When the Oscar and Emmy Awards winner Steve Martin met the beautiful Tony award-winning actress and singer Bernadette Peters. Her independence, more than anything else, attracted him to her.
Steve Martin is known for his contribution to the comedy fraternity, with his first show, "The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour," winning him an Emmy. He has also written many other comedic shows such as "The Glen Campbell Goodtime Hour."
His undeniable talent is, however, not limited to comedy. He featured in movies such as "Three Amigos" and "Dead Men do not Wear Plaid."
Martin earned his star status on "The Jerk," which brought in over $100 million despite the film's $4 million production budget.
Bernadette Peters began her career as a child star and performed on stage until her teenage years. In 1976, she appeared on "The Muppet Show," then on "Silent Movie," followed by "The Jerk."
In the '80s, she became one of Broadway's most known stars. The actress also has roots in singing and has recorded several albums as well as starred in musicals such as "Gypsy," Annie Get Your Gun," "Song and Dance," among others.
HOW MARTIN AND PETERS MET
Martin and Peter's meeting was by chance as Martin's then-agent, who first introduced them to each other. Even though Martin was, at the time, considered the king of stand-up, their first meeting was uneventful.
They met a second time at Kenny Rogers celebrity softball league, which they'd both joined. The third time was the charm, as Martin knew he had to make a move when they met again on Hollywood Square.
He asked her out, and soon after, they began dating. Their relationship would run for the next four years, and during their time together, they worked on films such as "The Jerk" and "Pennies from Heaven."
The fun fact is that Peters' role on "The Jerk" was written by Martin, specifically for her. The comedy show had beautiful moments where the couple shared with their audience, such as when they sang the classic love hit "Tonight You Belong To Me."
"The Jerk" is considered the film that kicked Martin into the throws of fame and one of the industry's funniest films of all time.
THEIR THOUGHTS ON EACH OTHER
While theirs was not love at first sight, the two soon grew so close together that all they ever said to and about each other was sweet little compliments.
Peters thought Martin was a comical genius. Instyle reports her speaking fondly of Martin on her interview with The Guardian, saying:
"He can be wild and crazy, but basically, he's a very serious guy."
Even though she was a star in her own right, Martin recalled his attraction stemmed from Peters' sense of independence and ability to talk about anything.
The two continued making history together and even discussed the possibility of Peters moving in with Martin, something that did not come to fruition.
In 1982, the couple split up, and up until now, none of them ever disclosed why they decided to end their relationship. Five years later, Peters made it clear that she didn't feel ready for marriage when questioned about it.
LIFE AFTER THE BREAKUP
Despite breaking up, the pair continued making great content for their fans. Martin went on to appear in "Three Amigos" alongside longtime friends Martin Short and Chevy Chase.
He's also appeared in "Parenthood" and "Father of the Bride." In 1986, he met and married Victoria Tennant, but eight years in, the marriage dissolved. He then married Anne Stringfield in 2007 and had his first child in 2012.
The star continues to live by his mantra, "Chaos in the midst of chaos isn't funny, but chaos in the midst of order is," and it is evident in his latest project, Hulu drama and comedy "Only Murders in the Building," alongside his personal friend of many years Martin Short, and musician Selena Gomez.
On the other hand, Peters continued to put her talent to work in both film and music and has, over time, bagged many enviable accolades, including three Emmy nominations, three Grammy nominations, a Golden Globe, and three Tony's.
The star has also been the recipient of the desired star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In addition to her revered film and musical portfolio, she is also a best-selling author and has written three children's books - "Stella and Charlie: Friends Forever," "Stella Is A Star," and "Broadway Barks."
In 1996, she met and fell in love with an investment adviser Michael Wittenberg and was married to him for nine years until he met his untimely and unfortunate death through a helicopter crash in 2005.
Wittenburg and Peters were complete opposites. Peters loved the fame and spotlight that came with it, while her husband loved the quiet side of Hollywood.
They'd met under curious circumstances outside her apartment. Wittenburg was dressed to the nines and headed to a charity event when he saw her. She recalls the night:
“So he walked up to me, a stranger, and said, ‘Are we ready to go?’ How’s that for confidence and a sense of humor?”
Wittenburg was 14 years her junior, but when the couple hit it off, the rest of their married life was nothing but bliss. He often accompanied her on her out-of-town shows.
Peters described him as a calm and steady presence in her life. Their personal life was well guarded, and they loved spending their alone time huddled up in their Upper West Side penthouse apartment.
They did not have children of their own but were pet parents to a mixed terrier named Kramer and a pitbull they named Stella.
Her friends, family, and acquaintances, including Martin, were hopeful that the loss of her beloved would not bar her from continuing her work on Broadway.