Happily ever after felt like a genuine possibility in the early 2000s.
Remember when rom-coms were about journalists who made a killing? Or two polar opposites going from utterly hating one another to falling madly in love in the span of 10 days?
For Miley Cyrus and Liam Hemsworth, happily ever after lasted for 10 years, but the couple recently confirmed they’ve called it quits. And we hate to say it, but love is officially dead.
From the time the two met on the set of Nicholas Sparks’ The Last Song, it was love at first sight. It was Miley’s moment to leave behind Hannah Montana and take her career to the next level.
She was 17-years-old and ready to take on more serious roles, and this film seemed like the perfect stepping stone between Disney and wherever she was heading to next.
What she didn’t expect was to meet Liam.
In the movie, Miley plays the bratty Ronnie Miller, a New York teen whose refusal to acquiesce her mother’s wishes of attending Julliard ends up living with her father in Georgia. But it all ends up fine when she meets the very hot and very popular Will Blakelee, played by Liam Hemsworth.
We’ve seen many on-screen romances turn into off-screen relationships. From Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie and Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart to Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis, some dalliances go the distance, while others end in tragedy.
From the time they met on The Last Song to the moment they decided it was on, we’re looking back at everything leading up to Miley and Liam’s breakup.
Get ready to rewind to 2010…
Despite the on-screen chemistry during The Last Song, Miley denied they were together.
A three-year age gap means very little unless one person is under 18 and during the filming of this movie Miley was just 17. But two days following the release of The Last Song trailer, relationship rumors began to swirl between herself and Liam. In the December/January issue of Seventeen magazine, Miley stated, “first and foremost, we are best friends, so that’s what I tell people all the time.”
But according to People that wasn’t true.
They were spotted “full-on making out,” according to People, as they said their goodbyes at the Nashville airport following the end of shooting. This was according to an observer at the airport, Alex Emanuel, a New York actor who saw the couple all over each other. He also went on to say that Miley was acting “as giddy as a schoolgirl.”
By the time the premiere came around, they could no longer keep things under wraps.
Making their debut in March 2010 as a couple for the red carpet premiere of The Last Song, Miley and Liam looked head over heels for one another. Miley lovingly gazed up at Liam as the press went wild. This was followed by a very charming photoshoot of the pair in Teen Vogue. Photographed holding hands and embracing one another, this photoshoot was way too cute.
The Reviews Are In And…
They’re not great.
Despite the budding couple garnering massive attention for The Last Song, reviewers weren’t as impressed by the on-screen adaptation of Nicholas Sparks’ novel. Maybe Miley took these reviews to heart, because by June, just two months after the film’s release she had dropped her third album, Can’t Be Tamed. The Guardian was particularly harsh, writing “Musical maturity still eludes Miley Cyrus.” Damn.
Cracks Begin To Show
As their joint film and Miley’s music came under fire, the relationship showed its first signs of weakness.
According to sources, the two break up in August. “Ever since she left for Detroit, Miley has been super focused on her work,” an insider confessed. “Liam wanted more, but she’s 17 and has other priorities right now. He’s been a distraction.” The source also added, “She is not ready to settle down, and Liam’s not a happy camper.” Sounds like an ominous prediction.
They’re Back Together In September
The on-again-off-again pattern begins to rear its head.
Liam and Miley are spotted cuddled up at Katsuya in a private dining room at the Californian restaurant. And it seems in the case of this couple, onlookers are always sources. One witness said they “looked so in love.” But maybe the cutest moment relayed to the gossip rags has to be that they shared milk and cookies at the end of their meal as Miley whispered into the Australian actor’s ear.
Next up, 2011: It’s A Big Year For Them.
They’re kicking career goals and settling down.
As Miley’s final episode of Hannah Montanna airs and Liam begins to film the first installment in the Hunger Games series the two tackle momentous occasions in their respective careers. While they’re seen making a slew of public appearances and stepping out on more dates in front of the paparazzi, trouble is also brewing…
It’s hard to confirm whether they were together at the time or not.
While 2011 began slow and steady for the couple, things were already up in arms by February. Maybe the two had broken up again, with some sources claiming they had, but either way, Miley was spotted this month cozying up with her film co-star, Josh Bowman. During the filming of So Undercover the two are spotted canoodling and we’re not sure what to make of this. Miley is after all, a free spirit.
Liam Is Back In The Picture
How far would you fly for the person you love?
Flying from LAX to Australia takes 15 hours. I can say this from experience. And by March 2011, Liam and Miley had started making plans to visit his hometown back in Sydney. While Miley was already set to visit his hometown on her Gypsy Heart tour in June, the travel plans obviously hinted at the seriousness of their relationship.
Where there’s smoke there’s fire.
Things were pretty quiet on the Miley and Liam front for the rest of 2011 and it seemed like everything was going swimmingly. And in March gossip about a potential engagement between the two starts making the rounds after Miley is spotted wearing a ring. But Miley isn’t happy about it and takes to Twitter to speak her mind, writing: “I’m not engaged. I’ve worn this same ring on this finger since November! People just wanna find something to tal about! It’s a topaz people!”
But They Actually Got Engaged
Three months later they made it official.
Maybe the couple just wanted to reveal the news in their own time or they were actually inspired by the rumors, but in June Miley and Liam announced that they were planning on getting hitched— and they had the ring to prove it! He proposed on May 31 with a 3.5-carat Neil Lane diamond ring. “I’m so happy to be engaged and look forward to a life of happiness with Liam,” the 19-year-old Cyrus told People magazine.
2013…It Was Bangerz
Suddenly cracks begin to show in the once bulletproof partnership.
There’s nothing Miley hates more than rumors, and her Twitter became a dedicated platform to denying them. When their breakup seemed imminent, she once again stormed to the social media platform to demonize the media and take a break. “I am so sick of La,” she wrote. “And sick of the lies that come with it. I didn’t call off my wedding. Taking a break from social media.” But she’s also spotted without her ring.
Everything changed after the VMAs.
Remember when Miley hosted the MTV VMAs in 2013? In August, she showed everyone that Hannah Montana is dead and the new Miley is here. She twerked, got yelled at by Nicki Minaj, smoked weed, and even suggestively danced against Robin Thicke’s crotch. Her album, Bangerz, which turned away from pop and delved heavily into hip-hop garnered a lot of criticism for cultural appropriation.
Who Was Cheating On Who?
Sources, onlookers, and witnesses fueled rumors of infidelity.
Reports that Miley had a fling with one of the producers of Bangerz, Mike WiLL Made-It began surfacing and people started wondering what was going on with Liam. But when Miley dropped her iconoclastic video for “Wrecking Ball,” Liam was supposedly making out with someone else. Her apparent fiance was seen kissing another woman at the Toronto Film Festival.
The on-and-off-again couple did it again.
A few days later, it was confirmed that the two had broken up yet again. Was this breakup number two, three or four? What made it official was the modern-day kiss of death: the unfollow. Miley unfollowed Liam on Twitter.“I don’t think I realized what 19 truly is, and I got engaged at 19, and I definitely wouldn’t change being engaged. It was so fun wearing a fat rock for a few years,” Cyrus told Barbara Walters in December. “But now, I just feel like I can actually be happy.”
2014: A Tale Of A Few Rebounds
Miley and Liam spend the entirety of 2014 apart.
While the two are off-again, they both respectively explore their other dating options. After “secretly dating” Mike WiLL Made-It and making out with one of Britney Spears’ backup dancers, Miley starts dating Patrick Schwarzenegger. Meanwhile, Liam is finding himself growing close with Canadian actress, Nina Dobrev. Despite Liam being caught by a very nosey diner who overhears him loudly exclaim that he and Miley will “always be best friends” the two don’t reunite for a while.
2015: Free To Be Miley
In an interview with Paper Magazine, Miley leaves no page unturned.
By April, Miley and Patrick were over. And soon after she was spotted smooching Victoria’s Secret model, Stella Maxwell. So when her interview with Paper Magazine came along, Miley was ready to spill the tea. I remember telling her I admire women in a different way. And she asked me what that meant. And I said, ‘I love them. I love them like I love boys,’” Cyrus tells Paper in June of a conversation about sexuality with her mom, Tish Cyrus. “And it was so hard for her to understand. She didn’t want me to be judged, and she didn’t want me to go to hell. But she believes in me more than she believes in any god. I just asked for her to accept me. And she has.”
She also explains to Elle that she identifies as pansexual.
“I’m very open about it — I’m pansexual. But I’m not in a relationship.” she told Elle U.K. “I’m 22, I’m going on dates, but I change my style every two weeks, let alone who I’m with.” Meanwhile, Liam had adopted a rescue dog. While the two were apart for most of the year, they reunited in Halloween when Miley borrowed a costume from Liam.
2016: Meanwhile In Australia…
Miley and Liam are spotted at a music festival.
Let’s be frank, you don’t just bump into your ex at a music festival halfway across the world. You plan it. And in this case, it seemed like a joint venture. According to Page Six, the two were spotted backstage kissing in the VIP area and it didn’t go unnoticed. After this, it seemed like the two were back together, especially after Miley was spotted wearing her engagement ring again.
It’s Official!… Again
Just 5 months later, Liam confirmed they were back on.
In an interview with GQ, Liam confessed that the two were officially together again.“Of course, it was hard, man. But at the time we were going in different directions, and it’s just what needed to happen,” Liam admitted. “We were both super young, and it was a good decision at the time—we both needed that.” “People will figure it out, they already have… They’re not dumb,” he responded after being asked about his relationship status.
Miley confirms it too, but with ink.
Instead of talking to the press, Miley posted a photo on Instagram of a tiny tattoo of a Vegemite jar on her arm. Apparently, Vegemite, the Australian yeast spread, is Liam’s favorite and Miley’s permanent commemoration indicated things were very serious. Liam got a matching one too. It wasn’t long before she confirmed that they were once again engaged and planning to get married.
2017: An Ode To Liam
Miley’s new album Younger Now saw the singer return to her roots.
Sonically, the record was a woozy mix of country songs and sweet melodies, but the lyrics were very personal. The first single, “Malibu,” references the couples life together in well, Malibu, while “She’s Not Him,” hints at Miley choosing to leave Stella Maxwell to reunite with Liam. “I just can’t fall in love with you/’Cause you’re not him/Yeah, she’s not him,” she sings on “She’s Not Him.”
2018: Everything Is Going To Plan
There’s an old Yiddish proverb that reads, “We plan, God laughs,” and maybe that’s the best way to surmise what happens next.
While the previous year was perfect for Cysworth/Miliam/Limey, what came next was heartbreaking. The home and life Miley lovingly sang about on her album was snatched from the couple when rabid fires in Los Angeles destroyed their home in Malibu. But Liam became a hero in Miley’s eyes after he took charge in the evacuation.”He was so incredible. He got all the animals out in his truck. He put two pigs in crates, which I tell you is so hard,” Cyrus told Howard Stern.”He got a lot of action for saving the animals,” Miley half-joked. “We had to make sure he knew I was very, very grateful.”
Here Comes The Bride
The couple finally makes it down the aisle.
Secret weddings became all the rage in 2018, and Miley and Liam weren’t about to be left out. In December, they tied the knot in a very secret ceremony in their home in Nashville. The day after Christmas, Miley made it official to the world, sharing a beautiful black and white snap of her wearing a white gown, while embracing her strapping Aussie beau.
2019: Redefining Marriage
Before trouble started brewing in paradise, it seemed as though the couple had everything worked out.
In an interview with Vanity Fair, Miley opened up about what it meant to her as a queer person to be in a relationship with a man. “We’re redefining, to be fucking frank, what it looks like for someone that’s a queer person like myself to be in a hetero relationship,” Miley says. “A big part of my pride and my identity is being a queer person,”
A few months later, she reiterates this in an interview with Elle.
“I think it’s very confusing to people that I’m married. But my relationship is unique,” she adamantly told Elle. “And I don’t know that I would ever publicly allow people in there because it’s so complex, and modern, and new that I don’t think we’re in a place where people would get it. I mean, do people really think that I’m at home in a fucking apron cooking dinner? I’m in a hetero relationship, but I still am very sexually attracted to women.”
But Suddenly It’s Over
Just one month after telling Elle that her and Liam had successfully redefined the definition of marriage for themselves, it was officially confirmed the couple had split.
On August 10, Miley and Liam announced it was over. “Liam and Miley have agreed to separate at this time,” a rep for Miley told People. “Ever-evolving, changing as partners and individuals, they have decided this is what’s best while they both focus on themselves and careers.”
Nobody expected this.
The rep added, “They still remain dedicated parents to all of their animals they share while lovingly taking this time apart. Please respect their process and privacy.”
And Miley is doing great.
Just moments after the news broke and fans around the world were devastated, Miley was spotted making out with Kaitlynn Carter— who had recently split from her husband, Brody Jenner. The two were spotted in Lake Como kissing, embracing, and swimming to their hearts’ content. Nothing wrong with a rebound!
As for Liam, he is devastated, but wishes Miley well.
Liam confirmed the split himself in an Instagram post, writing: “Just a quick note to say that Miley and I have recently separated and I wish her nothing but health and happiness going forward.” He is currently in Australia, hanging out with his brother Chris and hopefully getting all the TLC he deserves.