Dominic West Reveals Wife's Reaction to Lily James Kissing Scandal

Actor Dominic West opens up about the fallout from his 2020 kissing scandal with co-star Lily James, revealing it was "deeply stressful" for his family but they now joke about it, underscoring the impact of media scrutiny on celebrity relationships.

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Hadeel Hashem
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Dominic West Reveals Wife's Reaction to Lily James Kissing Scandal

Dominic West Reveals Wife's Reaction to Lily James Kissing Scandal

Actor Dominic West has opened up about the fallout from his highly publicized kissing scandal with co-star Lily James in 2020. In a recent interview with the Sunday Times Culture Magazine, West described the situation as "deeply stressful" for his wife Catherine FitzGerald and their children, but revealed that they occasionally joke about it now.

The scandal erupted when photos emerged of West and James appearing intimate during a trip to Rome while filming a BBC adaptation. The media attention was intense, with West and FitzGerald putting on a united front by kissing for reporters outside their London home and sharing a handwritten note stating their marriage was strong.

West acknowledged the absurdity of the situation, saying, "There were lighter moments where we would sometimes joke about the papers saying we were putting on a show of unity whenever we went out together, even if we were just arguing about something mundane." Despite the stress it caused his family, West believes the experience helped inform his portrayal of King Charles III on Netflix's "The Crown."

"I had a very acute understanding of that dreadful, freezing moment when something is revealed about you in the media," West explained. "That gut feeling of horror." He drew upon that firsthand knowledge to capture the scrutiny and pressure faced by the real-life Prince Charles during his own high-profile relationship with Camilla Parker Bowles.

While West did not mention James by name, the actress has previously declined to comment on the controversy. She did, however, appear to reference it obliquely in 2022 when discussing the challenges women face in the public eye, saying she had sympathy for Pamela Anderson's experience of being under intense scrutiny in a "difficult situation."

Why this matters: The Dominic West and Lily James scandal highlights the intense media scrutiny celebrities face when their personal lives become tabloid fodder. It also underscores the impact such publicity can have on the families involved, even as they try to maintain a sense of normalcy and humor in the face of public speculation.

Nearly three years later, West and FitzGerald remain together, having weathered the media storm. The couple, who have been married since 2010 and share four children, made a rare public appearance together at the Chelsea Flower Show in May 2023. While the kissing scandal was a painful chapter, West's revelation that they can now find moments of levity in the absurdity of it all suggests a resilience in their relationship.

Key Takeaways

  • Dominic West opened up about the fallout from his kissing scandal with Lily James.
  • The scandal was "deeply stressful" for his wife Catherine FitzGerald and their children.
  • West believes the experience helped inform his portrayal of Prince Charles on "The Crown".
  • Lily James has previously referenced the challenges women face under media scrutiny.
  • Despite the scandal, West and FitzGerald remain together and can now joke about the situation.