Iran might not be the first destination you consider for your next vacation, but the ancestral home of the former Persian empire has a number of breathtaking destinations to consider.
The village of Masouleh finds itself tucked into the Alborz Mountain range in northern Iran. The medieval village is more than just a look back in time. Every step you take is punctuated by the magnificent views of the surrounding peeks.
When the village was first being constructed, residents had the dual problem of needing to protect their livelihoods from the floodplain in the valley below, but found the brusque winds at the top of the mountain were too much to bear. The solution was a village about halfway to the summit, but the steep slopes begat a different architectural challenge.
In order to maximize their use of space, residents built the byways of the town on top of the roofs of their houses. The roofs were constructed out of a combination of clay, stone, and wood.
Each dwelling was uniquely designed to contend with the moist climate of the region, as well as the wear and tear caused by pedestrians and the chores required by daily life. The homes have a large picture window facing out of the mountainside, which allows for ample sunlight to warm and dry each home. During the coldest days of winter, however, many families would huddle in their back rooms that were insulated by a thick layer of clay.
The small village’s main industry these days is tourism, as travelers from all of the world want to come visit the town built on a roof top. Even the markets are built on the roofs of the houses below, and locals can be seen winding their way across the narrow passes, as the ascend and descend the steep, stone staircases.
For tourists coming to visit the area, most of the hotels are located on the lowest levels of the mountain, along with the various rooftop restaurants. If you’re looking for peace and quiet, however, the ascent towards the summit is worth it.
With their approachable demeanors, and easy going red carpet attitude, Anna Faris and Chris Pratt seemed like a match made in heaven. It, therefore, broke our collectives hearts when they announced this past summer that they were planning to divorce after eight years of marriage and nearly a decade as a couple. In a joint statement they issued on social media, they shared that they’re doing what they can to make the transition easiest on their five year old son, Jack. Following a deafening silence in the wake of their joint separation statement, the couple is finally ready to open up to the public about their split.
In Their Words
Following their devastating joint announcement of their split, the star crossed couple has mostly kept quiet about what went wrong.
Now, they’re finally speaking out about the downfall of their relationship. But what was it that led to the split in the first place?
Anna Faris and Chris Pratt have been married for over eight years, since their 2009 wedding. Their picture perfect romance came of age during the rise of social media, and their super cute Instagram posts sharing their lives together made us believe in fairy tales.
It was jarring, therefore, when they announced this past August that they were planning to separate and would be working on co-parenting their only son, Jack. It makes us ask, was their love the real deal or just a Hollywood smoke screen?
Both Were Famous
Both Faris and Pratt were famous in their own right. Faris had starred in most the films in the horror parody franchise, Scary Movie, placing her on Hollywood’s radar.
She followed that up with a number of successful comedic film roles, firmly cementing her place as Hollywood royalty. Chris Pratt first gained national attention when he began starring in the TV comedy, Parks and Recreation. But despite their combined successes, it seems the couple struggled to support each other’s careers.
The Past They Shared
Though the pair didn’t meet until 2007, Anna and Chris were drawn to each other in part by their shared past. Both grew up in Washington state, living roughly 20 minutes apart throughout their childhoods.
Pratt once said, “We both got our start in horror spoofs. We both did an animated movie for Phil Lord and Chris Miller. We both made our careers playing guileless nitwits for laughs. We both have parents that have suffered with MS. The similarities go on and on.”
Anna Faris began her acting career at nine years old when she appeared in a production of Danger: Memory! At the Seattle Reparatory Theatre.
Though she supplemented her income throughout high school with small acting jobs here and there, she never expected to become an actress. But in 1999, she starred in an indie horror film, Lovers Lane, a role which was well received by critics, even if the film was not. Anna, it seemed, was finally on the road to stardom.
Faris may only have been 22 when she appeared in Lovers Lane, but the film had a profound effect on her future for the next few years, not only jump starting her career, but introducing her to her co-star, Ben Indra.
The pair hit it off and quickly began dating before marrying in 2004. The marriage was to be short-lived, however, as tension quickly developed when Anna’s career took off and Ben’s shriveled up. It was fate that Anna met Chris Pratt when she did.
Chris Pratt always had an inkling that he was destined for fame that he mostly chalked up to classic overconfidence, since he hadn’t even considered performing when the idea first took root.
But in his early adulthood, he fell victim to lazing about, finding himself homeless in Hawaii. That quickly changed, however, when in a Hollywood twist, Pratt was “discovered” while waiting tables in Maui. Like Anna Faris, he began his career in an indie horror flick, in his case called Cursed Part 3.
Beloved By Everyone
Chris Pratt seemed to have it all during his high school years. He was a talented athlete and an excellent student.
Socially, he was comfortable among the many disparate social groups present in any high school, as it seemed the charm he still relies on today had already developed early on in his teenage years. He was so well liked, that his fellow classmates even chose him to speak at their high school graduation. There wasn’t a dry eye left when he’d finished.
From Hawaii To Hollywood
Chris Pratt struggled to fit himself into the academic mold. After only one semester of community college, he dropped out, earning money by selling discount tickets and as a daytime exotic dancer.
But it still wasn’t what Pratt was looking for, prompting him to move to Hawaii. He didn’t fare much better there, finding himself tanned from days spent surfing, but living out of a van and a tent on a beach. It was lucky he was discovered when he was.
Staying Down To Earth
Even as Pratt’s career began taking off, it was his down to earth persona that drew people towards him. Chris seemed poised to be one of those stars that no matter how famous he became, he could always hang with the guys from home.
In a profile of the young actor from his home town, it was speculated that his heart would always be in Lake Stevens, Washington, but they weren’t prepared for just how much fame can change a person.
A Different Track
Pratt’s career didn’t have quite the same upwards trajectory that Anna’s did. As she quickly made a name for herself as a comedy star, Pratt struggled to parlay his first role into career success.
He managed to eek out a living via some small television roles he landed, but fate was on his side when he was cast as Anna Faris’s on-screen boyfriend in Take Me Home Tonight in 2007. However, Pratt would have his work cut out for him, as Faris was still married.
It Changed Everything
When Anna Faris arrived to the first table read of Take Me Home Tonight, she hadn’t expected to fall in love. Regardless of her expectations, her personal life was secretly on the rocks.
Pratt was instantly smitten with the comedienne, which he later described as being “like magnets”. Pratt longed to be with Faris, but as long as she was still married, he focused his attention elsewhere, embarking on a series of flings with background actresses. Faris couldn’t help but notice.
In Another Life
In 2015, Pratt told Elle about the early days after they met, “Our personalities meshed. She was a goofball. She liked to have fun. It was impossible to offend her.
I just remember thinking, ‘Wow, in another life, that’s who I want to be with—we would be so good together, I just know it,'” Luckily, the pair would spend plenty of time getting to know one another as they were playing love interests opposite each other in the film.
She Was Jealous
Despite her marriage status, Anna Faris has recently shared that she was quite jealous of the other women Chris was keeping company with throughout the shoot of Take Me Home Tonight.
Faris went on to add that Pratt was ever the gentleman, accompanying her to her door to drop her home at night, and even helping her find a lost credit card without once trying to push things further as long she was committed to someone else. His kindness made her swoon.
On Its Last Legs
Even with their growing attraction to one another, Pratt wouldn’t be the one to push Faris over the edge with regards to leaving Ben Indra.
She shared in her recent autobiography that it was actually co-star Topher Grace who raised the question of leaving Indra to Faris. After a wild night out with the cast that Faris opted out of, Grace asked why she was staying with her husband when he saw the behavior he had engaged in the night before.
A Wake Up Call
Grace’s comments to Faris about Indra’s hard partying behavior were a wake up call to the actress. Though she knew their marriage was on the rocks, it had been hard to admit to herself just how bad it really was.
Following her conversation with Topher Grace, Faris’s attraction to Pratt was also becoming more undeniable. She was at a personal crossroads and was desperately seeking guidance as to how she should navigate such a sensitive situation.
The Final Straw
Following a cast outing that took place at Chris Pratt’s home, Anna was in a tizzy. She finally confided in another co-star, Dan Fogler that she thought she was ready to split from Indra.
Faris recently wrote, “Dan also told me that if I was going to leave my husband, I had to be a surgeon with a scalpel about it. Do it immediately and effectively, he said.” Fogler’s words seemed to be the final push Anna needed.
He Didn’t Believe Her
Anna swiftly informed Ben Indra that she was finally leaving him. In a candid comment, she wrote that she felt “like a villain” in speaking her truth, even though it was what she needed for her own well being.
“[E]ven on the phone I had to repeat myself a number of times before he took me at my word. “You’re just tired; you’re really tired,” he responded at first. I just said: “Nope, I’m leaving you.” And that was that,” she wrote.
Her Fame Destroyed Him
By 2014, Faris was ready to discuss what went wrong in the course of her first marriage. As her career began to take off, Indra’s career hit a road block.
He’s faded into such obscurity that he doesn’t even have a Wikipedia page and hasn’t had an acting role in over 12 years. “That kind of destroyed my marriage,” said Faris in an interview with Marie Clare in 2011. “The divide became too great.” But the struggle wasn’t over just yet.
Reaching An Agreement
By the time Anna Faris and Ben Indra finalized their divorce settlement, it was 2008, and Faris was on a hot streak. The release of the chick flick comedy, House Bunny, was imminent, and she also had a full slate of movies on her schedule, which would be released the following year.
Due to the disparity of their success, Faris agreed to pay him $900,000 in addition to evenly dividing up the rest of their acting royalties and real estate holdings.
Faris’s break up with Indra made her feel free for the first time in years. Even though Pratt was still on her mind, she knew she needed to take some time to explore other people first.
Faris began a stint of serious partying, coupled with a bunch of random flings. She also boosted her confidence by getting cosmetic enhancers, both for her bust, a decision she is still happy about, as well as getting lip fillers, a decision she regretted.
When Faris had finally gotten the partying out of her system, she recalls pretty much knocking on his door asking him to take her, body and soul.
But far from being a wild romp in the hay, she wrote that their first physical encounter was intimate in a way that she had ” never experienced before.” The two actors felt completely in sync with one another, and their relationship quickly progressed.
Chris’s Dream Comes True
Following their engagement in 2008, Pratt let slip in an interview with People, “I knew I wanted to marry her pretty soon [after I met her].
It took a while for me to admit it, because it would be crazy to be like, ‘I want to marry you’ the first day I met her. But I could have!” He told Elle in a separate interview, “The day that she told me she was leaving her husband, I knew that I was going to marry her.”
The Depths Of Their Connection
Anna recalled in a 2015 appearance on The Late Late Show that the first time Chris gave her a personal tour of his apartment after they began dating that she couldn’t help but cry when she saw that he had an African stick bug framed on his wall.
“I was like, ‘I’ve met the man of my dreams. We both have dead bug collections. ‘Make out’ was a gentle way to put it.” It seemed as though the two were meant to be.
Chris shared in another interview, “We were friends first, but she left her husband at the end of the movie, and we started dating when we were back in LA. So we were friends, and I was there for her.
And we had just played love interests, so we had this tight bond spending so much time and spending nights in Phoenix, but we never crossed the line…The day that she told me she was leaving her husband, I knew that I was going to marry her.”
Putting A Ring On It
Though Chris was ready to marry Anna from the day they met, he held off proposing until the end of 2008, giving her time to work through her divorce before immediately remarrying.
They adorable pair upped the cute factor when Chris also began sporting his own engagement ring, figuring that if his fiancée had one, he should have one too. To the elated couple, they were truly a Hollywood fairy tale approaching their happily ever after.
Eloping In Bali
Anna and Chris never officially planned a wedding, keen as they were to be married. Instead, they piggy backed off of a friend’s wedding that they were attending in Bali, and decided to cap up the retreat by tying the knot themselves.
Luckily for the high profile Faris and beau Chris, whose fame was finally heading towards stardom, the last minute wedding meant that their nuptials were kept far from the press, even as their close family and friends were able to attend.
Waxing And Waning
What goes up must necessarily come down. As Chris Pratt’s career was on the rise, Anna Faris’s began to wind down ever so slightly. Pratt finally began to get widespread recognition when he was cast in Parks and Recreation.
Though his role was intended to be temporary, he charmed producers so much that he was signed on as a series regular. It was the boost Pratt needed, and suddenly the film offers kept rolling in. But it was tough for the competitive Anna to handle.
Jealousy Is A Two Way Street
Both Anna and Chris have been quite open about their jealousy towards each others costars or past partners, which is not the most stable foundation for a relationship.
When Faris was filming What’s Your Number? with Chris Evans, Pratt felt the envy well up inside him as his wife was starring opposite a different Chris. Pratt, however, had nothing to worry about, and ended up becoming such close friends with Evans that Faris reported jealousy of her own.
Failing At Romance
Faris revealed during the publicity tour for What’s Your Number? that she is very much unlike her character. Her intimate romantic encounters were few and far between outside of her two marriages.
She candidly revealed that intimacy made her so nervous, she mostly avoided the encounters. She admitted to being a bad romantic partner when things got intimate due to her anxieties. Luckily, Chris never seemed to mind much, though perhaps her comfort with him helped put her at ease.
A Knight In Shining Armor
Faris had plenty to gush about with regards to her and Pratt’s relationship. She shared that he was the king of romantic gestures, from French braiding her hair while the two spent a night at home to sending her hand written letters while he traveled during film shoots.
However, for all the gestures in the world, it just wasn’t enough for Faris, even if it seemed like she had managed to put together the perfect life.
Expanding The Family
Pratt and Faris announced in May 2012 that they were expecting their first child together, revealing that Faris was due to give birth in the fall of that year.
Shortly after their wedding, the pair had shared with reporters that they both hoped to have a large family, but found the timing to be tough to manage given their disparate busy schedules. It seemed Pratt had wanted to get started right away, but it was hard for Faris to give up her busy film schedule.
Chris and Anna welcomed their son Jack in August 2012, but his birth was not the happy arrival they’d expected. Anna went into labor two months early, giving birth to their infant son well ahead of schedule.
It was necessary for the premature infant to spend a month in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. They pleaded with the press for privacy during that scary time. Regardless of their fear, Jack’s parents knew their lives had just been changed for the better.
She Didn’t Love It
In discussing plans for future children, Anna reflected back on her first pregnancy with Jack, sharing on her podcast, Anna Faris is Unqualified, “We both love kids, Chris and I have both dreamed about having a big family,” Faris continued.
“But I didn’t love pregnancy … I was just bored. I was uncomfortable at times, and Jack came early. He came two months early, so now I’m in a high-risk pregnancy category, but I would love to.”
Denying How Bad It Was
Faris gave a candid interview with Redbook magazine in 2015 where she shared just how terrified they were. “My water broke in the middle of the night at seven months,” she said.
“We rushed to the hospital and they were able to halt active labor with magnesium.” But then she went into labor again only a week later. “I was in denial,” she added. “For hours I was like, ‘I’m just having indigestion.’”
Reigniting His Faith
As the couple prayed for their tiny son, the situation renewed Chris’s religious connections. He told People in 2014, “It restored my faith in God, not that it needed to be restored, but it really redefined it,” the actor said.
“The baby was so beautiful to us, and I look back at the photos of him and it must have been jarring for other people to come in and see him, but to us he was so beautiful and perfect.”
Chris Was In Tears
Faris shared more about son Jack’s birth on her podcast last year, saying “Chris’ face when Jack was being born is unforgettable,” she added.
“He was holding my hand and he was just sobbing. I was scared he would be turned off by the whole thing … That was amazing, seeing his face.” She said Chris’s amazement at Jack’s birth was among the reasons she really wanted to have at least one if not more children with Chris.
Dealt Another Blow
Just four days after their son Jack’s premature birth, a doctor came to Pratt and Faris with some bad news. The tiny premature baby’s brain was bleeding badly, and they didn’t know how it would affect him until he was much older.
It was possible that Jack could have sustained lasting brain damage, and they wouldn’t know for at least a year and a half. Faris wrote,“I only half heard the words as they came out of the doctor’s mouth. I was in complete shock.”
The Seeds Of Discontent
Chris’s renewed spiritual awareness seemed to begin the rift that would eventually tear his marriage apart. It also didn’t help their marriage that his fame had finally eclipsed hers.
He was so busy working that he didn’t see his son for five months while he was working on Guardians of the Galaxy, the 2014 sci-fi blockbuster. It was hard for Anna to be left at home with the baby, while Chris was galavanting across the globe.
Losing His Father
In 2014, tragic news reached Chris while he was on the set of Jurassic World. His father, who had been suffering from MS for over 15 years, had passed away.
He said he felt responsible for morale on set, and shared how he dealt with the loss, “I compartmentalized it all and dealt with it in my own way, but not openly for people to see. I got pretty angry and got drunk and almost got in a fight with a drug dealer outside of my hotel room.”
Jealous Of J-Law
Though Pratt and Faris had mostly been ignored by tabloids, even at the height of her fame, Faris recalls her publicist warning her that was about to change, since Chris would be starring opposite Jennifer Lawrence in Passengers.
Even with the warning, Faris said the tabloid rumors that Chris and J-Law had become involved romantically, even when she knew it wasn’t true, made her feel really insecure. The jealousy she felt with regards to the friendship and his career proved detrimental to their marriage.
In the last year, Anna became more vocal about her desire to have a second child, but it seems for as much as Chris wanted a big family in theory, he wasn’t willing to take time off from his career in order to help her out.
It seemed that Chris wasn’t shaping up to be the man Anna thought he was, and they ultimately let their competitive natures and careers get in the way of maintaining their marriage.
Not Best Friends
In the aftermath of their shocking break up, Anna has a lot of surprising revelations regarding their relationship.
In a recent interview with Cosmopolitan, she shared, “I was once told that I didn’t need a tight group of girlfriends because Chris should be my best friend. But I never bought that. The idea of your mate being your best friend — it’s over-hyped. I really believe that your partner serves one purpose and each friend serves another.”
Anna finally got candid with listeners of her podcast. One of her fans called in asking for relationship advice, to which Anna responded that she’d “made mistakes.”
She continued, “Life is too short to be in relationships where you feel this isn’t fully right or somebody doesn’t have your back, or somebody doesn’t fully value you.” It seems like her resentment of Chris’s career finally simmered over, as the statement is a complete reversal of her previous descriptions of his unwavering devotion to her.
Editing Out Pratt
It recently came to light that Faris purposely left out a chapter of her book in the wake of her break up, as it detailed how she and Pratt dealt with keeping up their relationship long distance.
In light of this, she commented, “There is no finish line when it comes to relationships, and I think the search for one will just make you frustrated. So I have no illusions that this book is done and now I can close the door on my past.”
Breaking Their Silence
Pratt and Faris have finally broken their silence on their split. Though they have vocally supported one another since their joint announcement, and Faris has even dedicated her upcoming book to Pratt, they have mostly kept quiet.
Recently, it was revealed that they’re in couples therapy, though Faris has stated that fans shouldn’t get their hopes up. In response to a request for relationship advice she later added, “Don’t be afraid to feel your independence if things aren’t right.”