Kate’s New Love
Kate’s in love just three months after split from Jim
December 1-7, 2001
Actress Kate and film director Sam Mendes admit they’re an item
By Julie Emery
After the seemingly perfect marriage to Jim Threapleton broke down in September, Kate Winslet has kept a low profile in the press. But that all changed last week when the actress admitted she was in love with 35-year-old Sam Mendes, the Oscar-winning director of American Beauty.
The couple had been spotted hugging after spending two nights together in a hotel in Austin, Texas, where Kate is filming her next movie, The Life of David Gale. She was quoted as saying, "I just love Sam, I love him so much."
The story was noteworthy on two counts: firstly, Winslet is practically a national treasure these days, and anything she does makes the headlines (Kate loses weight! Kate has hair cut! Kate wears leather trousers!). More interestingly, this new relationship came barely three months after Kate had announced her split from Jim.
Yet the day after the story broke, Kate was in Los Angeles and Mendes flew to London, and both of them were happy to confirm that they were an item.
Mendes was photographed beaming with pleasure as he arrived at Heathrow, and told the pack of waiting journalists, "I have nothing to hide and I want to make sure the truth is clearly stated about us. We’re having a relationship. It’s early days and we’re very happy. I’m delighted to express my happiness at being with Kate." He was also keen to stress that he had come on to the scene well after Jim and Kate had finished.
Kate also spoke freely - something she’s well known for - and hinted at what had gone wrong between her and Jim. "Life with someone is very much about not wanting to change anything about that person and not allowing them to change anything in you. I firmly believe that."
Much has been made of the gaping difference in lifestyle between the profile of the Oscar-nominated actress and the lowly assistant film director, and how this must have been difficult for both Winslet and Threapleton to deal with. Yet they continue to bring up 13-month-old daughter Mia together, with Jim putting on a brave face for the cameras and not revealing his feelings to the press. He recently moved out of their marital home and the divorce agreement (rumoured to include an 800,000 pound settlement for him) is almost finalised.
Last week, Jim was said to still be in shock at the news that his so recently estranged wife was in love with someone else, and until recently he’d been under the impression that Winslet had been to meet Mendes only to discuss a future project.
So, will it be a happy ending this time for Ms. Winslet? Mendes is known for enjoying a series of medium-length relationships - previous relationships include a two-year stint with Jane Horrocks when they worked together on the stage version of The Rise and Fall of Little Voice, and an eight-month affair with Rachel Weisz, during which time the couple lived together. He was also briefly linked with Ally McBeal star Calista Flockhart.
Kate insists that despite her failed marriage with Jim, she still "absolutely believes in true love". She says, "Marriage is about the meeting of two minds and hoping that it is going to be forever. But sometimes that doesn’t happen and that is a shame."
It may be early days with Sam, but Kate, we wish you well and hope this relationship has a happier ending.