Melanie Griffith

END OF A Spanish Love Affair

Melanie Griffith © Michelle Chaplow

American actress Melanie Griffith was well known in Spain for her acting career (Working Girl, The Bonfire of the Vanities) long before 1996. But as a star, she shot into the Spanish-celeb stratosphere that year when she married the Andalusian-born actor Antonio Banderas. The two met during the filming of the movie Two Much, when it was – as Melanie is quoted as saying – love at first sight.

Sadly, the couple separated in 2014, after 18 years of marriage. They have one daughter, Stella del Carmen, born in 1996; Melanie gave birth to her third child at Marbella’s Costa del Sol Hospital, with mother and baby heading straight to their Marbella beach home afterwards (Banderas hails from Fuengirola). Stella del Carmen has dual Spanish/US nationality and the couple has worked hard to give her the best of both cultures. She is bilingual, with her father stressing that he wants to ensure she is clearly Spanish, but that she also takes pride in her Anglo-Saxon heritage.

While references to Antonio Banderas’ first wife, Ana Leza, did make their way into the Spanish “pink” press (including at least one bitter interview with the ex) during the early years of their romance and marriage, Melanie Griffith soon won the hearts of the Spanish people, who loved to see her by her husband’s side. Her attempts to learn Spanish and willingness to share a few words with the press were much admired and appreciated by everyone.

Melanie and Antonio enjoyed their home in Marbella on the Costa del Sol whenever they were not working on films. They made a special effort to come to Málaga every year for the annual Holy Week processions, which Melanie traditionally attended with his family, while Antonio went out in the procession of his hermandad. Antonio is still expect to participate.

Melanie’s first two children are U.S citizens born of previous relationships, first with husband Steven Bauer and then a remarriage to her previous husband Don Johnson. Her daughter, Dakota Johnson, had a starring role in the 2015 film Fifty Shades of Grey, based on the massive bestseller by EL James. Dakota also appeared along with her half-sister Stella in the 1999 film Crazy in Alabama, starring their mother Melanie and with Antonio Banderas directing.

  • Dark Tourist (2012)
  • Nip/tuck (2010)
  • Viva Laughin (2007)
  • Heartless (2005)
  • Shade (2004)
  • Shade (2004)
  • Tempo (2003)
  • All the Way (2003)
  • Stuart Little 2 (2002)
  • Light Keeps Me Company (2001)
  • Tart (2001)
  • Cecil B. Demented (2000)
  • Along for the Ride (2000)
  • Crazy in Alabama (1999)
  • The Battle Over “Citizen Kane” (1999)
  • Celebrity (1998)
  • Shadow of Doubt (1998)
  • Lolita (1997)
  • Two Much (1996)
  • Mulholland Falls (1996)
  • Now and Then (1995)
  • Milk Money(1994)
  • Nobody’s Fool (1994)
  • Buffalo Girls (1994)
  • Born Yesterday (1993)
  • Shining Through (1992)
  • A Stranger Among Us (1992)
  • Paradise (1991)
  • In the Spirit (1990)
  • Women and Men – Stories of Seduction (1990)
  • Bonfire of the Vanities (1990)
  • Pacific Heights (1990)
  • Cherry 2000 (1988)
  • Stormy Monday (1988)
  • Working Girl (1988)
  • Something Wild (1986)
  • Body Double (1984)
  • Fear City (1984)
  • She’s in the Army Now (1981)
  • Underground Aces (1980)
  • Steel Cowboy (1978)
  • Joyride (1977)
  • One on One (1976)
  • The Drowning Pool (1975
  • Night Moves (1975)
  • Smile (1975)
  • The Harrad Experiment (1973)
  • Smith (1969)

Living in Andalucia