Chris Rock and Malaak Compton are divorcing, the couple confirmed on Sunday. "After much contemplation and 19 years of marriage, Chris and I have decided to go our separate ways," Malaak said in a statement released to the press, adding that her philanthropy work for her nonprofit styleWorks gives her perspective on the split. "Being fortunate enough to lead a life of service by working with those most vulnerable makes me well aware of life's blessings, even when faced with difficulties."
Chris and Malaak married in 1996 and share two daughters, Lola Simone and Zahra Savannah. Malaak mentioned their children in her announcement, saying, "While recognizing that this is a significant change, my children remain at the center of my life and their well-being is my top priority. It is in this spirit that I sincerely ask that their privacy and the privacy of our family be respected during this transition in our lives."
Robert S. Cohen, Chris's attorney, released a statement on Chris's behalf, saying, "Chris Rock has filed for divorce from his wife, Malaak. This is a personal matter, and Chris requests privacy as he and Malaak work through this process and focus on their family." The announcement comes at the end of a big year for the comedian and actor, during which he returned to the spotlight to promote his new movie, Top Five. In the process, Chris has garnered headlines for sharing his thoughts on racism, women's rights, and more controversial topics in candid interviews.