'Dexter' stars Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Carpenter file for divorce (EW exclusive)

MichaelC-Hall-CarpenterImage Credit: WireImage.com After nearly two years of marriage, Dexter stars Michael C. Hall, 39, and Jennifer Carpenter, 31, are divorcing. An exclusive joint statement to EW from their representatives read: “Having been separated for some time, Jennifer Carpenter and Michael C. Hall have filed for divorce.” Both reps add that the split was amicable. The couple — who met on the set of the Showtime drama, in which she plays his foster sister — married on December 31, 2008. Hall completed treatment for Hodgkin’s lymphoma earlier this year.


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  • George

    Wow!! that really sucks… i was rooting for them too!!

    • Seddie Forever!!!!!!!!!

      Is the 8 year difference partly to blame?

      In general what is the acceptable age difference when there will not be such a generational difference?
      I think 5 years is optimal, 8 is probably stretching it

      • René De Beaumarchais

        8 years diff is nothing!!! Up to 15 is nothing even. Problems start at 20 years diff.

      • SirLizard

        Such a minor age difference actually makes NO difference whatsoever when people are right for each other.

      • MT

        And 8 year age difference is nothing for adults. There is no “generational difference” between a 31 year old and a 39 year old.

      • Louise

        The real problem is when she is young enough to wear diapers, and he is old enough to wear diapers.

      • Ellen

        There is a ten year difference between me and my husband and we’ve been married for 17 years. it just depends on the people. Is it really a big surprise that it didn’t last?

      • DT

        After a certain age, the age difference doesn’t matter. It’s not like she just graduated high school. If they are both in their 30s or if she’s a twenty-something comfortable with dating a 30-something, who cares? You make it sound like he went to Woodstock and she’s still in college or something.

      • mike Wolf

        To get the proper age difference you take half of the mans age and add 7 years. Works every time.

      • Joe

        General rule:
        (Woman’s age) >or= [(Man’s age)/2 +7]

      • Anonymous

        Why do people care if another couple has an age difference? My boyfriend and I have an 18 year age difference and have been together 2 and a half years. The only people who’ve had issues with it are the ones my age. They’re mainly annoyed that it’s one less person they can date, though.

      • K42

        According to the abovementioned rule, a 60-year old man is appropriate with a 37-year old woman. Also, 50-year old man, 32-year old woman. 40-year old man, 27-year old woman. As a rule of thumb, that’s hilarious, you don’t really have to wonder if that was a man’s or a woman’s idea. :)

      • conch

        Shhhhh… Don’t Tell Celine and René that their 26-year difference isn’t to your formula’s expectations.
        Sometimes, and this is a secret, sometimes people just aren’t right for each-other.

      • Jim

        What the hell does physical age have to do with their break-up? A question should be realizing a couple’s psychological age difference…

      • Leo

        I’m 8 years younger and for us it worked out really well (its been 16 years and counting)
        I think it was other issues. Sometimes when a person goes thru a life and death situation, they reevaluate what they want out of life and who they want to be with. That probably had alot more to do with it than age.

      • Edana

        My parents are 15 years apart and have been married for 38 years. In fact my current bf and I are 14 years apart. (and right in there with that formula. He’s 41 and I’m 28) Age has nothing to do with a relationship especially if the man is the older one.


        Seddie, I agree that EVEN 8 YEARS CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. My ex-boyfriend was 7 years older than me and he acted like such an old man! He’s very conservative, very traditional, narrow minded and has these old school beliefs. I just couldn’t relate to him anymore. The oldest I’ll date is a man 4 years older.

      • Lemon

        How old are you??? We’re not talking 15 and 23 here. Eight years is nothing. My sister had a loving committed relationship with a man 25 years older than her…they were together 10 years until he died of cancer. My aunt and uncle were 17 years apart and happily married. It’s not so much about age…but about what the two of you want at the same time.

      • Doctor Feelgood

        One thing i’ve discovered in a half century is that age is just a number. It’s the chemistry between two people that is the most important. Life experience and trust is essential in making a relationship last.

      • fifi

        I agree that 5 yrs is about the max age difference I’d have. I’ve been with my partner 18 yrs & we have a 5 yr difference & already have different cultural references & energy levels as we age. People I know, across all age ranges, generally want to be with someone not too far apart in age. You have shared cultural memories that way.

      • Jacoby

        Yeah she was too old!

      • Jacoby

        Half your age plus 7 is the rule, so he should be with a 26 – 27 year old. Go for it Mikey!

      • Zakry

        Very stupid commment.

      • Aaron

        I’m 10 years older than my wife and we’re doing just fine.

      • Charley

        They say the optimal age difference is for the woman to be half the man’s age, plus 8 years.

      • psychokitten78

        Well, with the age difference, that’s really not a huge leap. Having seen it at various ages I think as you start to get a bit older it makes less and less of a difference. Maturity level pays a huge part as well.

        I’ve seen a 30 year old hook up with a 20 year old and age definitely split them up. 30 year old was ready to settle down and start a family and 20 year old still wanted to be young and not tied down with kids. On the other hand, my partner is 11 years older than myself. No issues, neither of us are into the party scene add to that that we’re both parents…the age makes no difference.

      • kyg

        half one’s age plus 7 is the youngest age that one should consider dating someone. They’re both in their 30s, I don’t really see a problem with that. Sometimes relationships just don’t pan out. I wish them both luck.

      • meh

        If anyone watches the show, Debra dated a man twice her age and it was fine… until he got shot.

      • katherine

        There is 10 years between my hubby and i and its fine. If you look at when they started dating and his first marriage ended….theres a little clue there. I would say working together is hard besides the fact they are always making out with others on the show!!

      • Nat

        Excuse me I have a 30 year age difference between my husband and myself. We have been married for 11 years and have 4 kids. If two people have similar interests, personalities, and can find things to talk about then age doesn’t matter. I personally think it is ridiculous that anyone would suggest that an 8 year age difference would be the cause of a break up of a Hollywood marriage. I also think it is ridiculous that there is 16+ pages of comments on this crap. Ok they are getting divorced we get it. I don’t think it needs to be analyzed to closely. P.S. KYG..what mathematical calculation did you use to come up with half ones age plus 7. According to your calculations anyone 23 and under who went by your guidelines would be illegal. I think if you are not in or have ever been in a may-december romance then you should not pass an opinion on what you don’t know and have never experienced.

    • Just Jules

      I was rooting for them too…. :o(

      • Just Jules


      • james

        Me 2 :o(

    • etm

      Me too, George.

      • ryan

        Wow! I forgot that he was getting treatment! and he still did a great job on the show!!! Plus Im sure he knew this was coming so he still did a great job on the show, and not to belittle dexter but debs character had to handle him being sick and the imminent divorce and she was great as well!

    • Stella

      I was rooting for them too. Although I shouldn’t be suprised, because this is after all Hollywood, I still am suprised. I thought they were going to last, at least longer than two years. I wish both of them the best.

      • Doctor Feelgood

        It almost seems that the marriage wasn’t working from the start & that she stayed with him longer due to his battle with cancer….it’s also quite possible that his perceptions on life changed drastically (which is common) during his battle against cancer & realized the marriage wasn’t working & that there are more important things in life…that life is way too short.

    • lilian

      It’s none of my business, but I could not help feeling disappointed. Please, let not the next piece of news be “Michael C. Hall and Julia Stiles are getting engaged”…

      • Lottiemae

        I was thinking maybe it was Julia Stiles and M.C.H’s chemistry that broke them up.

      • Acfox1191

        Me too!! I thought they did sooo good together on the show! I’m bummed she left though… Maybe, hopefully, she will return next season…


      I agree with Seddie that EVEN 8 YEARS CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE. My ex-boyfriend was 7 years older than me and he acted like such an old man! He’s very conservative, very traditional, narrow minded and has these old school beliefs. I just couldn’t relate to him anymore.

      • Dexter Fan 34

        Maybe that was just who he was and had nothing to do with age. I think there are more people out there that will say there is a big age difference between them and their significant other but they still love each other than there are those that say it’s a problem.

        Maybe Michael C. Hall & Jennifer Carpenter just weren’t compatible? I think that is much more likely than the “age difference” theory.

      • Lemon

        Agree with Dexter Fan 34. I dated a man my age who was very immature and a man three years younger who was leagues above him.

      • Zakry

        That was your ex-boyfriend. All people are not the same! Duh.

      • buffy

        i dated a guy who was nine years older than me, and he was an immature dimwit. the relationship didn’t work out because he wasn’t on my level. so it’s all arbitrary.

    • Rush

      I thought he was gay.

      • kathy

        Rush, Michael C. Hall was a Gay undertaker in SIX FEET UNDER, it’s called ACTING!

      • luman

        Rush, you’re an idiot

    • kellie Auble

      Age does matter for sure!! I have been married for 15 years to a man 13 years older.our marriage was okay for the first 2 years has only declined since then.5 years at max is best for both partys.

  • Annie

    Awwwwww this is so sad! :(

    • yawn

      Naaaa, they were both tired of hitting “that”. Neither one of them is gonna be single for long anyway.

  • Thiago

    Sad news. :(

  • HomeSkillet

    That’s too bad. Sorry to hear that. On another note, when will writers/journalist stop using “getting a divorce” and begin using “divorcing” in their write-ups? You’re supposed to be professionals … write like it.

    • Cece

      Wow! That was kind of mean. As a journalist, it’s bad enough to make mistakes caught by a reader. No need to rub salt by questioning our professionalism.

      • skip

        You can’t possibly be a real journalist with a misplaced modifier that obvious.

      • No

        It’s their job if they can’t handle the criticism they should find another.

      • TGS

        @Skip: Trust me, as a former proof reader it is very possible for professional journalists to make every mistake under the rainbow. Everyone makes mistakes — most journalists focus more on the content of the article than the way it’s actually written. Sad fact!

      • Jonesy

        This must be your first time on the internet. You’ll soon see that no writer/blogger/professional journalist proofs anything they write on the web. This mistake is trivial compared to what you’ll find on sites such as CNN, New York Times, etc. It’s print and publish asap.

      • DivaSoulSista

        As a blogger and a writer, I can tell you that the most difficult thing to do is to proof your own writing.

      • Chucki

        Questioning prodessionalism is off the mark, in reality, it’s the maturity of the author that makes a writer a success, or just a nosey word pusher without morals. Point; “ou Can’t Make A Silk Purse Out Of A Sow’s Ear.” Just too many hacks out there!

    • henrietta

      @home skillet – This forum is a chatty one, after all…and I’d think that even you may have heard the phrase “getting a divorce” in normal daily (unpublished) conversation…not to mention that it’s likely the EW writers are aware that the content of these boards will not be considered by the pulitzer board or the nobel committee…Not sure I get your point. And yes, I’m aware of my overuse of ellipses…

      • lolkat

        This is the most ridiculously unprofessional post I have ever seen in a comments section at an Internet website. They’re not called “ellipses,” they’re called “little dots” or “mouse droppings.”

      • Nikki

        Oh, lolkat, you just made me LOL all alone in my living room save for my dog who gave me a strange look. That was some unexpected hilarity. :D

      • dewfen

        I’m with Nikki on this one. That was an incredibly funny comment. Made me laugh out loud and my dogs also gave me “the look” (I disturbed their after dinner nap).

    • me

      I agree this is sad.
      @Homeskillet I’m reading the article and it states “…Dexter stars Michael C. Hall, 39, and Jennifer Carpenter, 31, are divorcing.” I believe that is stated exactly as you suggested. So, why are you bringing it up with this article?

    • MemphisMom

      I had a friend who refused to say “getting a diverce.” She said that made it sound too much like a cheery gift. She would only say “we are divorcing.”

      • MemphisMom

        darn- that was divorce, not diverce…

      • popsyP

        dant ya meen dern?

    • popsyP

      really, Skillet, really? Peoples make mistakes all the times. i mean what up withyu? Here we are reading about some poor family breaking up and the obvious 8yr differance and the culprit and all yu can offer is the errers? Why dont you just worry about your-own-self, and things will be dandy. mmK?

      • Jordy


      • Chelsea

        Jordy…really?? Clearly popsys was making an example of all you retards who are super analytical. Good job for falling for it.

      • popsyP

        Thx Chels, I am in appreciating of the support in my English andevours.
        ps Jordy, really…really? I count at least 6 errors in my comment and you come back with 50% of ‘em. With my personal Fave ‘your-own-self’ as the biggie. Nice job.

        pss. is jordy short for Jordan from Big Brother? jus’ askin

    • Edana

      I regret to inform you that the post does not read “getting a divorce”. It does in fact read “are divorcing”. I believe that you should reread something to make sure you have your facts right before posting.

      • T

        I was wondering about that, I scrolled back up the page to check it out. Is it possible it was changed to satisfy the grammar nazis?

      • popsyP

        i think E-dub fixed it, it did actually read “getting” yesserday. Mr. E-dub probably ordered a fix pronto since so many panties were bunchin…mmmmmm bunched panties

    • Di

      I’m confused by the indignation. Yes, I understand that one cannot “get” a divorce at the supermarket along with a loaf of bread, but does this, actually, qualify as a grammatical error? To me it seems like it’s just an informal expression, appropriate for a gossip/entertainment site.

      • T

        Maybe, HomeSkillet is Jewish. To “get a divorce” has a slightly different meaning in Judaism.

      • popsyP

        i am confused by the word indignation too. whats up with that?

  • googie

    wow! sad!

  • Joe B.

    Now if only I could legally get married only to realize I’d made a huge mistake a year and a half later I would feel a little bit more EQUALITY up in here.

    • JP

      Of course, you just had to say something about prop 8 related stuff anywhere you can squeeze it

      • anakinjmt

        Prop 8? I thought he was talking about wanting to marry his dog!

    • Kelcie

      Well, I hope that you wouldn’t have to experience that. Equality or not. Divorce isn’t something to wish for…

      This is terrible news. I wish for the best for them both.

  • Jenny

    so bummed to hear this!

    • tina

      Look on the bright side, he’s available!

      • Smitty

        Yes, but not to a woman. The age difference has nothing to do with it. The gay thing does :)

  • Kwini

    I am completely devastated. They are both to great people who went through so much together, with Jennifer standing by Michael while he underwent cancer treatment. I wish the both happiness. And no awkward feelings on set for next year.

    • Buffy Freak

      Really? Completely devastated that two people you don’t even know are divorcing? Jeez I hope nothing terrible happens to you or anyone you actually know….

      • To Buffy Freak

        How do you know that the poster doesn’t know the couple? Is it inconceivable that tv stars have friends or aquaintances that would come to a website like this? I’m not saying that definitely applies here, just that it can. Have some common sense and quit being so ignorant.

      • Buffy Freak

        I sppose that is a miniscule possibilty. But I really doubt that a friend would come here to post about their friend’s divorce, even anonymously.

      • dusen

        Yeah, Buffy Freak, stop bein’ so ignorant! Don’t you know that friends of family of said couple recieve their updates from EW.com, and not the stars themselves? I bet you dollars to donuts that Kwini is Michael C. Hall’s sister…or even mother!!

      • Buffy Freak

        LOL! Dusen you’re right…my bad! And I’m sure Michael and Jennifer (or Mickey and Jen-Jen as Kwini probably calls them) are thrilled to have their friends airing their feelings on the internet.

    • Jeff4eee

      So What Happened?? Enquiring minds want to know!! Did he get better and figured he could do better?
      It is too bad I like them both and as a couple they seemed to fit well or at least look good together. But if Jennifer is as high strung in real life as she is on the show, and If Michael is like Dexter Meaning low key hard to wind up, I can see that, that mix may not work well together. I like them together though. I hope it can work out. Actually I hope they are Happy That is what I wish for…

  • bucks

    Someone is gonna die next season

    • soz


      And in other news, I’m still sad.

    • Kathryn


    • Chris R

      And the show ain’t called “Deborah”

      • MCS

        And Debra ain’t one of the producers who gets a say in what happens on the show either. I say main actor and producer credit trumps supporting.

    • kathy

      Hey, Bucks I’ll clue you in, someone dies EVERY WEEK, it’s DEXTER!!!!

      • popsyP

        I think ya missed the point yo

  • Sadie

    Pretty disappointing, I love Michael C Hall and Dexter. I wish him and Jennifer the best. Hopefully there won’t be any repercussions on the set of Dexter.

    • Hannah

      That’s what I was thinking…

    • Ashley G.

      Yeah that was my first reaction too, I just hope everything stays professional on set so that the show is not affected.

      • Nhlanhla

        I do like the way you have presented this palracutir challenge and it really does offer me personally a lot of fodder for consideration. Nonetheless, because of what I have observed, I just simply hope as other opinions pile on that men and women continue to be on point and not get started on a soap box of some other news du jour. Still, thank you for this excellent piece and whilst I do not concur with it in totality, I respect your point of view.

  • LJ

    What a shocker! They seemed so in love and supportive of eachother. Her heartfelt tears during interviews when he was battling cancer come to mind now. I hope that the battle with cancer wasn’t what tore them apart. Wish them both the best.

    • DivaSoulSista

      Wow, they’ve were married for two years and their ‘rep’ said that they’d been separated for some time. I wonder how long they were actually together?

      BTW, my boyfriend is a decade younger than me and we’re doing just fine! :)

  • Meeeeeeeee

    I literally yelled “WHAT THE ***”!

    • Chaz Winterbottom

      Literally? So you yelled, “What the three asterisks”?


      • Prunella Von Schleidlhaagen

        I think I love you.

      • Jaded

        Chaz, that would have been super funny if the asterisks weren’t put in automatically by the profanity filter.

      • mr. winter

        no, i’m pretty sure chaz still wins.

      • soz

        I thought that was the joke?

    • Ted Mosby

      You mean figuratively!!!

      • soz

        Haha, shut up Ted

  • terance

    I thought he could get better! Guess I was right.

    • George Costanza

      Get better? She’s younger, hotter, and stood by him during his battle with cancer. WTF are you talking about? You must be one of this George Costanza types who’s short, bald, fat, unemployed, ugly and has a horrible personality yet you expect to date beautiful models. HAHAHAHA That’s why the George types end up all alone.

    • Jeff

      Agreed, terance. Now if he’d married and divorced Julie Benz, I’d be disappointed.

  • Dee

    I’m really shocked and sad for them.

    • fgh

      So she dumped him because je got Cancer? Nice move.

      • soz

        To be fair, we have no idea who initiated the divorce or why they’re getting it. Let’s not get too judgey.

  • j

    That is sad i really wanted them to work out

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