As Marie Claire reported recently, Lilly Jay—the estranged wife of Ethan Slater, Ariana Grande’s Wicked costar, and reported new beau—is understandably “devastated” over the news that her husband (and father of her newborn baby boy) is dating the pop star. It’s news that, Us Weekly reports, Jay only found out about “days before the news broke,” a source told the outlet.
Slater apparently only informed Jay—who he had been married to for five years, and were high school sweethearts, together romantically for over a decade—that their marriage was over “shortly before his romance with Ariana Grande went public,” the publication writes.
A source close to Grande denies this, but the source stands firm, saying “Ethan sat Lilly down a few days before the news broke about him and Ariana and said that he wanted a divorce. Lilly never saw it coming.”
Yet another source speaking to Us Weekly maintains that Slater and Jay “were separated when they [Slater and Grande] started dating, and the relationship is recent.” Grande’s camp has maintained that she was separated from her husband, Dalton Gomez, and Slater was separated from Jay before the Slater/Grande romance began.
“It’s understandable that it’s difficult to see an ex move on, especially in such a public way, and they are trying to be as respectful as possible,” the source said.
Slater and Grande connected on the set of the upcoming Wicked movie, which began shooting in the U.K. late last year. According to Us Weekly, the two “weren’t shy in front of the cast and crew”: “Ariana and Ethan weren’t careful,” a source said. “They’d hold hands on set in between takes. They were sloppy and not hiding it.”
Us Weekly confirmed that things turned romantic between the costars amidst Grande’s own separation from Gomez. “Ariana and Ethan are dating, however, things are fairly new,” a source said. “Ariana and Dalton split in January, and Ethan is separated from his wife. Ariana and Ethan have only recently begun seeing each other but they have a lot of fun together and are enjoying each other’s company.”
Another source told the outlet that Grande’s ex, Gomez, is also devasted by his impending divorce, much like Jay is about hers. “Dalton is really hoping to make things work with Ariana,” a source said. “Despite the rocky patches they’ve been through, he isn’t ready to give up on their marriage. He saw himself spending the rest of his life with Ariana and will do anything to get past this.”
Another source said that Grande and Gomez had been having issues for months, which led up to their breakup. “They were having issues before she left for Wicked filming [in London] that they couldn’t resolve, and the distance did not help,” they said. “They haven’t been speaking and are separated, and a divorce is likely.”
What a mess all the way around.
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