The Truth About Courtney B. Vance And Angela Bassett's Relationship

There are numerous adorable Hollywood couples out there, yet Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance are arguably the absolute cutest. The pair have been happily married for a whopping 25 years (a veritable eternity in Hollywood), and they continue to be each other's number one fans. Not only has Bassett reported that the intimate nature of their marriage is still very much alive (per People), but they have a great working relationship as well. The two have starred alongside each other in several movies and plays, including "Nothing But The Truth," "Panther," and "His Girl Friday."

Yet despite their mutual critical acclaim and accolades in the entertainment world, they admit that their acting careers will never be as important to them as their family life. "Our focus is on our children and what we need to do as a family," Vance told Us Weekly in 2019. "Careers and things follow that."

There aren't many couples in Hollywood that can say they've been together as long as Bassett and Vance, so what exactly is it about these two that makes them so inseparable? Keep reading to learn about their heart-warming love story that made them into the goal-worthy pair they are today.

They met at Yale Drama School in the 1980s

Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett met back in the 1980s while attending the prestigious David Geffen School of Drama at Yale University. Although they both acted in August Wilson's plays and had the same circle of friends, there was no initial romantic spark between the two. This was most likely due to the fact that they were each in respective relationships while attending graduate school together. 

"He had a beautiful, beautiful girlfriend at the time, who was also in drama school with us," Bassett told People in 2018. But despite being in a relationship at the time, the "American Horror Story" star found herself captivated by Vance. "He was tall ... ish," she recalled on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in 2007. She added that he was "dark, skinny, and alluring." Meanwhile, Vance hilariously said that he doesn't have any recollection of Bassett during his graduate school days.

Yet despite Bassett not leaving a big impression on Vance during their time at drama school, she became all he could think about nearly 15 years later, when they met again and rekindled their connection.

Their first date didn't go so hot

Nearly 15 years had passed before Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance bumped into each other again. This time, both were single, and there was an immediate spark between the two. After exchanging numbers, they agreed to go out on a date. But, according to the couple, their first date was no fairytale romance. In fact, Bassett recalled the night being incredibly dull. She explained what caused her to feel that way on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," saying that she was a bit turned off by Vance's kind nature. "He just seemed like a really, really nice guy, which translated to ... kind of boring," she joked.

Because Bassett was a student of theatrics, she felt like she needed drama and conflict in order to invest in the relationship properly. But fortunately, she was able to mature into a woman who no longer needed all of that in order to feel satisfied. Now she knows to value what she has. 

"Find a nice person," she told Extra (via E! News), explaining her methods on how to find a lasting relationship. "Someone who's in it to fight, in it to win with you, and who supports you. And on top of it, they're really a nice person."

The moment Courtney B. Vance fell in love with Angela Bassett

While their first date wasn't exactly romantic enough to make onlookers shake with envy, their second date goes down in history for Courtney B. Vance as the moment he fell in love with Angela Bassett. Despite the "9-1-1" star's hesitance to go on a second date with Mr. Nice Guy, she decided to let go of her inhibitions and give him another chance. It ended up being one of the best decisions she ever made.

The two spent their second date on a golf course because Vance was a big fan of the sport. And while Vance stood behind Bassett with the club in their hands so he could show her all the right moves, he fell right under her spell. "We went to the driving range," Vance spilled on "The Oprah Winfrey Show," "and we had a great time. It was a great date. And I said, 'I like her.' Something was happening."

In fact, he was so smitten with Bassett that he ended up pulling out the elementary school moves by writing her a little love note. "I like you. You like me? Check 'Yes' or 'No,'" he recalled he wrote for Bassett. Of course, she said 'yes,' and the rest was history. "We shut down restaurants for the next week, and then it was done," he revealed to Access. How cute!

The moment Angela Bassett fell in love with Courtney B. Vance

Angela Bassett is forever grateful that she took the leap and decided to go on that second date with Courtney B. Vance. According to the "Black Panther" actor, she had a blast on the golf course with her old drama school buddy because it all felt so natural and effortless. "It was just easy, not putting anything on it. ... Not trying to impress," she explained to Oprah Winfrey on "The Oprah Winfrey Show."

But she also shared that the particular moment when she knew Vance was the one was during their first kiss. Because they had known each other for so long and had practically grown up together, it made their locking of lips all the more meaningful. In fact, it ignited feelings inside Bassett that she hadn't felt since she was a teenager. 

She revealed in her and Vance's memoir, titled "Friends: A Love Story" via, "It was truly reminiscent of my first puppy love kisses. I got pinpricks and chills up the back of my thighs and across my butt, up my neck, across my scalp." The kiss was so magical that Bassett admitted to Winfrey that she lost sleep over it! It was all she could think about to the point where she was replaying it over and over again in her head. It was then that she knew Vance was who she was meant to share the rest of her life with.

They co-wrote a book about their love story

What can be more romantic than writing a book with your significant other about your love story? Well, that's exactly what Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett chose to do in 2007 when they released their memoir, titled "Friends: A Love Story." In the book, the couple dives into their origin stories, and what made them into the strong individuals they are today. They also explain what shaped them into becoming the perfect pair for one another in the heartwarming book. 

"True love is possible when you love each other as friends," Bassett revealed while promoting her book with Vance. "We are admittedly as much students as we are teachers," Bassett continued. "We do hope, however, that our story may serve as a guide for 'love lessons' in relationships and life."

In an interview with NPR, Vance said that he learned a lot about how to be the perfect husband for Bassett through a marriage counselor. He explained that, in order to make sure things went as best as they could in their marriage, he would have to offer his wife a sense of security, which he would do by continuing to prove to her that she made the right choice by marrying him.

The couple practiced celibacy for one year before their wedding night

Despite the fireworks that erupted from their first kiss, the couple chose to practice celibacy one year before their wedding day in 1997 (per E! News). It was a tough decision to make because the actors were so in love with one another, but it was ultimately worth the wait for Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett. 

Although they managed to stick to their celibacy, this doesn't mean that there wasn't an occasional bump in the road. According to Bassett, she was the one who tried to convince her fiancé to cave in. "It wasn't easy," she told Oprah Winfrey (via E! News). "Actually, one night, I did beg Courtney to give in."

The two discussed their decision to wait until marriage for a whole year in their 2007 memoir titled "Friends: A Love Story" and the impact they felt it had on their relationship. As it turns out, however, Vance and Bassett aren't the only celebrities who made the choice to be celibate for a long while before their wedding night. Well-known actors and musicians such as Lenny Kravitz, Mariah Carey, Nicki Minaj, Jessica Simpson, and Tamera Mowry-Housley have also chosen to wait before marriage. Who knew?

Their staggering net worth

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance have an incredible net worth, according to Celebrity Net Worth. The website reports that Bassett and Vance each have a net worth of $25 million. 

But things weren't always so easy for the "How Stella Got Her Groove Back" star. In an NPR excerpt for her and Vance's memoir, "Friends: A Love Story," Bassett opened up about how her family struggled to get by financially during her childhood. As the actor revealed, her parents had a hard time living in a city as expensive as New York, especially due to the racial pay gap of the times. And when they added two children into the mix, matters got that much more difficult. "With both of them working, they didn't have much — even before I was born," Bassett explained about her parents in the memoir. "Times were hard for black folks in the late 1950s and early 1960s."

Nowadays, Bassett and Vance use their enormous net worth to give back to the community. According to Look To The Stars, they have donated to multiple charities and organizations, including the American Foundation for AIDS Research, Habitat For Humanity, and the Boys & Girls Club Of America.

They are parents to twins

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance were blessed with twins in 2006, as they revealed while sitting down with Oprah Winfrey on "The Oprah Winfrey Show." But the process of having children was extremely difficult for the celebrity couple, and they struggled to get pregnant for a long time. Bassett revealed that they tried everything, including IVF, to conceive, but nothing worked. Fortunately, there were other options available to them, including surrogacy. "The more we learned about it, the more we began to think that perhaps this was an answer for us," Bassett explained.

The couple has revealed on several occasions how proud they are of their children, Bronwyn Golden and Slater Josiah. But despite having amazing kids, raising two children at once is never a walk in the park. In fact, Bassett once compared raising twins to becoming a circus performer (per Parade). "I joke, 'Ooh, I just joined the circus, I'm the new juggler.' That's what it feels like, that there are so many balls you're trying to keep up in the air."

Being raised by celebrity actors hasn't seemed to influence the twins' future aspirations, however. As the "9-1-1" star revealed to Extra (via E! News), her kids don't really know what they want to do for their careers. Bassett said, "I don't think they've really done any acting since 'Charlotte's Web' in third grade. Even then, they didn't want to take any of my directorial advice."

The actors know their marriage is special

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance have a romance that deserves to be celebrated. Not only are they one of the few celebrity couples out there who have been together for more than two decades, but the quality of their relationship is even more inspirational than their longevity. Starting off as friends, Vance and Bassett now proudly call themselves "soul mates" (per 

One of the reasons their relationship is so healthy and brimming with green flags is because both Bassett and Vance lead with kindness above all else. During an appearance on "Rachael Ray" (per E! News,) Vance revealed he is always looking for ways to be of service to his wife. "I want peace in my home," he said. "I want that smile every day. What I had to realize was that she's first, and when the queen is happy, the land is happy."

Bassett also revealed that they share the same values, which has helped strengthen their bond. The two actors told Oprah Winfrey that they keep "God in the middle" of their marriage. In fact, Bassett reportedly even has an inscription of "GOD" on her wedding ring.

How they juggle their respective careers and marriage

Marriage is hard enough, but adding high-profile careers into the mix can make things all the more complicated. Priorities can get confused and it can be hard to figure out what comes first, work life or family life. In some unfortunate cases, when spouses are in the same line of work, they can get competitive over their respective careers, as well. 

For example, Scarlett Johansson famously revealed to Cosmopolitan (via E! News) that the reason she and her ex (who is rumored to be Ryan Reynolds) ended their relationship was due to their constant need to one-up each other in their careers. But for Courtney B. Vance and Angela Bassett, they communicated their priorities early on. Both knew from the start that they wanted to put their family first, with their work always coming second.

While sitting down with Oprah Winfrey on "The Oprah Winfrey Show" in 2007, Bassett emphasized her support for her husband. "I don't think I have a great ego that just gobbles everything in sight. I'm proud of the accolades he receives," she said of Vance. "And that is something we had to navigate early." Meanwhile, Vance said that he always puts Bassett ahead of himself in their relationship for everything, including their careers. He said, "Through counsel, I started to understand that once I allow, in my mind, her to be first, all the other things about the business. ... We gotta decide what we want first."

Walt Disney World is their favorite vacation spot

Angela Bassett and Courtney B. Vance are big-time celebrities who can afford to go wherever they want for vacation. But instead of an elite weekend in Paris or an exciting trip to Madrid, the couple prefers to spend their time at the Most Magical Place on Earth. Bassett and Vance love to be surrounded by Mickey, Minnie, and Donald Duck whenever they can, and even more so with their twins. "I've been coming to Disney World since I was about 14 because I grew up in Florida," Bassett explained in a video that saw her collaborating with Disney Parks in 2015. "So I'm so happy to share that with my family." Vance and Bassett's children claim that their favorite thing about the Walt Disney theme park is all the awesome rides they get to go on. 

In 2021, the "Black Panther" star was interviewed on "Live with Kelly and Ryan," where she discussed with the talk show hosts how much Disney World relieved her family during the COVID-19 pandemic. Because her children were forced to spend all of their time in their rooms, Bassett treated her kids to a trip to Walt Disney World. Of course, they took extra safety precautions at the park and wore masks to protect themselves from the COVID-19 virus.

Clearly, there's a lot we can learn from Vance and Bassett's beautiful relationship. Check out an excerpt from their memoir "Friends: A Love Story" on