Chris Rock and his wife are divorcing after nearly 20 years of marriage.
“After much contemplation and 19 years of marriage, Chris and I have decided to go our separate ways,” Malaak Compton-Rock, founder of the nonprofit styleWorks, said in a statement Sunday. “Being fortunate enough to lead a life of service by working with those most vulnerable makes me well aware of life’s blessings, even when faced with difficulties.
“While recognizing that this is a significant change, my children remain at the center of my life and their well-being is my top priority. It is in this spirit that I sincerely ask that their privacy and the privacy of our family be respected during this transition in our lives.”
Robert S. Cohen, Rock’s attorney, confirmed the news.
“Chris Rock has filed for divorce from his wife, Malaak,” Cohen said in a statement. “This is a personal matter and Chris requests privacy as he and Malaak work through this process and focus on their family.”
— The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) December 29, 2014
A source close to the couple, who have two daughters together, told People that “this was a long time coming. Chris has known it wasn’t salvageable for a while. He was the one to file because he knew it was time to just move forward already.”
It has been a rocky road for the couple over the course of the past few years. In 2007, they shot down rumors that their marriage was on the rocks.
— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) December 28, 2014
“Though we have tried in the past to take the high road and not comment on the tabloid media, we find it necessary to express on record how unfortunate it is that the Daily News, specifically, and other tabloid outlets have chosen to print untrue rumors and lies about our family and marriage,” the couple said in a statement to People. “It is extremely hurtful to us, our children, and our extended family. We remain, as always, very happy and committed to our marriage and the beautiful family that we have built.”