have convinced me to date that man so I always side eye these relationships of much older men with younger women…

      • MC2 says:

        I’m so sorry you went through that & kudos for being done at 31 while you’re still young! This reminds me of a comment I made on a thread here last week- a man’s potential money is not a fair trade for a young woman’s life.

      • jenner says:

        @viktoria— thanks for sharing. you may feel old at 31 but but that is still very young. You have your whole life ahead of you, and with some real-life experience under your belt. I got divorced three years ago in my mid-40s and I thought my life was over. Far from it, it has turned out to be the most interesting and passionate time of my life :) Your life can change in an instant :)

    • Carys says:

      I’m sorry that your ex-husband was manipulative and controlling. That sounds horrible and I’m glad you got out! I just want to say it’s not always about the age difference and some humans are awful no matter their age.

      I met my husband when I was 20 and he was 45. We began dating a few years after that and we have been married for 14 years. He has always encouraged me to pursue my dreams and career goals, is supportive, and I never felt that there was a a power imbalance in our relationship. We tackle the challenges of life together, make decisions together, and try to communicate openly and honestly about what the age difference means for us as we are at different stages in life.

      We are lucky to live in a community where any kind of “odd” couple – whether one with a large age gap, an interracial couple, or a interabled couple are unremarkable. Although, people are still probably still judging us in their heads (and on the internet).

      • Hellohello says:

        I appreciate hearing happy stories like this. I’m in my first big age gap relationship, only I’m the older woman and he’s the 13 years younger one. So far, it’s been amazing. He pursued me…and I was not on board at first, but we just click. Also, I’m white, he’s Asian, and we live in an area where there are not a lot of minorities. In some ways I worry that we stick out like a couple of sore thumbs, but mostly I don’t care because it’s so good.

      • jenner says:

        @hellohello– that’s awesome, git it girl!

      • SKF says:

        That’s lovely. I don’t mean to be negative; but I do wonder how you’ll feel when you’re 60 and he’s 85. Or 70 and 95. Because my aunt married a man 12 years older and he basically has shut down right when she’s retired and full of energy and ready to explore the world. The age gap seems to really tell in those later years. Sometimes, of course, it’s the reverse, and maybe you’ll be fine; I’ve just seen it a few times now and it turns me off large age gaps (not that I’ve ever been into older men – as a personal preference I tend to like guys within a 3-5 year range of my own age).

      • Carys says:

        @HelloHello cheers to you! It doesn’t happen often (usual only when we travel) but we have received strange looks/comments before. Only you know what will make you happy, and happiness is rare! Grab it in all its forms!

        @SKF we’ve had the hard conversations about retirement, aging, end of life care, etc. My view is that all relationships have challenges, and we never know how long we have with our loved ones, so we might as well make the best of it!
        My cousin’s late husband passed at 32 from cancer, and my best friend’s husband was killed in a military training accident 8 months after they married. Of course, I realize those examples are not the same as knowing, in all likelyhood, that my husband will pass before me, but it is a reminder that we can never be sure. My husband and I have already had decades of love and are looking forward to doing our best (wellness-wise) to ensure that continues for at least a couple more decades.

        I know our choice is not for everyone, and that’s okay! I just wanted to point out that we shouldn’t assume we know the inner workings of other’s relationships based on outward appearances.

  3. bucketbot says:

    For a second I thought that was Kirsten Bell’s husband. Those two are always up and everywhere, seemingly, all the bloody time. So I was shocked for a second. Had to google because I thought there was a scandal I missed. To be fair (to me), I’ve only been vaguely aware of Zach Braff, I could never get in to Scrubs. And somehow Kirsten bell’s husband is still forgettable (to me).

  4. Missskirrtin says:

    He is exactly old enough to be her dad. He could be immature and pathetic and try to act “young,” a la Justin Theroux. He looks like the guy Foster, next to her. Foster the 70 year old husband of Catherine McPhee…

    • Kristina says:

      Exactly this. This age gap could have meant he was the father-age to my sister AND brother and dating either one (my dad was 20 & 21 when they were born). They could be father and daughter. I am not comfortable with it, and I always wanted to like him, but never did- he always seems like a secret hothead to me. Idk, that’s the vibe I get.

  5. Hoopjumper says:

    Alicia Silverstone is 43, one year younger than Zach Braff. She probably plays Pugh’s mother in the movie they all worked on together.

  6. Other Renee says:

    Wow, that’s some impressive writing in People Magazine. I’m enthralled by the knowledge that while walking the streets of New York, Zach Braff wore his long coat unzipped.

    • elle says:

      The existence of that entire sentence makes me weep. They weren’t splitting the atom, they were wearing coats in winter.

  7. Jen says:

    She is AMAZING in Lady Macbeth and I’m really glad she’s broken out and got some good, meaty roles. She is an astonishing actress.

    And I dunno, if you’re a young actress and The Hot Thing Right Now, it might be good to have an older partner who’s been in the industry for forever and could be like “oh no you need to ask for more money/that person is known to be awful” if asked for input. I can see it.

  8. JBH says:

    ”I mean… maybe he treats her well and he’s lovely to her and he’s the perfect boyfriend. But he’s 44! And she’s 23! I can’t.”

    They are both adults. Who the hell cares?

  9. A says:

    I was shocked when they first made their debut as a couple and my first thought was “Florence, sweetie you can do much better than this.” I don’t understand what she sees in him. Ugh.

  10. Lala11_7 says:

    For me at 52…the idea of having romantic inclination towards ANYONE who could be the same age as my CHILD? That thought makes me emotionally and psychologically ill…

    • Lo says:

      I get that and I would get it more IF he had children. Then it gets a different level of weird. But there’s no power dynamic in the work place, no grooming, it’s just an odd couple. Chances are it won’t last but she’s a (young) adult and it will work itself out.

      My sister is dating a man 30 years her senior and it’s the most amazing, healthy relationship she’s ever been in and has taught her self love again. It makes me incredibly sad that my dad has shunned it because of the age difference.

      • Carabee says:

        She’s starring in the next movie he’s directing.

      • MC2 says:

        Maybe your Dad is on to something……most young women who leave these May/December romances tell the story that they are not usually healthy & are not equal in power dynamics. They usually paint them as great in the beginning, because they think they are & want to rebuff the societal judgment, but that they usually have an innate power imbalance that eventually does rear it’s ugly head. I’m glad you’re there for your sister, because she’ll likely really need it once her rose color glasses wear off.

      • emmy says:

        I think your dad has a very different perspective because he would be the old guy (no disrespect to your dad, I assume he’s not 40) robbing the cradle. To be a little crass.

        I understand wanting to be with someone older, more settled, interesting etc. But then I ask myself whyyyy would someone that age date a person who’s a few years out of high school at best. We all know why. I’m 35 and sure, guys in their early 20s might be hot but I could never. We would have almost nothing to talk about. 30 is not 20 but 60 isn’t 40 either.

      • SKF says:

        I mean, that’s lovely; but again, I have to question what happens when she is middle-aged and he is elderly. I mean, when she’s 50 he’ll be 80 and when she’s 60 he’ll be 90! 60 is still a vibrant age. It’s when many people these days retire and go out and re-explore the world, have adventures, have fun, etc. I’ve seen some of my parents’ friends and an aunt and uncle with smaller age gaps than that struggle in later years for these reasons.

  11. It’sjustblanche says:

    His hair screams middle-age freak out. He looks ridiculous.

  12. Lo says:

    She will outgrow it. Famous 23 year olds are allowed to date and make odd choices just as much as anyone else. My sister is 30 and dating a 60 year old – I thought it was super weird at first but they have a lovely relationship. Let’s just see what happens

    Zach isn’t doing anything wrong.

  13. ab says:

    she is everywhere lately! I’ve only seen her in ‘fighting with my family’ and she was sooo striking with dark hair in that movie. I don’t get why the dull blonde is a thing, makes her blend in with all the other starlets her age.

    not much comment about her relationship, except that zach braff definitely looks his age when he’s standing next to florence in those photos from people magazine, lol.

  14. whatWHAT? says:

    ohmydog…that whole outfit on her…the overalls, the Doc Martins and the literal rose-colored glasses…it’s like looking at myself in the early nineties.

    • Pita says:

      I grew up on the 90s and just turned 41 but i want her whole outfit so bad! But i am short and fat and i might end up looking like a non orange oompa loompa… not that i care lol

  15. Jess says:

    I get why young people date older people – I started dating my ex husband when I was 23 and he was 36. There were no control issues but the problem was I was too young to appreciate all the red flags about his major issues and by the time I figured it out we had two young kids. Now that I’m in my forties I don’t get why anyone my age would be interested in someone so young. And I don’t get why anyone would be interested in Zach Braff at all. I’ve rewatched some Scrubs lately and it does not hold up well and he gets so insufferable as the show goes on.

    • Ali says:

      I’m gonna go out on a limb and say she’s in it for his big heart and charming personality not that he has $ and access to roles for her…

      • Dani says:

        I don’t know how much access he has for her. Aside from Scrubs, Garden State and maaaaaaaybe The Last Kiss, I don’t think anything else he’s been in ever took off.

    • kgeo says:

      On being interested in younger people…I don’t get it either. I understand that youth is beautiful, but I’m not necessarily attracted to it. I don’t care how old the soul is either. You can enjoy hanging out with me while I embroider and drink tea, but you haven’t gone through 36 years of engaging with the world and learning who you are in the process. This is why I side-eye these relationships. Of course, there are exceptions to every rule, but if my son or daughter came home with someone 20 years older than them while they’re in their early 20s, I’d definitely be skeptical.

  16. BANANIE says:

    She should burn those overalls. I have a soft spot for Zach for creating Garden State. I think he has more range than people give him credit for.

    I don’t know enough about her/her personality to tell of this is an odd match.

  17. Carabee says:

    I thought everyone who follows her knew this? Almost everything she posts on her Instagram stories is from his house.

    Makes me question her judgement though. If she was going to be a cliche at least she could pick a HOT older man instead of….. that blob.

  18. The green dress is TACKY.

  19. Bananas says:

    But she’s SO MATURE!!!
    No seriously, no surprise. Man who made a living acting like a child, likes to date children.

  20. shells_bells says:

    What an odd pairing. She’ll grow out of this.
    Has anyone else seen “Fighting with my Family”? I was kind of shocked by how much I enjoyed it. Fun film and she’s excellent in it.

  21. sparker says:

    she’s the new Kathleen Turner, we’ll be seeing more of her.

  22. Miss B says:

    Hey remember that time Zach Braff punched a 12 year old!

  23. Jas says:

    What? Yuck. My queen can do so much better!

  24. Amy says:

    I cannot fathom why a grown-ass person in their mid-forties would date a (very) young adult over 20 years their junior. Like, maybe if she were in her late-twenties but she’s still in her EARLY twenties. There’s a BIG difference between a 22 or 23-year-old and a 29 or 30-year-old. And to everyone trying to find a silver lining…you know your reaction would be “wtf?!” if it were a middle-aged woman and a college-aged guy instead of a middle-aged man and a college-aged girl.

    I mean, I find Nick Jonas and Priyanka Chopra annoying as hell, but I did find it kind of sad how almost every time I see an article about them people are going on about how she’s “so old” and “looks like his mom” when she’s only 10 years older than him and Nick is already in his mid-late twenties.

    • Carina says:

      Priyanka is Nick’s beard. Tho looks like the contract could be at risk since she didn’t show up to his thing

      • Amy says:

        Still doesn’t change the fact that the general narrative about a guy in his late twenties and a woman in her late 30s is “ew! she looks like his mom!” yet there are a good few people who try and justify middle-aged men dating young women in their early 20s if not late teens!

  25. Millenial says:

    I tried to re-watch Garden State a couple years ago – a movie 17 year old Millenial thought was the peakest peak of cinema in 2004, and DEAR LORD it did not age well.

  26. Amber says:

    He was not very nice to Mandy Moore when they were together and he looks like a sack of rice. I don’t trust that guy. Florence is a mega-talented babe who could do better if she spun around blindfolded in a bar and pointed at a guy.
    I’ve gone out with guys in their late thirties/early forties (I’m in my mid twenties) before. They’re a lot nicer than guys my own age. But it’s also the case that some men date much younger because there can be an imbalance of power. I want to find someone closer to my own age but it’s hard to find any guy (with whom I also have things in common) in his twenties or early thirties who wants to be in a committed, monogamous relationship. Sometimes I think it just must be a cultural thing in California, but maybe it’s a generational, millennial problem. It’s like dating has become this race to the bottom, a competition to see who cares the least, who’s willing to be colder or more ambivalent. If you come right out and explain that you have needs and/or feelings, or even just tell a guy that you are attracted to him, men in their twenties treat you like you’re being unreasonable. I’ve talked to lots of other young women in my age bracket who’ve experienced the same thing.

    • A says:

      In my general experience, dating much older men (on the order of about 10 to 20 years), especially if you’re in your mid-twenties yourself, gives you a startling, front row insight into why these people wound up being single well into their forties. A lot of 45 year old men who date twenty-something girls are incredibly immature in their own way. It’s not simply that forty-something men aren’t attracted to women their own age–it’s also that women their own age don’t put up with their self-absorbed BS which is why they go after younger women who aren’t at a point in their lives to know better about what to expect in a meaningful, respectful relationship.

    • Joanna says:

      Sadly, I don’t think it’s just a millennial problem. When I was dating in my 30s, guys were the same. I eventually found my now husband. He wanted to commit, but he is also kind of old fashioned imo, in many ways. Some good some bad. Like wanting me to cook etc. He is responsible for the yard, I clean the house, that type of stuff. And I also dated guys when I was younger that cleaned and cooked. Idk, men are a mystery. Like you say, when i was dating, men would run if I showed that I liked them. But they say they want upfront women who don’t play games. Then why did you run when I showed I liked you? Imo, men like a bit of a chase. So I say play hard to get until you’ve gone out for a bit. I don’t mean as in: dont sleep w him, I mean don’t show your emotions right away. I have been the victim of sleeping with a guy too soon and then he dumped me because I was “too easy.” Oh the hypocrisy, you’re better without that kind. But it does sound like you get emotionally attached so I would say in your case, wait until a few dates. To save yourself the heartache, not cause of some “being a good girl BS,” but because I found I get attached more to a guy after sex. And then it hurts more if it doesn’t work out. Good luck to you.

    • Me says:

      Dating in LA was really hard for me. I moved here 15 years ago. I spent some time out of state working on a project and that’s where I met my husband.

  27. DragonWise says:

    I am nine years older than my fiance (I’m 44, he’s 35), and while our cultural points of reference are a bit different because of that age gap, most of the time, we don’t even notice. However, I know that if he were any younger or if I was any older, it likely would not work out for us. It’s enough of a difference to negotiate that I wouldn’t want the gap to be any wider. I can’t imagine dating someone 23, and I am exactly Zach’s age!

  28. Sara says:

    Her clothing must remind him of his high school days as she is wearing clothes from his high school era!

  29. jenner says:

    Did anyone watch Scrubs? My gosh I loved that show, and I loved Braff in it. Very disappointed to learn after the fact that he seems like a d-bag in real life. He does, however, look good for 44, I would have pegged him for much younger.

  30. Anni says:

    I totally thought he was gay. I follow him on Instagram and that’s the impression I got. Well, that he has a GF 20 years his junior is kind of a let down. Makes him so…typically Hollywood.

  31. IntheKnow says:

    When I was 23, I fell totally in love with a 46 yr old man. I thought he worshipped the ground I walked on. And me him. Man I was wrooooooong. It went well for about 6 months. Then we had a date and he never showed up. I called his phone, no answer. No response the entire night. I was terrified..for him. At 23, 46 yrs old is ANCIENT. I thought to myself, what if he fell down the stairs and broke a hip?? So I drove to his house a couple of times. Peaked into his window. I saw nothing.

    2 days later a cop showed up to my house to ‘warn me about stalking’. JFC. What?? What do you mean? Apparently I was dumped! I had no idea. He was the first guy I fell in love with. It ended going to court and the judge listened to me and put a restraining order on both of us. This shit still haunt me 20 yrs later.

    He was super controlling..which I mistook for care and love. I had male room mate (I was in university and living on my own in a shared house). And he became jealous.. Apparently that was one of the reasons I was dumped. He moved on 2 months later with someone of similar age.

  32. Chrissy says:

    He looks like her father.,

  33. Heather says:

    Well, if he treats her well and is lovely to her, and is the perfect boyfriend, what’s the problem? Sure, she may outgrow him. Or he may tire of the generational gap at some point. But I honestly don’t understand the age-difference issue, most of the time (except in extreme cases like Anna-Nicole Smith and the billionaire dude with dementia).

  34. Deanne says:

    Speaking as someone in a long term age-gap relationship, I think it really comes down to mostly personality to make things work. There are times when we have to work a little more to understand each other’s generational point of view, but if you have other common goals and interests, and are able to be open in communication with one another, that’s the main thing. Granted, if he had kids or if I wanted kids, that would makes things a lot more difficult. But it’s the closest, warmest relationship I’ve ever experienced with anyone, so no regrets. I can’t judge these celebrity relationships if they’re both happy and it works for them.