Sam Elliott’s real life love story is straight out of a Hollywood movie

Some Hollywood stars get our attention for living glamorous, larger-than-life lives. Others, like Hollywood heartthrob Sam Elliott, have attracted attention for a completely different reason: proving to the world that true love does exist.

Elliott, 74, has been married to his beloved wife Katharine Ross for no less than three long decades.

And counting.

Hollywood heartthrob Billy Elliott certainly has countless female fans around the world. But he has eyes for only one woman: his wife of three decades, Katharine Ross.

The two originally met on the set of Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, where Ross had a leading part. Meanwhile, as Elliott told AARP, “I was just a shadow on the wall, a glorified extra in a bar scene.”

“All I could do was just watch Katharine come and go,” he recalls, adding, “I never spoke to her. I never would even think to speak to her.”

Sam Elliott
ABC

Needless to say, Elliott was immediately taken by Ross. But it wasn’t until they met again on the set of The Legacy in 1978 that he finally dared interact with her.

20th Century Fox

The hit it off immediately — and six years later, they were married. Ross had previously been in four marriages, whereas this was Elliott’s very first.

After such a history of failed marriages, chances are that Ross couldn’t have felt so certain about how well her fifth (!) would go — but 3 decades later she can be sure she made the right decision.

Sam Elliott
Universal Pictures

The two have an adult daughter, Cleo Rose and their lasting love and hard work keeps them together day in and day out.

“We have a common sensibility, but we also work at being together. You work past the s–t; you don’t walk away from it. That’s how relationships last,” Elliott says.

The couple divide their time between their homes in California and Oregon, and Elliott says he would like to move them out to   “La La Land” in the future.

Sam Elliott
The Orchard

Elliott and Ross even got to fulfill a dream they’d had during their relationship: to actually share the screen as husband and wife. The managed to do that twice: in The Hero as well as Love Letters, the latter which Elliott calls a highlight of his career.

Sam Elliott
TNT

So how does Elliott credit the couple’s immense success?

“Through mutual love and a mutual respect,” he says, adding that Ross is “a pretty stable girl who has been around the block.”

At the end of the day, determination is key: “There are peaks and valleys like everything else, but you have to push on.”

Sam Elliott
AARP

What a lovely couple that seems so genuinely happy together. Share to wish Sam Elliott and Katharine Ross another 30 years of love and great success!