Celine Dion and Rene Angelil’s wedding made headlines back in 1994, as Rene, a music manager, was 26 years older than his superstar protege wife.
In a new interview with Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush and Kit Hoover, the “Loved Me Back to Life” singer says her mother was very against her relationship with Rene.
“I have to say that for my mom he was not the prince charming — the ideal prince charming. It was very difficult,” Celine said.
Rene met Celine when she was 12, and he began managing her professional career. Within a few years, her view of him turned romantic.
“So maybe at 17, 18 years old, my feelings started to change for him. I kind of saw him differently. Make a long story short, she saw it coming too because she’s a mom — mom knows best,” the 45-year-old star said. “Maybe [when I was] 19 years old, [I told her] that I have some really strong feelings for Rene and he’s been married twice and he had three children. And she tried everything to kill him and to make me snap out of it!
“I was very frustrated and mad at her at first because I said, ‘It’s not just like a crazy thing. It’s real!’ But she tried to make understand that this kid tried twice before, he has three children, he’s not responsible,” she continued. “He knows how it works in show business. But you’re my daughter, you’re my baby, and I want the perfect prince charming for you.”
Eventually, Rene earned the love of her whole family (she has 13 siblings!), and her mother came around.
“She had no choice. Love won,” Celine said, adding that roughly 10 years later, she finally understood why her mother had been concerned. “It’s because the moms fight all the way, like, ‘This is wrong, this is not your age, this is not what I [hoped for you] --are you sure? I’m afraid you’re going to make a mistake.’”
Now, as a mother of three boys (Rene-Charles, 12 and nearly-3-year-old twins Nelson and Eddy), Celine said she wouldn’t be as understanding as her mother was if one of her sons wanted to marry a twice-divorced 45-year-old woman with children.
“If I reversed roles — when I had my first son, RC, if I think of him and he comes [to me] with this lady who has kids and she’s 45 and she think she knows best, [I’d be] like, ‘Take your hand off of my son,’” she continued.
Adding, “I don’t think I’ll be able to do it. So, [my mother] is a saint. God bless her heart.”
Celine and Rene’s relationship has happily defied the odds.
“For the year 2000, we renewed our vows, just to prove again that we were right!” she said with a laugh.
More Celine nuggets that had us joyfully beating our chests:
Is she planning to have more children?: “We’re not committed to having another child. Time flies. Time goes by fast… You have to be honest, it’s hard to say no more. I’m not saying I’m going to have another one. But it’s hard a mom to say, turn the page, the chapter is done. Because the machine is still working. So there is hope for that. But do we want it? It’s just hard to convince [yourself] to say no more.”
Does it get old singing, “My Heart Will Go On”?: “When you’ve been singing a song for 20 years, 15 years, it’s not like you’re anticipating to sing it tonight so much. But let me tell you something, why people play such a big role when you do live shows, when the curtain opens they make you forget that you sang it like, 3,000 or 500 million times before. They came and like — they got married to it or something. They want to hear that song. So they make you forget that you’ve sang it too many times and [I] kind of feel bad that I didn’t want to sing it 10 minutes ago and now I feel bad about it. It’s a good problem to have.”
Why was she afraid songwriters wouldn’t bring her songs after her six-year English album hiatus?: “I didn’t know what to expect. Projects started a little slower… we took it easy on our side a little bit like--the industry changed tremendously. I mean, they’re going to write for Rihanna and Beyonce and ‘My Heart Will Go On’ has been done. What are they going to do? Finally songs started to come in… Not that I feel like I’m starting my career all over again, but I am feeling good. They want to write songs for me still and I’m very thankful.”
On younger stars using sex to sell themselves and Miley Cyrus’ VMA performance: “I find personally that people are selling their soul and it’s very unfortunate. When you start in life with selling your soul, what else do you have? What else do you have to offer? It’s pathetic and it’s very sad for our children. It’s very sad for the new generation. I feel sorry for them. It hurts to watch. It hurts.”
Which reality shows have approached her to judge?: “Probably my husband because my husband gets the call. I don’t watch TV. So Rene deals with all those offers.”
The secret to her lasting marriage?: “Communication. Anything talking, communication. [It’s key] for marriage, for children, for anything.”
Celine’s new single, “Loved Me Back To Life” (written by Sia), is available on iTunes now. The album is set to be released on November 1.