It was anything but a happy birthday for Ellen DeGeneres, after her celebrations were ruined by an explosive public bust-up with wife Portia de Rossi over the talk- show star’s ex-girlfriend.
Sources confirm the couple fired off nasty shots and angry attacks during the shock argument outside LA’s Madeo restaurant, with onlookers revealing it took several gal pals to end their intense exchange.
‘They were pretty fired up, that’s for sure,’ says a source. ‘Everyone was there to celebrate Ellen’s recent 59th birthday – however, it was anything but a good night. You could cut the tension between Portia and Ellen all night with a knife. But it was only when they went to leave the restaurant that the tension erupted. They were hurling insults at each other.’
Sources confirm the fight was in response to a recent controversial interview by Ellen’s ex Anne Heche, in which the actress accused her former girlfriend of forcing Portia, 44, to give up her career.
‘She was a lead on television shows and a celebrated actress, and I haven’t seen her career exploding,’ said Anne, who dated Ellen for four years before splitting in 2000. ‘I don’t know what happened to Portia, I can only imagine because I was in a relationship with the woman she’s in a relationship with, so I have some ideas about what happened that has nothing to do with Hollywood.’
A source told US Life & Style magazine: ‘Anne spilled what everyone in Ellen’s camp has always known – dating Ellen is tantamount to career suicide in Hollywood. If you’re with Ellen, it’s her career and only her career that matters. You pretty much give up your life.’
Dogged by endless divorce rumours in recent years, the two reportedly have a long list of issues that are destroying their marriage, including Ellen’s controlling behaviour – a concern that reared its ugly head yet again following Anne’s cutting remarks.
‘Portia has become increasingly more bitter in recent times that she has been forced to give up her career,’ says the source.
‘At first she was happy to play wifey at home and bask in the glow of Ellen’s success. But now she’s over it. Reading Anne’s thoughts really brought it crashing down around her, and it all came to a head at Ellen’s birthday party.
‘We’re all hoping they can get past it – but at this point, we’re just not sure.’
For the full story, see this week’s New Idea – out now.