Meg Ryan’s Looks Have Changed since She Disappeared after Divorce – Now She’s a Single Mom of 2

Meg Ryan was once considered Hollywood’s most coveted “It Girls” in her heyday. Her striking smile and captivating blue eyes set her apart from the crowd, and despite never envisioning herself as an actress, she captivated audiences with her versatile performances.

Her acting journey began when she portrayed Debbie Blake in the 1981 drama “Rich and Famous.” Later, she joined the cast of the CBS soap opera “As The World Turns,” where she took on the role of Elizabeth “Betsy” Stewart.

Meg Ryan in "Hanging Up," circa 2000 | Source: Getty Images

Meg Ryan in “Hanging Up,” circa 2000 | Source: Getty Images

In the mid-’80s, she took on a supporting role in the box office hit “Top Gun,” alongside Tom CruiseVal Kilmer, and Kelly McGillis among others. She then achieved critical acclaim with her appearance in the 1987 film, “Promised Land.” That same year, she also filmed the sci-fi movie “Innerspace,” where she met her husband, Dennis Quaid.

Despite an initial attraction, they did not start dating until they starred in the thriller film “D.O.A” the following year. They exchanged vows on Valentine’s Day in 1991 and welcomed their son Jack in 1992.

Ryan disclosed that they had not planned the wedding and had woken up one morning and decided that was the day. They went to City Hall, but the line was too long, so they had their concierge at the Hotel Bel-Air in Los Angeles track down a minister, and the lovebirds married in their hotel room.

Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan, circa 1989 | Source: Getty Images

Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan, circa 1989 | Source: Getty Images

A year into their dating, Ryan landed her breakthrough role playing Sally in the romantic comedy-drama “When Harry Met Sally,” a role that earned her a Golden Globe nomination. Over the next decade, her career spiked, making her a household name.

Unfortunately, the dramatic rise in her career did not sit well with her husband. Quaid, also an actor recognized for such films as “I Can Only Imagine,” “Strange World,” and “The Parent Trap,” among others, was not happy that his wife was more famous than him. During an interview, Quaid said he was a big deal when he and Ryan met, but as their relationship progressed, the tables turned.

Actor Dennis Quaid on April 17, 2019, in Studio City, California | Source: Getty Images

Actor Dennis Quaid on April 17, 2019, in Studio City, California | Source: Getty Images

His career began dwindling, even as Ryan gained more popularity. Whenever they would be out on the streets, fans would only shout her name, and slowly but surely, it started getting under Quaid’s skin. He confessed:

“I have to admit it. I actually did feel like I disappeared. I didn’t think I was that small, but I was.”

In retrospect, he says the jealous stint shouldn’t have happened. However, he long decided not to cry over spilled milk, took it as a learning opportunity, and has since grown from it. Sadly, as the world ushered in the dawn of a new millennium, “The Day After Tomorrow” actor and the “In The Land of Women” actress were mourning the end of their union.

Meg Ryan circa 1990 in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Meg Ryan circa 1990 in New York City | Source: Getty Images

Leaving Hollywood for a Quiet Life

Ryan and Quaid announced their separation in 2000, and their divorce became final in July 2001. However, they maintained a relationship even after the split because of their then-8-year-old son Jack.

Ryan’s break from Hollywood wasn’t just about her career.

In August 1998, sources reported seeing them together as they accompanied their son to the movies and church. They had been reportedly separated for a while at this point. Following the announcement of their separation, something else also started happening in Ryan’s life. She began hanging out with “Proof of Life” costar Russell Crowe.

Actors Russell Crowe and Meg Ryan in Manhattan on November 22, 2000 | Source: Getty Images

Actors Russell Crowe and Meg Ryan in Manhattan on November 22, 2000 | Source: Getty Images

And when Ryan and Quaid finally divorced, the rumor mills began spinning, with many speculating that she had left her union for Crowe. Ryan took a lot of heat for it, but years later, she clarified to the world that her seemingly happy marriage hadn’t “been a happening marriage” and had been a very unhealthy one for a long time.

She told Oprah she had made a colossal mistake by staying in her marriage longer than she should have: “It was never about another man. It was only about what my and Dennis’ relationship couldn’t sustain.”

Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe on March 11, 2000, in California | Source: Getty Images

Meg Ryan and Russell Crowe on March 11, 2000, in California | Source: Getty Images

She forever remains grateful for Crowe, who stood by her side despite being called a home-wrecker, something Ryan says could not be further from the truth:

“I didn’t leave my marriage for Russell Crowe. I left my marriage…My marriage wasn’t working.”

Initially, Ryan said neither she nor Quaid was to blame for the collapse of their marriage. She openly declared that “The Intruder” actor was an honorable man, and he had never cheated.

Actor Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan on December 21, 1998, in Los Angeles, California | Source: Getty Images

Actor Dennis Quaid and Meg Ryan on December 21, 1998, in Los Angeles, California | Source: Getty Images

Ironically, Ryan later confessed that Quaid had cheated on her for a long time, but she only found out about it after their divorce. Each blamed the other for the failure of their marriage, with Ryan blaming Quaid’s wayward ways and Quaid blaming Ryan’s fame.

People’s perception of her was a far cry from the heroines she played in the movies that made America fall in love with her, and any attempts to clean her image hit a brick wall.

Even her confession about Quaid cheating on her did not shift the criticism from her. Eventually, Ryan and Quaid went through a highly publicized divorce, and instead of sympathizing with her, people continued to blame her for her doomed marriage.

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