Colin Firth & Livia’s marriage suffered because ‘nothing could erase’ her betrayal

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We heard almost a week ago that Colin Firth and Livia Giuggioli have formally separated. It was not surprising, given the fact that Livia’s affair was made public last year, when she and Colin accused her lover of stalking them. While Colin and Livia claimed that they were low-key separated when she was sleeping with Marco Brancaccia for nearly a year, very few people bought that. What we did believe was that Colin was trying to protect his (cheating) wife and their family. He tried. Maybe Livia tried too. But in the end, they couldn’t repair their marriage. Now People says that after Livia’s affair, nothing was ever the same between them:

While Colin Firth and his wife Livia tried their best to keep their marriage intact, sources say in the end, they realized it was time to move on. Those who knew them best weren’t exactly shocked by the development—especially after the drama that transpired when the ultra-­private couple admitted in 2018 that Livia, 50, had had an extramarital relationship with Italian journalist Marco Brancaccia, while she and Colin, 59, were separated between 2015 and 2016.

Livia accused Brancaccia of stalking her after their 11-month relationship ended and, together with Firth, sued him in an Italian court for carrying out a “campaign of harassment.” (Brancaccia denied the accusations, and the case was settled out of court in July 2018.)

“Things never really came around for them [after that],” a film industry source tells PEOPLE in this week’s issue. “No matter what was decided when they stayed together after her affair, nothing could erase that betrayal. It was time to move on, even though they had a solid family relationship and really wanted to save it.”

[From People]

Their two sons are teenagers, and I imagine that the older boy is about to start his gap year and/or head to university. The younger boy is 16, so while I imagine there could be some “acting out” from the younger one, he’s old enough to understand the basics. For Colin and Livia, it’s not really about “we have to stay together for our family.” The kids get it. And so Colin and Livia just decided to end it. I do wonder about all of this though – we heard last year that Livia had her affair out of what amounted to boredom. Throughout all of those stories – not to mention the separation news – it feels like women have been eager to “find a reason” why it’s Colin’s fault. From what I’ve seen, Colin is thoroughly the wronged party, and he tried like hell to protect Livia (even from herself) and to save their marriage.

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56 Responses to “Colin Firth & Livia’s marriage suffered because ‘nothing could erase’ her betrayal”

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  1. Mignionette says:

    “…. had had an extramarital relationship with Italian journalist Marco Brancaccia, while she and Colin, 59, were separated between 2015 and 2016”

    How is that an ‘affair’…. THEY WERE ON A BREAK…. (i kid so don’t come for me)

    • (TheOG)@Jan90067 says:

      I ALWAYS think of Ross when I hear “…we/they were on a break!” lolol

    • Astrid says:

      Friends? LOL

    • Cali says:

      That’s my question. I’m thinking it’s her choice of break buddy ( I mean he was a stalker but did Colin know him?) or that she revealed personal things about Colin to break buddy that made reconciliation impossible. I personally do think that if I’m on “a break” in my marriage, I’d wait longer than a year to start dating though.

      • kgeo says:

        Right, you are connected to other people…a husband and kids. If you can’t take that into account when picking your side piece, and you end up bringing home the baggage of dating a stalker-type, I’d be a little put off too. It is in no way her fault that he is a stalker, but if my husband dated someone when we were on a break and she felt like a threat to my or my kids well being, it would make me rethink everything I thought I knew about him.

      • Eliza_ says:

        Her break buddy stalked her and colin. Sent colin intimate details about them and their time together. Even if “on a break” the emotional toll that “buddy” put them through would be hard to overcome. This was not a discreet rebound during a break (or discreet affair), but a troubled man who did not like she went back to (stayed with) colin.

    • stormsmama says:

      AHHH!!! great call! lol

    • Rocco says:

      What blows my mind is Firth has had dozens of sidechicks during his marriage. Weinstein literally paid for girls for him during the awards campaign he participated in. Still confused why all the blame is placed on the ex… I know Firth has the whole British gentleman, Mr. Darcy vibe – but his libido is not that..

      • Apple says:

        Rocco – curious about your comment. I’ve not ever seen reports like that about Colin Firth. I haven’t been able to find anything online about it – though there are so many articles about HW that it may be buried. Where has this been reported?

      • Ye says:

        Any sources for that info? I’ve never heard of this..

  2. Astrid says:

    Hard to say what happens in a marriage. If I was cheated on, that would be the “holy hand grenade” of destruction of the marriage. If a significant other can’t explain their unhappiness other than cheating, that would be the end for me.

  3. Lisa says:

    Not surprised and hopefully they will both be happier.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      I in no way think this mess is Colin’s fault but I do not think Colin is 100% faultless. I do not think we will ever really know all that went on unless someone writes a book or gives an interview to Oprah.

      • Lisa says:

        I agree but her part was made public however reluctantly and that spelled doom no matter how much blame there was to go around. Very difficult to repair the issues under those circumstances.

  4. Courtney says:

    People love to attempt to find a reason why the person cheated on deserves it. Maybe so they can better pretend it won’t happen to them?

    • Belli says:

      I think that’s exactly it. A lot of people try to rationalise horrible things, not just cheating. I think that rightly or wrongly there’s a train of thought that goes “well, if Colin Firth can be cheated on, what hope is there for the rest of us?”

    • The Hench says:

      There’s a great Ted talk by a couples’ therapist that holds that people cheat because of reasons inside themselves – not because of anything their partner does. You can’t ‘make’ someone cheat. That’s their decision and their action alone. Sure, Colin could be as scintillating as watching paint dry but shagging someone else is not the solution to that.

  5. (TheOG)@Jan90067 says:

    I can totally understand the split. For me, once a person cheats, how could you ever truly trust that person? I know “Dear Abby” and therapists say you can build trust again, marriages can be stronger with therapy… yada yada….but I couldn’t. Regardless of how much you *want* to be able to, (for me) the first time he’d be late and call with a reason/excuse, my *first* thought would go to “Who is he with?/Where is he really going?” Not “right” perhaps, but that’s where I know my thoughts would go.

    I do think in this case, they may’ve thought about ending the marriage sooner, if not for the stalking. That endangered their kids, and that’s a whole ‘nother ball game.

    • Turtledove says:

      I’m with you. I do think some people CAN successfully build trust again. But some of us just aren’t built that way and I would just prefer not to spend the rest of my life suspicious.

      • Christina says:

        Agree 100 percent. I’d have to leave. I HAVE left boyfriends who have cheated, and I’ve had to live with a cheating man as I worked hard to save up a deposit for a new place.

        I once left all of my crap and told my cheating ex to put my stuff in a box because I couldn’t enter our fabulous place, that I FOUND, again. I’m not built that way. I’ve never had a cheating husband.

    • Nikki* says:

      I know there are couples who can heal despite a cheating episode, but I think it’s far more common for it to erode the marriage irrevocably despite best efforts. Any time someone’s late getting home, anytime a phone rings at night, it’s all stirred up. Trust is very difficult to recover after a betrayal; I know I couldn’t do it.

  6. AnnaKist says:

    Whatever happened between them, he’s not going to be alone for long…

  7. Lucy says:

    Very sad, but obviously it was for the best. I don’t doubt that they care deeply about each other and always will.

  8. Paigeishere says:

    I don’t think they were separated, I think she cheated and they claimed it’d been during a separation to protect their images. The press said “a brief separation” then it came out it was an 11 month relationship. How do you fit a secret relationship of nearly a year into a brief break while still married? And there was never a period of time (much less 11 months) where they were not being photographed attending events as a couple.

    • stormsmama says:

      she had a passionate affair- maybe even told the dude she was gonna leave colin
      got busted
      tried to frame the other guy
      he was already batty so he leaned in to it and went nuts trying to get too colin
      and at the end he did
      he may not get Livia back in his arms
      but he got her back by helping ruin her marriage

      poor colin, in my opinion, got cheated on, then tried to be valiant and help save both her image and his marriage but at the end of the day she’s a selfish spouse who had a passionate affair for almost a year. It wasn’t just like a one time thing or something.

  9. Zapp Brannigan says:

    it seems like they tried to make of work but sometimes you can “unknow” the ways a person is willing to hurt you. Best that they both move on.

  10. Diana says:

    It’s so hard to speculate… marriage is difficult and layered. Relationship dynamics are nuanced. I wish them both the best… we really don’t have the full picture of what went on between them, only tidbits. I actually feel for them both. ❤️

    • Minxx says:

      I agree. Nobody knows what’s going on in a marriage except the couple. Maybe Colin had his own affairs that were never made public? I wish them both well.

      • Nikki* says:

        Mr. Darcy?? Please leave me my illusions; I’ve adored Colin Firth for 20 years. He’s the wronged party, Minxx!

      • Some chick says:

        Relationships are like shoes. Nobody knows what it’s like unless they are in it. And you can’t know what it would be like for someone else in those same shoes.

        My husband dumped me and I was suicidal. A longtime friend came and got me, took me to dinner and then we hooked up. Who knows what might have happened otherwise?
        Later, the husband changed his mind. When I told him what had gone on, he was like, “well… we were on a break.”
        And I really do think my friend might have saved my life that night. Because before he called me I was just drinking whiskey and crying.

  11. Jadedone says:

    This makes me like him more, the fact he wanted to protect the woman who cheated on him is really endearing and shows he is putting his children first.

  12. CityGirl says:

    I read somewhere else that he previously cheated on her and if that’s the case, they weathered that, but couldn’t weather her cheating on him? I understand it’s not good either way, but just asking. Also, and to be honest, my ex-husband cheated on me and I could never get past his cheating, nor the baby he created….

    • Basi says:

      Came here to say something similar. And maybe SHE just got caught. (Eyeroll. Not her fault her person was a psycho)

    • pottymouth pup says:

      even if he had cheated on her and they weathered that, his dalliance didn’t come with a huge dose of very public humiliation and grief in the form of a stalker w/need to file suit

  13. Valiantly Varnished says:

    Kaiser I completely agree. Livia cheating on her husband is Livia’s issue. We need to come to terms with the fact that women can be cheating a$$holes too. And just like when it’s the other way around and the man is the cheater we can’t blame Colin for her lack of fidelity.
    I don’t think Colin will have any issues finding love again should he choose to do so. He is much loved.

    • The Hench says:

      100% – we need to stop blaming one partner for the other’s infidelity. It’s a weird societal thing that in many ways is a hangover from the days when people saw it as a woman’s role to keep her husband happy and therefore it was her fault if he strayed. It’s a poisonous narrative either way round.

  14. Div says:

    I don’t think anyone was blaming Colin. It sucks and she did him wrong, and it was good of him to stick by her when they guy started harassing her.

    I think some of the speculation is because there were some weird comments from journalists (a British society one, for sure), not just blind items, about the marriage being “unusual” which raised some eyebrows.

  15. Mignionette says:

    They’ve been living separate lives for a while now, so I am guessing this is PR is for the purposes of allowing him to debut his new ingénue, whom I predict will be SIGNIFICANTLY younger that Livia….

    Mr Firth wants to preserve his squeaky clean good boy image for castings….

    • MrsK says:

      Bingo! I think it’s easy to conflate Mr. Darcy and Colin Firth. I hope Livia gets a good settlement out of all this because I would bet her public humiliation paled in comparison to what she’s had to live with. Think about why Colin didn’t walk away when this came out. My guess is Livia had the receipts on his behavior. And I would bet Mignionette is correct: we’ll see Colin with some under 30 starlet some time soon.

  16. Ruyana says:

    It always amazes me that any man views a woman’s infidelity as so much worse than their own. Why? Is it because they think men can do anything they want? Is it because they view women as their “property”, chattel , possession? And their “ownership” rights were violated? Why is a man’s cheating not a deal-breaker, but a woman’s *is*?

    • Christina says:

      Ruyana, bingo!! I agree with you. The cuckold stuff is every man’s fear. He is rumored to have cheated on her previously, but women are pressured by society and family to take men who cheat back for the kids, and women make less money than most men, so economics keeps many of us from leaving a cheating spouse. Men are pressured to punish the cheating spouse because they are being emasculated by the situation.

      In any case, male/female/they, people who cheat are the reason for the cheating. The partner has nothing to do with it. If you want to cheat, leave or at least tell your partner so that they can decide, but people are flawed and want to keep their families and mess around. The younger generations seem to be more open to recreational sex and open relationships, so maybe this won’t be as big of a thing to them as prior generations. I love my husband and want a closed marriage, so I’d be devastated if he cheated. It feels nice when other men or women compliment or flirt with me, but I don’t reciprocate because I know I am easy to flatter, i.e., VAIN, and I don’t want anybody else. My man is amazing ❤️

  17. Miriam says:

    I agree with you Kaiser about some women being DESPERATE to blame it on colin! Sad to see a couple of people claiming “rumours” they heard or read is proof that he is guilty or that he deserved it!!

    We can never know what goes on behind closed doors but intresting to see how they appeared together during the supposed “separation period”!!

  18. JanetFerber says:

    Funny that women are asked to “forgive” their husbands, but that men cannot “erase the betrayal.” Very different attitudes for the same act. I get that it’s an individual decision, but also that it’s heavily culturally weighted to favor men.

  19. Well-Wisher says:

    Clearly these are two people who tried but failed to save their marriage. All presumptions on my part, if they were private citizens and knowledge of the affair was unknown, they would have be successful in staying together.

  20. Bobbie says:

    There will be women lined up to around the block to date him.

  21. MrsK says:

    I love Mr./Mark Darcy as much as the next middle-aged woman BUT I don’t think it’s fair to pin the demise of this marriage on her. First of all, there have been rumors that he hasn’t been faithful. He has something of a track record of having affairs with co-stars. Secondly (and even worse, I think) , he was notably mum on Harvey Weinstein. He would have been in a perfect situation to speak up but he never did. I vaguely recall an article about a female co-star going to him to ask him to intervene in harassment she was receiving from Weinstein and he just advised her to stay away from him. I’ve always found his wife lovely and her ‘recycle fashion’ was ahead of its time. None of us knows what, exactly, went on in this marriage, but (having been married for some time myself), my guess is that she wanted some attention/affection and just chose unwisely.

    • windyriver says:

      Actually, regarding not speaking out about Weinstein, that isn’t true. He issued a very strong statement shortly after the NYT published the article on their investigation, condemning Weinstein, and supporting the women who spoke out.

      The comment about the co-star also doesn’t appear to be accurate. Apparently this refers to Sophie Dix, who was in one of his first films, Hour of the Pig, circa 1993. She didn’t ask him to intervene at the time, she told him about her encounter with Weinstein at a party some time after filming had wrapped. When the Weinstein allegations came out, she issued her own statement about her experiences. Firth then issued another statement in support confirming that she’d talked to him, though she hadn’t told him all the details at the time. “What I heard, it turns out, was part of a horrifying pattern. Other women have been hurt since. And those of us who didn’t act on our one bit of knowledge – and especially those of us who went on to work with Weinstein – have that on our conscience.”

      Her response – “I am delighted Colin has spoken and I remember him being very supportive at the time.”

      The above info is from two articles in the Guardian, mid-October 2017.

  22. Chantale says:

    Something tells the brake up is due to what she told her lover about Colin and their private life. The lover told Colin in a letter, I think. Colin just cannot live with the betrayal. I don’t think the affair is the issue. She probably said a lot of awful things about her mariage to her lover. She was bored and probably miserable, so she said things that should not have been said to someone like this crazy lover of hers.

    • Mignionette says:

      Agreed. Something felt insurmountable so much so they could not overcome it. I also wonder if Colin felt Livia acted in a silly / malicious way i.e. disclosing such intimate details to someone whom was essentially a journalist and set on the families destruction. That kind of reckless betrayal lingers, especially when it’s with someone with the ability to do that amount of destruction.