Ted Danson and Mary Steenburgen are two of the cover stars of People‘s first-ever “Love” issue.
Danson, 73, and Steenburgen, 68, are more in love than ever after marrying in 1995. However, when they first met in 1983 when Danson auditioned to play Steenburgen’s husband in “Cross Creek” it was a different story.
Danson told the mag, “I was a hot mess back then,” as Steenburgen said, “I was married. He was married. That was not our moment.”
The pair were then cast in 1994’s “Pontiac Moon”, with Steenburgen saying at the time they “had sworn off relationships.”
Danson had famously just gotten out of a relationship with Whoopi Goldberg and had finalized his divorce from his second wife Casey Coates, with whom he shares daughters Kate, 41, and Alexis, 36.
Steenburgen had gotten divorced from actor Malcolm McDowell, with whom she shares kids Charlie, 37, and Lilly, 40.
“We both said the same phrase to ourselves, which was: ‘Obviously we cannot be in a relationship,'” Danson recalled. “I could ruin anything. I’m not relationship material.”
Steenburgen admitted she initially thought, That dude seems kind of complicated, but felt an undeniable attraction.
“I wasn’t ready for anything like a relationship,” she told the mag. “We just kept working together and becoming better and better friends.”
Danson eventually planned a romantic canoe trip and picnic in Mendocino, California, where they realized their true feelings for one another.
“It was very magical,” he gushed. “We came back in love, to be honest, or I’ll say smitten.”
“I want as long as possible in my life with Mary,” he added. “I know it will have all of its hard parts but I want to experience love in all those moments.”
“Not to sound corny but I would sign up for 100 more lifetimes,” Steenburgen went on.
“There’s no hollow in my heart where I don’t love him, or where I doubt this love,” she said. “There’s no secret place where I say we weren’t a thousand per cent supposed to spend our life together.”