Here's Who Portia De Rossi Was Married To Before Ellen

Arrested Development actress Portia de Rossi has been married two times, first to a man named Mel Metcalfe III, and now to daytime talk show host Ellen DeGeneres, who she's known since 2000, and who she wed in 2008. Despite being in one of the most famous lesbian couples and basically being Hollywood royalty, Rossi's past marriage — and eventual 1999 divorce from Metcalfe — has been kept relatively under the radar.

So, who is Metcalfe, anyway? He is a documentary filmmaker and producer known for The Art of the Doll Maker, who Rossi married in 1996 and divorced three years later. According to E! Online, the actress reportedly married him to get her green card, but felt bad because she had a "great, caring relationship" with the man. 

In her book, Unbearable Lightness: A Story of Loss and Gain (as reported by RadarOnline), Rossi sheds more light on how her relationship with Metcalfe came to an end. The romance might've started as a way to get her green card, but it ended because her husband left her for another woman...her brother Michael Roger's wife, Renee Kappos.

Portia de Rossi's divorce led to her coming out and her marriage to Ellen DeGeneres

"When my husband left me, my brother moved into my place...My husband ran off with his wife, so we kept each other company and we liked to go out for margaritas and Mexican food to commiserate," she writes in the book, as reported by RadarOnline in 2011. "He had married his longtime girlfriend, Renee, just before leaving Australia and the two newlyweds moved into an apartment in the same Melrose Place-style complex that was home to me and Mel."

Looking back, Rossi reveals she should've seen the signs of a romance beginning between Metcalfe and Kappos, but neither her nor her brother saw it coming. "The fact that Renee would wear skimpy, lacy underwear clearly visible underneath her oversized, gaping overalls should have indicated to my brother and me that a personal partnership was also forming, but when Mel left me and Renee suddenly sabotaged her marriage to my brother to be with Mel, my brother and I were left idiotically scratching our heads in disbelief," she wrote.

In the end, the divorce gave way for Rossi to fully be able to admit that she was a lesbian and years later she was able to come out publicly. This revelation changed the Australian actress's world, leading her to date Francesca Gregorini — a filmmaker who she was linked to for four years — and eventually find forever-love with DeGeneres — whom she began dating in 2004 and married four years later.

Ellen DeGeneres took Portial de Rossi's breath away

Portia de Rossi originally met Ellen DeGeneres one year after her divorce from Mel Metcalfe was finalized — she petitioned for a Dissolution of Marriage with the Los Angeles Superior Court on February 3, 1999 according to documents RadarOnline obtained. And while de Rossi and DeGeneres didn't officially start dating until several years later, for the Ally McBeal actress it was love at first sight.

"I really never stopped thinking about her, because I just haven't felt that kind of energy with anyone in my life. So there's that," de Rossi told The Advocate back in 2005 about her initial feelings for DeGeneres five years previous when they'd first met. She also revealed that when she saw DeGeneres at a photo shoot in 2004, "she took my breath away." These feelings made it a no-brainer to start dating after they were reunited later that night at VH1's Big in '04 Awards in 2004.

The couple moved in together just weeks after they started dating (according to People) — and right after they broke up with their respective girlfriends.

The couple has been inseparable for more than a decade

As they neared their one-year anniversary, Ellen DeGeneres opened up to People about finding her soulmate in Portia de Rossi. "It's the first time that I've known in every cell of my being that I'm with somebody for the rest of my life," she told the publication in 2005. 

That year, the two were living together in a two-bedroom in Los Angeles, dreaming of being married. "If it were legal, we would be married, but it's not legal," the daytime talk show host said at the time. Once same-sex marriage was legal, the two were quick to make things official. They got married in 2008 at their Beverly Hills home and since then, as the saying goes, they've been living happily, ever after. 

On their nine-year wedding anniversary, DeGeneres proved once and for all how perfect this couple is together. "Being her wife is the greatest thing I am," she wrote on Instagram as a tribute to her wife. Now, 11 years after the pair first said, "I do," their romance and love for one another continues to be one of Hollywood's favorite love stories.