Disney fairy tales always have a wedding pegged as the ‘happy ever after’ to every romantic relationship - but, as we all know, the story doesn’t end with that big “I do” moment. Marriage is a huge commitment, legally, financially, and emotionally, and it requires a great deal of work to make it a success.
Something which Scarlett Johansson, 32, knows all too well.
“I think the idea of marriage is very romantic,” the Avengers star explained to Playboy. “It’s a beautiful idea and the practice of it can be a very beautiful thing.
“[But] being married is different than not being married, and anybody who tells you that it’s the same is lying.”
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Johansson, who recently separated from her husband, Romain Dauriac, went on to reveal that marriage will always change a relationship in some way – and not always for the better.
“It changes things,” she said. “I have friends who were together for 10 years and then decided to get married, and I’ll ask them on their wedding day or right after if it’s different, and it always is. It is.
“It’s a beautiful responsibility, but it’s a responsibility.”
The actor went on to talk about the concept of monogamy itself, and mused whether it truly is possible to dedicate yourself to just one person for the rest of your life.
“I don’t think it’s natural to be a monogamous person,” said Johansson. “I might be skewered for that, but I think it is work.
“It’s a lot of work.”
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Johansson continued: “And the fact that it is such work for so many people — for everyone — the fact of that proves that it is not a natural thing.
“It’s something I have a lot of respect for and have participated in, but I think it definitely goes against some instinct to look beyond.”
The actor went on to recall a Ted Talk that she had recently listened to about relationships, explaining that the content really resonated with her.
“The person who was giving the talk was saying that in moments when you’re starting a new relationship and your friends and family say, ‘No, this is a red flag. This person is not for you’ — why do we ignore those people who know us so well in the moments that we don’t?” she said.
“And then we distance ourselves from them because we’re embarrassed or whatever. It’s interesting how sometimes all you need is your good friend to tell you that you’re not acting like yourself. Or that they see something in front of you that is not beneficial for you or true to who you actually are.”
She added: “I don’t know. It’s so easy to just go, ‘No, I don’t want to hear that.’”
It is not the first time that Johansson has publicly addressed her reservations about marriage; in 2015, when asked about her divorce from Ryan Reynolds (who has since married Blake Lively), she again insisted that it “takes a lot of work”.
“Acting is a very strange world to be co-existing in. It’s very volatile. There’s always going to be the more successful person,” she told Parade magazine. “It’s related to rejection. Because actors, if they’re not having success, connect it directly to unpopularity—to the fact that nobody wants them. It’s not necessarily true. I’m constantly rejected.”
Johansson continued: “It takes a man who’s not only confident in the love that you have for one another, but confident in what he has going on in his own career.
“He has to be in a field that’s completely different from yours. My husband [Dauriac]’s also involved in art. What’s important to him is the recognition that he gets from his job, and that has nothing to do with my job.”
Images: Rex Pictures