Actor Robert De Niro is speaking out for the first time since news broke he was parting ways with his wife of more than 20 years, Grace Hightower.
De Niro released a statement saying, "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.”
The Oscar winner continued, “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.”
This is the second time they have separated. In 1999, Robert filed for divorce, but was able to work things out with Grace and reconcile. They renewed their vows in 2004.
Robert and Grace, who met when she was working at Mr. Chow in London, tied the knot in 1997 after dating for nearly 10 years.
They welcomed son Elliott in 1998 and daughter Helen Grace via surrogate in 2011. De Niro is also the father of Raphael, Drena, Julian and Aaron from previous relationships.