Sad news for Ben Stiller and his wife Christine Taylor as they announce that they are going their separate ways after not far off two decades of marriage during which they raised two chilren together. They have revealed, however, that they plan to remain firm friends.

Ben Stiller and Christine Taylor at the 'Zoolander 2' premiereBen Stiller and Christine Taylor at the 'Zoolander 2' premiere

The couple have been together 18 years, and married for 17. But now, as it sometimes goes, they've reached the end of the road and have made the decision to separate amicably. The reasons for the split are, as yet, unclear but it seems they are dead set on staying close.

'With tremendous love and respect for each other, and the 18 years we spent together as a couple, we have made the decision to separate', they told ET in a joint statement. 'Our priority will continue to be raising our children as devoted parents and the closest of friends. We kindly ask that the media respect our privacy at this time.'

51-year-old Ben and 45-year-old Christine met during the filming of a Fox TV pilot called 'Heat Vision and Jack' which Ben directed and Christine starred in. It never aired but it also starred the likes of Jack Black and Owen Wilson. After just one year together, they decided to get hitched and tied the knot officially in May 2000 in a ceremony overlooking the ocean in Kauai, Hawaii.

In April 2002 they welcomed their first child into the world: a daughter named Ella Olivia. Three years later in July 2005, their first son Quinlin Dempsey was born. 

Since meeting, the pair have starred in a number of movies together including 2001's 'Zoolander', 2004's 'Dodgeball: A True Underdog Story', 2008's 'Tropic Thunder' and most recently 2016's 'Zoolander 2'. They have also both appeared in the TV series 'Curb Your Enthusiasm' and 'Arrested Development'. 

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Ben is known to have previously dated the likes of Jeanne Tripplehorn, Calista Flockhart and Amanda Peet.