Does distance really make the heart grow fonder? Actor Denzel Washington certainly thinks so. Washington, who has been married to his wife Pauletta for 39 years, says long hours on movie sets may have helped his marriage.

“People who say they knew [their spouse was the right one when they met] are lying! It’s a marathon, not a sprint,” said Washington, explaining why his marriage has endured.

“Hollywood gets a bad rap,” said the 57-year-old Oscar winner. “It’s just a place with some footprints in cement. I don’t live there, I live in Los Angeles. But it’s probably helped our marriage that we’re apart a lot.”

Denzel and Pauletta, 62, have 4 children together, UFL football player John David, daughter Katia, 34, and twins Olivia and Malcolm, 21. The Washingtons share a 28,000 square foot 8 bedroom 14 bath mansion in Beverly Hills, CA.

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