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Wicked's Michelle Yeoh Explains Why She Was Engaged for 19 Years Before Her Wedding

The Malaysian actress, who'll play Madame Morrible in the upcoming Wicked films, explained her (very) long betrothal to husband Jean Todt.

By Samantha Vincenty

Michelle Yeoh has been a booked and busy actress since the 1980s, yet the Malaysian star's career has been hotter than ever since her Academy Award-winning turn in Everything Everywhere All at Once. So you might say she understands more than most people that good things can take time. And Yeoh and her husband, Jean Todt, felt no need to rush their very, very, very long engagement before marrying in 2023.

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During Yeoh's visit to The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy FallonHost Jimmy Fallon asked her about her headline-making betrothal. 

"I heard that you guys were engaged for—let's see if I got this right—19 years?" Fallon said. "I'm sorry, but what? And how? And what are you talking about?" 

Yeoh can explain. "We met, and within a month, he proposed, and I said yes," she said. "Because he's the most adorable—he's such a sweetheart." Aw!

"And then maybe he was just like [bleep], do I really want to do this?" she laughed, referring to her long resume of martial arts movies, such as Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon. 

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"Because you're always kicking someone's butt in a movie," Fallon said, chiming in on the joke. "So he's afraid of you."

Yet Todt knew Yeoh was worth waiting for. "He's one of the most patient [people] in the world," Yeoh said (evidently!). "And I think that's what we all deserve—to have someone who loves us for who we are and what we do."

Michelle Yeoh on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Episode 1909

"We have a busy lifestyle," Yeoh continued. She's been filming movies internationally since she and Todt met—most recently, the forthcoming Wicked movies co-starring Cynthia Erivo and Season 21 The Voice coach Ariana Grande. "But he's always been so supportive."

Still, 19 years is 19 years. "Finally, I think he was like, 'Do you want to get married or not?'"

The answer was (still) yes—and on July 27, 2023, Yeoh and Todt tied the knot. As the photo Fallon shared revealed, Yeoh's Oscar award was in attendance. 

Who Is Michelle Yeoh's husband, Jean Todt?

Jean Todt has led an exciting life. From France, Todt had a career as a race car driver before becoming the CEO of Ferrari until 2008, according to People.

“Today after 6992 days on 27th July 2023 in Geneva, surrounded by loving family and friends, we are so happy to celebrate this special moment together," their wedding program read.