Janet Jackson and Wissam Al Mana have revealed that they were secretly married last year. Jackson is the Grammy and Emmy award winning singer and actress while Al Mana is a wealthy fashion tycoon who runs a family business with his two brothers. US Weekly reports that his “father is the founder and owner of the Almana Group, a Qatar-based luxury lifestyle enterprise that works with companies in industries as diverse as luxury cars and food services.” Al Mana, known as “Sam,” “heads the family business fashion portfolios” and is reported to have a net worth of $1 billion.
The couple’s engagement was revealed last year and rumors started that they were planning a lavish $20 million wedding. The persistent rumor is what prompted the private couple to announce they were already married. In a joint statement to Entertainment Tonight the couple stated, “The rumors regarding an extravagant wedding are simply not true. Last year we were married in a quiet, private, and beautiful ceremony.”
This is Jackson’s third marriage, and she seemed skeptical about the possibility of a third marriage. In an interview with Harper’s Bazaar, Jackson explained, “I'll put it like this: If God wants me to, then I will.” Despite spending her entire life as an entertainer and celebrity, Jackson has been able to keep her private life relatively private. Jackson’s first marriage at 18 to James Debarge united two singing family dynasties, but it only lasted three months and the marriage was annulled in 1985. Her second marriage to Rene Elizondo Jr. in 1991 was so secretive that it wasn’t publicly revealed until the couple announced they were separating in 1999. Jet Magazine reported that the marriage was one of the “best kept secrets in Hollywood.” In her most public relationship, Jackson dated record producer Jermaine Dupri for seven years before ending that relationship in 2009.
Jackson met and started dating Al Mana shortly after breaking up with Dupri. US Weekly reported that the couple met at a hotel opening in Dubai in April 2010 and were reportedly in love by that summer. In a joint interview with Harper’s Bazaar Asia, Al Mana said, “I'm fortunate enough to be dating my dream woman,” while Janet described her relationship with Al Mana as “a bond, a deep connection.”
ABC News reported Janet and Wissam sent a note asking that their “privacy is respected and that we are allowed this time for celebration and joy.” Here’s hoping that they get that chance.
In honor of Jackson's nuptials, here is a short portfolio chronicling her multifaceted career.
1. The Jackson Variety Show with the Jackson 5
2. Penny from Good Times
3. Different Strokes
4. "What Have You Done For Me Lately"
6. Rhythm Nation
8. Poetic Justice
9. Poetic Justice With Tupac
10. "The Best Things in Life are Free" — Janet w/ Luther Vandross. Mo Money Soundtrack video featuring the Wayans and Stacey Dash
11. Rolling Stone
13. "That's the Way Love Goes"
14. The Nutty Professor
15. Velvet Rope
16. "Got Til It's Gone"
17. All For You
18. Sex Symbol
19. "Love Will Never Do Without You"
21. Harper's Bazaar — High fashion
22. Wardrobe Malfunction
23. Damita Jo
24. Why Did I get Married?/Why Did I get Married, Too?
25. With Micahel
27. With hubby, Wissam Al Mana