Why did Anne Heche and Ellen break up? Relationship explored as former talk show host reacts to ex's car crash accident 

Anne Heche's former girlfriend Ellen DeGeneres recently reacted to her near-fatal car crash incident (Image via Getty Images)
Anne Heche's former girlfriend Ellen DeGeneres recently reacted to her near-fatal car crash incident (Image via Getty Images)

Anne Heche’s former partner Ellen DeGeneres recently addressed Heche's horrific car crash that sent her into a coma. According to Entertainment Tonight, a photographer asked DeGeneres if she had the chance to speak to Heche since her near-fatal accident. The talk show host replied:

“No, have not. We’re not in touch with each other, so I wouldn’t know.”

However, DeGeneres sent her good wishes to Heche and said:

“I don’t want anyone to be hurt.”

When the photographer pointed out that Heche's accident was “dangerous” in nature, DeGeneres replied saying, “sure was.”


Anne Heche was taken to the hospital on August 5 after she crashed her blue Mini Cooper into a two-storey Los Angeles house. Her car was engulfed in flames, leaving the actress severely burned.

On Monday, August 8, Heche’s representative told Entertainment Tonight that the actress was in a coma and had to undergo surgical intervention to treat her burns:

“At this time, Anne is in extreme critical condition. She has a significant pulmonary injury requiring mechanical ventilation and burns that require surgical intervention. She is in a coma and has not regained consciousness since shortly after the accident.”
Actress Anne Heche severely burned in fiery car crash.

Ellen DeGeneres and Anne Heche started dating in 1997 but the duo parted ways in 2000. Reports suggest that they had an “amicable break up” and decided to call it quits because the relationship was “not working.”

Looking into Ellen DeGeneres and Anne Heche’s past relationship

Ellen DeGeneres and Anne Heche were together between 1997 and 2000 (Image via Getty Images)
Ellen DeGeneres and Anne Heche were together between 1997 and 2000 (Image via Getty Images)

Ellen DeGeneres and Anne Heche first met at a Vanity Fair party in 1997 and immediately hit it off. The former opened up about their meeting during a 1998 interview with the Tampa Bay Times and said:

“I met her at the Vanity Fair party. And it was a chemistry thing that you can’t really describe. It just happened. Obviously, I was attracted to her, but that wasn’t enough. There are a lot of attractive people. She is so unique.”

The duo made their red carpet debut at the premiere for Heche’s 1997 film Volcano. The actress later spoke about the event in the 2018 Irish Goodbye podcast and said that people had warned her that the appearance would cost her the Fox contract:

“I had told them that I was taking Ellen as my date and I was told if I took Ellen, I would lose my Fox contract. At that moment, she took my hand and said, ‘Do what they say,’ and I said, ‘No thanks.’”

Heche also alleged that the couple had been ushered out of the event and both ended up losing their jobs:

“And we went to the premiere — these are the stories that I know people don’t know — we went to the premiere, we were tapped on the shoulder, put into her limo in the third act and told that we couldn’t have pictures of us taken at the press junket. And both she and I were fired that week.”

DeGeneres also told the Tampa Bay Times that she wanted to move out of Anne Heche’s life to protect her career:

“I tried to back out of her life. I said, ‘I think I’m ruining your career and your life and I don’t think that I’m good for you. I think I should get out of here.’”

Despite the obstacles, the couple continued to have a strong relationship for more than three years. They worked together on the film If These Walls Could Talk 2 and later moved into a multi-million-dollar Los Angeles home in 1999.

DeGeneres told reporters that the duo were “very happy in love three years later” during the If These Walls Could Talk 2 premiere in August 2000. Unfortunately, they decided to call it quits that same year.

The couple announced their break-up in a statement to The Daily News and said that they had a mutual separation:

“Unfortunately, we have decided to end our relationship. It is an amicable parting, and we greatly value the 3 1/2 years we have spent together. We hope everyone will respect our privacy through this difficult time.”

Another source told the publication that the “relationship just ran its course and it was not working." They clarified that there was no third party involved in their separation.


Following their break-up, Anne Heche allegedly walked into a stranger’s home under the effects of ecstasy. Meanwhile, DeGeneres told The Los Angeles Times in 2001 that the she was taken aback by their parting:

“She walked out the door and I haven’t spoken to her since, I don’t have the answers.”

Nearly two decades later, Heche opened up about her relationship with DeGeneres during her appearance on Dancing with the Stars. She said that their romance left a mark on Hollywood and contributed to the movement towards equal rights:

“My story is a story that created change in the world, moved the needle for equal rights forward. I was in a relationship with Ellen DeGeneres for three-and-a-half years and the stigma attached to that relationship was so bad that I was fired from my multimillion-dollar picture deal and I did not work in a studio picture for 10 years.”

Following their break-up, Anne Heche married Coleman Laffoon in 2001. The duo parted ways in 2009 and the actress then dated her Men in Trees co-star James Tupper. The couple called it quits in 2018.

Meanwhile, Ellen DeGeneres started dating actress Portia de Rossi and has been married to her since 2008.

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Edited by Mohini Banerjee
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