Veteran Hollywood star Robert De Niro has finally broken his silence over his split from wife Grace Hightower and has asked for "privacy and respect from all."
Earlier this month, multiple news outlets reported that De Niro and Hightower decided to call it quits after over 20 years of marriage. While the news was confirmed by sources close to the couple, neither De Niro nor Hightower verified the reports, until now.
In a statement given to E! News, the Academy Award winner, while addressing the split reports, said: "Grace and I have two beautiful children together. We are entering a period of transition in our relationship which is a difficult but constructive process. I honor Grace as a wonderful mother and ask for privacy and respect from all as we proceed to develop our roles as partners in parenting."
De Niro met Hightower in 1987 when she was working at famed eatery Mr. Chow in London, and got hitched in 1997 after dating for about a decade. They share two children together, son Elliott (20) and daughter Helen Grace (6).
According to People, in 2004, the Hollywood couple renewed their vows in front of A-list celebrities including Martin Scorsese, Meryl Streep, Ben Stiller, and Tom Brokaw. The two were last spotted together on the red carpet of the 72nd Annual Tony Awards in New York City.