Ewan McGregor used to be up there with Matt Damon and Tom Hanks as one of the good guys of Hollywood. He loved his wife, adored his kids and used his profile to make a difference in the world.
Throw in his talent to play both geeky and gritty and you had the ultimate leading man.
Well, that’s the old McGregor. The new version seems a heartless shadow of his former self, who’s either going through a midlife crisis or so bereft of emotional intelligence that the only acting role he deserves is a cameo in the next incarnation of Dumb and Dumber.
Sure, marriages end. Love dies. People grow apart. But McGregor’s decision to publicly thank his wife, Eve Mavrakis, for her support after dumping her for a younger version smacked more of damage limitation than genuine gratitude.
Imagine how his wife of 22 years felt when he collected a gong at the Golden Globe Awards earlier this month and thanked not just her, but his girlfriend of three minutes.
'I want to take a moment to just say thank you to Eve, who always stood by me for 22 years, and our four children, Clara, Esther, Jamyan and Anouk,' said McGregor, seconds after kissing his new girlfriend, Mary Elizabeth Winstead.
That he then went on to thank Winstead was cruel, thoughtless and deeply insulting. The mother of your four children and your new squeeze don't deserve equal billing. They don't belong in the same breath.
Mavrakis must be hurting but she has been dignified since her husband was photographed with his co-star last October. There's been no outbursts, no contrived attempt at conscious uncoupling. When asked how she felt about his speech, she was honest: 'No, I did not like his speech.' She has since said their divorce is "disappointing and upsetting" but that her main concern was that their four children were OK.
When marriages end the focus should not be on who's to blame but how to cause the least pain to all involved. McGregor may have wanted his new lover at his side at the awards but what message does it send to his children? He might as well have told them: 'Yes, your mum is replaceable and my happiness is more important than your pain.'
McGregor needs to give his family time and respect. He could have sat at the same table as Winstead but not by her side. He could've written a private thank you to his wife. Instead he's acted like a selfish git and his 15-year-old daughter Esther has written a song saying as much.
'Seeing those pictures, they're making me cry,' she sings. If he's not careful he could lose all that truly matters.
For more on Ewan McGregor, pick-up a copy of WHO on-sale now!