Why Jennifer Garner Wishes She Hadn't Married Scott Foley
#TBT: Check in every Thursday as we throw it back to some of our favorite celebrity couples of all time.
Who: Golden Globe-winning actress and universally beloved mom, Jennifer Garner, 46, and Felicity and Scandal star Scott Foley, 46.
How they met: In 1998, Garner guest-starred on Felicity as the long-distance girlfriend of one of the series’ main characters, Noel (Foley). During her two-episode arc, Garner met Foley, yes, but also Felicity co-creator J.J. Abrams, who’d later propel her to stardom with his next major series, Alias.
Garner and Foley wed in 2000 and Alias premiered on ABC the following year. Garner reprised her role in Felicity in the show’s final season in 2002, at which point she’d already become a household name.
When they peaked: I don’t want to say that Jen’s fame split them up (though some would), but I like to think they thrived in the years before either of them hit the A-list. During the early Felicity years, they were both just humble up-and-comers and it was all very exciting and romantic.
But then Jen landed Alias, and with it co-stars who looked like this:
Yes, that is Bradley Cooper. Go watch Alias (the best show of all time — and not just hottie-wise), NOW.
And we’re not saying that Scott got jealous — he’s the Noel Crane, after all — but it would be pretty fair if Scott got jealous …
Why we loved them: This photo, mostly. Bring back the glasses, Jen!
The breakup: Scott and Jennifer announced their separation in April 2003. Jen had stirred breakup rumors just one week prior when she arrived at the Oscars sans Foley. Though she smiled wide for the cameras, legal documents indicate that that very day, March 23, marked their official split.
The divorce appears to have remained rather amicable. Garner said she and Foley “really were the victims of Hollywood,” noting, “Everything is speeded up here — it is a fast-lane life, and if something is not working, it is considered best to end it without much thought. If we lived where I was brought up [West Virginia], we would probably still be together."
Soon after their breakup, Jen began dating Alias co-star Michael Vartan (see above). Though speculation of infidelity circulated, Foley put rumors to rest when he told TV Guide, “nobody else was involved” in their split. “Jennifer became a huge celebrity,” he continued, echoing Garner’s previous sentiment. “She became a huge star, and she deserved everything she got. There was no other relationship, there was no infidelity, nothing. People get divorced, you know? Through no one’s fault and everyone’s fault.”
Years later, Garner opened up about their divorce in greater detail, telling The Sun that she regretted marrying in her 20s. “Everyone reaches maturity at different times. I wish I’d known to wait for marriage until I was 30 or over,” she said. “I did marry in my twenties and I found divorce a crushing experience,” Garner continues. “I thought the divorce statistics would never apply to me. I was beyond heartbroken when they did.”
The following year, Garner spoke about Foley once more, telling Allure, “Oh, [Scott’s] a great guy. We were full-on grown-ups, but looking back I'm aware we did not know what hit us. We didn't have a shot. He's a really good guy, and we just imploded."
Where they are now: After splitting from Vartan in 2004, Garner began dating her former Daredevil co-star, Ben Affleck. The pair wed the following year and welcomed their first daughter, Violet, months later. Ben and Jen had two more children together: Seraphina, 9, and Samuel, 6, before separating in 2015. Garner is currently reported to be dating CaliGroup CEO John Miller.
Professionally, Garner is back at the top of her game. The actress made her return to television for the first time since 2006 in HBO comedy Camping.
In 2007, Foley married Grey’s Anatomy alum and fellow TV veteran Marika Domińczyk. The duo share three children together: Malina, 8, Keller, 6, and Konrad, 3.
After Felicity ended in 2002, Foley bounced from series to series until he landed a lead role on CBS’s The Unit. From there he moved to Grey’s Anatomy, True Blood, and The Goodwin Games before making his true comeback on ABC’s Scandal.