Summary List Placement
It’s easy to forget that behind the outlandish characters like Borat, Ali G, and Brüno is a talented actor: Sacha Baron Cohen. The British actor and his wife, Isla Fisher, star of “Confessions of a Shopaholic” and “Wedding Crashers,” are one of Hollywood’s longest-lasting couples — and one of its most private.
Over the last 20 years, the two have collaborated on a film, had three kids, and moved from Los Angeles to Australia. Keep scrolling to learn more about their relationship and how they make a Hollywood marriage work.
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2001: They meet at what he later calls “a very pretentious party” in Australia.
The future couple met at a party in 2001 in Fisher’s homeland, Australia — specifically, Sydney.
“She was hilarious,” Cohen told the New York Times in October 2020. “We were at a very pretentious party, and me and her bonded over taking the mick out of the other people in the party. I knew instantly. I don’t know if she did. It’s taken her about 20 years to know,” he joked.
Fisher told People in 2020 that they “will be celebrating 19 years together this year” and that she feels “very fortunate” to still be together.
2004: The couple get engaged after dating for around three years.
According to the New York Daily News, the notoriously private couple got engaged in 2004, when Fisher was 28 and Cohen was 32.
2007: To marry Cohen, Fisher officially converts to Judaism after three years of studying.
“I will definitely have a Jewish wedding just to be with Sacha. I would do anything — move into any religion — to be united in marriage with him,” Fisher told the Evening Standard.
In a 2009 interview with Allure, she revealed that, while she wouldn’t comment about her faith, she had taken the Hebrew name “Ayala,” which means doe.
She added, “I never saw it as a losing or gaining situation, just an embracing situation. If one wanted to be buried next to one’s beloved and they were Jewish, then one would have to be Jewish, too. That came out really weird. Scratch the burial.”
October 2007: Fisher gives birth to their first child, Olive.
Olive was born in October 2007, right around the time Cohen began planning his film “Brüno,” which would be released in 2009.
2009: While promoting “Confessions of a Shopaholic,” Fisher gives fans (and Conan O’Brien) a peek into their relationship.
Fisher joked about what it was like to show Cohen’s work to her family — she told O’Brien a story about her mother at the premiere of one of his films, and how her mother was semi-incredulous that this was the man she wanted to marry. Fisher also explained that going to visit Cohen on set was risky, due to the nature of his work.
That year, she also shared that Cohen “was the reason I got into comedy.” Australian tabloid Who? reported the actress told Indie London in 2009, “I was losing confidence in my abilities when he recommended that I do comedy. He felt I was really funny, so when someone as funny as him recommends that, I listened and actually auditioned for ‘Wedding Crashers,’ which ended up being my big break.”
March 2010: Cohen and Fisher tie the knot in Paris, France, with just six guests present.
After six years of living the engaged life, the two were married in Paris in 2010. According to People, there were just six people present.
“It’s very important to me to have a beautiful ritual celebrated with my family and friends,” Fisher had said in 2009. “And when you are in the public eye, to keep that private and to make it happen without it being really visible is really difficult.”
Cohen confirmed in 2020 that, in order to throw the paparazzi off the scent, he made his father pretend to be a famous chef celebrating his 70th birthday.
“We had a secret wedding in Paris. And the ruse was that it was my father’s 70th birthday and that he was a famous chef in England. That was how we avoided having photographers at the wedding. I trained him up to be in character. He said that his favorite dish that he created was L’oeuf Scrambled,” he told the New York Times.
August 2010: They welcome their second child, another daughter, Elula.
The newly two-time parents kept Elula’s name a secret for six months. It means “August” in Hebrew.
To explain the secrecy, Fisher said, “Motherhood is my favorite topic but I never talk about it publicly,” according to Us Weekly. “As much as I love what I am doing, and I am so fortunate to have the opportunities that I have had, my responsibility is to my family.”
2012: Fisher says being with Cohen is like “winning the lottery,” even if she has to deal with his many shenanigans.
“Choosing to be together every day is incredibly romantic. I love marriage. I think it’s a wonderful institution and it’s the most important decision you make,” she told Australia’s Sunday Telegraph. “Life is filled with highs and lows, and you have a best friend to share it with you. It’s amazing. It’s like winning the lottery, having a good partner.”
April 2015: Their third baby, a boy named Montgomery, is born.
InStyle confirmed the birth of their son that month.
February 2016: They co-star in their first film together, “The Brothers Grimsby.”
In the movie, Cohen plays a man from a small English fishing village who’s looking for his long-lost brother. Fisher talked about how Cohen remained in character during filming — including at home.
“Of course [he brings his characters home]. It’s hard to drop the accent when you’re doing it all day on set,” Fisher said during an appearance on “Lorraine.” “This is the first time we’ve worked together. He’s such a perfectionist. He’ll do everything and anything to get the best joke possible into the movie, so it was definitely inspirational. He’s so funny on set and it was a lot of fun.”
March 2016: Fisher stashes a fake beard, glasses, hat, and glove in her Spanx to help her husband appear as Ali G at the Oscars.
In 2016, Cohen was asked to present at the Oscars — and he decided to go on stage as his character Ali G, his very first popular character and star of “Da Ali G Show.” The problem? The Academy had already specifically requested that he present the award as himself.
In order to help pull off this prank, Cohen asked his wife to help smuggle all his props into the show — she obliged by shoving it all in her Spanx, she told Jimmy Kimmel in March 2016.
“He said, ‘I want to sneak in and do Ali G, but I can’t fit it on my body because they’re going to put me through metal detectors, and be ultra-suspicious, and, sweetie, will you fit giant yellow glasses, a hat, a glove, and a beard inside your Spanx?'” she said. There’s never been a better partner in crime.
October 2017: Fisher opens up about sheltering their kids from the spotlight, saying, “They have rights, too.”
“If you speak about your children or if you take them to a red carpet event, you can’t be litigious later on when there is a picture of them in something and say, ‘Hey, they deserve anonymity,’ but they do,” Fisher said during an appearance on “Today.”
“They have rights, too. It’s a very conscious decision and truly I would feel really disgusting about myself if I used my family to sell something. It wouldn’t sit right with me. It doesn’t line up with my values. But I do have an open-door policy and people come over all of the time. I do big Shabbat dinners. Everybody gets access to my family time once a week,” she said.
July 2018: The “Tag” star reveals it’s her “secret fantasy” to move their family back to her home country, Australia.
Fisher explained how LA isn’t the most ideal place to raise a family.
“Juggling a family in LA isn’t easy,” Fisher told Marie Claire. “There’s not really a culture of bringing your kids to dinner parties or to restaurants past 6 p.m. I tend to entertain at home because I want to be with my family — it’s easier to put your kids to bed and have a wine with friends.”
“I have this secret fantasy of slowing down, moving to Byron Bay, getting off the grid and sitting on the sand with a Vegemite sandwich,” she added — soon, she’d get her wish.
January 2020: They’re one of the best-dressed couples of the night at the 77th Golden Globes.
They rocked the red carpet in jewel tones, one of the trendiest looks of the last few years, landing them on multiple best-dressed lists.
November 2020: Cohen and Fisher fulfill her fantasy and move to Sydney.
“I have to say; the most beautiful country is obviously Australia … It’s like my spiritual home, I love it so much and I feel so beautiful and confident when I’m there. It’s got such a link to my childhood and who I am,” she told Who.
A source close to the couple told the tabloid that they reportedly moved to Australia because they “didn’t want to raise kids in Trump’s America.”