The trouble began with reports that Ashton had gone astray while partying it up in San Diego on -- get this -- the night before his sixth wedding anniversary, while Demi was working in New York. Rumor had it that Sara Leal, 22, a local administrative assistant, was the other woman.
While the reports seemed to include a lot of details -- such as that a bodyguard took Leal's phone during the encounter -- Ashton denied them. Among other things, the "Two and a Half Men" star, who goes by @aplusk on Twitter, even linked to the Public Enemy song "Don't Believe the Hype" and sent out a defiant message: "When you ASSUME to know that which you know nothing of you make an ASS out of U and ME."
By the weekend of October 7, Ashton was a little more somber. He and Demi showed a united front by attending Yom Kippur services at the Kabbalah Centre in L.A. (After Twitter, the two are best known for their dedication to the spiritual organization.) As they left the venue, the couple was spotted with their arms around each other's waists. Hmm … was a reconciliation in store? Sure looked like it. The next day, they were seen building a campfire at Cachuma Lake near Santa Barbara, California, where they reportedly went with their Kabbalah instructor and a pal of Ashton's.
Talk about bad timing, though! Following Demi and Ashton's weekend reunion, Leal told her side of the story -- and it didn't paint a very flattering picture of Ashton. She said that she met him at San Diego's Hard Rock Hotel, that he claimed he was separated, and that she had sex with him. Twice. "He was like, 'I enjoy things like this because I'm an actor 90 percent of the time and it's fake. It's nice to have moments that are real,'" Leal revealed to Us Weekly.
Larry Busacca/Getty Images
The following Monday, it was Demi's turn to walk the red carpet alone. The "Ghost" actress was described as "scary skinny," "gaunt," and "pale" when she stepped out for the premiere of her movie "Margin Call" in NYC.
On November 17, it was official. Demi released a statement that made it sounds suspiciously like the Leal affair had happened. "It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I have decided to end my six-year marriage to Ashton," she said. "As a woman, a mother, and a wife there are certain values and vows that I hold sacred, and it is in this spirit that I have chosen to move forward with my life. This is a trying time for me and my family, and so I would ask for the same compassion and privacy that you would give to anyone going through a similar situation."
Ashton, responding via Twitter, of course, said, "I will forever cherish the time I spent with Demi. Marriage is one of the most difficult things in the world and unfortunately sometimes they fail. Love and Light, AK."
Does this mean Demi has to change her Twitter handle from @mrskutcher?
Check out these clips to refresh your memory about Ashton and Demi's final days:
- Ashton Kutcher
- Demi Moore