Hollywood’s 12 Nastiest Custody Battles

Published on August 21, 2014. Updated April 3, 2017

These celebrities were once happily married – or so it seemed – however, it didn’t last. As soon the marriages ended, these couples quickly turned on each other and then embarked on some of the nastiest custody battles in Hollywood history. These former spouses did everything they could to take their partners down and ensure that they got sole custody of their children. While some of these couples were able to end the custody dispute amicably, many of them are probably going to hate each other forever – it was that bad! Here is Fame10’s list of Hollywood’s 12 nastiest custody battles!

12. Jeremy Renner and Sonni Pacheco

It took a long while, but Jeremy Renner and Sonni Pacheco finally settled their custody battle in the spring of 2015. It all started when Pacheco filed for divorce from Renner after 10 months of marriage and she demanded physical custody of their little girl, 2-year-old Ava. In the documents she claimed Renner stole her passport and that she wanted her independence. They ended up agreeing on joint physical custody and Renner was forced to pay Pacheco $13,000 a month in child support, but she was not granted spousal support like she wanted.


11. Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie

This custody battle was one of the most shocking, not only because Jolie was accusing Pitt of being abusive towards his children, but also because it seemed to come totally out of left field! Apparently things had been rocky between these two for a while, but there was one particular incident that acted as the last straw for Jolie. It happened on September 14 while the family was traveling on the couple’s private plane and Pitt, who was allegedly drinking began acting “abusive” and Jolie feared for the safety of her children. She filed for divorce the next day and asked for primary custody of the children. Jolie’s claims forced child services to get involved, both parents were subject to an investigation and the children had to undergo therapy. Their custody battle remains open, but they’ve decided to settle it privately out of the press.


10. Morena Baccarin and Austin Chick

Morena Baccarin was caught in the middle of a nasty custody battle while she was pregnant with her Gotham co-star, Benjamin McKenzie’s baby! She was embroiled in a bicoastal custody battle with her estranged husband, Austin Chick. The two shared custody of their 2-year-old son, Julius. Baccarin wanted him to stay in New York City with her while she shot her show. Chick agreed to stay in NYC to co-parent, but when he found out she was dating and expecting with McKenzie, he up and moved to L.A. with their child. Baccarin told the courts that she could not travel because of her pregnancy and waged a war to keep their son in NYC with her. The now divorced couple still share custody of their son, but he primarily lives in NYC with his mother. She was ordered to pay him $23,000 a month in spousal and child support.

Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

9. Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee

Pamela Anderson and Tommy Lee had a pretty intense marriage, followed by a really contentious divorce. In court, she asked for sole custody of their two sons Brandon and Dylan and accused her rock star ex of abusing alcohol and being emotionally unstable and asked the court to appoint a monitor to supervisor his visits with them. After a couple of years of fighting, however, the former couple finally agreed to share custody of their two sons.

Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

8. Christie Brinkley and Peter Cook

Christie Brinkley and Peter Cook were involved in a pretty nasty custody dispute that just wouldn’t end. The couple split up in 2006 when the former supermodel caught wind of her husband’s affair with his 18-year-old assistant; however, they battled in court over minor issues including nasty email correspondences and custody of their daughter Sailor and Jack, Brinkley’s son from another relationship, until 2012.

Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com

7. Woody Allen and Mia Farrow

Woody Allen and Mia Farrow had one of the most acrimonious custody battles in history. The former couple – who were never married – repeatedly savaged each other as they fought for custody of their one biological child and their two adopted children. During the trial, Farrow alleged that Allen had sexually molested their adopted daughter Dylan while his lawyers claimed that she was an unfit mother. The court ended up siding with the actress-turned-humanitarian, awarding her sole custody.

Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

6. Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin

When Kim Basinger and Alec Baldwin divorced after nine years of marriage, they quickly became embroiled in a bitter custody battle over their daughter Ireland that lasted for several years. Things came to a head in 2007 when the “30 Rock” star called Ireland for a court-approved chat and got her voicemail. Baldwin flew into a rage, calling his daughter “a thoughtless pig” and his ex wife “a thoughtless pain in the a**” on the voicemail.

Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

5. Bethenny Frankel and Jason Hoppy

Bethenny Frankel and Jason Hoppy’s custody battle over their daughter Bryn got pretty ugly. Although the pair eventually agreed to share custody, they first resorted to fighting it out in court. According to the former reality TV star, Hoppy “threatened to destroy her” when their marriage fell apart while her estranged husband’s lawyer said that Frenkl wanted to get even and used the child as a prop “in the pursuit of her own career and her own brand.”

Everett Collection / Shutterstock.com

4. Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubry

In 2011, Halle Berry and Gabriel Aubry were involved in one of the ugliest custody disputes in Hollywood’s history. Things were so tense between the former couple that when he filed for joint custody of their daughter Nahla, the Oscar-winning actress responded by filing for sole custody and then asking the court to grant her permission to move to France with the couple’s daughter. After the judge refused this request, Aubry and Berry’s current beau Olivier Martinez came to blows outside her home a few weeks later. These days, the two are finally sharing custody amicably.

s_bukley / Shutterstock.com

3. Usher and Tameka Foster

Usher and Tameka Foster were only married for two years; however, after the marriage went south, they spent the next three years battling each other in court for custody of their two children, Usher V and Naviyd. During the trial, she accused the world famous singer of cheating on her and of being an absentee father while his lawyer’s argued that she was incapable of parenting the boys and did not have the emotional stability to bond with them. Usher ended up winning primary custody.

s_bukley / Shutterstock.com

2. Anne Heche and Coley Laffoon

Anne Heche and Coley Laffoon were involved in a pretty nasty custody battle over their only son Homer. Things got so bad that both parties ended up airing their dirty laundry to anyone who would listen. He questioned her parenting skills and sanity and accused her of trying to destroy his relationship with their son while she accused him of making outrageous financial demands. Even after a settlement was reached, these two – Heche in particular – just couldn’t seem to stop talking about it.

Featureflash / Shutterstock.com

1. Kelly Rutherford and Daniel Giersch

Kelly Rutherford and Daniel Giersch’s custody battle has lasted longer than their marriage. Relations between these two have been downright nasty. At one point Rutherford filed a temporary restraining order against her ex and she is also rumored to have been involved in having him deported back to Monaco. The court decided that the children should live with Giersch overseas and that the actress would have to travel there to visit them; however, Rutherford is still trying to find a way to keep her children in the U.S.

s_bukley / Shutterstock.com
9 Surprising Secrets About Celebrity Divorces

celebrity divorce

9 Surprising Secrets About Celebrity Divorces

- Click Here to Close Menu -