Kim Kardashian West filed for divorce Friday from Kanye West after six and a half years of marriage.
Representatives for Los Angeles Superior Court and for Kardashian, 40, said she had filed the divorce papers.
The move brings an impending end to one of the most followed celebrity unions of the 21st century — the marriage of a reality TV superstar and a hip-hop and fashion phenomenon with four kids, a vast fortune to split and even more fame.
The couple began dating in 2012 and had their first child, North, in 2013. West proposed later that year using the giant screen at the empty waterfront ballpark of the San Francisco Giants, and the two married May 24, 2014, in a ceremony at a Renaissance fortress in Florence, Italy.
The couple has four children, all seven and under. Aside from North, they have their daughter Chicago, and sons Saint and Psalm.
Celebrity power couple
It was the first marriage for the West, 43, and the third for Kardashian, 40. While the union wasn’t long, it outlasted the predictions of many cynics who thought doom was inevitable given their oversized personalities, West’s well-known volatility and the fact that Kardashian’s previous marriage, to former NBA player Kris Humphries, was fleetingly brief.
News of their divorce comes after the September announcement that the show that made her family’s name, Keeping Up With The Kardashians, was coming to an end in 2021 after 14 years.
Both Kardashian and West have have parlayed their initial fame — his for being a sought-after hip-hop producer and the rapper behind Stronger and Gold Digger, hers as a reality TV star — into bigger endeavours, and have amassed considerable wealth with it.
West’s Yeezy fashion line, with its pricey clothing and coveted Adidas sneakers, has become as much part of his life and persona as his music. Kardashian went from famous socialite to major businesswoman, with mobile apps and games in her name, along with beauty products and clothes.
While their marriage was extremely high profile in some ways, the two did not appear together in public all that frequently. And the inner workings of their marriage were usually a well-guarded secret that took years to spill out into public view.
On Keeping Up with the Kardashians, West appeared only occasionally, mostly serving as an oft-discussed, off-screen character, and unlike other Kardashian couplings, viewers didn’t see even made-for-TV versions of fights or especially tender moments.
They had more than their share of globe-trotting, scene-making and controversy-stirring moments however, from a trip to Jerusalem for North’s baptism, to fashion weeks around the world including one in Paris where Kardashian was bound and robbed, to West’s years-long feud with Taylor Swift, which Kardashian got sucked into.
But their careers did not have much overlap, and they spent much of their married time far apart.
And her carefully curated persona stood in contrast to his erratic public moments that often resulted in wild statements and over-sharing tweet storms.
In one of these, since deleted, in July 2020, West said he had been trying to divorce Kardashian, that her mother Kris Jenner was a tyrant and that the family was trying to force him into psychiatric treatment.
Kardashian responded with a statement on Instagram, urging people to have compassion for West as he struggled with mental illness.
“He is a brilliant but complicated person who on top of the pressures of being an artist and a black man, who experienced the painful loss of his mother, and has to deal with that pressure and isolation that is heightened by his bi-polar disorder,” Kardashian said. “Those who are close with Kanye know his heart and understand his words some times do not align with his intentions.”
The tweet came shortly after West announced his bid for the U.S. presidency, a bid that seemed doomed from the start as he missed numerous deadlines to appear on election ballots in different states.