According to yahoo.com on 12th April 2007, basketball legend Michael Jordan, Neil Diamond and Steven Spielberg top a new Forbes magazine list of the 10 most costly celebrity divorce settlements.
After topping the NBA scoring tables, now it’s Michael Jordan’s turn to top the list of divorce costs. Indeed, it could very well turn out to be the most expensive celebrity divorce ever. His wife Juanita Vanoy filed for divorce last year after 18 years of marriage, and she could get half his fortune i.e. USD150 million (about half a billion ringgit Malaysia!).
Mike and Juanita in happier times (1999)
Juanita, 4 years older than Mike were introduced to him at a restaurant in 1984. Mike proposed in 1987 and married in 1989. Smart lady, they signed a post-nuptial agreement a year and a half after their wedding. Problems brewed in less than 3 years later in Jan 2002, when she filed for divorce citing the oft-used phrase: irreconcilable differences. She withdrew it a month later. But, 4 years later in 2006, citing the same thing, lawyers announced that the 2 have decided to really divorce.
They have 3 kids, including one born before they got married. Juanita is a former model & former executive secretary for the American Bar Association.
They had a home near Chicago: a 25,000 sq foot home with six bedrooms on 7.5 acres. It has a guest house, indoor/outdoor swimming pool, jacuzzi & sauna & a huge garage.
- Juanita about Michael, March 2000: “He is a great husband and father. He is very attentive, romantic and affectionate, and when he is away for a period of time, he sends me roses. He knows that I love roses.”
Jordan about Juanita, 1991: “I like independent people. She always was very independent. She knew hot to work and provide for herself, which is what I loved. I love her and I never wanted to take her away from her independence. She still does what she wants, and I love for her to do that. Sher is more of the stern side of this relationship. And I like that.”
Juanita about Michael, 1991: “He’s affectionate and romantic. We often have candlelight dinners. He likes champagne, and he sends me flowers all the time. He never forgets a birthday or anniversary, and he loves buying jewelry. He picks out clothes for me all the time. He has good taste.”
To me, it all means that there is no such thing as “…and they lived happily ever after.” That’s life.
Perhaps splashing out at Reeds.com jewelry store would make him feel a bit better.
A close silver medal goes to Neil Diamond, at USD150 million, which he paid to ex Marcia Murphey. They married in 1969 and divorced 27 years later.
Bronze medal goes to Steven Spielberg, who had to give roughly half his fortune i.e. USD100 million to his first wife Amy Irving. Their marriage ended in 1989.
Others in the top 10:
- Harrison Ford, Melissa Mathison (1st wife), USD85 million.
- Kevin Costner, Cindy Silva (1st wife), USD80 million. 16 years of marriage.
- Paul McCartney, Heather Mills, USD60 million. Sir Paul is estimated to be worth USD700 million. He should be able to comfortably afford it.
- James Cameron, Linda Hamilton, USD50 million – half of what he earned for “Titanic”
- Michael Douglas, Diandra (1st wife), USD45 million.
- Lionel Richie, Diane (2nd wife), USD20 million.
- Mick Jagger, Jerry Hall, between USD15 million & USD25 million.