The Truth About Katherine Heigl's Marriage

It can be said that actor Katherine Heigl is one of those rare celebrities who doesn't mind opening up about her personal life, having shared pretty intimate details about her relationship with her husband, Josh Kelley, over the years. Perhaps that's because Heigl has been in the business for a long time, getting her first role back when she was only 14, in a 1992 film. Since then, Heigl has continued to act, with her breakthrough performance, of course, being on the ABC drama "Grey's Anatomy."

While Heigl eventually left the show to become a movie star (doing multiple rom-coms in the mid 2000's), she also had to deal with a lot of drama after she was accused of being difficult to work with. That kind of reputation could presumably end any actors' career, yet Heigl managed to move past the scandal. It appears Kelley had a lot to do with that though, by never wavering from his wife's side and frequently defending her character. 

These days, it's hard not to think of Heigl without thinking of Kelley. Not only have they been together since 2005 but they often share glimpses into their life together through very honest interviews and social media. When it comes to her relationship with Kelley, Heigl gushed on Instagram, "I found my person...the person who soothes my turbulent mind. Who bolsters my tender spirits." So are the "Knocked Up" star and Kelley really this perfect couple? Let's break down the truth of Heigl's marriage.

How Katherine Heigl met Josh Kelley

Work apparently brought "Killers" star Katherine Heigl and her husband Josh Kelley together since the two began dating in 2005 after Heigl played Kelley's love interests in his music video for "Only You." Heigl seemingly made the first move, recalling to People, "At the end of the shoot, I said, 'You're gonna go eat dinner with us, and you can't say no.'"

For Heigl, it was basically love at first sight even though she admitted that starring as lovers in the romantic video helped. "The video is about these two people flirting through their apartment windows ... and we were flirting for real through those windows," she gushed to Cosmopolitan. It seems Kelley is just as fond of their first days together. He posted a photo of them from 2005, writing, "She came up for my show in New York City and we had the next day to ourselves to walk around ... What a fun time that was."

As romantic as that sounds, Heigl admitted there were times in the beginning when she worried they weren't on the same page. She dished on "The Late Late Show," "Josh and I were probably dating about a month, and it was unclear where the relationship was going." Because of that, she may have used singer John Mayer to get Kelley's attention. She admitted, "I didn't know if he was serious about me as I was about him. I had run into John ... We were just hanging out."

Kathrine Heigl's romantic engagement

Josh Kelley decided to make things official in 2006 by asking Katherine Heigl to be his wife. The "Amazing" singer clearly wanted the proposal to be romantic so he took her to the exact place where they had met when shooting the "Only You" music video. "It took me forever to find that bungalow ... I walked miles and miles until I recognized it," Kelley told Artisan News Service. Once he negotiated with its residents, Kelley had a car pick up Heigl in order to surprise her. He recalled, "She had no clue ... I had set a table with a nice white tablecloth, roses, wine, chocolate cake, the music that we listened to when we started dating." Heigl said yes, and they celebrated by taking a stroll on the beach, which is also what they did in the video.

Despite the perfect proposal, Heigl wasn't in a rush to get married. She revealed to Cosmopolitan, "I'm enjoying being engaged and not having to quite go there yet. Being engaged adds a weight to the relationship." She admitted it was even intimidating, explaining, "You're saying 'It's you, and only you, for the rest of my life.' It took me about a week to get used to that idea."

Heigl apparently did love wearing her new ring though, gushing, "It's ridiculously big, but I really like it." Outside of it being three-carats, per PopSugar, it appears that the ring was special for another reason in that it included a stone from her mother's own band.

The Grey's Anatomy star's winter wonderland wedding

You could say that Katherine Heigl always knew Josh Kelley was "the one" even before they got engaged. "From the moment I met him, I said, 'This is what I want and what I need,'" she told Vanity Fair.  Yet Heigl didn't necessarily believe that saying "I do" meant happily-ever-after. In fact, she admitted that when it comes to marriage, "I think it's a crapshoot. The odds are really bad, especially in this town," referring to Hollywood. However, Heigl added that despite that, she still had hope for her and Kelley, and that's why it was important for her to hold a traditional wedding.

It appeared that Heigl upheld other traditions too, revealing, "I ... didn't want to live together before we were married ... I wanted to keep that a little bit sacred." It seems tying the knot was just as sacred for Kelley. He explained to People, "It's about showing someone you love that you're actually capable of the ultimate commitment." He was also a bit more optimistic about marriage than Heigl, gushing, "We're madly in love and she makes me excited to become married and to have a family and spend my life with someone."

Just days before Christmas in 2007, the couple held their wedding at a lodge in Park City, Utah, under a tent decorated with white accents and adorned with fresh snow. Heigl gushed to Good Housekeeping, "It was Narnia, a winter wonderland. It was magic."

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley are parents

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley eventually became parents, welcoming daughters Naleigh in 2009, and Adalaide in 2012, through adoption, and biological son, Joshua, in 2016. Heigl had apparently always wanted to adopt since her sister is from South Korea. She told Scholastic, "I wanted my own family to resemble the one I came from." As her daughters get older and have questions about it, Heigl revealed to Parents, "We have said to them, 'this is your story ... you can have as much or as little information as you want."

While Heigl and Kelley live in Utah to keep their children away from Hollywood, they don't necessarily keep them totally out of the spotlight either, frequently posting them on social media. Yet Kelley explained to Daily Blast, "We decided early on they're going to get their photos anyway ... we may as well control the narrative." When it comes to fame though, Heigl revealed their kids aren't impressed. She dished for Adelaide, "She's like, yeah, I know. My parents are famous, I got it. And for Naleigh, I think it's a little bit embarrassing."

Becoming parents has seemingly made the couple appreciate each other more, too. Heigl even gushed in an Instagram post, "​​There is NO ONE I trust more to guide and encourage and support and love our children." As for Kelly, he referred to Heigl in his own post as, "The most fun partner in crime to be raising these babies with!"

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley are best friends

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley credit friendship for helping make their relationship last over the years. The "Doubt" actor explained to E!, "We just are really good friends ... We get along really well, we have a really good time together." It's also what helps them overcome obstacles, with Heigl admitting, "We just sort of cling to that friendship when stuff gets hard."

Like most friends, the two seemingly like doing things together and sharing their interests. Heigl recalled to Cosmopolitan, "The first summer we were together, we'd have what I'd call our art days," adding, "I love sculpting ... [while Josh] is an amazing artist who paints and draws." Even after becoming parents, they still make it a priority to enjoy each other's company. "We like to watch 'Game of Thrones,' have a couple cocktails, hang out together," Heigl told Us Weekly. She did acknowledge though that there can be a downside, claiming, "When it starts to become too much of a friendship and not enough of a romance, that can also be a problem."

From the looks of Heigl's Instagram, she and Kelley have no problems in the romance department. Yet they've apparently had to work at it, especially during the pandemic, when Heigl told People, "We have never spent this amount of time together." They eventually found a solution by finding their own space in a backyard shed. "We leave the kids, and we try to talk about each other and remember we're not just parents," she said.

Katherine Heigl's marriage has its challenges

Although Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley seem to have the perfect marriage, like any couple, they've faced their challenges. In fact, the "Firefly Lane" star revealed, per Female First, "We've had some pretty explosive fights over the years trying to make our marriage work, but it's been worth it." Heigl emphasized why it's worth it, adding, "I do not want to live my life without Josh in it and will do everything I can to make sure I don't have to."

That appears to be why the couple has found ways to work through their issues, which at one point was with communication. Heigl confessed to Us Weekly, "It was just a lack of hearing, and it was assuming what the other person meant and needed or wanted." She even gave a specific example of when she thought just doing Kelley's laundry would make things better. It didn't, but led her to a realization. She reflected, "I remember thinking, 'I should just ask him what would make him really happy." 

Kelley is also apparently willing to work with Heigl during difficult moments. She explained on "The Oprah Winfrey Show", "I'm not always so nice ... He never lets me get away with it, but doesn't expect me to be perfect." While Kelley is patient with her, he'll still call her out too when needed. She explained, "Like anybody I tend to take it out on the people I'm closest too ... and I get a lot of 'don't be cold and snippy.'"

Cheating isn't a dealbreaker for Katherine Heigl

Cheating wouldn't necessarily mean the end for Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley's relationship. In an interview with Cosmopolitan UK, Heigl suggested her views on cheating have changed, revealing (via People), "Josh and I always said that cheating would be a deal breaker ... But I've seen friends and acquaintances go through it and they've found a way back to the relationship."

The "Suits" actor made it clear though that she wouldn't be okay with Kelley cheating, admitting, "I would kill him if he cheated because it would destroy me." Yet, she apparently wouldn't want to give up right away, either. "If a mistake were to be made and it was a one-time thing, I would forgive him," she claimed. Heigl explained that it would not only be because of their long-shared history, but because the family they've created would be worth saving. However, it would be hard to fully ever get the trust back.

With that said, Heigl herself has no interest in being the cheater, dishing on her blog (via OK!), that she wouldn't even be into another man considering she's always been a "serial monogamist." Yet, she does understand why others are enticed, confessing, "Every human being on earth wonders if the grass might be greener in other pastures." But Heigl would rather work on her connection with Kelley instead, which is more than enough for her. "I guess the relationship I'm in is so consuming that the idea of a dalliance with another man sounds exhausting," she said.

Josh Kelly has defended his wife

Katherine Heigl has the reputation in Hollywood of being difficult to work with, seemingly just for publicly criticizing some of her own work like "Grey's Anatomy" and "Knocked Up." That negative attention made Heigl anxious, yet she told Good Housekeeping that her husband, Josh Kelley, helped her work through it. She revealed that one day he asked her, ​​ "Why don't you just commit to being you, and to hell with the rest of it?" That apparently really resonated with Heigl. "There was a little bit of grace ... I understood it emotionally ... And it helped me so much," she said.

Kelley wasn't only encouraging, but also very protective of Heigl, telling The Washington Post in 2015, "She is probably one of the most grounded, most amazing people." He's also shut down those "difficult" allegations, blaming that label on a few haters. He explained, "That girl's never been late, never missed a mark, she's the least 'difficult' person in the world." He added, "I've been to every movie set ... and everybody loves her."

As of 2022, Kelley was still supporting his wife, pointing how she was treated unfairly for just speaking her truth in the mid 2000's, which is something that is usually celebrated nowadays. The "Share This Day" singer told The Washington Post, "If she said [some of it] today, she'd be a hero." Unfortunately, that negativity has already affected Heigl. Kelly dished, "It would be hard for anybody to process that, especially when it's unjust."

The Firefly Lane actor is Josh Kelley's muse

If you've followed Josh Kelley's music career, it's clear that Katherine Heigl is his muse, inspiring his songs and starring in his music videos. That had seemingly begun back in 2006 when Kelley wrote an ode to his new love at the time called, "Katie's Song." Heigl gushed to People, "It was one of the most thrilling and romantic things that I've ever experienced." Since then, their relationship has continued to inspire Kelley's music, with even a fight they had leading to his song, "It's Your Move." He explained, via The Washington Post, "​​Every now and then that girl will spark something in me ... And sometimes I gotta write a song about it."

Heigl not only sparks Kelley's creativity, but she's also starred in several of his music videos from 2005's "Only You," to 2017's "I'm On Fire," and 2019's "Busy Making Memories." He even gave her a shoutout when promoting his 2022 song "Falling in Love at a Coffee Shop" on Instagram, writing, "Shoutout to my valentine @katherineheigl for always being my video and creative star."

Yet Heigl doesn't just use her acting skills to help Kelley, she's also directed some of his videos too, including "I'm On Fire" and "Naleigh Moon." When it comes to collaborating with his wife, Kelley dished to Daily Blast, "She's more talented than I'll ever be, so it's actually a lot of fun." Heigl apparently finds her husband just as talented, frequently promoting his music on her Instagram.

Katherine Heigl is worth more than her husband

It's safe to say that Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley are a Hollywood power couple and their bank accounts definitely reflect that. The performers have a combined net worth of $35 million with Kelley bringing in about $5 million of that from his music career, per Celebrity Net Worth. With her own net worth of $30 million though, it's clear Heigl is the family's breadwinner. Yet, it seems Heigl was making even more money when she was starring on "Grey's Anatomy" and when she did a string of romantic comedies in the mid-2000s. At the time, she not only was the highest-paid TV actress, but was making between $12-$15 million for films.

When it comes to spending their money, the couple is apparently into real estate, having bought and sold a few homes in Los Angeles. In 2008, Heigl sold a house for $1.75 million after she and Kelley had purchased a four-bedroom home together the year before for $2.55 million. They later sold that in 2013 for $2.622 million. These days, their family lives on a sprawling 20-acre ranch in Utah, which according to Today, includes a barn, game room, and dressage arena.

It appears that while Heigl also likes to buy designer clothes and shoes, it's more important for her to give back. In 2019, she even sold some of those luxury items from her closet on Poshmark to raise money for her charity Jason Debus Heigl Foundation, which advocates for animals.

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley love animals

Katherine Heigl and Josh Kelley seemingly share a passion for animals considering that their home is filled with dozens of furry friends. The "27 Dresses" star revealed to Forbes in March 2022, "We have six dogs and three cats and we have a ranch with many, many animals." For Heigl, her love of animals started young with her telling People, "We just had lots of pets from the moment I was born." She even runs the animal rights charity, Jason Debus Heigl Foundation, alongside her mother. 

While Kelley also adores pets, Heigl admits she takes it to the extreme. "If you're talking from one to 10, I'm like a 40 and Josh is probably like an eight. I'm insane and he's normal," she joked. Because of that, the "Hold Me My Lord" singer sometimes needs more convincing when it comes to adding more dogs to their home. For example, when Kelley originally shut down getting a sixth dog, Heigl confessed to Harper's Bazaar, "I started crying. I said, 'Where's your heart? Where's your soul?'...and he's like, 'Fine, just take the dog.'"

That many pets can presumably be overwhelming, but Heigl sees it as a positive for their family. She explained to Parents, "Caring for animals is a great way to teach children compassion, kindness, loyalty, and responsibility." All in all, Heigl may want more pets and the couple could hit more hard times, but so far their marriage appears to be strong enough to handle it all.